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  1. #1
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    Minimal food & water ride

    Greetings Fellow 50+ers,

    I was riding last Sunday (05-03-2015)—solo as usual—and I had mentally plotted my intended course, a roughly 125 mile ride depending upon how I felt as I approached the 75-mile point. While I know I can easily ride 125 miles, I was riding my Trek 29er hardtail in my “light as possible” mode (no backpack hence no variety of tools, minimal lighting, no extra batteries, seatbag only—which had just one spare 700 x 28~32 inner tube, a patch kit, a universal tool with tire lever, and a single serving 28 gram box of raisins). Via my two bottle holders, I was carrying two 20 ounce bottles of water. My goal was to see how far I could ride on just the water and that single 28 gram box of raisins.

    I started from Upper Darby, PA and by the time I made it to route 422 & route 662 (near Douglassville, PA) I was just 37.2 miles into the ride and I felt strong. It was at that point that I heard people passing over me as I exited one of two tunnels at that location. I previously thought both tunnels went under railroad tracks, but only the longer tunnel does so. I discovered that the shorter tunnel passes under the Thun bike trail! (Though I hadn’t yet discovered the name of the trail at that point.)

    Well, being that I saw quite a few people pass by on bicycles, I had to give the trail a ride to see how far it traveled west as I was heading toward Birdsboro, PA to ride south on route 345 through French Creek (and a lot of climbing, but I knew that before hand).

    I first pulled over and met David, who travels with his wife across the United States for business via an RV that they live out of. David indicated that he rarely rides the same trail twice while in a given area, as he tends to ride as many of the trails as he can before he moves on. That sounded kind of interesting and he was a friendly individual.

    After we parted, I continued riding west (David was heading east toward Pottstown, PA). The trail was fine gravel and packed fairly well for riding on. I had just recently removed my large volume 29” x 2.1 street tires in favor of riding with considerably less rotating wheel mass via a set of Bontrager 700 x 32 H2 street tires, which really made it easy to cruise at faster speeds. Consequently, I was passing (cautiously and respectfully) all bicyclists that I encountered in the westward direction. David indicated that I’d eventually come to a steep descent which crosses route 724 and he was right, it was plenty steep (with barriers in the way, so fast descents to cross route 724 were virtually impossible without crashing into the barrier poles).

    It was at that steep point in the trail that I met Tim who was taking a break. I had a 15.3 MPH average speed and was 40 miles into my ride at that point. On my long distance rides, I don’t fret average speeds as the point is to pace myself to be able to complete the distance while enjoying the ride and meeting people along the way is part of the fun for me. Tim was another friendly individual whom I spoke with for quite some time and I enjoyed the nature of our conversation. Not unlike David several miles earlier, Tim was also heading east on the trail and it was time for me to exit the trail to again ride route 724 west has I had done for many miles prior to discovering “Thun Trail.” I mentioned this forum to Tim just in case he wanted some place to visit, perhaps on a rainy day when he couldn’t ride, but could associate with other bicyclists. We bid each other farewell and a safe return home.

    After several additional miles, I was making my turn onto route 345 south and my climbing began. As usual, I pedaled up all ascents though I took a mini water break at a couple places which gave my butt some relief from the saddle. When I reached a point that was 73 miles into the ride (and having already consumed the one serving 28 grams of raisins), I decided it would likely be best to take the 20 mile route back home rather than continue for the 125 miles as originally intended, as my conversations had delayed my progress (though no regrets, as I enjoyed speaking with David and Tim) and I prefer not to ride into darkness if I can help it especially since the route I was going to take was just freshly cindered and it had plenty of deep potholes (which aren’t easily seen at night). Being that I was now riding on little 700 x 32 tires (fast rolling comfortable rascals at that), deep potholes could be potential problems during fast descents. My highest descent speed that day was 44.4 MPH. And so, I opted to take the more direct 20-mile ride home.

