3 Easy pre-run breakfast recipes

5 min read

Deciding what to eat before races or long training runs is tricky, especially when the run starts at dawn and you need to eat pretty much as soon as you wake up. Opting not to eat at all is NOT the solution- a proper breakfast before runs longer than about two hours is hugely beneficial. Not only does it provide you with some blood sugar -needed after a night of sleeping and fasting-, it also allows you to be properly fuelled and therefore get the most out of your race/ training run.

I, for one, personally struggled with finding the right breakfast to eat pre-run and after some trial and error, have narrowed it down to three, quick and easy go-to meals which I choose between depending on the situation. Everyone is different and so these meals might not work for you pre-run; BUT they’re delicious regardless and worth making for any ordinary breakfast.

Oat banana pancake

This is my staple breakfast before most races. Ideally it should be eaten around two hours before the start of the run to allow it to digest fully. I either make the mixture as I wake up or else the night before.



  • 1 medium banana
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • A dash of cinnamon and salt
  • Oil or butter


  1. Mash up banana in a bowl
  2. Add eggs and beat together
  3. Pour in oats, chia seeds and cinnamon and salt
  4. Add oil/ butter to pan and heat on stove at a medium heat
  5. Once pan feels hot, pour batter into pan and spread (will not be as thin as a normal pancake)
  6. Leave pancake on pan until bubbles start forming through the top of pancake, then flip
  7. Allow to cook for another ± 3 minutes or until your pancake feels cooked enough and remove from pan (pancake should be slightly browned on either side)
  8. Spread honey/ peanut butter/ nut butter/ any other toppings (I like to keep it simple with honey and peanut butter)
  9. Enjoy!

Peanut butter, banana, cocoa smoothie

I make this when I need to eat within an hour or so of a run- so generally before most of my longer early morning training runs when I only need to be up an hour before the start.



  • 1 banana (preferably frozen)
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 1 or 2 dates
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa (or cacao nibs if available)
  • ½ teaspoon of coffee (to add some extra chocolatey richness)
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  • ¼ cup Wazoogles vanilla protein powder
  • A dash of cinnamon and salt
  • Some water/ almond milk/ coconut milk
  • Optional toppings to add some extra crunch: roasted pumpkin seeds and coconut flakes*, berries, cacao nibs


  1. Add all ingredients (besides toppings) to a Nutribullet/ food processor
  2. Mix until desired smoothie consistency achieved
  3. Either pour into glass/ bowl or just chuck toppings straight on and eat out the Nutribullet
* to roast the seeds and coconut flakes, simply chuck them into a dry pan on the stove at a high heat and allow to pop ( seeds) or brown (flakes)- takes ± 4 minutes (monitor closely to prevent burning).

    Healthy five ingredient banana bread

    This is the perfect breakfast pre-run on weekends away (like camping trips) when there is limited access to cooking utensils, ingredients etc. It needs to be prepared before-hand (obviously) but it lasts the whole weekend and is an ideal, wholesome, delicious quick bite to eat before a long run.



    • 3 medium bananas (the more ripe, the better)
    • 2 eggs
    • 2 cup oats
    • About ¼ cup honey (depending on how sweet you like it & how sweet bananas are)
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • Optional extra add-ins: 1 teaspoon vanilla essence, walnuts/ pecan nuts, chia seeds, dark chocolate pieces


    1. Preheat oven to 190°C
    2. Line a standard loaf sized baking tin with baking paper
    3. Mash up bananas (I use 2.5 bananas and leave half of the 3rd banana for slices on top of the bread)
    4. Add the eggs and beat
    5. Add in all other ingredients and mix
    6. Pour into tin, add the slices of banana on top & sprinkle some cinnamon over
    7. Place in oven and cook for ± 30 (I prefer mine a little underdone so that its more moist)
    8. Remove from oven and tin, allow to cool and then cut into slices (I add peanut/ any nut butter to mine when I’m going to eat it- SO GOOD)