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Race Day Breakfast

Hi all, 

Hopefully I'll get a little response as new to the nutrition side of life, previously when taking part in the sport I just ate what I felt like (but that was back in 91-93 when I was relatively young and no forums were on hand to assist) - however, now I am older and a lot wiser (hopefully), I believe it is extremely important hence my question/plea for some advice.

I am enquiring about race day breakfast's what foods specifically people have found helpful (energy wise to endure 6-7 hours and avoiding the trip to portaloo's) - I've read all the quantum physics and mathematical advice out there but still none the wiser... So looking for something along the lines of avoid: Fruit and Fibre/Toast - try: Bananas etc. Or at best a few peoples race day breakfasts so I can test and adjust what works for me.    

Additionally it may assist to know what my goal is, I am looking at completing the middle distance 70.3 Mallorca event in May 2015, and as such looking to tailor my race day preparation to a fine art (1. as I'll be aboard and 2. to ensure no GI distress during my lengthy event), further help along these lines would be fantastic as travelling aboard can upset the stomach and appetite even more. 

Thanks for any time, assistance and advice, all the best - JH 


  • Hi .. here is something that might help you  http://triathlonresearch.org/triathlon-nutrition/ .. best of luck

  • I find it starts the night before with pre race food prep. to avoid tummy niggles in the morning, avoid oily foods and fast foods, curries etc.

    Also avoid foods that will lay heavy on the stomach and take a long time to digest. avoid red meats, stick to chicken fish. Although car loading is good make sure they are good carbs. try to avoid potatoes of any kind. pasta is obviously well known for being a good carb loader the night before a race so some good pasta dishes but maybe not with creamy sauces or cheesy sauces that could cause indigestion. light clean meals. For breakfast I always go for porridge a good 3 hours before a race. usually with bananas, blueberries and some honey. fantastic to get you ready to race. you don't want to go into a race feeling hungry so if you get peckish say an hour before(this can happen because the nervous energy kicks in) nibble on a chocolate rice cake or two and then down a carb gel about 20 mins before the off.

    I also usually have a black coffee an hour before for a caffeine kick.

    This tends to work for me. and never have any troubles. hope it helps and good luck.
  • Thanks Adrian - sounds like great advice, I appreciate the time and explanation you've give to assist me 

  • a relatively sensible sized portion of porridge for me too, I experimented with big breakfasts before tris and ultramarathons and usually led to tummy trouble.

    I tend to avoid massive carbo loading either the night before or too much that morning as protection against 'paula radcliffe' moments . Unavoidable on a 6-12 hour ultra though sometimes

  • Thanks Thomas - discovered this article if anyone else is interested - it seems porridge or oats is the main staple - will try that - thanks again  


  • Andrew4Andrew4 Posts: 190

    James - this is my tried and test (Olympic) nutrition plan.

    Race - 3hours Muesli with milk and banana, bagel with butter and marmite (peanut butter is preferred but many but I can't stand the stuff)

    As I drive to race I might snack on flapjack or a bit of chocolate brownie.

    Race - 45 minutes caffeine, source either a pill (e.g. pro plus), caffeine containing bar (see race -30) or a caffeine rich drink (ideally not the fizzy kind but as a last resort)

    Race - 30 minutes is an energy bar, if I am taking a caffeine bar this might be slightly earlier

    Throughtout the three or so hour period I will normally aim to take down 1litre electrolyte drink.

    Hope my two pennies worth helps. I know a lot of people struggle with stomaching caffeine so definitely test that out (and whether you can deal with caffeine gels on the go).

  • Thanks Andrew - extremely helpful - appreciate the time pal 

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