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Touring Subway

Old 10-26-13, 12:29 PM
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Walter S
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Touring Subway

Yesterday I finished a three week tour thru north Georgia, Alabama, and then the Natchez Trace through Mississippi down to Meridian. I've noticed that there is at least one Subway restaurant even in very rural areas where you might find almost nothing. They don't always pop out of nowhere but a google maps search almost always finds something nearby. As I browse the US in general, they seem to be almost anywhere one might go.

This makes for a real easy eating plan. I carry oatmeal, dried fruit, and some soy milk for breakfast. Then stop at subway and eat half a foot long and a couple cookies and pack the rest with me for supper. All food groups. Easy prep. Pretty affordable.
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Old 10-26-13, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
Yesterday I finished a three week tour thru north Georgia, Alabama, and then the Natchez Trace through Mississippi down to Meridian. I've noticed that there is at least one Subway restaurant even in very rural areas where you might find almost nothing. They don't always pop out of nowhere but a google maps search almost always finds something nearby. As I browse the US in general, they seem to be almost anywhere one might go.

This makes for a real easy eating plan. I carry oatmeal, dried fruit, and some soy milk for breakfast. Then stop at subway and eat half a foot long and a couple cookies and pack the rest with me for supper. All food groups. Easy prep. Pretty affordable.
Awesome....on another thread the discussion has been if one could survive a Tour on $20/day. This sounds maneagable...
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Old 10-26-13, 01:18 PM
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I rely on Subways when I tour. There are more of them than McDonalds in the US and they are in both Canada and the UK, where I've toured in the past few years.

In addition, they have a tasty veggie burger sandwich at most, not all, stores and the places in the US have free ice and filtered water in their drinks machine.

I usually check if there is a Subway in the towns I will stop in or ride through as I plan my trips.
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Old 10-26-13, 01:33 PM
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Seems like most of the subways I have gone to don't have the veggie patty. Southeast of the Mississippi I have never found one at any rate.
When you do find one that has the veggie patty, I like the looks I get when I ask for Bacon on it. Like you need to be a card carrying vegetarian in order to the Veggie burger.

I ate at Subway three times on my last trip.
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Old 10-26-13, 03:42 PM
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I have read that Subway has more outlets in the world than any other fast food outlet, including McDonalds. A Subway tour doesn't surprise me in the least.
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Old 10-26-13, 04:58 PM
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Lol, we had dinner with a Kiwi couple finishing the TransAm ecstatic to be eating "somewhere besides Subway!" but grateful for its reliable "veggie-tubbles" along the way. They were totally shocked at how many Americans are fat.
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Old 10-26-13, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
I have read that Subway has more outlets in the world than any other fast food outlet, including McDonalds. A Subway tour doesn't surprise me in the least.

Yep Subway is the #1Food franchise in the world now.
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Old 10-26-13, 08:01 PM
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It's a godsend for vegetarians in many parts of the US. I've been in a number of restaurants over the years where there is basically nothing without meat or seafood.
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Old 10-27-13, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Spld cyclist View Post
It's a godsend for vegetarians in many parts of the US. I've been in a number of restaurants over the years where there is basically nothing without meat or seafood.
Agreed! Out west I've been places where you can't even find salad without meat. Even a "meat and three" minus the meat is unworkable when even veggies like cabbage have meat added. It's usually not that you can't find anything, but a sustainable and balanced diet can be quite a challenge or impossible.
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Old 10-27-13, 07:32 AM
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Subway and Waffle House in the Southeast... don't make me choose!

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Old 10-27-13, 08:07 AM
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Midwest as well, usually in or near the gas station. Caseys has a lot of food as well, but I prefer Subway. I found their really nice locator map function is great, but in my hometown, they missed one. There is one in Bloomington, Illinois, on East Oakland Avenue, so that makes 11.
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Old 10-27-13, 08:19 AM
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They added their egg and cheese omelet five dollar footlong a year ago last summer when I was on tour across the US. That made it hard for this ovo-lacto vegetarian to pass one up, and I saw many of them. That helped keep my food cost down to $15/day. I always asked the maker to pile on as much spinach as she/he could without getting in trouble. Across the Midwest, it was one of the few places I could get dark greens.
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Old 10-27-13, 09:12 AM
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I have relied on Subway a good bit when on tour. It is possible to eat well pretty cheaply there. I generally enjoy my stops there and most of their food packs up nicely to take along for later.

I still like to eat regional and local food though and love rubbing elbows with the locals at small diners. So while I like Subway, I limit my subways stops enough to keep them from making me miss the local cuisine.
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Old 10-28-13, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
I have relied on Subway a good bit when on tour. It is possible to eat well pretty cheaply there. I generally enjoy my stops there and most of their food packs up nicely to take along for later.

I still like to eat regional and local food though and love rubbing elbows with the locals at small diners. So while I like Subway, I limit my subways stops enough to keep them from making me miss the local cuisine.
Same here. I can get Subway local here so I would rather nut eat it on tour. But they do offer an excellent selection at a very affordable price. Across all of the big fast food restaurants, they probably offer the best value for your money.

And as the OP mentioned, you can find them almost anywhere and you are going to get consistent quality.