    By the time I reached a point that was 87 miles into the ride, the heat, lack of water (ran out of water 5 miles earlier), and a measly 28 grams of raisins to eat for that entire ride was all working against me. When I spotted a shaded sidewalk in front of a pizza place in Broomall, PA (still 6 miles from home), I pulled over and laid on their sidewalk as my back tried to suck up as much cool pavement as possible. I was feeling quite drained at that point (though I knew I’d be able to make it homeward) after I cooled down just a bit. I must have looked worse than I felt, as someone from the pizza shop came out and offered me a cool bottle of water and though I said I’d be grateful if they simply filled my empty water bottle with tap water, they insisted that I take the cooler bottled water (I suppose they feared I’d die on their pavement, perhaps slowing business until they scraped my carcass off their sidewalk - LOL). Well, my throat was so parched that as soon as I swallowed a big gulp of that satisfying cold water, my throat felt just as dry as a new sponge! Even so, that 16.9 ounces of cold water rejuvenated me and I was flying on the remaining 6-mile ride home.

    And so, I managed to pedal 93.228 miles on just 28 grams of raisins, though I consumed 56.9 ounces of water. My overall average speed was 14.3 MPH, not bad for a 32 pound hardtail over that distance.

    This “limited food & water” experiment was necessary while at distances that were closer to home, as my longest rides have extended into the 250 mile range in the mountains however, on those rides I was heavily loaded with provisions in my large backpack (initially weighing 25 to 30 pounds, which isn’t pleasant). I wanted to see how little I actually required food & water wise, so I could pack lighter for those longer rides and enjoy those longer rides even more while not so heavily loaded.

    After the ride concluded, I didn’t experience any muscle cramping. I’d call my minimal food and water experiment a success though, via an actual long distance ride, I’d still pack slightly more than the minimal food and water requirement just to be on the safe side, but it would be much less than I’ve packed for previous long distance rides.

  2. #2
    Senior Member bruised's Avatar
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    I don't mean to be disrespectful, but what you're doing is OK under controlled conditions where you have an escape plan. But heading off into the wilderness under-supplied, because you did it one time and survived, is tantamount to lunacy.

    "I wanted to see how little I actually required food & water wise, so I could pack lighter for those longer rides and enjoy those longer rides even more while not so heavily loaded."

    It'll be one of those longer rides that probably kills you.

    Please tell us you're going to rethink this whole idea.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member randyjawa's Avatar
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    First off, at my age, which is 50+ nearly 20, I never ride without my cell phone, a spare inner tube, a patch kit and tools to effect most on the road repairs, including chain repair.

    I always take more water than I think I will need and a snack to reward myself for getting there. I always let Mrs. Me know what my route intentions are and then I stick to the route. And I hydrate, before and after a ride. Failure to do this is foolish. Your body needs water and lots of it - every day!

    Trust me, in 2002, I endoed, breaking my neck in two places. Thank goodness I had the cell phone, your best riding partner, when foolish enough (like me who prefers the solitude) to go into the wild alone.

    Nothing said here is intended to offend, perhaps scold, but not offend. We, in this forum, are old and getting older, not better. Long ago, I decided to forget trying to be that young guy or gal again. It does not happen. And above all else...

    Don't challenge Mother Nature. She knows what we need to operate/survive.
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    Don't see the point in trying to limit your water supply. Besides all the other problems it causes, being dehydrated makes your heart work harder, which means you'll lose any advantage you would have gained by not carrying that extra weight to begin with.
    A ride on a bike is not a walk in the park

  5. #5
    Member tg16's Avatar
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    I had two lithotripsies to get rid of a 1 cm kidney stone which I developed by failure to hydrate a couple of times over a summer. Just my personal experience and a hard lesson learned. I remember well a quote from a class I had when I lived in El Paso, TX and wish I had remembered it then. "If you wait until you're thirsty to drink, you've waited too long."

    On the other hand. That was an impressive average speed.
    Once I got the straight jacket off, my imaginary friends and I escaped.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by randyjawa View Post
    ...We, in this forum, are old and getting older, not better. Long ago, I decided to forget trying to be that young guy or gal again. It does not happen. And above all else...

    Don't challenge Mother Nature. She knows what we need to operate/survive.
    With all due respect randyjawa, you paint a gloomy picture of our age group which actually bears no overall truth when it comes to our age group allegedly “not getting better” with age. I’ve gotten continually better for the last 4+ years now!

    …I battled my way back from a heart attack that nearly killed me on August 30, 2009 at age 53 (from being dormant for far too many years of my life) and I wasn’t well enough to commence bicycling until April 18, 2011 at age 55 (a point at which I hadn’t pedaled a bicycle for 30 years). My first 8-mile hilly commute (at age 55 and weighing 210 pounds) required an hour and 22 minutes to traverse that distance, yielding a pathetic average speed of just 5.9 MPH (though I was thrilled, as I’d only been bicycling for 7 weeks and I was making miraculous cardiovascular progress). I pedaled home as well, so that first commute was 16 miles round trip; not bad for just 7 weeks of bicycling after a heart attack of such severity.

