The night before a marathon

This is my first marathon coming up....London, touch wood my preparations seem to be fine, and I am starting to get nervously excited!! The one thing I can't work out is, if I am staying in a hotel the night before, what can I do in terms of eating that night? I am not sure I fancy traipsing about trying to find a half decent restaurant (or that I wouldn't try to eat everything if I eat out). What I am asking is, what are other people doing or what have people done in the past?? Thank you in advance


  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭
    I think your Friday night meal is more important. Then on Saturday I have a pre-prepared pasta salad at lunchtime. Saturday night I just want to avoid food poisoning really, so I usually go to a pizza express.
  • M..o.useM..o.use ✭✭✭

    I think your Saturday night meal is important too but I don't think it's too tough to do.  I'm quite happy at Pizza Express like Puffy but, in extreme circumstances, I've been known to cook my own food on a camping stove.  If you want total control, you could do that?

    If you're happy with a chain pasta/pizza place, maybe think about booking?  Also eat early?  Eat something you know works for you (my two staples are pasta with a plain tomato sauce (or spag bol at a push but I prefer no meat) and fish and chips).  Both are simple to process and easy on your tummy, as well as being carby.

    Don't worry if you don't sleep well the night before, make sure you get LOTS of sleep on Friday night.

    Good luck, the first marathon is really special so soak it all up.

  • Personally I quite like venturing out and finding a nice restaurant, but since I'm incredibly classy that usually means a Frankie and Benny's image

    Take's my mind off what's going to happen the following day, gets me some carbs and the walk to/from the place keeps my legs loose.  

  • PhilPubPhilPub ✭✭✭

    I carb load from Friday through to Saturday morning.  Saturday evening meal is what I would normally eat on a Saturday evening.  If I'm staying away from home, I'll eat out wherever, as long as it's not stupid rich or spicy. Don't get fixated on pizza or pasta, unless you like that sort of thing of course.

  • Thank you for all your suggestions, it sounds like I was worrying about something I didn't need to, and it sounds so obvious.

    It may well be pizza express then, I just need to try and limit myself on what I eat, that might be the biggest challenge!!
  • CC82CC82 ✭✭✭

    If you're eating early, it's probably not a massive deal to limit yourself too much.  Within reason of course.

    What time does the marathon start?  So long as it isn't super early, then the evening meal the night before will be processed and through your system.  Be careful not to limit yourself too much - you need fuel!

    I had some takeaway pasta last year ahead of Edinburgh Marathon I think (in fact, I think I had from the same place Friday and Saturday).

    And my usual routine of banana and porridge (with a cup of tea) 3.5-4 hours ahead of race.  We headed off at about 10am I think.

  • I'm going with the Friday being more important. I've managed to miss my meal the night before an ultra and still been fine.
  • Tom13Tom13 ✭✭✭

    I ran my first marathon on Sunday in Manchester and tried to stick to eating whatever I had been doing on the days before long runs in training because of the fear of something new/different having an adverse effect on the body. I ate a bowl of simple pasta at 6:30 pm on the Saturday at a little italian resteraunt with a glass of red wine. Then in the morning of the race I had a bowl of porridge, a banana and a cup of coffee at 6:00 am-3 hours before the race. I had practiced this routine (apart from Italian resteraunt!) many time in weeks leading up to the race. I ran 2:44:16 so very happy with how it went. Good luck!

  • I think is quite simple, I will probably find a pizza place on the night and jam on toast and a banana in the morning. But concentrate on a proper meal on the Friday.

    It's nice to know that people are happy to help out with advice and generally be supportive, so thank you. I just wish I could finish it in 2.44, but somehow I don't think this will happen!!
  • 15West15West ✭✭✭

    Have a vindaloo, that will get you that 2.44.

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