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Old 02-05-06, 11:54 AM
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alison_in_oh
Focus on the future
 
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I can tell you what works for me, but it might not be totally applicable because I have a female physiology.

The idea is to protect your muscle glycogen and stave off the bonk. You have enough glycogen for 2 hrs of moderate-intensity work if you rely on it exclusively for your carbohydrate source. If you're going easier than moderate intensity, your body can get a lot of its energy from oxidizing fat, and you can go longer without refueling. If you're really hammering, you might deplete your glycogen more quickly.

I try to eat something with carbo, protein, and a little fat about an hour before a longish ride. Oatmeal, peanut butter crackers, a Clif bar if I'm in a hurry. That will easily get me through two hours, especially if I re-stock afterward (4:1 CHO to protein ratio preferably in liquid form).

If I am going to be out more than 2 hrs, then after 90 min. I eat something that will digest moderately slowly. Moderate carbs with some protein and fat, and about 200 cal, like a half peanut butter sandwich. An hour later, if I am still riding and planning to be on the bike for a while, I'll take another ~200 cal, something a little quicker and easier to digest. Usually something with more carbo and less fat like a Clif bar. Finally, (none of my rides so far have been much over 4 hrs) I'll take something quick-burning to give me the energy to finish the ride. Like a banana or something.

Food that is really "fibrous" will just make you have to poo on the ride! And that's annoying. There's a happy medium between "fibrous" and "processed".

But all that said, if you're only going 30 km at a go, then I'd focus on pre- and post-ride nutrition, and not so much on eating on the bike. (The guys I ride with seldom need food for less than 40 miles.) If you're doing the whole 60 km at once, one snack or two will probably get you through.
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