To Run Like A Runner

You need to eat like one.

Simple as that.

It kills me to see some people busting their butts by putting in the time to run crazy distances and train hardcore not to see the results they deserve. Or worse – an injury.

I am currently reading Running For Women by Kara Goucher. I must admit, I have a major girl crush. She is so candid in the fact that she struggled with emotional eating when she suffered two injuries. Yet, she came back strong and faster than ever. She is going to London for crying out loud! Her chapter on nutrition really spoke to me. Coming from an athelete, I could relate to her advice/tips more so than a fashion magazine that puts women on a low calorie diet. Running 65-75 miles a week requires lots of fuel, so eating is essential to reduce the risk of stress fractures, injuries and burnout. I don’t have any eating “rules” per say – except two.

  1. 1500 mg of Calcium every day. No ifs ands or buts about it.
  2. Carbs at every meal. Usually 2-4 servings.

When I post reviews/a reciepe – it is usually only one part of my meal. I normally have a couple extra sides to make sure I am getting enough. Thus, I’d thought I would show you a typical lunch for me. Increasing my carbohydrates during lunch has really improved my performance. Enter a little Italian love <3

I think you all can tell I love me some Trader Joe’s & I have loved eggplant ever since I tried it about a year ago. Top the purple vegetable with some tomato sauce, seasonings and cheese and the meal sounds promising. Plus, how can you go wrong with ingredients like this:
Although, the last Italian meal I had from Trader Joe’s was less than stellar so I really had no expectations for this. However, my tastebuds were blown away. Not only was the sauce flavored perfectly with basil & oregano the tomatoes used for the sauce tasted surprisingly fresh. No “tomato sauce from a jar” taste at all. The cheesy had a rich mozzarella flavor that was abundant throughout the eggplant. Oh and the eggplant – well lets just say it was hearty and savory. Not soggy at all. If you have a local Trader Joe’s – this should be added to your list asap. Crazy good. I mean just look at the cheese!

Rating –> 5 Coffee Beans

Alas, no meal Italian meal is complete without some veggies and pasta. My veggie of choice is two sauteed zucchini seasoned with garlic powder, basil & Italian seasoning. The pasta is spinach pappardelle, which taste oh so good. Not to mention I love how wide the noodles are!

And that lady & gents is one of the many ways I like to fuel up.

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51 thoughts on “To Run Like A Runner

  1. That looks like a yummy meal!
    And i agree – i honestly don’t get how people can i eat so little while running so much.
    Some bloggers make me pretty worries eggwhite omelet, 6 mile run, chicken salad, a little strenghttraining, stirfry – EAT!

  2. I love this. I always think blogging makes it look like some people don’t eat very much. It’s so misleading. Plus to be distance runners we do need lots of fuel!!

  3. That looks AMAZING. :)

    As a newbie runner, I’ve been trying to figure out if I’m getting enough calories and whatnot to balance out my new fitness venture. I’m not running the distances you are, but it is definitely something I need to be thinking about!

  4. oh do you recommend this book?? We are starting a book club paired with a run at work and the books are all themed around exercise / running and we are looking for recommendatiosn!

  5. I wish we could get meals like that in shops here! It looks out of this world, as does the pile of veg.
    I think as far as food rules go, if you’re going to have any food rules, those two have to be up there with the best… hooray for carbs :-)

  6. Amen Kailey! SO true! When I was training for my first (and only ;) ) marathon in 2010 I DEFINITELY was not fueling as much as I should have been. I was so flawed in thinking that it was an opportunity to lose weight, rather than focusing on nourishing my body. It hurts me to read some of these blogs where women train like crazy and eat grass all day long, and those magazines are NOT helping either!

    Sorry for the rant haha

  7. Pasta is a food of the Gods and I think active people should eat a lot more of it! :-) This is great post and more people should eat like you! ;-)

  8. YES, such an important topic! You can’t work out AND cut calories, that’s just crazy! You’ll never get stronger/faster/healthier and are putting ridiculous strains on your body if you do so. The New Rules of Weightlifting for Women brings this up too (a book I’m a fan of and that’s good for the non-runners like me out there).

  9. I have been looking for a good female running book, so as we speak I am downloading this on my Kindle :)

    I totally agree with you on the need to fuel your body with the right energy in order for it to perform at it’s best! I am a carbs girl too. Check out my last post on increasing low GI carbs in your diet.. you look like you do a good job at it!

