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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 08-22-07, 03:51 PM   #1
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Question about eating on a ride ... (when?)

Hey

Things are going well ... I did 20 miles today, and it felt like I could have gone further pretty easily. I was tempted, but was afraid of pushing too far and being stuck a long way from home with nothing left to get me home. The next ride I'm planning (Friday, most likely) will be 25 - 30 miles, and I'm thinking that I should take a snack with me. So far, I've been biking on water alone. Am I right to think that I should perhaps stop for a little snack, and do you have suggestions on when I should eat, and what I should eat? I'm thinking eating about mile 20 should be good, but bow to your collective wisdom. I'm also thinking about a bannana or two, though again, I'm wide open to any and all vegetarian friendly suggestions.

Thanks again for all the good advice.
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Old 08-22-07, 03:55 PM   #2
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A Banana or a Clif Bar sounds good.
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Old 08-22-07, 04:17 PM   #3
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I would take a banana, if I was to take anything. I usually eat before and after.
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Old 08-22-07, 05:09 PM   #4
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Generally for 20 miles I don't need food but 30 I might. If you aren't eating before a ride you should. Basically you should have a reasonable snack or breakfast 2 hours before a ride in order for your body to properly process the carbs or protein. If you plan on doing a particularly hard ride, a GU or Power Gel (or something like that ) is great before the ride. If 30 miles for you means 2 1/2 - 3 hours of riding then take a protein bar or snacks such as fig bars, banana etc. I would not usually eat until I ride 20 miles but if you are hungry, a light snack is OK. And then once you are finish with your ride, do a recovery drink - I know this sounds weird but one of the best is non or low fat chocolate milk (just a 1/2 pint).
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Old 08-22-07, 06:29 PM   #5
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I eat something after 2 hrs. Up to that point I don't worry about it. I typically ride after I eat dinner and don't really need anything less than 2 hrs.
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Old 08-22-07, 06:33 PM   #6
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I eat and hydrate before a ride. If I am going to ride long (for me that is 2 to 2.5 hours), I take a banana along and eat it about the half way point. I am usually more worried about staying hydrated than needing an energy boost. Getting dehydrated affects me more over a 2 hour ride than lack of food energy.
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Old 08-22-07, 06:46 PM   #7
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Ok - thanks a lot.

I expect I will get the 30 miles done in a little over 2 hours - I did 20 today in 1 hour and 17 minutes. I do usually ride about 2 - 3 hours after lunch, and drink lots of water all the time. I'll just toss a bananna in my bag and see if I need it. This will be my longest ride yet, and I'd like it to stay fun.

Thanks again!
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Old 08-22-07, 06:47 PM   #8
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Eat and drink before your body starts yelling at you to do so. I just about never leave the house (errands and commuting excepted) without food.
If it's going to be a longer ride I'll start eating after first half hour and nibble regularly throughout. I'll boost with gels and drink a sport drink as well. Remember, you're burning calories at about twice the rate you could reasonably* eat. Further, those calories take some time to get into use.

*I go pretty hard which ups the calories used and limits uptake (of solid food) to slow periods unless puking is the order of the day.
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Old 08-22-07, 06:48 PM   #9
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Ok - thanks a lot.

I expect I will get the 30 miles done in a little over 2 hours - I did 20 today in 1 hour and 17 minutes. I do usually ride about 2 - 3 hours after lunch, and drink lots of water all the time. I'll just toss a bananna in my bag and see if I need it. This will be my longest ride yet, and I'd like it to stay fun.

Thanks again!
Eat the banana mid-ride and see what effect it has. Try it, it's not like the 80cal is going to hurt anything.
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Old 08-22-07, 06:52 PM   #10
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Bananas sometimes don't "travel" so well and can get squished. I prefer energy bars for this reason.
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Old 08-22-07, 06:55 PM   #11
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No food of sports drink for me unless I'm going over 3 hours. I also eat half a sandwhich before I ride.
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Old 08-22-07, 06:58 PM   #12
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I guess it depends upon what you have on your body or on your bike to carry things in. I like bananas for a food to eat before an exercise, and pretty much hate the texture or taste of most energy bars, so I would find a way to take a banana. My wife would find a granola bar or something.
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Old 08-22-07, 07:00 PM   #13
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I should qualify my post by saying I am a banana addict and it is my default snack for any time. I really, really love them. So the 'half way banana break' is probably as much a treat and psychological reward as anything else for me.

