What should I eat before a 5k race or parkrun?

Wendover Woods parkrun


Q: What should I eat before a 5k race or parkrun?

You will probably run your 5k in less than 40 minutes, perhaps even less than half of that. Even at 40 minutes, your body will have ample energy already stored. A recreational runner does not need anything special before a race, or during a 5k race for that matter.

Carbohydrates take about 30 minutes to kick in so it’s not worth eating those, your body will already have an ample carbohydrate store. You are just consuming more weight and that will slow you down.

So NO pasta the night before, if anything it will slow you down. Eat easily digestible stuff

A very light breakfast of what you normally eat 2 hours before you run will be fine.

I find that a banana and some caffeine (in the form of a strong not too milky coffee) about an hour before the race are best for me.

After the race, you will need to rehydrate with about 500ml of fluid and if you are being super efficient you will have a little bit of protein within 30 minutes of finishing. Both of which help your body recover.


The following post goes into that in MUCH more detail and gives you a wide range of tips to get that elusive 5K PB/PR; some of them are science-based and some a bit silly and some a bit of fun. but there are some supplement- and kit-based tips that will make you TENS of seconds faster this saturday…even the good people.


How to get a parkrun PB – Top *100* Tips for your best 5K time PB PR


Sex the night before a Triathlon or 5k? Good or Bad?


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