70.3 race-day nutrition advice

Confused about nutrition for your first 70.3 triathlon? Ironman coach Mark Kleanthous has all the advice you need to conquer the middle distance

Male cyclist mid-race in a triathlon

If you’re new to the 70.3 distance of triathlon racing and are yet to find out what works and what doesn’t work for you mid-race, trying to wade through the mountain of nutritional advice out there can be daunting, to say the least.


So here, we’ve set it out in super simply terms so you can get started on testing it out in training.

What should I eat on the bike during a 70.3?

When you’re on the bike during a 70.3 triathlon (also known as a half-Ironman or middle-distance triathlon), solid foods such as energy bars and flapjacks are a great option, as food is more digestible.

What should I eat on the run during a 70.3?

During the run, however, it’s best to stick to easily digestible nutrition such as energy chews, drinks and gels. Carry as much electrolyte drink as you can and pick up water from the feed stations.

Eating too many solids on the run can cause gastric distress. It’s important to find your limit of how much food you can take on during a race to avoid overloading your gut.

Taking on calories little and often will limit the amount of food sloshing around in your stomach, which could lead to painful bloating.

Always practise in training

The biggest nutritional mistake you can make is not having a plan that works for you, so practise feeding in training to learn what your body can tolerate.

You also need to learn how to adapt your nutrition plan for changes in weather conditions, as warmer temperatures mean you need to take on more fluids.


Your nutrition plan must be tried and tested so you’re operating on autopilot come race day, while constantly listening to your body and the way calories affect you.