This is one of my favorite pre-race dinner recipes. I’ve had my best results when I have my carb-loading dinner two nights before my race. I like a meal high in carbs that won’t upset my stomach and is easily digested. When you are busy thinking about your race it is nice to have a dinner that is easy to prepare, tastes great and will help fuel you on your big day.
Chicken is lean, high quality protein that will help speed muscle recovery. It also helps maintain a strong immune system. Most of us already know our immune system is low after running an endurance event, making this the perfect pre-race recipe to boost the bodies defenses.
Onions contain a flavonoid that may help offset oxidative damage to muscle fibers caused by intense exercise. They also help keep your heart healthy and aid in digestion.
Marinara sauce is rich in lycopene, a cancer-fighting antioxidant. I try to find a sauce that is low in sodium and doesn’t have added sugar. You can always make your own if you have time.
Pasta is full of carbs and most carbs are stored as glycogen in your muscles and liver. Glycogen is your body’s most easily accessible form of energy. This can help you avoid hitting the wall during your race.
I hope you enjoy this pre-race pasta meal as much as I do and that it helps fuel you for your next big event.
Pre-Race Chicken Cacciatore
2 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 medium onion, cut into wedges (feel free to add other veggies like bell peppers to your own taste)
26 ounces marinara sauce
12 ounces pasta
1. Place chicken, onion and spaghetti sauce in a slow cooker.
2. Cook on high 4-5 hours or low 8-10 hours.
3. Fifteen minutes before serving, cook pasta on stovetop.
4. Serve chicken and sauce over pasta.
5. Enjoy your race!