  10. Such an informative post, and a great reminder too! I like that you take lots of calcium in a day and although i’m really good with many of my nutrition habits, I don’t put thought into calcium very often….so strange! But now I’ll make SURE to be intentional with it. :D

  11. Totally agree! You have to fuel like an athlete if you want to be one. This goes with any sport.
    It drives me mad when I see magazines post “train like an olympian” and then give a 1200 calorie diet plan. Noooo.
    You will developed osteoporosis in the long run. Calcium is super important in our diets. I have to be so careful with calcium intake because right now I have osteopenia and have had lots of broken bones in the past.
    That eggplant looks super tasty too!

  12. This looks so gorgeous!!
    I’m with you, even though I exercise because it’s good for you as opposed to something I enjoy a lot :P, it makes me sad when I see people losing weight so quickly because of exercising and eating no carbs!
    Kara is doing such an awesome job raising awareness through her inspiring story :)

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

  13. Always helpful to know which products are good out there, thank you for taking time to explain a bit more about this one :) I have a Trader Joes about 25 minutes from me… so when I go, I go with a plan, and hope to goodness I don’t forget anything!

  14. I love Trader Joe’s but the nearest one to my house is about an hour away! We need to take a cooler in order for everything we buy to stay cold/frozen/fresh. I will look for this next time I am there!

  15. Haha, I am not a huge runner (6-8 miles/week for me!), but I should take a page out of your book re: calcium intake… I broke my hand 3 weeks ago! :( I’ve switched to yogurt as the basis of my breakfasts now, so I know I’m at least getting closer to the right calcium intake!

  16. I’m so jealous of everyone’s TJs finds–there isn’t even one store in my state yet! But a big YES to carbs! Lately I’m really loving quinoa pasta and homemade waffles to get my carb fix. I’m not a runner but I work out every day and I can’t live on just veggies and protein alone–that wouldn’t be as fun anyways ;)

  17. Awesome! When I was competitively skating 9 hours a day, fuel and nutrition were things that I had to take seriously……though for many years, I ate all of the wrong things to fuel and repair my muscles! Any athlete should do some reading on nutrition…and some experimentation so they can put forth their best performance! Great post!

    Also, I FINAAAAAAAAAAAALLY hit up TJ’s….after like nearly 2 years. And yeah, I don’t know how I went so long without it!! I’ll definitely be back in 2 or 3 weeks …not 2 years! :D And I think I’ve had this dish before…and I remember really enjoying it!

    Hugs and happy weekend! :D

  18. Yes! Even though society is past the Atkins diet phase, I still think a fear of carbs exists. It kills me to see active individuals “fueling up” with just veggies and protein. Carbs are necessary people!

    Also that’s awesome that you’re so adamant about eating calcium every day – that’s something I need to get better at!

  19. Eggplant Parm is one of my all-time favorite meals, but roasting the eggplant, layering the ingredients, and then baking the entire thing requires lots of TLC! Leave it to Trader Joe’s to come to the rescue with a clean, instant and delicious option!

    I love your two food rules. Calcium is SO important! Osteoporosis runs in my family, so as an athlete/avid exerciser, I have to be extra careful. Today I was reading that it’s just as important to pay attention to the amount our bodies are excreting as it is to the amount we’re consuming. If we eat lots of fruits and vegetables, we’ll have an alkaline balance, which prevents the excretion! This was something I never knew!

  20. I most certainly do not shop at Trader Joes. This needs to be my grocery store apparently. I wish the hubs favored healthier foods so he would agree to make the very short drive and shop there with me! Eggplant Parmesan has always been somethig I’ve wanted to try. Maybe I should start with this one!

  21. I believe it! I found that when I add variety to my diet (meat and dairy included for me!) I have more energy and am able to run like a champ. Diet is everything!

  22. thanks for the reminder I almost forgot to take my calcium just now hehe! I’m definitely anal about that too, I supplement with 1500mg/day and try to get as many nondairy sources of calcium as I can (usually soymilk…my stomach can’t tolerate cow milk products so I dunno how much nutrition I’d be getting out of eating them but ah well). and YES to carbs. I totally used to underfuel all the time and it got me nowhere but burnout and probably contributed to my injury cycle a bit. I am kind of in love with Kara’s book too, and her whole experience with injury, weight etc, and I gotta say, I can’t wait to be able to train again cuz now I know how to do things right! Oh and I love TJ’s Italian noms!! have you had any of their raviolis before? they’re my fave!

  23. Oh boy, I def need more calcium in my body. Being Asian with a family history of osteoporosis does not bode well for me. I wish there was a Trader Joe’s in Texas :(.

  24. I wish I would have known this yesterday! I did my monthly T’s run (there aren’t any on my side of the state) and I debated over this. I will have to pick it up next time for sure!

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