Protein and Running

runners and protein

As runners, it’s important to get enough protein while training.  Protein allows us to recover quicker and stay healthy.

As someone who doesn’t always run from home and is constantly on the go, I’m always looking for portable sources of protein.  It’s impossible to just bring a steak around in my pocket.

That’s why when I was contacted to work with two companies I purchase from frequently: Quest Protein and Vitamin Shoppe, I jumped at the opportunity.  I shop with both routinely and have for years.

Thinking out loud, finding a portable protein bar can be tough but finding one that actually tastes good can be tougher!  I’ve pretty much tried every protein bar on the market and some taste like glorified cardboard.

A couple of years ago when staying with good friends Danielle and Amelia, I had several Quest bars in my backpack.  We all went out for dinner.  While we were away, their cats got into my bag and ate several of them.  What can I say, who doesn’t like Quest bars?

Quest cereal bars are just as good as their regular protein bars. The Quest ‘Beyond Cereal’ Bar has all the sweet crunch of a junk food cereal bar, but with the incredible nutritional profile you know you can expect from Quest.  When I’m training, I like to make the most of calories.  While I don’t stress about it, I would rather have a more healthy protein bar versus one with empty calories.

Each bar contains the following:

  • 110 calories and 12g protein
  • 2-3g net carbs
  • 6-7g fiber
  • 8g of Allulose a new naturally occurring sweetener found in figs, raisins & dates.runners and protein

Why do Runners Need Protein?

Protein is made up of essential amino acids.  It does more than help repair muscles after a hard workout. Protein isn’t stored for later use which means unlike fat and carbohydrates, there is a limit your body can use at one time. That’s why it’s important to spread out the amount of protein you get daily, versus having it all in one sitting.

runners and protein

What Does Protein Do?

  • Plays a role in cell repair and production
  • blood clotting
  • fluid balance

How Much Protein Should You Have During Training?

While training, it’s important to have between .55 grams/pound-.75 grams/pound.  Will you hit that every single day?  No.  Should you stress about it? No.  It’s just a guideline.

For comparison, I’m 130 pounds try and get about 70-100 grams of protein daily but I don’t track it everyday.

Personally, I like Quest Cereal Bars because they are quick and taste good. The new cereal bars are chocolate, waffle, and cinnamon.  All three are delicious, but given a choice, my favorite bar is the waffle. I don’t have to worry about storage, and I can pull one out while at work as well.

Questions for you:
Where do you get your protein from?
Do you snack often or are you a three meal a day type of person?


  1. Do these bars have any sugar alcohols or sucralose? 2 ingredients I avoid (and I know some Quest bars have them)

    I usually have one or two snacks a day. I make a lot of my own stuff (it helps to not be working & to like to cook/bake). I also carry around turkey sticks (the ones that don’t need refrigeration) and enjoy both Epic and Wilde bars. RX Bars are good too, although they don’t taste like cookies.

  2. I really love Quest bars and The Vitamin Shoppe. I wish we had a Vitamin Shoppe closer but they have some great sales and they carry everything protein/nutrition related and the workers are great. I love when they have their store brand buy one get one half off a few times a year.

    To be honest, my favorite quest bars are the regular ones but I’ve tried the cereal ones. I really like Cookies and Cream and Blueberry Muffin, though. They keep me full in the mornings and provide a good source of portable protein after workouts. Plus you can find Quest bars anywhere even gas stations so it’s an easy choice when traveling. I’m not running right now but still keeping my protein intake high to repair this janky ankle :).

  3. I don’t eat meat, poultry or seafood. There’s protein in everything, and unless one is anorexic or malnourished, protein deficiencies are quite rare. I don’t give protein much thought. Not only that, but I fast until noon most days. I train every day after work, and I eat my one big meal in the evening. I’ve been doing this since 2000. So far, so good.

  4. I went plant-based when I turned 40 (about 5 years ago, but who’s counting!) – protein mainly from nuts/seeds/grains during the day. Legumes/greens in the evening. As for snacking, over-ripe bananas all day every day for carbs.

  5. for quest bars my favorites are oatmeal chocolate chip, rocky road and blueberry muffin -i also am loving the oh yeah one bars: the new blueberry cobbler is amazing as is cookies and cream, glazed donut (but very sweet) and the cinnamon bun is good too! – combat crunch cinnamon twist are a go to also!

  6. I never get protein after a run/workout… Might be part of my issues? I’ll have to check theses bars out because like you said most of this stuff takes like crap.

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