When you run to lose weight, running is only a tiny part of the equation. Your diet when you run will be the most important thing, and what determines whether you lose weight or not.
One reason for this is that many runners overestimate how many calories they burn when they run and often overeat. It can lead to weight gain, not weight loss. It would help if you had a healthy and balanced diet when you exercise running, and it will help you reach your goal of losing weight by running.
If you run 10 or 100 kilometers a week, are a meat-eater, or vegan, a runner, should focus on what you eat. There are four main areas of nutrition you should focus on. Eat vegetables and fruits in the colors of the rainbow. Choose the right carbohydrates. Select the correct fat in your diet, while the fourth is to get enough protein.
Food in the colors of the rainbow
Runners should aim to consume nine servings each day of colorful fruits and vegetables. One serving is equivalent to medium-sized fruit, 1, 3 cups of dried fruits, 1 cup of raw vegetables, ½ cup of boiled vegetables, or 2 cups of salad.
Nitrates found in beets can make your muscles work more efficiently during exercise by reducing the amount of oxygen they need.
The tomatoes’ red pigment results from high levels of lycopene, an antioxidant that can reduce the risk of certain cancers.
High vitamin C intake can reduce upper respiratory tract infections and help lower heart rate during exercise. One cup of mango provides 75 percent of your daily needs for C.
Sweet potato provides more than three times your daily need for immune-boosting vitamin A in the form of beta-carotene. It is also full of carbohydrates to maintain a runner’s energy stores.
This green vegetable has vitamin C, vitamin K, and vision-protective beta-carotene. Use cabbage for soups, salads, and sandwiches.
Almost 70 percent of the fat found in this fruit is monounsaturated – the same type that makes olive oil especially heart-healthy. Half an avocado also provides 7 grams of fiber.
Eggplant, which has only 20 calories per cup, contains antioxidants with heart-protecting properties.
These superfruits have about twice as much antioxidant power as blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries. Consumption of many antioxidants can reduce damage to muscle tissue after exercise, speed up recovery and boost the immune system.
Banana contains potassium and fast-digesting carbohydrates. Potassium is essential in muscle contraction, with low levels associated with muscle cramps.
Celery root contains large amounts of vitamin K. A single cup covers 80 percent of your daily needs.
Runners need more carbohydrates than the average person, especially in the days before the marathon or other forms of endurance running. After all, carbohydrates are the body’s first choice in fuel and the best energy source for muscles. In general, runners should consume about 50 to 65 percent of the calories in the form of carbohydrates (the higher the amount of exercise, the higher the percentage of carbohydrates).
Whole-grain foods are made from whole grains, and you will find nutritious B vitamins, iron, magnesium, selenium, and fiber throughout the grain. It also keeps you full longer, helps you control weight, reduces cholesterol levels, and improves heart health.
Eat the right fats
Fat is an essential part of a runner’s diet, and it plays a crucial role in maintaining overall good health and increased performance when you run. Suppose you reduce your fat intake too much. In that case, you can become hungry, prone to damage, and lack essential vitamins and minerals. The key is to make sure you eat the correct type of fat.
Protein is essential for a healthy runner’s body for more reasons than you may realize. High protein intake helps maintain a robust immune system by stimulating white blood cells. This is important because, after an intense workout, your immune system has been weakened for about 4 to 5 hours, making you more susceptible to infections. Protein is also vital if you are trying to lose weight. And it helps keep your blood sugar levels steady, so you do not get hungry and feel the need to overeat. Because of this, the runners’ protein needs are higher than the average person’s. Every day, runners need at least 0.5 to 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of weight, and for a person of 75 kilos, it is about 75 grams. Ideally, you should spread your intake throughout the day and eat something at each meal and snack to get the most health benefits.