The Importance Of Carbs and Protein When Training for a Marathon

Making the decision to train for a marathon is a big commitment, and it usually means undertaking a complete overhaul of your routine.

Many of us training know how important our workout schedules are and we know why we need to allow our bodies to become accustomed to strenuous activity. A big part of that transformation to ensure that you’re successful in your fitness goals is your diet.

Your Diet

Our diets obviously play a very big part in our everyday lives – the food we eat determines just how well we operate and how healthy we are. Without the adequate fuel, your body isn’t going to be able to keep you on your feet, let alone help you cross that finish line.

When you’re sticking to a strict fitness routine and you’re taking part in more activity than you usually would carry out, your diet actually needs to change quite dramatically. Put simply; if you’re going to be working out more, you need to be eating more. More specifically, you need to make sure that your body is getting the nutrients that it needs to fuel your workout recovery and your fitness progression. If you’re not getting the right nutrition, you’re going to find it next to impossible to achieve those marathons dreams at all.

It can all be quite overwhelming and you might not even know where to start with changing up your diet. So, to help you out, here are a few key things you need to know about the two major types of macronutrients you need to be getting, when it’s best to eat them, and why.


When you’re training for long-distance running, it’s rather evident that you’re going to need a lot of energy. Running truly does take it out of you and it burns a lot of calories, so you need to make sure that you’re taking in more than you’re using up. Therefore, carbohydrates should be one of the most important macronutrients that you consider when it comes to increasing your daily intake.

Carbohydrates serve as our main source of energy as they help make up and maintain our body’s glycogen stores, which is where our energy comes from in the first place. As carbohydrates are digested, they provide you with the fuel you need to keep you on your feet for longer, which is especially important when endurance training. Without enough carbohydrates, you’re not going to be able to tie your shoe laces, let alone run an entire marathon.

Rather than just sticking to simple sugars, it’s more important to make sure that you’re eating a range of complex carbohydrates as they’re better for long-term energy release and are healthier in general. Complex carbohydrates, such as whole wheat pasta, oatmeal, and vegetables are digested more slowly, which means that you’re going to find that you have energy for much longer.


Another major macronutrient that’s vitally important to your daily training diet is protein. When you’re training and trying to build muscle, protein is one of the most important nutrients to have in abundance as it aids muscle growth and workout recovery.

If you’re not getting enough protein in your diet because you’re too full from eating so many of the carbohydrates you need, your body isn’t going to be able to maintain muscle mass. Protein is needed to have a sustainable amount of energy to provide the fuel required for muscle growth and repair. Without adequate protein, your muscle stores will break down, which is exactly what you don’t want. Likewise, a protein deficiency will leave you feeling lethargic and weak, and you’ll find yourself feeling empty even after eating a big meal. This can majorly impact your training performance and can leave you wondering why you’re just not making any progress.

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When trying to build muscle, protein is your best friend and one of your best sources of energy. Making sure that you get enough of the nutrient will allow you to continuously build muscle, and you’ll also find that you bounce back from a workout much quicker.

Though, it’s sometimes hard to ensure that you’re getting enough of it each day. Therefore, we recommended investing in clean protein powder without added sugars and chemicals. The brand Naked Nutrition features such protein powders making it easier to control what you’re consuming, including Grass Fed Whey Protein, casein protein and vegan protein powders. Supplementation via a powder is one of the simplest, easiest, and more flexible ways of hitting your required intake. It’s a great source of nutrition that can be added to all sorts of recipes, ranging from smoothies to pancakes to salad dressings. No matter what your specific tastes may be, you’ll be able to incorporate this supplement in a way that suits you, and it’s going to allow you to rest assured that you’re adequately fueling your body.

Since protein is great for workout recovery, it’s a good idea to treat yourself to a protein shake just after you’ve completed a workout. This way, you’ll be giving your body a store of fuel to help rebuild your muscles and keep you energized for the rest of the day ahead.

The key to being successful in your marathon training requires both a strict workout schedule and a balanced diet that provides you with the macronutrients that you need for your body to rebuild. While other nutrients, such as healthy fats, are also important, carbohydrates and protein are the two that should generally be at the forefront of your mind when considering how you’re going to change your diet to sustain your regime.

Making sure that you’re getting the proper fuel is majorly going to impact just how smooth your marathon training process is. Use this information and take a little time to plan ahead, and you’ll find yourself well on your way to completing that marathon.

By Experts from Naked Nutrition

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