Now that “live” races are in full motion, many of my athletes are transitioning in preparation for their distance racing in the fall.  Some questions have come my way regarding the best fruit for running endurance. While I’m not a registered dietitian, I have worked with several and below is my own research on the best fruits to consume for endurance.  If you’re looking for a sports nutritionist, send us an email and we’ll gladly connect you with the best in the nation!

  • Oranges? 1 orange can provide as much as 106% of the Recommended Dietary Intake for vitamin C. Research has shown that oxidative stress (an imbalance of free radials and antioxidants in the body which can lead to cell and tissue damage) could promote feelings of fatigue. The antioxidant protection provided by the compounds in an orange may decrease fatigue. One study showed 13 women who consumed 17 ounces (500 mL) of OJ did 1 hour of aerobic training 3 x per week for 3 months decreased in muscle fatigue and improved physical performance.
  • Bananas are one of the best foods for energy. They’re an excellent source of complex carbs, potassium and vitamin B6, which all help in boosting our energy levels.
  • Apples have a high antioxidant content, the strong antioxidant activity inhibits cancer cell proliferation. Research has shown that antioxidants may slow the digestion of carbs, they release energy over an extended period of time. Also, thoroughly wash the apple and reap the benefits of the apple’s skin, which provides fiber.
  • Strawberries? Strawberries provide another source of energy boosting power. Strawberries also help fight inflammation, the antioxidants in this fruit helps fight fatigue boosting your energy.
  • Goji Berries?  and benefits of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.

Drum roll please……all fruits mentioned above help with running endurance, however, bananas are the number 1 choice; a Science Daily study found that bananas provided cyclists with antioxidants not found in sports drinks as well as greater nutritional boost including fiber, potassium and Vitamin B6.