This staple of the endurance athlete is still a smart choice, but noodles made with whole grains or ground legumes pack a nutritional punch that puts their white-flour brethren to shame. Our heartiest and tastiest find is Barilla Plus; a quarter-pound serving of this penne, rotini, spaghetti, or elbow macaroni provides a whopping 20 grams of protein.
Combine with fat and protein from foods like nuts or hard sausage.
Pack jerky–beef, turkey, salmon–because it’s lightweight, edible on day 5, and loaded with protein (11 to 18 grams per serving for most brands). Its high sodium content also helps replenish salt lost through sweating. Salt is an important electrolyte that regulates your body’s fluids and keeps you from feeling sluggish.
Combine with fattier, high-carb foods such as cheese and crackers, tortillas, and grits.
Oats provide those slow-burning carbohydrates that make you feel full longer, stabilize blood sugar, and are known to reduce bad-cholesterol levels. Bypass those sugar-laden instant packets; instead, opt for unadorned rolled oats or steel-cut oats. McCann’s new Quick & Easy Steel Cut Irish Oatmeal cooks in 5 minutes instead of the usual 30.
Combine with your favorite varieties of nuts for protein and fat.