On Saturday April 29, 2017, I ran the hardest obstacle course race that I have ever attempted, the Spartan Ultra Beast. Which is 2 laps of the Beast course, each lap was about 14 miles. I ran the first lap of the course in 5 hours and 30 minutes and the second lap in about 7 hours and 30 minutes. I spent about 15 minutes in the transition area. On the course, there were cut off times, which means that if racers are not at a certain obstacle on the course at a certain time, the racer is taken off the course because if they are not at that obstacle, they will not finish the race in the time allotted. The course closed at 9:30pm, and all racers that did not come across the line before then were cut from the course.

     I trained for hours and I ran about 500 miles, just for this 28-mile event. After 13 hours and 25 minutes, I crossed the finish line. Strenuous training was not the only reason I was able to complete the race though, my nutrition is what truly helped me to get through this race. This post will describe what I ate the week leading up to the race, during the race, and after the race.

The Week Before:

    For breakfast each day, I ate an omlette with two eggs and spinach in it, with an apple and yogurt. Eggs contain all 9 essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. The yogurt also contains protein and calcium, which helps to build strong bones. Protein helps to heal muscles after being put under stress from training. For lunch, I ate roast beef with spinach wrapped in it and a homemade salad. The salads I make typically have spinach, peas, apple cubes, pineapple, and homemade salad dressing with olive oil and apple cider vinegar. For dinner I would eat steak or chicken with a sweet potato side. Sweet potatoes contain a lot of fiber and carbohydrates, and it is very important to eat plenty of carbohydrates leading up to a race. Carbohydrates get stored as glycogen in the liver. During activity, the body uses the glycogen stored up, so it is very important to replenish.

During the Race/ Breakfast Before:

    For breakfast I ate an egg sandwich on whole wheat bread. During the race, I did not eat until mile 11, however before that I was drinking water with an electrolyte powder mixed in. When I did eat, I ate dried fruit, which contains a lot of sugar. There are different types of sugar, which are monosaccharides, disaccharides, and polysaccharides. The sugar in the dried fruit is a monosaccharide, which means that during digestion it is not broken down further. This is very beneficial during a race, because the dried fruit provides energy quickly, because it is a monosaccharide. If I consumed a polysaccharide, such as whole grain pasta, this would not have been helpful, because it would have taken a while for the food to digest. During the race, I also consumed vegan organic gummy bears, for the same reason why I ate the dried fruit. I also used energy gels, which contain amino acids. This is very important, because amino acids help to fuel muscles. The energy gels also contained sugar which provides an energy boost. Half way through the race, racers enter what is called the transition area, and this is where racers fuel up for the second lap. Each Ultra Beast racer is required to bring a tote to the race that contains all supplies necessary to complete the race. In my tote, I had apples, bananas, dried fruit, hypothermia blankets, an extra shirt and socks, and an extra hydration bag. During the transition time, I changed my shirt, ate an apple and banana, took some Tylenol, because I had a headache, and I filled my second hydration bag with an electrolyte solution. Electrolytes are essential, especially for athletes, because they help with the regulation of heart function. Last season, my electrolytes were low and my heart rate dropped. If an athlete does not consume enough electrolytes, the results can be dangerous. Sweating from physical activity electrolyte levels can decrease.

After The Race:

    When I crossed the finish line, I was not hungry at all. I was very dehydrated and all I wanted to do is take a shower. When I returned to the hotel room, a banana was all I ate. My post-race nutrition was lacking, however by time I completed the race it was too late to get dinner. The next morning my parents and I went to a diner near our hotel. I got an omelet with vegetables, such as tomatoes, spinach, peppers, and onions. I also had a couple pieces of whole wheat toast.

    I also put salt on my omelet, because salt helps with muscle contraction and when salt intake is low, muscle cramping can happen during a race. The recommendation for salt intake is to consume less than 2,300 mg of sodium. Consuming 1,500 mg of sodium or less is considered a low salt diet. For my nutrition class that I took this semester, we had to monitor our diets for 3 days using a website, and my salt intake was 1,547 mg. This is approximately the amount of sodium that a person who is following a low salt diet should consume. I am trying to increase my salt intake because I have many more races to come and it is very important to make sure my diet is the best it can be. Proper nutrition is essential for everybody, especially athletes, because deficiencies in different nutrients can cause harmful effects. A proper diet can prevent injury and increase performance.

Kristina Petit

Nutrition and Fitness


New Jersey Ultra Beast




Kristina Petit

Nutrition and Fitness

It's Time To

Challenge Yourself...

Let's Get Started!​

Kristina Petit

Nutrition and Fitness

It's Time To Challenge Yourself... Let's Get Started!​