Behold common runners’ complaints and how dark green leafy vegetables can help:
I don’t have enough energy – Vitamins from dark green leafy vegetables will help your energy levels and overall health. Dark green leafy veggies also improve muscle function.
I am always getting sick – Minerals from dark green leafy vegetables will help you recover faster from workouts and races and decrease your chance of getting sick. Phytochemicals – naturally occurring chemical compounds in dark green leafy vegetables – also reduce your chance of disease.
I crave bad foods – Fiber from dark green leafy vegetables will help you become lean and maintain your lean form. The best runners are lean. Fiber also helps to stabilize blood sugar levels and aids regulation. This leads to a robust and lean core and prevents constipation. Lighter runners are faster runners. More lightweight runners are also less injury-prone.
I hit the wall in long races – Hitting the wall is often caused by dehydration. Dark green leafy vegetables help keep you hydrated, increasing your chances of staying hydrated during races and long runs.
I hate the way I look in my race photos – Dark green leafy veggies will help you look better in your race photos. Dark green leafy veggies improve skin and hair. The vitamin E found in dark green leafy vegetables works with vitamin C (also a benefit of dark green leafy veggies) to keep skin healthy as you age. They even help your teeth stay strong for that photo of you smiling as you cross the finish line.
I am so not flexible – Dark green leafy veggies do not replace good active dynamic, active assisted and static stretching. They do, however, provide Vitamin C, Lutein, and Zeaxanthin. Vitamin C helps makes collagen, which is a major component of cartilage. Cartilage helps joint flexibility and reduces your risk of arthritis.
I am sore all week after a hard workout – Dark green leafy veggies contain Beta-carotene, which contributes to the growth and repair of the body’s tissues.
I forget to foam roll – Eat more dark green leafy vegetables. Dark green leafy veggies contain Folate, which helps with memory loss.
I have such negative thinking when I run – Again, eat more dark green leafy veggies because Folate contributes to the production of serotonin. It can even help decrease your chances of becoming or staying depressed. And Folate elevates mood. Do the right thing for the runner next to you in your next race. Save him your negativity – eat your greens and help yourself stay more positive when you run. It will make you a better runner.
Running Scientist Note: If you are training without a customized run training program, dark green leafy vegetables alone will not improve your performance nor save you from injury. A properly balanced, nutritious lifestyle must be part of a customized run training program designed specifically for your needs.