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Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

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Old 02-07-08, 12:24 PM   #1
Pedal Wench
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When to start the caffeine drip?

During a 24-hour race, when would you start adding caffeine to the mix? I like a little jolt to get started in the morning, but I don't want to overdue it too early. I was thinking about something at around 6pm (we start at 6am), again at midnight, and then one more if I need it at 3am, obviously giving up the chance for sleeping afterwards...

Thanks for your opinions.
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Old 02-07-08, 03:29 PM   #2
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More and more lately I don't use caffeine on my long rides ... or very limited caffeine. I don't find it works as well as I'd like it to. But if I'm going to use it, I will start using it later in the ride. On my last 24-hour, I started the ride at 6 am, then started drinking coffee somewhere around midnight or so, and had a cup every time I came in for a break ... a cup of strong, lukewarm, very sweet coffee, a bit of food, and off I'd go again. I find eating goes further toward keeping me awake than coffee or tea.
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Old 02-07-08, 05:18 PM   #3
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24 Hour races sound fun! I'd like to try one at some point.

The only thing I have that relates is my last 200k, which started at 10 pm. I only had a cup of coffee around 2 or 3 from a gas station and it didn't seem to do much. Actually, I was more worried that I would be tired later, but the moderate physical exertion was keeping me awake, but I did fall asleep pretty quickly in the car on the way back.
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Old 02-08-08, 09:08 AM   #4
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Thanks folks. I know that on a regular century that a Rockstar or plain old Coke right around the 70-mile mark makes the last bit of the ride quite enjoyable, but I don't know when to give that boost in a 24-hour context. I'll let you know how it goes!
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Old 02-08-08, 06:29 PM   #5
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also it may be a good idea to limit caffeine intake a week or so prior to the ride - that way, it will have more of an effect on you.

that's what i hear anyway, i haven't layed off of my daily coffee/coke fix for a few years now...
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Old 02-09-08, 09:53 AM   #6
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Sounds like a good plan already. Although, I would delay the evening spike until an hour after sunset.
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Old 02-09-08, 11:38 AM   #7
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Sounds good. You can get plenty of caffeine by using gu if you go that route. Just switch to the caffeinated kind at night if you get drousy.
You might start getting cold at night and not realize it right away. Put on knee warmers or tights before you feel cold.
Figure out how much food you need and stick to it. Keep a slow and steady stream of calories. Use some small amount of fats if it doesn't come in your mix.
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Old 02-11-08, 03:36 PM   #8
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Thanks, everyone. I'll have a mix of gu's, some with caffeine and some without, and I plan on a slow stream throughout the day. It's the big jolts that I'm concerned about. I'll get some fats in the peanut-butter bagels I plan on throughout the day too.
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