    Conversely, last week on my return ride of 14.137 miles from Performance Bikes in Paoli, PA via my 36 pound RoadMaster with 26” x 2.0 street tires—a so-called “boat anchor” by the standards of some individuals—I achieved my highest average speed ever over those 14.137 miles, 20.4 MPH, completing that distance in a time of just 41:38! I now weigh 161.8 pounds and I’m a lean, mean, pedaling machine and I love competition. When competition isn’t available, I simply push harder to beat my previous average speeds. It’s only on my longest rides that I back off my pace to enjoy my 200 and 250 mile mountain rides. I’ve gotten faster and have ridden farther every year that I’ve bicycled. I’ve currently pedaled a grand total of 8,176 miles. Having turned 59-years-old over a month ago, I feel utterly fantastic! Some people are in fact getting BETTER in our age group, so don’t sell our age group short. It’s wisest to speak on your own behalf, as others can speak more accurately for themselves.

    Yes, a point will eventually come to pass when the tide of progression will change, but there’s no knowing when that point will be reached, but even so, that changeover won’t come quickly so long as a concerted effort is put forth on a fairly regular basis.

  7. #7
    Senior Member baron von trail's Avatar
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    Lots of water and some kind of nutrition, like gels, are a must for century rides. I can't imagine the gain or joy in riding without either.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by baron von trail View Post
    Lots of water and some kind of nutrition, like gels, are a must for century rides. I can't imagine the gain or joy in riding without either.
    Traversing considerable distances via limited food and water is exciting for me, so that made my ride all the more enjoyable! It equates to an improvement in the efficiency of my bio-engine, which concurs with my recent 20.4 MPH average speed over a 14.137 mile distance via my 36-pound RoadMaster and my recent 17.7 MPH average speed over a 20-mile distance via my 32 pound 29er hardtail with new 700 x 32 street tires, which was a gain in elevation of hundreds of feet, but presented far more climbing than that. It feels like my heart and legs are nuclear powered and I honestly never imagined that I’d acquire this state of physical conditioning at my age, so this is incredibly exciting for me. J

    What it comes down to is this… Just as a finely tuned combustion engine yields far greater mileage than a horribly out-of-tune combustion engine; our bio-engines run at a variety of efficiency ratings therefore our nutrient and water requirements to perform a given task can differ considerably.

    You may actually require considerable food and water intake on your century rides whereas individuals such as myself require only a fraction as much. My friend is always bewildered as to how I don’t get thirsty on our metric century rides. He’ll often be finishing his 2nd bottle of water or Gatorade before I take my first drink! Conversely, I wonder how he could possibly be so thirsty so soon into the ride? The answer is; our bio-engines run at different efficiency ratings. He’s like a car with a leaking cooling system whereas I’m like a car with a perfectly sealed cooling system that employs a recovery system. Consequently, he runs out of water long before I do.

    One significant aspect I have over my friend is the experience of much longer ride distances (200 and 250-mile mountain rides). On those rides, you learn how to meter yourself to conserve food and water especially since there are various remote passages where I haven’t a clue as to where to purchase food and beverages and, since I ride through the night, those businesses would typically be closed at such late hours. Hence, learning to conserve is critical to ride success, which equates to survival for me, as I flat out refuse to call anyone for assistance. I don’t own a wireless communication device (and have no desire to own one) and pay phones are a thing of the past (and never existed in remote mountain passages), so I couldn’t call anyone even if I wanted to. But my long distance rides bring the satisfaction that they do because I know they are all about being entirely self-reliant. This may not be important to some people, but it makes all the difference in the world to me. No one will ever have to come looking for me, as I’ll find a way to make it home on my own, just as I’ve always done.

