Generally speaking ...
- If the ride is less than 2 hours, all you need is something to eat before you go out, and possibly something to eat when you return.
- If the ride is more than 2 hours, aim for 250 calories per hour. Those calories can be liquid or solid or both. In other words, juice, poptarts, or both.
- If you ride fast/hard, your stomach will have a harder time digesting solid food. Therefore, if you are going to consume solid food, ride slowly for a while after eating solid food.
- If you are not used to riding those distances, your stomach might not be trained to digest foods while riding. One way to train your stomach to eat solid foods is to nibble. Put the poptart in your bento bag or handlebar bag ... take a bite, and put the poptart away. 10 minutes later, take another bite, and put the poptart away, etc. Consume your 250 calories per hour throughout the hour, rather than trying to consume 250 calories all in one sitting each hour. You sip your orange juice ... do the same sort of thing with your poptart.
While poptarts are a decent choice for a long distance ride, there may be certain flavours that go down better than others. I love chocolate of all sorts when I am sitting at home in the evening ... but I have trouble eating chocolate when I'm on a long ride. For me, a strawberry or other fruit flavoured poptart goes down much better than a chocolate one. You might need to figure out which solid foods go down the best.
I like things like the following on long rides:
- granola bars
- potato chips
- beef jerky
Just to name a few. Don't give up on solid foods just because one particular item upset your system. Try other solid foods ... and train your stomach to eat them.