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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 05-17-11, 11:58 AM   #1
mttx
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Question about eating proprely to fuel by body

Good day,

Since I started to commute, I feel really good and seems like I have more energy at work. (Desk job) However I start to think that I am not eating the right thing to fuel my body because I will hit several ‘plateau’ during the day and get so sleepy.

Here is my typical day:

Wake-up at 6:45 and hop in the shower
Get the kids ready and leave the house by 7:45 (usually I just grab a fruit)
At work around 8:30 – eat a big bowl of cereals, cheese and a glass of milk or juice
Lunch at 12:00 – usually the left over from last night diner, yogurt, water or juice
Around 15:00 – grab a snack (nuts bar with mix fruits)
Heading home at 16:30
Diner time is usually around 18:00
After 21:00 – I usually grab a snack (vegetables, fruits or some kind of treats )
Bed time is no later than 23:00.

The ‘plateau’ that I usually hit is around 10:30-11:00 and 14:30-15:00. At that time, my body seems like it is asking for something as my energy will just drop drastically. I sometime find that I can slowly fall asleep.

I am not looking to loose weight or to get into a diet but looking for some suggestion on what I can eat to properly fuel my body.

So let me hear you suggestion.

Thanks
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Old 05-17-11, 12:12 PM   #2
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Cereal will put you to sleep because it is loaded with carbohydrates. Same with juice. Too many carbs raise your blood sugar and your body responds by releasing lots of insulin which in turn lowers your blood sugar. Try to balance your macronutrients with a little more protein and fat (the good kinds, like olive oil or from tree nuts). A more balanced meal will digest slower and the sugars will be absorbed more slowly, slowing your body's insulin response. I find that I have fewer highs and lows by eating many smaller meals throughout my day. I don't eat anything before riding to or from work, I just try to burn some stored energy so that my body will be ready to store more when I do eat my meal.
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Old 05-17-11, 12:16 PM   #3
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Cereal will put you to sleep because it is loaded with carbohydrates. Same with juice. Too many carbs raise your blood sugar and your body responds by releasing lots of insulin which in turn lowers your blood sugar. Try to balance your macronutrients with a little more protein and fat (the good kinds, like olive oil or from tree nuts). A more balanced meal will digest slower and the sugars will be absorbed more slowly, slowing your body's insulin response. I find that I have fewer highs and lows by eating many smaller meals throughout my day. I don't eat anything before riding to or from work, I just try to burn some stored energy so that my body will be ready to store more when I do eat my meal.
In addition to this info, you can switch your sources of carbohydrates from simple carbs (sugar, fruit, etc) to complex carbohydrates (whole grains, starches, fiber, etc). This will cause a slower conversion of the carbs into blood glucose which will give you a slower release of energy instead of a big spike which results in an insulin-induced crash.
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Old 05-17-11, 12:17 PM   #4
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hmm... your diet looks pretty healthy. Are you getting enough healthy fats; olive oil, nuts, avocados etc for long term energy?
I would even suggest that due to your morning exercise your body may want rest to recuperate. Any chance of getting a power-nap at lunch time?
After a nap I usually need something sweet (chocolate, raisins, biscuits) to "rewake" (well, and an espresso, but you don't seem to be a coffee drinker...)
More water maybe?
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Old 05-17-11, 12:28 PM   #5
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Thaks guys. I'll try to eat more of 'fats' food. Being an asian, our meal does not always contain all of the necessary fats that y'all refer too. I guess I'll have to find some alternative for it.


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hmm... your diet looks pretty healthy. Are you getting enough healthy fats; olive oil, nuts, avocados etc for long term energy?
I would even suggest that due to your morning exercise your body may want rest to recuperate. Any chance of getting a power-nap at lunch time?
After a nap I usually need something sweet (chocolate, raisins, biscuits) to "rewake" (well, and an espresso, but you don't seem to be a coffee drinker...)
More water maybe?
You are correct. I don't drink coffee at all. Very very rarely will I drink one but usually it will be the weekend when I am sitting at a coffee shop. Beside that, never really felt like I needed it.

I do have some power-nap at lunch when I feel very tired but I try not to often. I don't want my body to get use of getting that 'rest time' at a certain time during the day. (but power-nap are good!!)
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Old 05-17-11, 12:39 PM   #6
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I keep a supply of healthy snacks in my office for those mid-morning and afternoon periods. Stuff like granola bars, nuts (almonds and peanuts), yogurt, cheese. I also drink coffee in the morning and a Diet Coke in the afternoon. Going for short walks also helps.
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Old 05-17-11, 01:51 PM   #7
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I'm actually thinking it maybe a combination of the milk and cheese he has for breakfast that accounts for the 10:30 - 11:00 feeling. Both substances contain tryptophan which can act like a mild sedative. The later time can also be because of the yogurt or lunch time feeding. However, It can also be part of your circadian rhythms.

Maybe change your diet around a little to see if it works. replace the cheese and yogurt with a hardboiled egg or 2 (both fat & protein) and see if that helps.
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Old 05-17-11, 02:13 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by mttx View Post
Good day,

Since I started to commute, I feel really good and seems like I have more energy at work. (Desk job) However I start to think that I am not eating the right thing to fuel my body because I will hit several ‘plateau’ during the day and get so sleepy.

Here is my typical day:

Wake-up at 6:45 and hop in the shower
Get the kids ready and leave the house by 7:45 (usually I just grab a fruit)
At work around 8:30 – eat a big bowl of cereals, cheese and a glass of milk or juice
Lunch at 12:00 – usually the left over from last night diner, yogurt, water or juice
Around 15:00 – grab a snack (nuts bar with mix fruits)
Heading home at 16:30
Diner time is usually around 18:00
After 21:00 – I usually grab a snack (vegetables, fruits or some kind of treats )
Bed time is no later than 23:00.

The ‘plateau’ that I usually hit is around 10:30-11:00 and 14:30-15:00. At that time, my body seems like it is asking for something as my energy will just drop drastically. I sometime find that I can slowly fall asleep.

I am not looking to loose weight or to get into a diet but looking for some suggestion on what I can eat to properly fuel my body.

So let me hear you suggestion.

Thanks
Here's what the typical reformed hard-core alcoholic such as I will do: just drink a quart or so of STRONG coffee whenever you feel sleepy during the day.

No longer drink, no longer smoke (quit @ 5 packs/day in 1974) -- got to have something to be strung out on. Perhaps I should call cycling enough of an addiction and moderate the caffeine -- yeah...right!! Maybe tomorrow, maybe next week, next month, next year....

Don in Austin
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