Whether you're running your very first marathon or you're trying to improve your personal best, getting your nutrition right is key to maximising performance on the day.


We've worked with James Collins, elite performance nutritionist, to bring you four marathon meal plans aimed at the seven days leading up to race day. These give examples of the nutrition strategies that you could use on each of the different days, as well as meal and snack ideas and links to recipes to help you stay on top of your nutrition all week.

We've also included some training suggestions from the London Marathon beginner's training plan, which gives you an idea of how much running and rest you should be getting in the week leading up to the marathon.

Check out the London Marathon's training and meal plans. Don't have a spot to run this year? You can still take part with the virtual event London Marathon MyWay – join up for your chance to run 26.2 miles on marathon day, 21st April 2024.

Marathon meal plan


Worried about what to eat and when to run the week before a marathon? Sports nutritionist James Collins has advised Team GB on their Olympic nutrition and here provides advice and recipes for the seven days before your big race.

More like this

Our week-long marathon meal plan

Vegetarian marathon meal plan


What does an optimal vegetarian marathon diet look like? Discover what sports nutritionist James Collins recommends to eat in the week leading up to the race.

Our week-long vegetarian marathon meal plan

Vegan marathon meal plan


If you're vegan and running a marathon, we’ve put together a week-long menu which is free from animal products to help you run your best race ever.

Our week-long vegan marathon meal plan

Gluten-free marathon meal plan


Running a marathon on a gluten-free diet? Discover our sports nutritionist’s running meal plan and training tips for the seven days before the race.

Our week-long gluten-free marathon meal plan

Now try...

More marathon training & nutrition guides
What should I eat when training for a marathon?
Carb-loading explained

James Collins is recognised as a leading Performance Nutritionist through his work with Olympic and professional sport. Over the last decade he has worked with Arsenal FC, the England and France national football teams and Team GB. He has a private practice in Harley Street where he sees business executives, performing artists and clients from all walks of life. He is the author of the new book The Energy Plan, which focuses on the key principles of fuelling for fitness.


All health content on bbcgoodfood.com is provided for general information only, and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other health care professional. If you have any concerns about your general health, you should contact your local health care provider. See our website terms and conditions for more information.

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