What I Ate Runner’s World Race Weekend

Panera Tomato Soup and Veggie Sandiwch

Somewhere in all of that race recapping yesterday, I mentioned that I felt as though I ate really well when it came to fueling my muscles properly in order to prepare, run, recover and then prepare to run again.

wiaw fall into good habits button

When I say I ate really well, I mean that the foods I was consuming made me feel good. They digested really well, didn’t leave me hungry, gave me energy and didn’t cause me any intestinal distress.

On Friday I showed you my favorite running/race food staples that I was packing up to take along with me to Bethlehem, PA.

race food

Destination races can get tricky because you want to make sure you eat what you are used to and needing to do that means coming a bit prepared.

The best part about everything I brought along with me is that I really ate it all!

  • Cooked oatmeal
  • Extra make-your-own oatmeal raisin oatmeal packets
  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Ezekiel Bread
  • A jar of Crunch Time Peanut Butter
  • Jelly Beans
  • Justin’s Peanut Butter Packets
  • Chobani 100 Strawberry and Blueberry Greek Yogurt
  • Mixed cereal container with raisins
  • Sweet Potato Wedges
  • Extra Watermelon Gum – because, well, sometimes you need a piece or two or three

I love sweet potato wedges hot or cold and figured they would make a perfect running snack at any time of the day or night.

sweet potato wedges

I put them in a cooler along with the yogurts and cooked oatmeal for the car ride.

cooler bag

I left Friday afternoon and prepared myself a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel Bread to eat on the road.

peanut butter and jelly

I ate the halves of the sandwich probably an hour apart.

I wasn’t even all that hungry to tell you the truth which I don’t say often but I knew I had to eat.

I stopped for Starbucks when I was probably thirty miles outside of Bethlehem which was a nice pick-me-up even though I was trying for the whole more water less coffee thing. Oops.

starbucks coffee

By the time I arrived at the hotel, checked in and found my way in and out of the expo to grab my number, it was time for dinner which ended up being at Panera Bread.

Panera Tomato Soup and Veggie Sandiwch

As you may know, I don’t care for soup. Not that it’s bad, I just never crave it or want it.

Tomato soup though, is sometimes the exception.

I went with a long time fave, the Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich on Whole Grain Bread with a side of the tomato soup as my pre 5k/10k dinner.

Oh and a pickle.

I ordered the soup not just because I think I was in the mood for a bowl but because the extra sodium sounded like a good idea to help me retain some water in order to keep me a little more hydrated.

Sodium helps regulate the body’s fluid levels. Click here for a good article from Runner’s World on the subject.

I had some apple slices with peanut butter when I returned to my room before bed. apple with peanut butter

Pre 5k/10k Breakfast:

oatmeal banana peanut butter

My usual oatmeal mixed with banana and peanut butter.

And of course, coffee.


And lots of water too, from the minute I woke up.

In my pockets went:

jelly beans and peanut butter

And like I showed you yesterday, in between the 5k and 10k was a banana with the peanut butter I carried in my pocket.

banana and peanut butter

When I got back to my hotel room after the 10k, I was starving as usual which is exactly why I knew to bring my usual post run favorite meal.

overnight oats

It’s not all that appealing to the eyes but trust me, it was delicious.

Basically, it was overnight-ish oats:

I heated up one of my make-your-own oatmeal packets with water and then let it sit in the fridge during the races. When I got back, I added a container of the Chobani Blueberry Greek yogurt, some skim milk, more raisins, apple slices and a ton of peanut butter.

I normally eat plain greek yogurt but since I would not have my usual fruit supply with me to flavor the mix, I bought the flavored yogurt varieties for this trip.

I am really not good at heading out to eat after a race. I am usually too sweaty and cranky to wait for a table or rely on what might be on a menu. I like to shower, eat what I am used to and put my feet up.

I drank a few servings of a smoothie-juice-thing from the Vitamix booth at the expo that afternoon which somehow became a meal because I wasn’t even hungry again until an early dinner.


I really liked how I felt from eating the soup and sandwich combo as a pre-race meal so I went the same safe route for dinner Saturday night, only having it this time from Cosi,  which was located in the Saucon Valley Promenade Shops because yeah, I fit in some shopping when I wasn’t running.


I think it was a warm veggie sandwich on their whole grain bread with hummus instead of some feta spread, toasted up all nice with a cup of the tomato soup with extra bread and a little bag of carrots.

So this is interesting:

candy store

I took this picture with the intention of showing you what I ate from the candy store. But I didn’t get anything.

I know, right?! I went in thinking I would go for a piece of fudge or some fun chocolate-covered pretzels but nothing was truly appealing to me.

I just wasn’t in the mood. Instead I went back to the hotel and had this as my nighttime snack:

sweet potatoes with bananas and peanut butter

A cup full of banana slices, sweet potato wedges and lots of peanut butter.

