"Rule #1: Never try anything new on Race Day 24 hours and before Eat normal balanced meals like you would normally do on any training day. Make sure you drink plenty of liquids all day long, especially electrolyte fluids such as Gatorade or use electrolyte tabs such as Nuun. It helps if you carry a water bottle along with you throughout the day to remind yourself to drink. Your main meals should still be in the form of low glycemic to medium glycemic index foods. Ideally, you won’t be too active on the day before the race, so you may feel full quickly. That is fine, you shouldn’t try to stuff yourself. Good choices are: Sweet potatoes, pastas, baked potatoes, brown rice 18 hours before the race Start eating small meals every 2-3 hours, but after lunch, cut out red meat, fried foods, dairy products, fats, nuts, and roughage. You should only be consuming light, digestible foods like energy bars, bread, and small sandwiches. Keep drinking water and electrolyte beverages and avoid salty foods. Examples include: energy bars, bread, and small sandwiches. Keep drinking water and electrolyte beverages and avoid salty foods. 4 hours and less You should be up early enough before the race to eat a small breakfast with plenty of time to start digestion before the gun goes off. If you need 3 hours to eat a small meal before running, then you need to get up at least three hours before the race to get in a light breakfast. You’ll want to drink mostly water (unless you know temperatures at the race are going to be warm), with some electrolyte fluid. Don’t try to get all your fluids down by chugging your water bottle. Drink small, regular sized amounts. Room temperature water is absorbed quicker than warm or cold water. I estimate that you’ll need 6 oz. every hour or 8 oz. every hour on hot days. Lots of runners will take a GU or energy gel right before the gun goes off. I only recommend this if you have a weak stomach and you haven’t eaten in 3 hours. If you’re able to stomach more solid foods 60-90 minutes before the race, this is preferable. Basically, energy gels are mostly simple sugars and you’ll be consuming another 2 or 3 gels before the race is over. Even for the biggest sweet tooth this is a lot of sugar. My favorite breakfast – oatmeal with banana and coffee. At this point, you should have a good idea of what works best for you pre hard or long run, so stick with what works."