Did you know electrolytes are one of my favorite topics?? It’s this little tiny change that can do so much for our running, but is so easily overlooked.
I’ve written all about electrolytes and why they’re so important here.
So why am I talking about it again? As noted, favorite topic. But also because a few weeks ago I had an interview with Elyse Kopecky after checking out her new cookbook with Shalane Flanagan, Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow.
Elyse Kopecky Interview
I asked on Instagram what you were dying to ask her and I used those as the basis for our chat! I’m here for your enjoyment.
First though, I loved that she shared this little insight!!
“Originally there was no meatball recipe in the book. Then we realized that was the cover shot, so the turkey meatballs because a last minute addition and are now one of our favorite recipes at home.”
Is there a recipe you wish you’d included?
Homemade cashew milk! She started making it more during the time the book was being published and found that it’s so much easier than almond milk because you don’t have to strain it. She added to the blog the day after our conversation so you can enjoy it now!
What are your favorite quick on the go snacks??
She always have snacks in her purse, which she says makes Shalane laugh, but believes that you gotta be prepared or you’ll end up grabbing something junky!
Her go to quickie is trail mix. She likes to keep a big pre-mixed jar in the house and either grab a handful or put in a baggie to take with her in that stocked purse noted above!
But her daily routine includes packing smoothies to go for a mid-morning snack and she’s been making the super hero muffins from the book every weekend, because her son is so in love with them, so those are ready to go during the week.
At home, if afternoon hunger strikes she goes for 1/2 avocado with sea salt or while making dinner she will put out beet hummus with carrots.
Finally, she does have a standard before bed snack because she, like so many of us running around all day long, may not get enough food. Her go to for aiding sleep is whole milk yogurt, topped with granola.
What does Elyse use for fueling on long runs?
Turns out Elyse is a lot like me and doesn’t feel the need to take in much under 12 miles. She’s never really been able to eat while running and feels like if you’re fueling correctly the rest of your day with enough calories and quality foods, you should be pretty good. (I agree that’s a lot of the premise behind my LHR training).
If she is hungry, she might have some nuts and dates heading out the door.
You can get a great 7 day marathon meal plan for free on their blog too.
Does she still race?
Nope, she hasn’t raced in years. Now she just enjoys running for herself, to enjoy getting outside and enjoy moving her body. She isn’t following a training plan, but instead running for what feels good to her body, which is crazy because when she worked at Nike she was on the wearables team and tracked everything!
However, she hasn’t worn a watch since she stopped working at Nike 8 years ago.
Shalane’s Homemade Electrolyte Drink
The interview also reminded me of a recipe from the book, which I’m happy to say they gave me permission to reprint!
You don’t need to down a neon-blue beverage to make it to the finish line faster. If you’re in search of a natural sports drink, experiment with our race-ready concoction below. We hand- selected each ingredient to maximize electrolyte replenishment (potassium, sodium, calcium, magnesium) and provide simple carbs for quick energy.
MAKES 28 OUNCES
- 2 cups filtered water
- 2 cups coconut water
- ½ cup tart cherry juice (optional)*
- 2 tablespoons fresh- squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon blackstrap molasses
- ¼ teaspoon high-quality sea salt
*Juices are high in sugar, which is why we always dilute them with water and use them in small quantities, mainly just for flavoring. If you can’t find tart cherry juice, sub in any other favorite juice.
Here’s why this combination makes such a great natural sports drink.
- Coconut water: high in potassium and magnesium, quick glucose boost
- Tart cherry juice: high in potassium with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties
- Blackstrap molasses: high in iron, calcium, and magnesium
- Sea salt: replenishes sodium lost in sweat and other essential trace minerals
Notes: Never try anything new on race day. Everyone’s fuel and hydration needs vary greatly, so it’s important to test out your race day nutrition during training to find what works best for you.
1. In an iced-tea pitcher or half-gallon glass jar, combine the water, coconut water, cherry juice (if using), lemon juice, molasses, and salt. Seal the jar with a lid and shake vigorously to combine. Store in the fridge for up to 3 days.
2. For long runs, drink 16 ounces 1 hour prior to running.
Reprinted from Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow. Copyright © 2018 by Shalane Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky. Photo by Alan Weiner. Published by Rodale Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House.
Looking for more electrolyte information?
Have you tried any of the other recipes from the book?
What other sports nutrition questions do you have?
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