REAL FOOD During an Ultra - She Runs Eats Performs

Episode 147

Published on:

6th Jul 2023

REAL FOOD During an Ultra

Ultra-distance running is becoming more and more popular, however there is limited information on what to eat to fuel these distances. 

Do you struggle to eat ENOUGH for your ultra training?

The food and nutrition needs of an ultra-runner DURING training and in-event is going to be different from other endurance runners….even marathon runners. 

So, in this episode we:

1.     Outline some Core Eating Habits for an ultra-runner to consider

2.     Highlight some REAL FOOD ideas for ‘eating on the run’

3.     Give some practical solutions on how to include these foods during YOUR ultra-distance run training and events

A BIG thank you to our Show Sponsor AMAZING JANE ACTIVE WEAR. Please use discount code RHH10 for 10% off ALL purchases at



Outlining the FIVE core eating habits of an ultra runner as proposed by the American sports nutritionist and author Matt Fitzgerald: These core eating habits are:

1.     Eat everything

2.     Eat Quality

3.     Eat Carb Centred

4.     Eat Enough

5.     Eat Individually


Highlighting some REAL FOOD ideas to eat during the long hours of training or the long hours of running in an event including:

  • Pizza Bread
  • Tofu ‘cheese’ sandwich
  • Trial wrap with a filling of hummus and olives


Sharing some of Aileen’s REAL FOOD ideas that she takes with her on her long hikes including:

  • Plant-based burgers in a bun
  • Rice cakes
  • Salty foods
  • Sweet potato wedges


Considering some of the practical issues an ultra runner might have to overcome when determining which foods to take on a long run:

  • How to carry the food
  • Accessibility of food
  • What foods are available at the checkpoint stations during an event
  • Always have a nutrition back-up plan  



1) Remember to think about putting in place Matt Fitzgerald’s FIVE CORE HABITS: 

·       Eat everything

·       Eat Quality

·       Eat Carb Centred

·       Eat Enough

·       Eat Individually

2) As distances increase, surviving on bars, gels and medjool dates is just not going to work!! The body will require more substantial snacks…and in some instances…a proper meal…so REAL FOOD!!

3) When you begin practicing with REAL FOOD and recipes, choose ones that will be easy to make as well as easy to carry to help keep you inspired rather than it feeling like a chore!!

4) Some food ideas you could start practicing with include: pizza, sandwiches, plant-based burgers, sweet potato wedges….remember to share your experiences with us…I will share mine

5) Investing in durable and appropriate equipment is essential for any ultra-runner….including a back pack for all the food and fluids that will be required. There are so many choices out there so do your homework and choose one that fits with YOUR needs…not what a friend recommends you purchase!! 

6) Finally, remember to PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE different eating strategies in training until you find what works for you so you can go into an event feeling confident and prepared for any eventuality

Download our FREE E book TOP Running Snacks and Nutrient Timing to Fuel Peak Performance

Related Topics:

Nutritional Needs of an Ultra Runner

Eating Enough to Run

Designing Your race Day Nutrition Plan


The suggestions we make during this episode are for guidance and advice only, and are not a substitute for medical advice or treatment. If you have any concerns regarding your health, please contact your healthcare professional for advice as soon as possible.

A BIG thank you to our Show Sponsor AMAZING JANE ACTIVE WEAR. Please use discount code RHH10 for 10% off ALL purchases at

​Also, when you're ready, here are FOUR ways that we can help you:

1) Join Easy Nutrition For Healthy Runners HUB. Please join our FREE private facebook group for education, tips, inspiration with like- minded female runners.

2) Get our Easy Nutrition For Healthy Runners Online Programme. As a THANK YOU, please use COUPON CODE POD to get 33% discount off the full price which brings the price to £199. 

3)Find out if you are the right fit for our Healthy Woman Healthy Runner Programme. Please book a free Discovery Call.

4) If you love our FREE stuff but need more help and would like to find out which of our services would be best for you. We’d love to have a short informal (no obligation) chat to see how we can help you. Book a free call here.

We love to hear from our listeners - what are your nutrition and running goals, challenges and successes, please drop us a line at


Best Wishes and Happy Running!

Karen and Aileen 

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About the Podcast

She Runs Eats Performs
for mid-life female runners of all abilities
Are you confused about the science around nutrition for runners? Listen in to learn about the WHY, HOW, WHAT, and WHEN of eating to fuel your running performance.

We are here to help you translate sports nutritional science, into easy to apply tips and plans, helping you enjoy peak running performance. We focus on the FEMALE FACTORS every mid-life woman needs to know to be a healthy runner.

About your host

Profile picture for Aileen Smith

Aileen Smith

Nutritionists, Educators, Podcasters, Runners and Friends

We have a love of running and a passion for nutrition, delicious food and healthy living. She Runs Eats Performs for female runners of all abilities who are looking for simple ways to improve their running performance and their health with nutrition and lifestyle.
We enjoy sharing our nutritional expertise, reviewing the latest sports science and most of all helping you to take easy action so you can enjoy your running life to the full.
We are here to help you achieve great health and good shape whilst staying injury-free with easy-to-understand sports nutritional concepts and easy-to-implement tips and plans.

Aileen and Karen are BANT and CNHC Registered Nutritional Therapists.