  9. #9
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    You're kinda like those who get a new car and drive until the car runs out of gas, just to see how far below E the gauge goes. It makes no sense to me and neither does your experiment. To each his own. I hope you don't hurt yourself.
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    Senior Member CrankyOne's Avatar
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    I don't get the point of this experiment. As part of controlled medical research perhaps but not like this. And, having had a kidney stone once due likely to dehydration I really really don't want to repeat it (the cheerful nurse said, with a smile, that it was the closest I'd ever come to experiencing the pain of childbirth) not to mention other longer lasting problems it can cause. On top of this is the danger of loosing mental capacity due to dehydration and becoming unsafe on the road. Finally, there's potential permanent damage to your testes (and personally I'd like them to continue to function for as long as possible).
    "Trying to cure traffic congestion by adding more capacity is like trying to cure obesity by loosening your belt." - ATL Urbanist

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    I've done the 100 mile with no fuel experiment and it was fine although I don't recall trying to restrict water. It comes down to how hard you ride. Riding at a low to moderate intensity minimizes the body's use of carbohydrate, riding harder will definitely require some extra fuel.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CrankyOne View Post
    I don't get the point of this experiment. As part of controlled medical research perhaps but not like this. And, having had a kidney stone once due likely to dehydration I really really don't want to repeat it (the cheerful nurse said, with a smile, that it was the closest I'd ever come to experiencing the pain of childbirth) not to mention other longer lasting problems it can cause. On top of this is the danger of loosing mental capacity due to dehydration and becoming unsafe on the road. Finally, there's potential permanent damage to your testes (and personally I'd like them to continue to function for as long as possible).
    The point of my experiment is rather easy to understand and it would be pointless for me to repeat my reasons. But I’ll add a few things which will hopefully make matters clearer for you.

    But first let me ask you a question. Do you know how far you can ride without food, or, via a very limited food intake, so in the event that a situation arose you could potentially traverse that distance via such a limitation?

    I’ll wager you don’t know because you clearly fear the worst in making any such attempt.

    I, however, have no such fear, as I know how far I can push this body and it’s rather stunning. I have a several year history of being able to traverse considerable distances without ANY food intake. For instance…

    …From the time I began riding century rides, I never ate anything on the 50-mile returns because I never felt the need to do so. If I could pedal the last 50 miles without any food whatsoever (and I did so every time), then I knew I’d be able to pedal much greater distances without food or via very limited food intake.

    I may be crossing the United States via bicycle in the near future (something I wanted to do when I was a child and that desire has reignited) and the potential exists whereby I may need to make a decision to proceed on a very limited supply of food at some point. I need to now my limitations to make the best decision at that point in time. We’re talking thousands of miles, so traveling with a backpack that is as light as possible makes a big difference in the wear and tear factor on the rider. This hasn’t been a pointless experiment by any stretch of the imagination and with as many of you who fear not eating and drinking enough, none of you are going to be able to convey what’s actually possible because you’re too busy flooding your bodies with food and water! But I’ll be able to convey what’s possible because I’m not afraid to push myself beyond existing boundaries.

    Does that make things any clearer for you? It should.

    But what difference would it make if I croaked in the process? I’m being serious. My passing won’t stop the world from turning; it won’t impact the stock market; I have no family to speak of, and any so-called friends have only been “fair-weather friends,” (only there for the taking), so there’s no loss to anyone if I should succumb. I’m free to experiment in this manner without causing anyone any heartache, but I’ll be able to convey the outcome to forum members to make them better aware of what the human body can actually accomplish. Someone needs to be the guinea pig, that’ll be me.

    The likelihood of me succumbing during such attempts is very slim as I’ll bonk long before death’s approach and kidney stones aren’t issues in my family. I’ve been extremely dehydrated numerous times in the past, but I recover quickly. I’ve lived through the worst heart attack imaginable; kidney stones are a picnic by comparison!

  13. #13
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnosis View Post



    I may be crossing the United States via bicycle in the near future (something I wanted to do when I was a child and that desire has reignited) and the potential exists whereby I may need to make a decision to proceed on a very limited supply of food at some point. I need to now my limitations to make the best decision at that point in time. We’re talking thousands of miles, so traveling with a backpack that is as light as possible makes a big difference in the wear and tear factor on the rider. This hasn’t been a pointless experiment by any stretch of the imagination and with as many of you who fear not eating and drinking enough, none of you are going to be able to convey what’s actually possible because you’re too busy flooding your bodies with food and water! But I’ll be able to convey what’s possible because I’m not afraid to push myself beyond existing boundaries.
    There are too many variables to extrapolate your one day experiments to almost any other ride, much less a muti-day ride: hydration before starting, humidity, temperature, wind, topography, and fatigue. There is a great difference between riding one hard day and riding 74 consecutive days. Being in good condition has a lot more to do with digging into your reserves than a few controlled one day rides.