Don’t knock it till you try it. I am craving it just typing up this post.

Pre-Half Marathon Breakfast:

oatmeal banana pb

Getting repetitive, aren’t I?

I will spare you another photo of coffee but I never go without a cup (or two) before a race.

I had half of a banana with water right after I finished the half just to hold me off until getting back to the hotel.

post race breakfast

More overnight-ish oats with Strawberry Greek Yogurt, raisins, apples and peanut butter and a side of race medals.

I made myself another pb & j for the car and stopped for coffee before hitting the road.

dunkin donuts

During my ride home which went fast until reaching the GW Bridge (shocker), I ate my sandwich, an apple and the few sweet potato wedges that were left in my bag.

pb and j

When I got home, I found myself craving another bowl of tomato soup before going out for dinner which I recapped in Monday’s post.

Trader Joe's Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Good thing I had some in the house. I should now try the regular version which contains more sodium for my next race!

Looking back, I eat real boring and repetitive but it really worked for me and I loved every bite.

Be sure to check out what everyone else has been eating this week!


Do you bring certain foods with you for destination races?

Are you starving when you finish running or does it take time for your appetite to kick in?

Are you a soup lover?




Author: The Cookie ChRUNicles

Hi! I'm Meredith. Join me while I run and cook my way through single motherhood. It is always an adventure trying to teach my 12 year old son the benefits of an active lifestyle combined with healthy eating while of course, still leaving room for dessert.

18 thoughts on “What I Ate Runner’s World Race Weekend”

  1. So many good eats, although I bet the time in the candy store was the best part 😉 I always love going in those, although rarely buy anything.

    I have a funny story for you about taking food. For the marathon, I bought 2 bananas on thursday, so they would be ready for race day, because I knew the ones in the elite lounge and at breakfast would be green. On the Saturday, Alexi (my roommate) asked me if she could have one of my bananas, I told her that as much as I loved her, I couldn’t, and she said “ooooohhh they need to be perfectly ripe for tomorrow” so the whole weekend we waited in anticipation till I could eat myh perfectly ripe bananas on race day….which I did! SO long story short, YES! I do pack for races, even when they give you unlimited food 😛

  2. I’ve been keeping any kind of roasted sweet potatoes in my fridge all the time- I eat them as a snack or toss them into a salad or breakfast. They really are the best! I need to get better with planning for race travels. Especially with having some stomach issues around long runs lately I am extra nervous since i will be traveling for my marathon! I am crossing my fingers that our hotel room has a fridge!

    1. I say call ahead to find out about the fridge situation – if they don’t have you booked for a room with a fridge, ask now to be switched to one. Worst case scenario, I say bring a big cooler. It isn’t summer so I bet it would stay cold, even if the ice packs melt a bit.

  3. For as much as you purport not to like soup, you certainly souped it up! I typically travel with food when I go to races, though I can’t say I’m as well prepared as you. Typically I find a grocery store for yogurt purposes.
    I also hope that the banana was not in your pocket for the races…

  4. Roasted sweet potato wedges are awesome and surprisingly portable! I’ve taken cooked sweet potatoes with me when traveling, along with lots of bananas, coconut butter and nut butters, grain free granola, lara bars, plantain chips, and avocados. Oh and sardines in olive oil, they make me really popular wherever I go 🙂

  5. Congrats on the race. I’m definitely going to have to use this post for good food recommendations for runners that I may have in the future as clients. In my sports nutrition seminar, we talked about jelly beans being a good thing to have while running because the carbohydrates will keep providing you with energy.

    1. I am so happy that you want to use my post as a reference. These foods work great for me on a regular basis and are a good reminder of the basic (and portable) foods to select when running races, running in general and fueling your body. I do love jelly beans for my long runs. I never tried the true “sport beans” and always stick with the Trader Joe’s version.

  6. It’s a great idea to have all of your race food planned out the way you’ve done! When I finish a race, I’m not usually hungry, but I like to have chocolate milk or even ice cream like they handed out after the St. George Marathon.

  7. First off: belated congrats on your half-marathon! Running one is one my life bucket list [read: I’m as far as could be from it right now except for the fact I really like running but had been off for months due to an injury] and I admire anybody who’s regularly running races. Also, ‘a side of race medals’ has to be the most amazing random mention ever. Just a few race medals you had lying around ;).
    And then I think you did really well on the food prep there. I’m not sure how far you travelled but packing enough and the right things – as in: knowing ahead what you’ll crave/want to eat – is tricky. Aside from the fact I don’t like sweet potatoes the combination with bananas and peanut butter actually sounds really good to me. Imagining kabocha as a sub here.

  8. I’m a soup lover when I actually remember soup. I’m not really one to go out and make it myself, but when I have it, I can’t help but wonder why I don’t make it more often. Too much chopping, probably 😆 And I’ve been all about the easy to digest foods lately. Bananas, dates, oatmeal, and smoothies are currently my life.

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