Eliud Kipchoge’s Diet: An ‘Eat Like a Champion’ Guide!
Eliud Kipchoge, the world-renowned marathon runner, is known not just for his incredible speed and endurance, but also for his strict dietary regime.
Kipchoge hails from Kaptagat, a small village in Kenya that has produced numerous Olympic champions. He works closely with his longtime coach, Patrick Sang, who is also from Kaptagat, and they both understand the importance of nutrition in achieving peak performance.
Kipchoge’s diet primarily consists of locally sourced foods from the Eldoret region, where he trains, including vegetables, fruits, and lean proteins. He also adheres to a strict schedule, eating at specific times throughout the day.
Kipchoge’s diet played a critical role in his record-breaking marathon runs, including his sub-two-hour marathon in Vienna in 2019, sponsored by INEOS, and his gold medal-winning performance at the 2016 Rio Olympics. For anyone looking to “eat like a champion,” Eliud Kipchoge’s diet is a great guide to follow.
What Does Eliud Kipchoge’s Diet Consists of?
While Westerners have not been quick to recognize the potential benefits of a plant-based diet, the Kenyans embrace it wholeheartedly. Marathoning greats out of Kenya eat a high carbohydrate, low-fat diet of whole foods.
Although Kipchoge is not entirely plant-based, it is the majority of his food intake. Kipchoge has cut out most of the meat and dairy from his diet.
Kenyans overall predominately eat a diet of vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, seeds, and whole grains.
We would be remiss in implying this is a diet made up for elite runners. That could not be further from the truth.
It simply is how Kenyans overall eat.
11 Foods Eliud Kipchoge Eats
Knowing that Kipchoge trains in the highlands of Kenya, it should come as no surprise that he eats the foods native to the area. He and the others who train with him in rural Kenya sustain a plant-based whole food diet.
Some food items are the primary staples of the diet.
- Ugali: A maize porridge, it is said to have a taste similar to popcorn. It is often seasoned with butter and salt. Some people also add pumpkin to it for additional flavor.
- Managu: An African nightshade, Managu is a leafy vegetable similar to spinach. This is high in protein and full of nutrition. It is often cooked sautéed in water and oil.
- Cabbage: In Africa, the cabbage is usually cooked similarly to the Managu. If you ask google how Kenyans typically cook cabbage, you will find recipes combining cabbage and Ugali.
- Potatoes: These are usually boiled and eaten that way.
- Beans: The beans eaten at camp are usually red beans. This is one of their main protein sources.
- Bread: Another food staple is bread.
- Chapati: This is another form of bread. Chapati is like an Indian flatbread.
- Rice: Often, the rice is combined with beans to create a main part of the meal.
- Eggs: Another excellent protein source, the eggs are typically fried.
- Bananas: This is one of the most common fruits eaten at training camp.
Chai: Sweet tea with plenty of milk.
How Many Calories Does Kipchoge Eat?
It appears as if, on an average day, Kipchoge eats far fewer calories than one might think. Somewhere around 2,300 calories for a day seems to be the average number on a non-race day.
Men’s Health did an article where they had an athlete simulate the life of Kipchoge. A man named Elijah Orrate slept, worked out, and did chores like Kipchoge and others in the training camp for one day.
While 2,300 calories may not seem like a lot, they have you taking in quite a bit when eating real foods.
The absence of a lot of processed and sugary foods does make a large difference.
Kipchoge’s Marathon Nutrition
Kipchoge has said his breakfast of champions on race day is rice.
According to the New York Times, Kipchoge reportedly ate oatmeal breakfast the day he broke the two-hour barrier.
Have you ever wondered about Eliud Kipchoge’s nutrition during a race?
According to one source, during the Berlin Marathon in 2018, Kipchoge took in 100 grams of carbohydrates each hour. In that particular race, he fueled with a Maurten hydrogel.
Kipchoge’s Pre Run-Fueling
We were surprised to learn that most Kenyans did their first workout of each day either in a fasted state or with very little fuel in their body. Most ate nothing at all.
Some had a little bit of chai tea prior to running that first workout of the day.
Having said that, they do take in calories prior to racing.
Should You Be Following the Kipchoge Diet Plan?
If you are hoping to eat like Kipchoge, you may feel like it sounds difficult. After all, unless you are native to Kenya, some of those foods are unfamiliar.
There are, however, many foods on the list that are common throughout the world. Also, there are comparable foods you can find no matter where you live.
Scientists have long found that there are many civilizations of people who seem to be blessed with longevity.
The question is: is this luck or something else?
Many of these people have in common that they follow a diet either entirely or predominantly plant-based.
Kipchoge Diet-Inspired Changes We Can All Make
If you are looking to fuel more like an elite runner, you can make some small and easy changes.
First, add potatoes to your diet but eat them in their natural state. Forget French fries or processed spuds. Just plain old potatoes with butter and a little seasoning are a great carb source.
Second, find a simple cereal-like source. Too often, we fuel ourselves with sweet oatmeal or other breakfast product. Kipchoge’s cereal in Kenya may not be exciting or flavorful, but it is easy on the stomach and does the job.
Third, find a good leafy vegetable you can incorporate into your diet. Spinach or kale are good choices.
Lastly, focus on eating less meat and more fruits. We are not suggesting you have to give up meat. However, most people eat a much larger portion of meat than recommended.
These are four small changes you could make if you wanted to fuel your life more like Kipchoge.
Oh, and one more change, this one not diet-related: run with that famous Kipchoge smile.
Running happy makes for a great mindset!
- REVEALED: The Diet of Kenyan Runners – The Greatest Distance Athletes in the World, Nutrition Site ,
- Eliud Kipchoge – Diet, Running Site ,
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