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  1. #1
    Senior Member TromboneAl's Avatar
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    In-Flight Refueling Question

    Yesterday I went on a 60 mile ride with a much stronger rider. I was going all out for hours. There was a point at which I really didn't feel like eating anything, but I forced myself to steadily eat bites of Powerbar.

    So my question is: When your stomach says no, but your brain says you need refueling, what should you do?

    On that trip, I consumed a sandwich, one small homemade energy bar (oatmeal, nuts, raisins, etc.), 1.5 Powerbars, one 12 ounce Gatorade, and four water bottles of water. I felt like puking, and I'm still a little queasy today.
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  2. #2
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    You have to eat or your energy will crash. Keep experimenting to find something that's easy for you to digest when riding hard. Some people need liquid food. You can try putting an Ensure or two in one of your bottles.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
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    I have learned to not even try to eat solid foods on a ride.

    There are generally 4 types of "liquid fuel".
    As your time/distance increases, you need to work your way down the list.
    The times here are just rough estimates.

    1. Water
    Duration: Up to 2 hrs

    2. Water + electrolytes
    Duration: 2-3 hrs. (A symptom of lack of electrolytes is cramping.)
    Examples:
    - Gatorade

    3. Water + electrolytes + carbohydrates
    Duration: 3-12 hrs
    Examples:
    - Powerbar Endurance
    - Hammer Heed

    4. Water + electrolytes + carbohydrates + protein + fats
    Duration: Multi-day rides.
    Beware protein/fats sour a few hours after opening/mixing in warm weather.
    Examples:
    - Hammer Perpetuem
    - Hammer Sustained Energy
    - Ensure Plus
    (King Soopers sells a generic called "Fortify Plus" that costs less)


    Also, *always* have a one bottle of plain water on your ride. I have experienced exercise-induced nausea so bad I couldn't even drink a carbo-mix, but that was all I had with me 2/3 of the way through a hot weather century. As a result I got dehydrated before I reached the next store. It made the last 30 miles REALLY miserable.
    Last edited by Shimagnolo; 08-01-09 at 10:12 AM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member ericm979's Avatar
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    Gatorade has a lot of carbohydrates.

    "exercise induced nausea" is probably low electrolytes. None of those things listed have much in the way of electrolytes. You may need to supplement with Endurolytes or satl tables on long hot rides.

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    Senior Member ericm979's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
    Yesterday I

    So my question is: When your stomach says no, but your brain says you need refueling, what should you do?
    Eat. Stuff it down. Gotta have calories to ride. Although you ate quite a bit. You may not have needed all of that.

    Did the sandwich contain significant amounts of meat? If so that may be your problem. It's tough to digest meat when you are also exercising.

  6. #6
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    1. Eat foods you like ... don't force yourself to eat "energy bars" because some company tells you they're what cyclists eat. I much prefer oatmeal raisin cookies to powerbars.

    2. Nibble ... this is what I have a Bento Box for. I put my oatmeal raisin cookies in the Bento Box and nibble throughout the ride, rather than trying to force down an entire cookie all at once.

  7. #7
    Senior Member TromboneAl's Avatar
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    Did the sandwich contain significant amounts of meat?
    Yes. It was half of a (big) deli turkey/provolone sandwich. That may have been a big factor.
    My Book: Drive, Ride, Repeat: The Mostly-True Account of a Cross-Country Car and Bicycle Adventure

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    1. Eat foods you like ... don't force yourself to eat "energy bars" because some company tells you they're what cyclists eat. I much prefer oatmeal raisin cookies to powerbars.

    2. Nibble ... this is what I have a Bento Box for. I put my oatmeal raisin cookies in the Bento Box and nibble throughout the ride, rather than trying to force down an entire cookie all at once.
    +1 but with one difference. I'd say eat foods that work for you. You just have to experiment. You might even find things that you like at the start of a ride, don't work so well for you later on in a long ride. For me, I find Clif bars and Hammer gel to be Okay tasting (better tasting to me than other brands) but I know for a fact, that my stomach can handle them pretty much any time on a ride. If I need energy and want something I know will work and won't upset my stomach, I always have something I can go to. Everyone is different though.
    Quote Originally Posted by caloso View Post
    Good lord. Why do we keep trying to make cycling attractive to people who are not attracted to cycling?

  9. #9
    Senior Member Dubbayoo's Avatar
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    You should'nt have to force food down. I normally cramp in the calves when I ride over 40. Wed I rode 63 and could have done a century easily. I had 8 fig newtons, 3oz hammer gel, a gatorade, 16oz vitamin water and water with Heed. Just shoot for 300 cals/hr via food and fluids. I think the Hammer endurance caps were a big help too.

  10. #10
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    For me, if i have to eat and I can't eat food, I eat Gu brand energy gel.

    Every single thing on your list of what you ate would be a problem for *me* - but you have to figure out what works for you.
    ...

  11. #11
    Zan
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    eat foods you like. try eating before the ride if your stomach can handle it. I don't seem to have a problem eating while riding... but then 'gain I stick to the staples: bagels with either cream cheese or peanut butter, and bananas.
    -- Zan

    "Every dog needs a squeak toy."

  12. #12
    Senior Member JimF22003's Avatar
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    I usually save the GU's and other gels for later in the ride when I need something, but I can get enthused about solid food. I can almost always slug down a gel. I've been using the Hammer gel in a flask lately, because it's more convenient than dealing with packets.

  13. #13
    pmt
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    Continuous feeding is better than big chunks at a time; I just did another 200k Permanent on Saturday, and consumed three bottles of HEED, one Perpetuem, three Hammer Gels, seven eDiscs, and about twenty Endurolytes, along with copious amounts of plain water. By continually taking in easy calories, I was fueled and strong for the whole ride, and felt great at the end.

  14. #14
    Senior Member geofitz13's Avatar
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    On a 2 day, 192 mile ride (112 the first day) I ate only fruit, melon, banannas, grapes, and had a 1/2 pbj sandwich for lunch. At night, I had a burger and a beer. Felt great all weekend. For some unknown reason, I tried experimenting with gels, powerbars, and such, and never came close to the same results. So it's back to the fruits for me. Maybe that just what I tolerate.

  15. #15
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    I agree with what everyone said, but I'll add that if you do eat energy bars, I prefer Cliff Bars, eat half on the hour and half at the half hour mark so you don't have to feel like you are stuffing yourself.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
    Yesterday I went on a 60 mile ride with a much stronger rider. I was going all out for hours. There was a point at which I really didn't feel like eating anything, but I forced myself to steadily eat bites of Powerbar.

    So my question is: When your stomach says no, but your brain says you need refueling, what should you do?

    On that trip, I consumed a sandwich, one small homemade energy bar (oatmeal, nuts, raisins, etc.), 1.5 Powerbars, one 12 ounce Gatorade, and four water bottles of water. I felt like puking, and I'm still a little queasy today.
    The answer is simpler, but you won't like it.

    Don't ride that hard for that long.

    Digesting food requires blood supply. If you are going all-out, you don't have any extra blood supply to spare, so anything in your stomach is going to just sit there.

    Having said that, I agree with the others to look at something different.
    Eric

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