    My wife and I have ridden 15,000 miles of self supported touring in the last 7 years including: across the US twice, across British Columbia, and Alberta, CA; and 3 month tour across several European countries. Water or food was never a major issue. We experienced temperatures from 28 to 109 degrees F, and crossed major arid sections of several countries. We never got in what I'd call a "survival" situation. However, we have been pushed to the limits at times but good planning and experience can go a long way. I think what you are doing has more probability of giving you a false confidence that could lead to doing something that may not be very prudent. But what the heck, go for it.

    l'd also drop the backpack, and get a rack and panniers, it will make the ride more enjoyable.
    Last edited by Doug64; 05-08-15 at 07:27 PM.

  14. #14
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    Gnosis good for you. I detect I bit of edge in your riding preference as in "out on the edge" just a bit. All things considered, your level of training seems more than adequate for the associated risk. There are certainly a lot more activities with far greater risks and challenges especially when we are well into our second half-life. I find that more of my personal activities are out on the edge. But then again, I am no longer responsible for a loved one which could certainly be cause for reflection. To each is own and carpe diem.

  15. #15
    Senior Member baron von trail's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnosis View Post
    Traversing considerable distances via limited food and water is exciting for me, so that made my ride all the more enjoyable! It equates to an improvement in the efficiency of my bio-engine, which concurs with my recent 20.4 MPH average speed over a 14.137 mile distance via my 36-pound RoadMaster and my recent 17.7 MPH average speed over a 20-mile distance via my 32 pound 29er hardtail with new 700 x 32 street tires, which was a gain in elevation of hundreds of feet, but presented far more climbing than that. It feels like my heart and legs are nuclear powered and I honestly never imagined that I’d acquire this state of physical conditioning at my age, so this is incredibly exciting for me. J

    What it comes down to is this… Just as a finely tuned combustion engine yields far greater mileage than a horribly out-of-tune combustion engine; our bio-engines run at a variety of efficiency ratings therefore our nutrient and water requirements to perform a given task can differ considerably.

    You may actually require considerable food and water intake on your century rides whereas individuals such as myself require only a fraction as much. My friend is always bewildered as to how I don’t get thirsty on our metric century rides. He’ll often be finishing his 2nd bottle of water or Gatorade before I take my first drink! Conversely, I wonder how he could possibly be so thirsty so soon into the ride? The answer is; our bio-engines run at different efficiency ratings. He’s like a car with a leaking cooling system whereas I’m like a car with a perfectly sealed cooling system that employs a recovery system. Consequently, he runs out of water long before I do.

    One significant aspect I have over my friend is the experience of much longer ride distances (200 and 250-mile mountain rides). On those rides, you learn how to meter yourself to conserve food and water especially since there are various remote passages where I haven’t a clue as to where to purchase food and beverages and, since I ride through the night, those businesses would typically be closed at such late hours. Hence, learning to conserve is critical to ride success, which equates to survival for me, as I flat out refuse to call anyone for assistance. I don’t own a wireless communication device (and have no desire to own one) and pay phones are a thing of the past (and never existed in remote mountain passages), so I couldn’t call anyone even if I wanted to. But my long distance rides bring the satisfaction that they do because I know they are all about being entirely self-reliant. This may not be important to some people, but it makes all the difference in the world to me. No one will ever have to come looking for me, as I’ll find a way to make it home on my own, just as I’ve always done.

  16. #16
    The Left Coast, USA FrenchFit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnosis View Post
    But first let me ask you a question. Do you know how far you can ride without food, or, via a very limited food intake, so in the event that a situation arose you could potentially traverse that distance via such a limitation?

