From’s Shape Up! Blogger: How to Fuel Long Runs and Still Lose Weight

Good morning and Happy Monday! After a busy (and sweaty!) weekend of packing, moving, and unpacking I’m now back to my regular weekday schedule (sort of). Today I have a special guest blogger – a lovely lady who’s training for her first half-marathon while shaping up her diet. I love Glamour Magazine and have been a long time reader of’s Shape Up! Blog, so I’m super pumped for you all to meet Karina. Welcome to The Runner’s Kitchen!


Hey Runner’s Kitchen readers! I’m Karina,’s Shape Up! blogger. What that means is that I’ve gone public with my lifelong battle with weight. For the last few months, I’ve been following Body by Glamour, a food and exercise plan that has radically changed my life. I write about my daily struggles, setbacks, and breakthroughs; and the hilarious social drama that ensues when people have to adjust to the skinnier, new me…I can’t get enough of it, really!

So how does Runner’s Kitchen fit into all of this?

When I first signed on as the Shape Up! blogger back in April, I also told the entire world that one of my goals was to run the Philadelphia Half Marathon in September. I know that might seem like a piece of cake to many of you, Runner’s Kitchen Readers, but this was a bold move on my part: I had never run more than 3 miles when I made that crazy announcement! Since then, I have run my first 5K, 10K and completed a 10-mile trial run. I kinda have the running bug, to tell you the truth.

The Philly Half-Marathon is less than three weeks away, which means I’ve been running longer and farther in preparation. At this point, I’m averaging a total of 20 miles per week. (I run every other day.) Some days I’m really tired, but mostly I just love being in motion. I’m amazed at what my former super-sedentary body can do! My biggest hurdle, however, is deciding what to eat. I haven’t reached my weight loss goal yet, but I now have to think about fueling my body to run as well. I need carbs to make it through long runs, but I have to limit my carb-intake in order to finish shedding this weight. How does that work? I’m not exactly sure.

That’s how I stumbled on Megan and Runner’s Kitchen:

So what am I eating?

I am by no means on a no-carb diet. The basic gist of the Body by Glamour food plan, which was created by celebrity nutritionist Rachel Beller, R.D., is relatively simple:

– Eat at least 8 grams of fiber at breakfast.

– Have a midmorning and midafternoon snack that is 150 calories.

– Build every lunch and dinner like a pyramid: Veggies are the base, lean protein is next, and a small amount of healthy carbs tops it off.

– Treat yourself every day. As in have a piece of chocolate or that scoop of ice cream, (we all know how much Megan LOVES her ice cream!) just keep it at 120 calories or less.

-Get at least seven hours of sleep every night.

Simple, right? The problem is that sometimes, I feel really tired mid-run, or just plain ravenous the day after. Which is why I decided last week that I needed to add an extra carb or two to my menu the day before a big run. Take the other day for example:

For breakfast I had a Trader Joe’s Moral Fiber Orange Cranberry Muffin with some scrambled egg whites, 1 tbsp reduced-sugar jam, and a cup of cranberry green tea.


This muffin, at 240 calories, is packed with fiber (12 g) and a decent amount of protein (6g). Normally, I would only have half a muffin, but on a day before a run, I allow myself a double portion. (Plus I love it!)

For a mid-morning snack, I had some Oikos nonfat vanilla yogurt with fresh cantaloupe. Full of protein and yummy too!


For lunch, I had some leftover grilled chicken from dinner the other night with homemade Greek salad (feta, Kalamata olives, red onion, red, green and yellow peppers) over a bed of greens. SO good and filling!


For my mid-afternoon snack, instead of the usual apple and string cheese combo, I opted for a Peanut Butter Gnu Flavor and Fiber bar. There are always a couple of these stashed in my gym bag for pre or post-workout meltdowns!


For dinner, I probably had a combination of my favorite foods, EVER: Half a cup of whole wheat pasta, turkey meatballs in Marinara sauce, with broccoli, Brussels sprouts and baby Bella mushrooms sautéed in a little canola oil and garlic, all topped off with some shredded Parmesan cheese. SO GOOD! Seriously.


And finally, as a treat later that night, I had a slice of angel food cake with 1 tbsp raspberry jam and a cup of peppermint tea.


So there you have it! As you can see, I’m doing my best to stick to my food plan while still eating a healthy amount of carbs. I hope it works! I know you Runner’s Kitchen readers are savvy when it comes to this, so if you know of any other weight-loss friendly carbs I can eat, please share. And wish me luck in Philly next month!