Best smoothies for runners

Shakes & Smoothie ideal for runners to boost energy, stamina & endurance



What are the best smoothies for runners ?

If you go running smoothies are a great way to boost your running results, a very easy way to boost your energy, stamina & recovery.

In addition smoothies are great as a very simple runners diet plan – where for 1 to 2 meals you don’t need to worry about what to eat.

If you are thinking about adding smoothies to your runners diet then the key is to focus on both before and after you go running.

In this article we will cover :

Before Running Smoothies..

Which smoothies to use if you go running Before Breakfast, After Breakfast, Afternoon, or in the Evening

In each case we will show you what to do if you go running for less than 1 hour, or more than one hour

After Running Smoothies

Similarly we will show you which smoothies to use to help your muscles & recovery.

Taking each one in turn :

1. Before Running Smoothies

Your pre-running diet is key to your results, because the right type of ‘fuel’ will make all the difference.

When do you run (and for how long) ?

Early Runner (Before Breakfast)

If you have a very busy lifestyle, and simply can’t run during the day (work commitments, family, etc.) then the ‘early morning’ run is often the only option. Many runners will simply ‘get out of bed’, maybe have some water and/or coffee and start.

The key to a good runners diet (and getting best results) will depend on your level :

Run for less than 1 hour ?..

If you run less than 1 hour (which is the case for most runners) then going without food or drink probably won’t do you any harm.

An average runner will burn between 600 and 700 calories on a 60 minute run, so you will probably have enough ‘stored reserves’ to cope without extra ‘fuel’ before you start.

Quick Tip…

Yes, you probably won’t need a smoothie but it is very important to make sure you are hydrated. (drinking enough water).

An very ‘easy way’ to boost your early morning results is to drink a specialised electrolyte drink – very easy to make : simply add some powder or a sachet to your water. to help reduce tiredness / help with stamina and energy. There are a variety of different drinks, depending on your running level.

Run for more than 1 hour ?

If you are taking your running very serious, maybe you’ve reached the level where you are training for 5k, half marathon, marathon or longer..

Then you will also need to take your running smoothie plan to a higher level.

Quite simply – if you are running more than 1 hour you will need to provide your body with extra fuel before you start.  Unfortunately this also means you will have to get up earlier to give your system (mainly your guts) the time to digest the food.

4 Options you could try….spaghetti

Night Before – Carbohydrate loading is one option.  Very common routine for the night (or a couple of nights) before a race it involved making sure you eat pasta, etc.  The ‘downside’ is that this is great once in a while for competitions but it might get really boring every night (as well as the real danger you will pile on the weight)

Breakfast – if you have the time then get up 1 to 2 hours (at least) before you run and have a ‘light breakfast’. Why not try something like 1 medium banana and 1 tablespoon of nut butter,  some pretzels and hummus, some whole-grain waffles with maple syrup or a  Peanut butter and banana sandwich, etc. (You get the idea).  Try to focus on foods that contain low Glycemic Index ingredients – that release energy slowly and gradually.

A Snack – If you can’t face getting up ‘that early’ than you could try using an energy boosting snack before a run. However you would also need to give these about 30 minutes to ‘digest’.

Try to focus on smaller carbohydrate snacks that have a reasonably high glycaemic index score (GI), this is different from above because you want to boost energy to help you get going, and then try to add a specialised ‘fuel’ drink to help with ‘refueling’ along the way.

A Smoothie – And of course we believe the best option is to have a specialised smoothie about 30 minutes to 1 hour before you start.


Morning Runner (After Breakfast)breakfast

The key is to leave a bit of a gap between breakfast & running. As above, how long you leave will depend on what you have for breakfast.

A large fry up (Bacon, Eggs, etc) could take 3 to 4 hours to digest, whereas a healthy cereal breakfast might only take 30 minutes.

Again what you eat will depend on how long you run :

Run for less than 1 hour ?..

Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day – whether you go running or not…

Ideally you need the right type of breakfast containing low Glycemic Index ingredients, as well the right balance of fat and fibre – but in particular the right level of protein for you.  If you are not sure where to start simply let us email you a recommendation

The best type of smoothies are those that are easy to digest (making running easier), but also contain enough protein to prevent hunger between meals.


Run for more than 1 hour ?

Yes, (as above) breakfast is very important but it’s easy over estimate the number of calories you will burn and the amount of carbohydrates you will need to (for example) complete a 90 minute run.The body has enough glycogen stored in the muscles from your normal diet to run at marathon pace for right around 2 hours.

That is why for any sport (including running) your diet will account for 80 % of your results – and (for example) losing weight but just doing sport or exercise is so hard.

However, simply by having a running smoothie with the right ‘calorie and protein’ levels will help your energy levels – but don’t forget that isotonic drinks also need to be part of your running diet plan.


Afternoon Runner (After Lunch)plate

The advantage of running in the afternoon is that you have lots of time to get your running diet right.

Ideally balancing a nice healthy breakfast, maybe a low GI index snack (like a banana) mid-morning with the right lunch.

Obviously (like breakfast) it’s important to leave a bit of a gap between breakfast & running. And yes, a large lunch might sound nice but the right running smoothie will help you get much better results !!


Run for less than 1 hour ?..

Most of the smoothies on our site will work as a healthy runners smoothie


Run for more than 1 hourrunning-uphill ?

Yes a ‘high calorie smoothie’ (as above with 249 calories) will work.

But if you are a serious runner then you will need to get your running diet plan exactly right

– yes isotonic drinks are important but so are key elements like antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, etc.


