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I just read a fiction book. The girl in the book was a runner (that was not the subject of the book at all, just a side fact). When asked her favorite foods, she replied "Almost anything white......rice, pasta, potatoes, milk, the same thing every athlete eats." Is this true about runners? In my non-fiction book about running it mentioned those are good but not to forget lean meats and especially fruits and vegetables. I haven't much experience with healthy eating. When I lived at home I ate whatever my Mom cooked, of course 9 times out of 10 it was terribly unhealthy. Now that I'm married, my husband and I cook seperate quick things for ourselves (he does the low-carb thing. Blech.) I don't mind learning to cook some things. I just need some ideas. I am not running much right now, I'm trying to get back into it after years and years (when I wasn't really a runner THEN, just learning). I run three days a week, 20 minutes at a time right now. What's a typical diet in the day of the life of a runner who is trying to lose weight? I need to know how to build my diet around my running cuz I want to get serious about it, but I want to lose weight too.

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I think some good lean protein can always be a good bet.

Mostly it's about what your body digests best before/during/after a run.
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well except for the milk, i'll eat most ( i said most Gdawg and you others)
white things, however i won't say i limit to them, i mean i eat red meatsm i eat all color veggies and some fruits. but i must admit to a lot of white meat a well, but for heart sense.
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it's kinda a paradox, no? you want to run to lose weight but at the same time you have to eat to run or you won't be efficiently running :?

i have found that lean proteins at both lunch and dinner are a great addition to my runnng diet, this coming from a previous vegetarian who gained alot of weight eating "no meat, no dairy". i existed on carbs cuz they had "no fat" and, alas, i had enough to go around!

lean protein helps build muscle which is torn down by running, especially running hard and running consistently. i have added the protein along with complex carbohydrates -- very little white flour stuff though -- only whole grain bread. we still eat white pasta cuz i can not get my kids to eat whole wheat noodles :umno:

complex carbohydrates, brown rice, whole grain bread, some fruits, along with protein at the same meal has the greatest effect for running repair and endurance, i think. the protein eaten with the carbohydrate will prevent an insulin spike which will prevent an insulin "low" that usually folllows a carbohydrate splurge (sleepy, no energy resulting from your body overkilling with insulin and putting you into a low blood sugar state)

i eat whole grain muffins for breakfast and ideally i should have an egg-white omlette with that. i try to repeat the protein/carb thing at every meal...lots of fruit for snacks and i have recently added alot of nuts (altho they are very calorie dense) they have a good amount of good fat which you need too.

basically, get rid of junk, it doesn't burn as energy, it goes straight to the fat cell storage bin garbage in~garbage out. gotta start learning to love the high-test foods. once you make the switch and can feel it in your running performance, i highly doubt you'll go back.

good luck and welcome to the forums!!
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The key is "everything in moderation". You've got to eat some carbs, some protein and some fat.
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The book is certainly fiction. Whiter is not better. In fact, the more color the better. The best diet for anyone, runners included, is whole-grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables and real lean meats. That being the case, you want the whole grain breads, those dark 100% whole wheat loaves. You want that brown rice and the dark beans, the black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, whatever turns ya on. You want the dark veggies, the yams, the squash, the peppers. You want the fruits with color; oranges, kiwis, grapes, figs, plums. And when it comes to meat, start thinking of it as a 'condiment'. It should be a small part of your diet.

As for how to adapt that to an athlete, the biggest thing to consider is the 'timing' of what you eat. Right after your workout, within 60 and within 30-minutes if possible is when to get your protein. Studies show you need that immediately to begin the rebuilding process that Rolling Rock mentions. In addition to a meal close after you do workout, if you are working out daily, which I suspect you're working yourself towards and what most runners do, is that you need to get the fat in your diet during the first twelve hours following the run versus the twelve hours before the next run. Again, studies show there is oxygen carrying capacity that gets hindered by elevated levels of fat/cholesterol when you go to exercise. Those levels drop dramatically by the twelve hour mark. So the time to get the dairy and other animals products on your plate before you get within twelve hours of your next run. Then during those remaining twelve hours before your run, try not to over eat and head out the door with a full stomach or a full colon. Contrary to what it seems fiber will do, true high fiber grains and veggies bulk up in your system, the keep you body regular and don't grease their way through like the junk foods will. So really focus on what you eat in the hours before a run, smaller servings, veggie based, without animal fats.

And lastly, if you want to lose weight, the best way I've found is miles, miles and miles. When you're just starting, it by no means is necessary to run them all. Get out there for evening walks, everyday. At lunch hour, click off a couple miles of walking. If your 3-runs a week give you about 10-miles, then triple or quadruple that with walking and burn, burn, burn those calories. Just my own experience, but the real weight loss burn is going to hit when you're pumping out 30, 40 and 50 miles a week. How much you run is up to you, but you can certainly walk whatever it takes to make the scale go where you want it to.

G'luck!!

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I agree with a lot of this. (All of it, actually) My only problem with beans is the by-product. A little embarrassing while running with a partner. But they were by far one of the best foods--paired with rice (sometimes even white) was awesome. I lost most of my weight (pre-illness) by walking and cutting out unnecessary fats. Like buying light butter/sour cream, FF milk, etc. I limited myself to 20-25 grams of fat a day and walked everyday that I could. I lost a bunch--which prompted me to move forward into running.

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Very interesting. Some exellent info here guys. Thanks!
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Absolutely. I learned a lot from this!
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