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  1. #1
    Back in black cydewaze's Avatar
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    Why am I such a pig on the bike?

    After reading some comments to a thread I recently posted, it would seem that I'm a bit of a pig when it comes to eating during rides.

    Example: For our usual 57-mile loop, I consume (not counting water) 6 gels, 1 Powerbar (or granola bar) and 1 32oz bottle of Cytomax. Depending on the pace, I can sometimes subtract 1 gel, but any more than that and I risk losing energy.

    - It doesn't seem to matter what I eat the day/night before the ride.
    - It doesn't seem to matter what I eat for breakfast the day of the ride (although too big of a breakfast will make me feel like barfing).
    - I don't have an unusually low percentage of body fat
    - I'm way too fat to have a tapeworm.

    If I plan for around 1 gel per 10 miles of riding, I usually come out ok. My general feeling is that that's a lot of food. Is it because I'm heavy (190-195) and have a lot of weight to push up hills? Is it due to the topography of my area (deep rolling hills)? How much does everyone else eat?

  2. #2
    Cheesmonger Extraordinair natelutkjohn's Avatar
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    I am far from a nutrition person, so I won't answer as if I am, but as to your question of does everyone else eat, I eat a lot when I'm not riding becasue I love to eat, but when I ride my regular (alternate day) 50 mile rides, I just eat a regular breakfast, then ride with water and then eat a lunch when I get back. ALthough everyone is different I know, but I rarel,y get hungry when I ride until I get past the 60 mile and above points.

  3. #3
    The Question Man
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    Quote Originally Posted by natelutkjohn
    I am far from a nutrition person, so I won't answer as if I am, but as to your question of does everyone else eat, I eat a lot when I'm not riding becasue I love to eat, but when I ride my regular (alternate day) 50 mile rides, I just eat a regular breakfast, then ride with water and then eat a lunch when I get back. ALthough everyone is different I know, but I rarel,y get hungry when I ride until I get past the 60 mile and above points.
    I agree, while my rides aren't nearly as long as either of yours (only around 15 miles), I don't get hungry until I stop riding. If I was going to eat anything it would be purely for energy and would have nothing to do with hunger. Not sure why. But let me tell you, nothing is more satisfying than eating a big meal after a long (well long for me) ride.
    Trek 7200 FX Black
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  4. #4
    semifreddo amartuerer 'nother's Avatar
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    I have a hard time eating while riding. But for rides over 40-50 miles I look at it as just something that has to be done. I don't eat too much if I know it's going to be done soon and I can gorge when the ride is over. For a 50-or-so mile ride I'll have a fig newton package (the 2-pack double-wide thingys, equivalent to about 4 standard size ones) and maybe a Clif bar + 1 or 2 20 oz. <whatever>-ades + a bunch of water. Never got into Gels much. Organized centuries I eat as much as I can stand at the stops, which usually isn't much, but I know I have to shovel something in for fuel. Haven't done any solo centuries yet but I imagine I'd just double or triple up on what I mentioned above, maybe toss in some salty pretzels or Goldfish or something like that because I get tired of all the sticky sweet crap after a while.

  5. #5
    roadie (mostly)
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    If I'm riding for 30miles or more I bring some food or stop at a store. Today (30 mile ride) I ate about a cup of raisin bran at the 15mile mark. Usually I don't eat too much because it tends to make me feel ill, but i also don't go very fast. If I'm doing 50 miles I usually bring a powerbar and make a stop for food along the way. Nutritional needs probably have a lot do with weight/metabolism so I wouldn't be too worried about piggin' out.

  6. #6
    ???What??? barleyrocket's Avatar
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    I did my 40 mile ride last night with 24oz of Gatoraid. Maybe I didn't eat enough. From a triathlon perspective (Coach Gordo www.coachgordo.com and others) the idea would be to get back between 200-300 calories per hour (depending on body weight...heavier athletes need more calories than light athletes) during the event. They are specifically talking about Iron Distance events but I think that it applies to shorter < 5hr events. Most athletes that I know with not try to take that in during a sprint event (1-2hrs) and during Olympic distance events will probably be pretty close to that (2-3hrs) and then of course for 1/2 and full Iron distance events they will be there (4-17hrs).
    I'm not a coach so take what I say with a grain of salt, I'm only parroting back what I have read. It sounds like you've done some experimenting by yourself saying that you'll lose power if you don't consume enough gels. If you are looking to lose weight as well, you might try to cut back to as few as possible and see how it goes.
    ???Huh???

  7. #7
    Focus on the future alison_in_oh's Avatar
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    Gel isn't food. That may be part of your problem. It's a quick burst of high-GI sugars, nothing that's going to last you.

    Now, women are supposed to need more frequent re-fueling -- probably due to lower muscle mass and subsequent lower glycogen stores. But I invariably eat solid food, about 150-250 calories, at 1:30 and every hour thereafter. I could MAYBE get through 60 miles (~3:30) with just two Clif bars, but ideal for me would be to start with a Clif bar or PBJ, then have a Lara bar (quick eatin' fewer calories slightly more sugary), and then a banana to make sure I don't lose energy before I get home. Slower to faster digesting energy. I also eat within the hour before a ride, chug my post workout drink when I get home, and have a meal within an hour.

    Considering you're burning 500-1000 calories per hour, is it really any wonder that you are replacing about 1000 calories in 3+ hours? I'd just make it slower burning food so you're not constantly opening packets.

  8. #8
    more ape than man timmhaan's Avatar
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    yeah, replace some of the gels with something more food like. an extra granola bar might work, or a bag of trail mix. something like that.

  9. #9
    Back in black cydewaze's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies.

    I guess I could go with bars instead of gels. The reason I use gels is because they seem to work VERY well for me, plus I can easily eat them on the bike. When I use bars, I can only eat 1/2 bar at a time, and they're more awkward to eat on the move.

    btw, the longest I can go without eating (assuming a big pre-ride meal) is 20-25 mi.

    Maybe I'll try more bars and less gels on my next ride.

  10. #10
    cab horn
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    Instead of using all that stuff meant for racing, stop halfway and go in grab some real food (sandwich etc.) and continue on.

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