And I just throw one in my rack trunk and it makes the ride just fine.
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Old 08-22-07, 07:08 PM   #14
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I take a Smucker's Uncrustable PBJ sandwich with me in my jersey pocket. It's defrosted after about 30 minutes, and if you get hungry mid-ride, its not a bad snack.
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Old 08-22-07, 07:48 PM   #15
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err ... I think my ego subconsciously self-edited ... I did the 20 miles in 1 hour 27 minutes, not 1 hr 17 mins. My bad. One day though.
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Old 08-23-07, 08:34 AM   #16
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Lots of good information here; thanks! I was going to ask something along these lines too.
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Old 08-23-07, 02:51 PM   #17
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the BANANA GUARD




GLOW IN THE DARK

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Old 08-23-07, 07:46 PM   #18
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Generally for 20 miles I don't need food but 30 I might. If you aren't eating before a ride you should. Basically you should have a reasonable snack or breakfast 2 hours before a ride in order for your body to properly process the carbs or protein. If you plan on doing a particularly hard ride, a GU or Power Gel (or something like that ) is great before the ride. If 30 miles for you means 2 1/2 - 3 hours of riding then take a protein bar or snacks such as fig bars, banana etc. I would not usually eat until I ride 20 miles but if you are hungry, a light snack is OK. And then once you are finish with your ride, do a recovery drink - I know this sounds weird but one of the best is non or low fat chocolate milk (just a 1/2 pint).
This is good advice. Eating BEFORE a ride helps greatly. Starting with an empty tank always leaves me feeling half hungry the whole time I ride. Even after I eat someting as I go. Gu gels are always with me, as are Clif bars. I drink just water, or a small amount of Gatorade with the water. The best thing........the Ovaltine milk as a recovery drink. I drink a pint jar full after any ride.
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Old 08-23-07, 07:55 PM   #19
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Are you serious?????

Someone is making money off of it also. I may actually be one of those in the future.

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the BANANA GUARD




GLOW IN THE DARK

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Old 08-24-07, 08:27 AM   #20
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I am allergic to bananas, but I own two of those banana guards because they are so cool.
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Old 08-24-07, 08:40 AM   #21
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This is good advice. Eating BEFORE a ride helps greatly. Starting with an empty tank always leaves me feeling half hungry the whole time I ride. Even after I eat someting as I go. Gu gels are always with me, as are Clif bars. I drink just water, or a small amount of Gatorade with the water. The best thing........the Ovaltine milk as a recovery drink. I drink a pint jar full after any ride.
I was really impressed with the sports gels. I could actually feel the effects of it.

About the Cliff bars... I want a bar that isn't so sweet. I like Tiger Milk bars, but I'm not sure it's the same thing... aren't there any plain bars? Should it be a protein bar or a carb bar?
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Old 08-24-07, 09:24 AM   #22
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I will not be toting one of those banana cases around! Just saying.....
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Old 08-24-07, 11:46 AM   #23
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I normally down a PB&B sandwich with some honey sprinkled on it before I go for my 1-2 hour ride. Two bottles of water during the ride and some Special K for after the ride. Keeps me energized.
For longer rides I stuff one or two cliff bars in my jersey and additionally a gel when the schedule says hard training.
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Old 08-24-07, 12:18 PM   #24
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Am I the only one here who can barely choke down a bite or two of solid food, even during a break, in the middle of a ride? I can manage about half a Clif bar during a 2 hr ride, but that's about it. Have ordered some HEED which I'm hoping will help me keep my energy up.
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Old 08-24-07, 01:53 PM   #25
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Am I the only one here who can barely choke down a bite or two of solid food, even during a break, in the middle of a ride? I can manage about half a Clif bar during a 2 hr ride, but that's about it. Have ordered some HEED which I'm hoping will help me keep my energy up.
Well, you're not the first person, and won't be the last.

For me, however, I'm the opposite. I eventually get so sick of liquids and nothing solid that I need the bars.

Also, the Clif Bars I am a big fan of as they're the only energy bar that does not taste terrible!! They don't taste good--just not terrible. And now I'm getting used to them and am actually starting to like them.

Tip: Take a bite of Clif Bar, chew, add water to mouth, chew more and swallow. Much easier.
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