To start… Plant based foods are foods that are plant based, haha funny, what does that actually mean? Basically it means things that gown in the earth, things that do not contain animal products or are highly processed. There are A LOT of plant based foods out there… the below ones are some (not all) that are great for runners.
Beans! Black beans, Pinto beans, Garbanzo beans. Beans, beans, beans.
Why? They contain a good amount of Protein, Iron, Vitamins.
How to consume? In salads, in wraps, bowls with veggies/rice, in soup or stews, cooked with grains or veggies, roasted (roasted garbanzo beans are great!) as spreads or dips and so on.
So all fruit is excellent choice for everyone, of course unless you are allergic, some fruits however are better for runners
Why? Vitamins (that help with recovery)
Specifically, Bananas are almost all carbohydrate, this is good for runners but more importantly bananas are high in potassium which we lose in sweat during exercise and need to replenish. They are good pre and post runs.
Cherries contain antioxidants, these are always good, for runners cherries have been said to be good for athletic performance because they reduce the amount of strength loss and muscle soreness.
How to consume? Any way you want? The easiest way is mostly likely going to be raw, bananas travel well and taste great alone or even with peanut butter (or any nut butter) I guess you could make a them into just about anything but these two are best to have pre and post runs.
Why? Almonds are an excellent source of vitamin E, which is an antioxidant lowers circulating cholesterol levels, particularly the artery-clogging LDL type, decreasing your risk for heart disease, so you can run longer.
Almonds are good alone, in salads and even mixed into pasta dishes. You can add them to oatmeal or cereal, combine with chopped dried fruit, and or and chocolate for a trail mix and almond butter, who doesn’t love almond butter? On toast, on a wrap, on celery, with an apple… I could go on for days
Why? Sweet potatoes a good source of vitamin C, potassium, iron, manganese and copper. Manganese and copper are crucial for healthy muscle function and not having enough can have an impact on performance.
How to consume? Baked, boiled, or microwaved are quick and easy choices. Also try in stews and soups or made in to fries.
What are you favorite plant based power foods?