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These Superfoods Will Elevate Your Running To The Next Level


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One of the best things about running is that it typically goes hand in hand with an overall healthier lifestyle. You don’t want heavy foods in your stomach before running three miles; and you’re more likely to make better decisions after you’re done, because you feel so great. As you get healthier, your new approach bleeds into every part of your life. You start eating better, walking and riding your bike instead of driving, and taking good care of yourself. Running teaches you to listen to your body and gives you the motivation to fix what ails you, physically and emotionally.

A big part of setting yourself up for success as a runner is through your diet. Which is why runners get a little obsessed with the idea of “superfoods.” This mysterious food group has a loose definition. Generally speaking, we’re talking about food that’s nutrient-rich and particularly good for health. In running, it’ll likely be something that gives you energy, reduces inflammation, or boosts endurance. If it gives you extra juice in the back end of your run, chances are it’s in that superfood category and runners are buying it by the bushel (or carton, or caseload).

These running superfoods will help to make you the best runner you can be.

Blueberries

Blueberries aren’t just a punishment for vile children who chew gum in the candy factory that you mysteriously run, they also help you with your running! A group of researchers in North Carolina found that athletes who were given blueberries in conjunction with running burned fat for much longer afterward than those who weren’t, and also, absorbed polyphenols better. Blueberries are super rich in polyphenols which are an antioxidant compound that reduces inflammation, improves artery function, and lowers your cholesterol and blood pressure.

Best of all for runners: Blueberries are invaluable in helping your muscles recover from damage.

Sweet Potatoes

We’ve all heard or (done some) carbo-loading before a big race. But exactly how much carbo-loading you should do is confusing. Should you eat a bowl of hearty pasta or order 23 identical Baskin Robbins ice cream cakes that say, “Got Get ‘Em Killer” and eat them entirely by yourself on the floor of your kitchen? It’s a tough call. You want to have stored up energy to burn, but you also don’t want to crash from a sugar high that bottoms out suddenly. Well, here comes sweet potato walking slowly down the stairs as “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None the Richer plays and we realize just how beautiful and carb-y sweet potato was all along, but especially without those glasses.

Sweet Potatoes are the best way to get your carbs in as a runner. They do the job, but they also have a low glycemic index rating which prevents blood sugar spikes after you eat. And they’re filled with things like beto-carotene which will help protect your skin from the sun on the trails, and Vitamin A and C. Sweet potatoes are just a food that it’s time to fall in love with for real. Not just because you made a bet that you could turn it into the prom queen. They’re beautiful inside AND out.

Salmon

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