    I’ll wager you don’t know because you clearly fear the worst in making any such attempt.
    Since I fast during the day I know well how far I can go without food. The very idea of taking a bunch of gels, snacks and bars with me on a day ride sickens me - it's all likely to come back unopened. Water is a different story entirely. I've had my lithotripsy, I know you play a dangerous game with your health if you exercise while under hydrated. So I force myself to drink. I don't crave the water but I'm imagine I riding with my urologist who's nagging me: "Drink some water MORON."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnosis View Post
    I may be crossing the United States via bicycle in the near future (something I wanted to do when I was a child and that desire has reignited) and the potential exists whereby I may need to make a decision to proceed on a very limited supply of food at some point. I need to now my limitations to make the best decision at that point in time. We’re talking thousands of miles, so traveling with a backpack that is as light as possible makes a big difference in the wear and tear factor on the rider. This hasn’t been a pointless experiment by any stretch of the imagination and with as many of you who fear not eating and drinking enough, none of you are going to be able to convey what’s actually possible because you’re too busy flooding your bodies with food and water! But I’ll be able to convey what’s possible because I’m not afraid to push myself beyond existing boundaries.
    Curiosity as to how far you can go without food is one thing but doing it for the purpose of saving weight on a bike tour seems truly pointless and ridiculous. Unless you're overweight, you're going to need to eat while touring particularly if you plan on spending 6-8 hrs/day on a bike. Why would you limit your eating to the beginning and end of your ride only? Your recent experiment will tell you nothing about what happens when you try that little trick for 3 days in a row.

    2000 Cals weighs a couple of pounds and isn't going to affect your ride. Cycling when severely dehydrated isn't doing your body any favors either.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
    Curiosity as to how far you can go without food is one thing but doing it for the purpose of saving weight on a bike tour seems truly pointless and ridiculous. Unless you're overweight, you're going to need to eat while touring particularly if you plan on spending 6-8 hrs/day on a bike. Why would you limit your eating to the beginning and end of your ride only? Your recent experiment will tell you nothing about what happens when you try that little trick for 3 days in a row.

    2000 Cals weighs a couple of pounds and isn't going to affect your ride. Cycling when severely dehydrated isn't doing your body any favors either.
    Clearly, you’re thinking far too narrow-mindedly and it’s causing you to draw a number of flawed conclusions.

    I didn’t say anything about not eating and drinking when I arrive at various destinations hence, definitely before and after rides. Neither did I say anything about trying to limit food intake for days or longer; that’s strictly your flawed conclusion.

    I simply stated that I wanted to find out how far I could pedal without food & water or via a limited supply thereof. This didn’t suggest in any manner that I wanted to make my entire journey across the United States on limited food and water!

    There are potentially points in the ride where I’d have to stretch provisions for a considerable distance, at which point, knowing how far I can potentially ride on those limited provisions will permit me to make the wisest decision at that point in time. If you can’t understand that, then your replies are as pointless as they are ridiculous (thus returning your pointless and ridiculous insult – you reap what you sow).

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    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    As John Wooden said,"It's what you learn after you know it all that counts."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnosis View Post
    There are potentially points in the ride where I’d have to stretch provisions for a considerable distance, at which point, knowing how far I can potentially ride on those limited provisions will permit me to make the wisest decision at that point in time.
    You're correct that I don't understand why you'd ever need to stretch provisions like this. I know I wouldn't have any problem carrying enough food every day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
    You're correct that I don't understand why you'd ever need to stretch provisions like this. I know I wouldn't have any problem carrying enough food every day.
    Gregf83, I concur that you’re “willing” to carry as much food & water as is necessary (and for that matter, so am I), but if you were traveling across the country, you couldn’t be absolutely certain that you wouldn’t encounter an issue whereby acquiring food and beverages at some point might become virtually impossible. While this doesn’t sound likely, it’s entirely possible (and it’s happened to a group of us when riding our motorcycles on 4th of July in the mountains). You might arrive at an establishment too late; a crime may have been committed at the establishment; it could be closed due to a death in the family; it could be closed due to unforeseen plumbing/electrical circumstances; someone could have given you bad directions to the establishment (or you simply missed a turn and end up essentially lost). These are merely a few of the many possibilities that might prevent you from acquiring food and beverages as planned at a given point in the ride. When it happens and you’re completely self-reliant as I will be; what are you going to do if there’s no other establishment for the next 50, 75, 100 miles and your current supplies have dwindled to next to nothing? If you have no idea how far YOU can pedal via limited provisions, you’ll be in a particularly precarious situation because YOU just might NOT make it.

    My point is; don’t be so certain that acquiring food and beverages will be as easy as paying for them, as that’s contrary to the nature of unforeseen circumstances. There have been plenty of times that I had money enough to purchase supplies, but in remote passages in the mountains on 4th of July virtually everything was closed. If you knew you were able to pedal the above distances to the next establishment via very limited provisions, you’d at least be fairy confident that you’d make it to the next establishment.

