Food is good for you.

6 Oct

I can’t run and now, I am officially sick. This sucks. I guess that means I have the opportunity to write what’s now on my mind. Good food. In the past, before any type of run, I’ve enjoyed eating bananas, hummus, peanut butter and homemade trail mix. Not in that order though. 🙂

I googled “Hummus” and “Marathon Runner”, to see the health benefits of hummus, to a runner. I didn’t really find anything interesting, but I did find some fantastic recipes in an old issue of Runner’s World (the original section was geared towards teenage runners, but is still applicable to adults).

At the risk of copyright infringement, I have listed a couple of great sandwiches for runners. These are the vegetarian-friendly options from the article because (if you’ve been paying attention), I’m vegetarian.

While I’m on the subject, the vegetarian diet is going really well. I’ve had no problems from the “lack of protein”. I read a great article that I wanted to share on this subject as well. Click here for more info.

I’d also like to ask for Shibanee’s (my cousin) opinion on this. She has a background in this subject and I trust her judgment.

In any case, here is the food….

Hummus Special Sandwich
What’s Inside: Hummus, feta cheese, tomatoes, red onions.
What’s Outside: Flatbread.
Starting Line: Spread hummus first. Grate feta cheese into fine bits. Dice tomatoes and onions. Sprinkle with vinegar for more spice.
Variations: Eliminate onions if you are concerned about stomach distress prior to a workout or race.
Testimonial: This is Deena Kastor’s (Olympic Marathoner) Athens ’04 special. “It’s a nice balance of protein, carbohydrate, minerals and vitamins,” she says Kastor. (And it can’t hurt in progressing toward your own Olympic goals.)

Mexican Black Bean Sandwich
What’s Inside: Black beans, tomato, bell pepper, onion, cheddar cheese.
What’s Outside: Pita bread.
Starting Line: Diced vegetables, grated cheese and beans should be mixed together then spooned into the pita, which you coat with guacamole. Cut pita in half and fill each pocket.
Variations: Substitute honey mustard for guacamole.
Testimonial: “Add some shredded lettuce and your favorite salsa for a high carb treat that will provide plenty of fuel for a workout or race,” says sports dietitian Scott Fischer, director of the Active Training & Nutrition Center in Englewood, N.J.

Grilled Veggie Special Sandwich
What’s Inside: Peppers, eggplant, zucchini, squash, onions, fresh mozzarella.
What’s Outside: Ciabatta bread.
Starting Line: Might be a tough sell for some teen runners-grilled veggies may not win the who’s-got-the-best-sandwich contest at lunch, but everyone likes several veggies, so build a sandwich accordingly.
Variations: Spice up with a dab of vinegar.
Testimonial: “High in carbs, low in fat,” says Fischer. “A great choice for pre- or post- workout.”

Bread’s Best Bets
Question: Is darker bread always better than lighter bread?
Answer: Generally, yes. But not all the time. The dark color of some bread comes from substances like molasses and caramel, essentially dark sugar, as opposed to the nutrition-laden dark flour you find in healthy pumpernickel bread.

Question: What about white bread that has been “enriched”?
Answer: It’s better than non-enriched white bread but still has less vitamins, minerals and fiber than any dark bread.

Question: What should I look for on a packaged bread label to ensure that my sandwich will be made with nutritious bread?
Answer: Look for the “100 percent” phrase. That is, 100 percent whole grain wheat or oat or corn. Also look and see how much white flour counts in the ingredients list. The higher up it is, the more white flour and the less nutrition.

Lastly, a reminder that I am fundraising for the AIDS Marathon training program. Please visit to make a donation. It can be as little as $5. Every bit helps. Please…donate.


One Response to “Food is good for you.”


  1. Nutrition » Food is good for you. - October 13, 2007

    […] Elaine Murphy wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptTestimonial: “Add some shredded lettuce and your favorite salsa for a high carb treat that will provide plenty of fuel for a workout or race,” says sports dietitian Scott Fischer, director of the Active Training & Nutrition Center in … […]

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