The Perfect Day of Eats

I have often wondered what is the perfect day of eating for a runner. I know this varies depending on your size, age, activity level and preferences – so it really is hard to exchange this kind of information with fellow runners. (Unless they are your clone – which in that case please hook me up so I can make a red-headed Mexican clone because we’re a rare breed…)

But – that doesn’t stop me from asking people what they eat or what they think an idea day consists of :)

Runner’s World had a “Perfect day of eating” in a recent issue and I ended up tossing it before I got the chance to post about it. Boo.

However, I found it online the other day and thought I’d share. All those “girly” fitness magazines often advise you to eat 1500 calories (sometimes less). This RW mag day suggests 2,029 – and that’s to lose!

While I prefer to say “Ideal Day” I did find this daily eats breakdown interesting and helpful…

Here’s how to gauge what your diet should look like.
Runner 35 years old, 150 pounds
Lifestyle Sedentary desk job
Exercise Runs about 20 miles per week at a nine-minute-per mile pace; strength trains about two hours per week
Maintenance Calorie Needs 2,387 calories per day
Goal Calorie Intake 2,029 calories (15 percent reduction)
2 slices whole-grain toast; 2 teaspoons almond butter; 1 kiwi; 1 hard-boiled egg
A breakfast containing a balanced mix of carbs, protein, and healthy fats prevents overeating during the day.
Morning Snack
1 cup plain low-fat yogurt; 1/2 cup raspberries; 1 ounce sunflower seeds
Have a midmorning snack to hold off hunger while providing energy for your lunchtime workout.
Lunch Workout
30- to 40-minute interval run
1 cup low-fat chocolate milk
It provides an ideal mix of quick-digesting carbs and protein to promote recovery. Plus, the chocolate helps satisfy occasional sweet cravings.
1 serving (2 cups) Pasta Bean Toss; 1 medium apple
Make this no-fuss recipe (below) for dinner the night before and pack the leftovers for lunch.
4 ounces chicken breast; 1 cup cooked quinoa; 1 cup multicolored salad of an avocado; 1 tablespoon extra-virgin-olive-oil-and-vinegar dressing
The healthy fat in olive oil and avocado slows digestion (keeping you satisfied) and boosts the absorption of antioxidants in veggies.
Evening Snack
3 cups air-popped popcorn
When air-popped, it makes a tasty and healthy whole-grain, low-calorie snack for the evening.
CALORIES: 1,991; CARBS: 252g; FIBER: 47g; PROTEIN: 113g; FAT: 67g

(This is from the March issue of Runner’s World. You find the entire article here.)


My day today started out ideally just like that plan above :)

I went on an 8 mile run (slow, but steady). I will be missing my long run tomorrow since I’m out of town.

Then, I came home to a smoothie and bagel with AB. This is one of my top 3 ideal breakfasts for sure! IMG_8419Today I changed it up and put cream cheese and jelly on half of my bagel. Good call if I do say so myself. IMG_8417 

Lunch was leftovers – sweet potato with beans, salad and un-pictured pretzels. IMG_8420

Ben and I will be road tripping to New Jersey this weekend! His school does an annual reunion we’ll be hitting up with his friends.

I hope I run into my fave Real Housewife of NJ – Dina (second from right). I have a major girl crush on her for some reason. Love Dina :)real housewines nj


Please pray that although there will be copious amounts of alcohol consumed, I don’t convince myself that “while in Rome” and try to  start dressing like Snookie… snookie

On second thought… does anyone have a Bump-It I can borrow…

Question: What’s your idea of a perfect day???



  1. says

    I don’t agree with any magazine or diet that says 1500 or less a day is healthy. One said 1200 was the goal! 1200 calories in one day–with exercising? That sounds awful to me.

    I strive to eat 1600 calories a day. When I exercise I burn anywhere from 300-600+ so I will eat more calories to replenish my body. When I was losing weight I liked to see that deficit and I didn’t replenish. But now that I need fuel, my mentality has changed. I’m less restrictive with my calories.

  2. says

    That’s funny you mention that article as I was going through a bunch of my old RW magazines this morning and tearing out good “keeper” articles and this was one of them.

    And, uh, I do have a “bump it” you can HAVE–my girls and I bought a box of them at Target as a joke and had a lot of fun messing with them. Haven’t used them since!

  3. says

    My idea of a perfect day of eating is when I feel super good at night before I go to bed. On days when I don’t eat well, I feel blah and kind of go to bed unhappy. It’s worth watching what I eat during the day so I can get a good night’s sleep!

    Oh, and yesterday I saw a girl with Snookie hair on the metro. I stared. Not gonna lie.

  4. says

    i really liked that runners world didn’t write about eating 1500 calories like the other magazines. as a runner i eat mucho calories! i think i’d die on 1500. but i wish that runners world had included “guidelines” for people running more than 20 miles because i know that ~2000 calories would still be too low for me because i run more than 20 miles

  5. says

    My idea of a perfect day is fresh, organic food complimented by a hard workout that leaves me sweaty!

    And maybe some chocolate in there, too:)

  6. says

    I love the Real Housewives of NJ – I also grew up in NJ and get a good laugh every time I see the show.

    Theresa is my favorite – she has NJ crazy mom written all over her. Enjoy the weekend!

  7. says

    I love RHONJ and Dina is quite pretty. I think I may enjoy it if youstarted to dress like Snookie. It would be entertaining as long as you post some pics lol. Oh and don’t forget the hair XOXO

  8. says

    I don’t run nearly as much as those in the blogging world, but I can’t stick to just 1500 calories a day! Although today was pretty good, 1650. That’s about the lowest I can do. I usually stick between 1600 and 1900 when the goal is to lose a few lbs.

  9. Alyssa says

    My perfect day of eats is when there is any chocolate still in the house and not on its way to my thighs!

  10. says

    Dena is definitely my favorite too. She has the most beautiful blue eyes. Plus, I just love her for introducing “bubbies” to my vocabulary.

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