If you asked me what I think the perfect snack food is for endurance workouts like marathon training or long distance biking, I'd say it is this: Dates stuffed with Nuts. In the picture above is my favorite combo: Medjool dates with walnuts.
What makes dates and nuts a perfect workout snack to me you ask?
- Dates are fiber rich and a natural carbohydrate. When you are physically pushing your body for over an hour your body need carbs to re-fuel and I like to find natural sources versus things with wheat or food additives and preservatives in them. Dates are also packed with all kinds of nutrients especially potassium, in fact more so than bananas. Intense workouts can make your potassium levels drop, and dates can help keep your potassium up. Here's a list of the nutrient goodness in dates.
- Because of the high fiber content, dates help keep you regular in the potty department, and a happy colon is always a good thing especially if you have issues with constipation. It sucks having to run for two hours or more with that heavy feeling in your bowels.
- Nuts give you protein and fats which are beneficial for the muscles.
- I like the Medjool date the best because it's bigger in size compared to other dates and they are very moist. You almost feel like you're eating a candy.
- They pack light. When you stuff the dates with nuts, these snacks are small and compact enough to put in your shorts pocket or sweatshirt without taking up a whole lot of room. Because they are moist and not stiff like a food bar, the dates won't jab you in the side or rub up against you while you're in motion. I always hate that feeling of a stiff food bar in my shorts. [Ok, I hear the jokes. You know what I'm talking about though ;-]
Next to dates for workout re-fueling, I like eating dried figs with nuts like Figs & Filberts.
What do you consider a perfect endurance workout snack?