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    RR3
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    56.9 oz of water seems plenty for such a short ride.

    Most cyclists drink and eat too much on rides.

    Why would Gnosis necessarily need to eat anything on such a relatively low output ride where he should be burning mostly fat. I have trained my body to burn fat and would not need to eat anything on a 93 mile ride although I would have probably 500-600 Kcal.

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    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnosis View Post
    Gregf83, I concur that you’re “willing” to carry as much food & water as is necessary (and for that matter, so am I), but if you were traveling across the country, you couldn’t be absolutely certain that you wouldn’t encounter an issue whereby acquiring food and beverages at some point might become virtually impossible. While this doesn’t sound likely, it’s entirely possible (and it’s happened to a group of us when riding our motorcycles on 4th of July in the mountains). You might arrive at an establishment too late; a crime may have been committed at the establishment; it could be closed due to a death in the family; it could be closed due to unforeseen plumbing/electrical circumstances; someone could have given you bad directions to the establishment (or you simply missed a turn and end up essentially lost). These are merely a few of the many possibilities that might prevent you from acquiring food and beverages as planned at a given point in the ride. When it happens and you’re completely self-reliant as I will be; what are you going to do if there’s no other establishment for the next 50, 75, 100 miles and your current supplies have dwindled to next to nothing? If you have no idea how far YOU can pedal via limited provisions, you’ll be in a particularly precarious situation because YOU just might NOT make it.

    My point is; don’t be so certain that acquiring food and beverages will be as easy as paying for them, as that’s contrary to the nature of unforeseen circumstances. There have been plenty of times that I had money enough to purchase supplies, but in remote passages in the mountains on 4th of July virtually everything was closed. If you knew you were able to pedal the above distances to the next establishment via very limited provisions, you’d at least be fairy confident that you’d make it to the next establishment.
    That is why I carry a couple of freeze dried Mountain House or other brand 2 person dinners for those situations. We also carry a couple of Platypus collapsible bladders for carrying extra water when needed.
    Platy™ Bottle
    Last edited by Doug64; 05-11-15 at 04:56 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HtownTREK View Post
    Gnosis good for you. I detect I bit of edge in your riding preference as in "out on the edge" just a bit. All things considered, your level of training seems more than adequate for the associated risk. There are certainly a lot more activities with far greater risks and challenges especially when we are well into our second half-life. I find that more of my personal activities are out on the edge. But then again, I am no longer responsible for a loved one which could certainly be cause for reflection. To each is own and carpe diem.
    Thanks, HtownTREK.

    I actually enjoy pushing hard; I love gravity-bombing steep descents (52.6 MPH my max descent speed currently); and I love riding really long distances. So it only seems natural to attempt to determine how far I can pedal via limited provisions on my longer distances.

    I’ve bonked in the past even when I was eating more, but it apparently wasn’t enough via my out-of-tune bio-engine. My physical conditioning now feels extraordinary. While pedaling “out of the saddle” yesterday I climbed an 8.5% grade a tenth of a mile long via my 32.6 pound Giant Rincon mountain bike via in its 36/17 gearing (and its 26.6875” diameter street tires hence, 56.5 gear inches) and I never dropped below 14 MPH all the way to the top. I wasn’t exhausted upon reaching the top, but was instead able to swiftly head to some other nearby ascents and conquer them as well. On my way home I descended at 39.2 MPH. I covered 5.531 hilly miles in a time of 21:38 and yielded a 15.4 MPH average speed. I can hardly complain about that average speed via a portly mountain bike. My heart and legs feel like they’re nuclear powered. None of this is intended in a bragging manner rather, it’s more that I’m stunned by my incredible progress at age 59. I never foresaw this awesome state of physical conditioning. I only wish that others could realize that it’s possible for them if they’ll put forth a continued effort. These have been the most remarkable 4 years of my life with regards to my physical progress.

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    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RR3 View Post
    56.9 oz of water seems plenty for such a short ride.

    Most cyclists drink and eat too much on rides.

    Why would Gnosis necessarily need to eat anything on such a relatively low output ride where he should be burning mostly fat. I have trained my body to burn fat and would not need to eat anything on a 93 mile ride although I would have probably 500-600 Kcal.
    I don't know about the OP, but I weigh 155 at 6', dropping down to 150 on multi-day rides; there is no fat to burn!

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