Evening Runner (Before Dinner)

Most evening runners tend to go before having dinner – simple reason is that waiting 3 or 4 hours for the food to digest simply makes running to late.

However the ‘right’ running smoothie will really help your results (and enjoyment)


Run for less than 1 hour ?..

You will probably have enough ‘fuel’ in your system from your meals during the day – a mid afternoon snack (like a banana or cereal bar) will help.

But if ‘lunch didn’t happen’ and it was just a rushed day – why not try a very light smoothie that will boost energy but not ruin your appetite for dinner.. Simply have it about 30 minutes or so before running.


Run for more than 1 hourbinder ?

If you are a serious runner then you know you need to have an organised daily runners diet – if you are not sure how then why not let us email you a plan

– yes isotonic drinks are important but so are key elements like antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, etc.

In addition do consider using a specialised smoothie like the one below..


After Running Smoothiesweightlifts1

The time after you finish is just as important as before running.

Quite simply you should be running at least every other day – and your recovery has a major impact on your running plan.

As soon as possible when you’ve stopped running, i.e. within 20 minutes after exercise, a smoothie may be the perfect way to meet your recovery needs as it can provide:

  • Fluid to help you ‘top up’ – 1.5 litres of fluids/kg of body weight lost;
  • Extra carbohydrates to replace muscle glycogen: 1.0-1.5 g/kg body weight;
  • Protein to help rebuild & repair muscles: Very, very important !!;
  • Extra electrolytes: mainly sodium and potassium depending on an runner’s individual sweat rate.


Been running for less than 1 hour ?..

Apart from your post running stretching (warming down) try a very simple smoothie with some extra protein.


Run for more than 1 hour ?

Sorry we are not going to recommend a smoothie, because you would need to add exactly the right type of nutrients to help you get the best results.

For example you will get better results with a specialised sports drink than a smoothie

And the best runners smoothie ?

Hopefully the above will have provided some advice and inspiration.

Our specialised shake & smoothie site has a variety of specialised mix powder – ideal for running.

More Details

Runner Shake Recipes

The example shake recipes below are ideal for runners:

Ideal Before A ‘Regular’ Run



Ideal if you want some instant fuel.

You will need

  • 2 tbsp Sport Shake Mix
  • 2 tbsp Protein Powder
  • 1 tsp ground almonds
  • 3 dried apricots
  • 150 ml unsweetened orange juice
  • 100 ml water

Simply blend until smooth.


THE ACAI BERRY SHAKE.acaiberryshake

This running smoothie is very easy to make, will fill you up and provide energy,  But in addition they contain acai juice. Although they look like a blueberry acais are great antioxidants.

(Don’t forget you need to boost your antioxidants when you go running)

You will need

  • 4 oz Acai Juice
  • 2 unsweetened whole frozen strawberries
  • 1 serving Formula 1 Vanilla
  • 1 serving Protein Powder
  • 4 – 6 oz water
  • 4-6oz water

To make add all ingredients in to a blender and blend.

Banana Peanut Butter Shakebananapeanutbuttershake


  • 1 cup Skim Milk
  • 2 scoop Formula 1 Vanilla
  • 1 tsp Peanut Butter, Creamy
  • 1 1/2 ounces Frozen Banana (about 1/2 Banana)
  • 1/2 cup ice cubes (optional)


Place all ingredients in the blender and mix thoroughly until the ice cubes are completely crushed.

The Banana Fruit Smoothiebananafruitsmoothie


  • 120 ml water
  • 2 scoops Formula 1 Vanilla
  • 1/2 cup frozen peach slices
  • 1/2 medium Banana
  • 4 oz NonFat Yogurt
  • 3 ice cubes (optional)


Place all ingredients in the blender and mix thoroughly until the ice cubes are completely crushed.

Before Running Shake (Run 1hr +)

HIGH FRUIT & PROTEIN SHAKE,highproteinfruitshake

Ideal if you are running for 1 hour or more because exercise drains nutrients, and the fruits (especially strawberries) will help. You need

  • 35 g Formula 1 Vanilla
  • 20 g protein powder
  • 3/4 cup soya milk
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup strawberries frozen
  • 1/2 banana,

Simply blend in a blender and serve.


Contains 2 of the 6 most powerful antioxidants.


  • 1/3 cup skim or semi-skim milk or plain soy milk
  • 2 scoop Formula 1 Vanilla
  • 2 scoops Protein Powder
  • 1/2 cup low-calorie cranberry juice
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • a few drops orange extract
  • 4 ice cubes


Place all ingredients in the blender and mix thoroughly until the ice cubes are completely crushed.


The reason we like this one because it’s designed to help the digestive system – a common problem with long distance runners.


  • 170 ml apple juice
  • 2 scoop Formula 1 Vanilla
  • 1/2 Papaya
  • 60 ml Herbal Aloe
  • Dash Cinnamon
  • 4 to 6 ice cubes


To make simply put into a blender until smooth.

After running Shakes

Strawberry Kiwi Shakestrawberrykiwishake

Full of vitamin C you would need to add extra protein powder to help your muscles.  (Simply contact us for advice on how much to add)

You will need :

  • 2 tbs Strawberry Shake Powder
  • Extra protein powder (see above)
  • ½ banana sliced
  • 1 kiwi sliced
  • 5 frozen whole strawberries
  • 1 ¼ cups apple juice


Place all ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth.

And the best runners smoothie ?

Hopefully the above will have provided some advice and inspiration.

Our specialised shake & smoothie site has a variety of specialised mix powder – ideal for running.

More Details