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Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

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Old 07-03-06, 03:22 PM   #1
stercomm
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Feeding in the saddle

I've modified my feeding process while on a long ride (50 miles +). I use to do gels and bars on the bike every hour and then would stop at around 30-40 miles and grab a sub and fill the water bottles. I've decided that the stops eat up too much time so have changed my approach so that I now eat in the saddle, only stopping for a quick fluid refill. I stuff an extra bottle of Gatorade in my back pocket and for calories load the pockets up with a mix of gels, Clif bars, fig bars, a couple of bananas and a couple of peanut butter sandwiches depending on the distance of the ride. This way I can stay moving.

My question is any suggestions on other things to eat while on the move. I've found that for me I need to consume 200-300 calories an hour for anything between 50-70 miles and for riders greater than 70 miles I need to consume 300-400 calories an hour to finish off with some strngth and energy.
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Old 07-03-06, 04:43 PM   #2
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Like you, bananas are my food of choice while riding. They're easy to carry and easy to eat while riding. I also use gels but as a last resort-and avoid the ones with caffeine. Fig bars are pretty good as well. I've never had much luck with sports bars.

I've started eating round peanut butter crackers (Lance around here) and they seem to be a very nice supplement. They're a little difficult to eat because they're so dry but the salt and the peanut butter are worth the hassle. Like you I avoid stopping and eat while riding. If I'm solo I'll stop to snap a few pictures. On group rides sometimes it's difficult to get the proper nourishment if the pace is hard....just not enough time to even reach in the pockets and grab food......
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Old 07-03-06, 06:36 PM   #3
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+1 for most of the above (I love bananas but in our Central Valley heat they turn almost black in jersey pocket over a longish ride).

Add prunes to the list. They carry well, are soft and a little moist from the airtight package, and a good energy source-- and they're "real" food. I used to carry grapes because they are sweet and moist, but swallowed one whole one day and damned near choked to death going up a grade.

I used to like carrying Nutella on wholewheat crackers, but I would end up out in the kitchen late at night spooning the stuff....me bad.
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Old 07-03-06, 07:12 PM   #4
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I go with fig bars, bananas, a sports drink in one bottle / water in the other, and on really long rides... a handful of jellybeans.... the sugar rush helps on hard climbs.
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Old 07-04-06, 12:53 AM   #5
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Cakes- biscuits- dried fruit- Cheese- and anything else that I fancy. I mean it. Always carry a couple of cereal bars- The cake is a firm Fruit cake- The dried fruitand there is so much choice from figs,prunes, aprocots even down to and ordinary mix-- The cheese I use as a change from other sweet tastes and is a bit of protein- and fig rolls are a favourite. Just don't take chocolate- gets a bit messy. Only thing is for a long ride I would need a fanny pack to carry the amount I want to eat.
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Old 07-05-06, 12:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stapfam
Only thing is for a long ride I would need a fanny pack to carry the amount I want to eat.
Heck, I do take a fanny pack and I enjoy stopping to eat. Sitting under a peaceful shady tree munching some peanut butter crackers, a peach, and a taking a few swigs of Gatorade while resting the legs and butt are all part of the experience for me. If I have to start worrying that taking 10-15 minutes is wasting too much time, then cycling won't be fun anymore...
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Old 07-05-06, 01:54 PM   #7
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I also enjoy stopping to eat - I can't imagine what you are in such a hurry for! For eating while rolling I prepare my own mixture - cherios cereal, nuts, dried fruit, pretzels, reeses pieces. This mixture is heavy on salt, because I don't like anything other than water in my water bottles. I find apples more durable than bananas, although I am in the habit of eating a banana before leaving on most rides, and usually at the end of the ride. Gummy bears are good for a boost of energy and they seem to like riding in a jersey pocket.
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Old 07-05-06, 03:45 PM   #8
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Like HopedaleHills, I also prefer to sit somewhere and relax while eating. I've not gotten used to eating while riding. Consequently I guess I'll never become a racer, oh well.
This is not a bike phenomenon only with me. I don't do drive throughs in the car. When I eat I like to sit at a table, not hold a burger with my right hand while turning the steering wheel with my left.
It gets worse, even at fast food shops, I place a napkin in my lap.
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Old 07-05-06, 05:38 PM   #9
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Like HopedaleHills, I also prefer to sit somewhere and relax while eating. I've not gotten used to eating while riding. Consequently I guess I'll never become a racer, oh well.
This is not a bike phenomenon only with me. I don't do drive throughs in the car. When I eat I like to sit at a table, not hold a burger with my right hand while turning the steering wheel with my left.
It gets worse, even at fast food shops, I place a napkin in my lap.
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Old 07-05-06, 07:37 PM   #10
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Good points on the stopping and enjoying the peace. My main reason for not stopping has to do with time away from home. I find that on a long ride 60 or more miles, I can save a good half-hour by feeding and drinking on the roll. My wife is starting to comment that golf would take less time as I'd only be gone once a week as opposed to the amount of time I spend on the bike during a week and i can't seem to get her interested in joining me. So, I find that the extra half hour or so buys some good vibes at home.

Good ideas from all on different things to eat, gels and power bars get real old and nasty after a while.
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Old 07-06-06, 06:34 AM   #11
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On my longer rides here in the Great White North, I tend to stop at a national coffee shop chain called Tim Horton's to nosh on a whole wheat bagel w/PB or carrot muffin and Gatorade. There are so many of these shops around that you can easliy work them into your ride no matter how long. Also carry the fig bars or cereal bars and defintely bananas.
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Old 07-07-06, 07:32 AM   #12
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My son, who is a cyclist, an inline skate racer, and was a national class rower showed up for TOSRV with some cold baked potatos in his pocket. I haven't gotten around to it myself, but I mentioned it to my riding partner, and now he takes baked potatos on a long ride. Good carbs, not messy, easy to eat while on the saddle.

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Old 07-07-06, 08:11 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadnsnh
My son, who is a cyclist, an inline skate racer, and was a national class rower showed up for TOSRV with some cold baked potatos in his pocket. I haven't gotten around to it myself, but I mentioned it to my riding partner, and now he takes baked potatos on a long ride. Good carbs, not messy, easy to eat while on the saddle.

Leland
Not trying to be a smart a**, but does your son or riding partnerprefer one potato variety to eat than another? Some baked potaoes are so darn dry that I don't think I'd have enough fluid on the bike to choke it down.
I do like the idea - easier to eat, no wrapper, no mess but maybe the sour cream and chives could be a little messy.
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Old 07-07-06, 09:07 AM   #14
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Well, I thought I had seen everything. But, noooooo way is this true! This morning on my drive into work, I pass a guy sitting on the side of the road with this bike (Trek Pilot). He's wearing full spandex Discovery jersey and shorts. I slow down to see if maybe he needs help. What I see if a guy eating a slice of watermelon. Now I don't know how in the world he got the slice, but that's what he was eating. Makes we wonder what kind of jersey pocket you'd need to carry this with you.
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Old 07-07-06, 09:51 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadnsnh
My son, who is a cyclist, an inline skate racer, and was a national class rower showed up for TOSRV with some cold baked potatos in his pocket. I haven't gotten around to it myself, but I mentioned it to my riding partner, and now he takes baked potatos on a long ride. Good carbs, not messy, easy to eat while on the saddle.

Leland
Great idea. I did a century last year that included a baked potato at the end. I have to say that potato tasted awfully good.
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