A Dietitian’s Summer Fitness Routine & How I Fuel For It

After wrapping up my marathon this spring, I have decided it’s time to run another one this fall – and I’m aiming to beat my time!

Let me take you through what my summer marathon training routine will look like, along with how I fuel and recover from that training.

As I highlight fueling and recovery routine, I’ve partnered with the Canadian Beverage Association (CBA) to showcase the role of 100% juice in my diet for Juice Celebration Month.  100% juice is fantastic fuel and recovery for my workouts due to the natural sugar content (the quickest fuel), electrolytes and the water content – more on that shortly.

Let me start by explain the training routine:

Training

My training will be consisting of about five workout days each week, with two rest days. Those workouts will consist of:

Weekly Long Runs

The weekly long runs are key to build endurance. I will be doing them on Saturdays most weekends. These runs I take at a slower pace, as I am working to build my distance back up slowly. I will increase the distance of these by no more than 10% each week.

Easy Recovery Runs
These runs I will be doing about twice a week. The purpose of these is to get my body used to running on tired legs. They will be done after my long runs and after a speed workout throughout the week. They will also help speed up my recovery from those runs.

Speed Work
Speedwork is actually one of the most crucial parts of marathon training (in addition to endurance and strength training, of course). It gets you out of your comfort zone, forces you to run with more efficient form, teaches you recovery tools, and prepares you for the rush of adrenaline you’ll experience on race day. If you always train at the same speed, you can’t expect to race any differently. Speed workouts also help increase your VO2 max, or how efficiently your body uses oxygen. The more oxygen you can consume and use properly throughout your run, the longer you’ll be able to hold a pace.

I will be doing about two sessions of interval/ speedwork during marathon training.

Strength Training
Personally, this is what I have to work on. Strength training doesn’t come naturally to me. However, running faster requires stronger muscles. Your legs, hips, and core all need to be strong to propel you forward with more power in each step. I’m incorporating two strength training sessions a week through videos from Youtube or the Pelaton app. My preference is to use body weight strength training workouts or light weights.

Fueling

Fueling correctly is equally as important as doing the proper training. Especially in the warm, summer months, when your body is working extra hard during the workouts.

I will do my easy runs fasted, however I need to have fuel in my body during the long runs and speed workouts. I also bring fuel with me during my long runs. The perfect pre-run and during-run fuel is 100% juice. Let me explain why.

100% juice contains only naturally occurring sugar from fruit. The sugar content in one 250 ml glass of orange juice is about the same as two medium oranges. I prefer to drink juice right before a long run vs eating the whole fruit, because I don’t need the fibre before a run. Having fibre before a run can slow down the speed that our body can uptake or use the sugar for fuel. Too much fibre can also lead to gastrointestinal cramps – which is not desirable during a long run.

During the summer long runs, I love to make a homemade electrolyte drink with 100% fruit juice. 100% fruit juice is a great source of essential nutrients and phytonutrients. In fact, those who drink 100% fruit juice have a better quality diet than people who don’t! People who drink fruit juice have higher intakes of vitamin A, C, folate and magnesium. The 100% fruit juice electrolyte drink will replace minerals lost in sweat and also provide the needed hydration for during the run.

My favourite homemade sports drink is below. Simply mix everything together and store in pitcher.

  • 2 cups of 100% juice (my preference is Orange Juice)
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp magnesium citrate

Right after my long runs, it’s important to fuel within a half hour – I usually make a smoothie when I get home with (you guessed it) 100% fruit juice, a banana and some protein powder. I will then have a full meal an hour or two later with carbohydrates, veggies and protein.

There you have it – my summer workout and fueling routine! Thank you again to the Canadian Beverage Association for working with me to bring you this post. I hope this has provided some information for how 100% fruit juice can be part of and enhance your healthy diet.

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