One thing that bother me about Subway is the fact they place huge stacks of food out, very early in the morning. I realize they are probably in cooling
trays but it is hard to believe that the food at the top of the stack gets adequate cooling. In addition, the food is often left uncovered leading to possible contamination.
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Old 10-28-13, 05:52 PM
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In warm weather, if I'm going to pack one for dinner, I'll ask for mustard dressing as it won't spoil in the heat. Ham, etc has preservatives. I too seek out the mom and pops most of the time.

Dunkin Donuts is coming on strong in parts of the country. They've got some pretty healthy offerings, and plenty of pedaling energy round things with holes.

Didn't realize Subway was so wide spread outside the US.
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Old 10-29-13, 03:18 AM
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I still can't believe they're the biggest food chain. I don't think I know anyone who eats at Subway. I used to many years ago, but found that the quality of their offerings went downhill. Maybe it was just our local shop? Eventually it seemed like I was getting a couple paper thin slices of ham, a couple thin slices of unripe tomato, a few black olives, and 4lbs of iceberg lettuce and lots of bread. Did it get better again, or is it just a matter of the fairly low price point that brings you guys in the door?

I always felt that Taco Bell was a pretty good choice if you keep it simple. A crunchy taco + tomato, has meat, corn tortilla, lettuce, tomato, and cheese for ~$1. And you can get 4 for under $5. There are some other pretty decent options there too for very cheap.
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Old 10-29-13, 03:40 AM
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It must have been your local shop. The quality at each of the Subways we've been to, whether in Hualien on Taiwan, in the UK, or in Canada or the US, has been very consistent, and worth the money, in my book.

And the the reason they are the biggest fast food chain is that their overheads are much lower than for the others. They can squeeze into quite small properties, which reduces that cost substantially, along with the fact they don't have grills and deep friers going all the time. The ingredients are relatively simple, and the staffing levels minimal. And you can see what is going into each creation.

Last edited by Rowan; 10-29-13 at 03:43 AM.
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Old 10-29-13, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
I have read that Subway has more outlets in the world than any other fast food outlet, including McDonalds. A Subway tour doesn't surprise me in the least.

You are correct.

IMO, however, Subway sucks. The bread is lighter than air. The rest of the ingredients are not high quality. I am from Philly--birthplace of the "hoagie."

And 3Speed echoes what many people have been saying as of late. Their sandwicihes are anemic.
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Old 10-29-13, 08:56 AM
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It certainly much better than other fast food joints. I stopped at Subways a few times on my last tour and they had all-day breakfast. That alone gets them my vote.
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Old 10-29-13, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Erick L View Post
It certainly much better than other fast food joints.
If you are talking about national fast foiod chains, that's not saying much.
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Old 10-29-13, 11:19 AM
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I have eaten subway on tour, and it is probably one of the better choices, but it is still fast food crap for the most part. It's maybe OK for healthy young people to pound on this kind of abuse, but it isn't all that good idea if you have any serious reason to eat healthy. If you tossed the bun, and any of the meats, you would be pretty close, but then you might as well just buy a bag salad, etc...

I think there are several approaches to eating on tour. One is the "if I ride that much in a day, I can eat anything" school vs. "if I want to ride that far every day, better eat something sensible crowd". Both "work" for the people concerned, I guess.
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Old 10-29-13, 11:26 AM
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Frinstance. The Garlic 6" bun has 30% more salt in it than the whole big mac. It has 6 x you daily salt requirement, and .5 your daily allowed. Add chipotle sauce, and you are pulling up to the salt in 2 big macs (not recommended either!). I don't know about you, but I like a 12"... Add pepporoni, and you might as well swerve into a truck now. Helmet, you seriously should wear one while eating this crap.
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Old 10-30-13, 01:29 AM
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Yeah, let's all eat McDonalds. Or better still, the instant noodles and cheese noodles that seem to be the favourite of many touring cyclists.

Like McDonalds, no-one is forcing you to eat it. And no-one is forcing you to put manufactured meats and great globs of dressing on it because your taste buds have become immune to real taste. There's usually at least nine different salad vegetables you can build in one of their rolls, cheaper than what a McDs or other fast food outlet can offer.

As I said, I found the quality of Subway consistent across continents where I have travelled.
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Old 10-30-13, 04:08 AM
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Originally Posted by MassiveD View Post
Frinstance. The Garlic 6" bun has 30% more salt in it than the whole big mac. It has 6 x you daily salt requirement, and .5 your daily allowed. Add chipotle sauce, and you are pulling up to the salt in 2 big macs (not recommended either!). I don't know about you, but I like a 12"... Add pepporoni, and you might as well swerve into a truck now. Helmet, you seriously should wear one while eating this crap.
Thanks for the tip. I seek out high salt foods on tour. I've never had a problem with too much salt. I have, however, experienced hyponatreimia and that sucked.
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Old 10-30-13, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by TheReal Houdini View Post
Thanks for the tip. I seek out high salt foods on tour. I've never had a problem with too much salt. I have, however, experienced hyponatreimia and that sucked.
You beat me to it. On the 100F+ days I was cycling in the Midwest heat wave I experienced, I was adding salt to my Subway sandwiches and fast food fries. When you drink six or seven liters of water per day, you'd better add salt. Hyponatremia does suck--a friend nearly died of it on a Tucson golf course. He stayed very well hydrated--too well, as it turns out.
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