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I never eat on rides......

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Old 06-08-08, 06:13 PM
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Romans8:28
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I rarely eat on rides......

I apologize, the thread title should read "rarely" not "never"

Sometimes even the 5 hour+/100 mile ones......

I usually don't seem to run out of energy unless I am pushing hard.

Seriously, I just don't seem to need the food during the ride especially rides less than 50 miles. I get by on whatever I had eaten the night before or earlier in the day.

Anyone else out there just drink and not eat while riding?

Last edited by Romans8:28; 06-09-08 at 05:56 AM. Reason: To clarify what was meant
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Old 06-08-08, 06:38 PM
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That's nice for you, but I would NEVER recommend this ... especially not to new long distance riders.
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Old 06-08-08, 07:17 PM
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How often do you ride and how often do you do these centuries?
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Old 06-08-08, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Romans8:28 View Post
Even the 5 hour/100 mile ones......

I never seem to tire or feel hungry, so why bother right?

Seriously, I just don't seem to need the food during the ride. I get by on whatever I had eaten the night before or earlier in the day.

Anyone else out there just drink and not eat while riding?
Good for you? *shrug
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Old 06-08-08, 08:36 PM
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keiththesnake
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I think I'd get hungry.
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Old 06-08-08, 08:44 PM
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You're probably going too slowly.

Generally speaking people can't hold more than 2000kcal worth of glycogen in their bodies. Glycogen (aka carb fuel) is the primary fuel burnt during more intense endurance exercises. Stored fat makes up less of the energy used at higher intensities, and more of the energy used at lower intensities (although you're still burning MORE fat at higher intensities, it's just proportionally less).

An 80kg male will burn through 800kcal/hr at a moderately fast pace. So at 2.5hrs most would start to slow down. Then again, if you're anticipating a long ride the day before and pigging out, you could have stored enough extra to make it through. In any case though, I'd say this is sub-optimal, and you might find you're riding faster and staying fitter should you modify your nutrition to a more conventional plan.

Then again, you could be a freak of nature, and genetically inclined to feats of spectacular endurance. You never know...
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Old 06-08-08, 08:48 PM
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I think the original post is a joke. There's no way someone can do a 5 hr century without added food...unless they consume 20 GU gels and 8 liters of sports drink
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Old 06-08-08, 08:53 PM
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Well, he did say he just drinks ... so perhaps he's a Perpetuem, Sustained Energy, or Spiz user.
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Old 06-08-08, 09:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Well, he did say he just drinks ... so perhaps he's a Perpetuem, Sustained Energy, or Spiz user.


I'd feel like a jackass then. Plenty of people do 24hr MTB races on liquid fuel alone.
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Old 06-09-08, 05:19 AM
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Romans8:28
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Originally Posted by kuan View Post
How often do you ride and how often do you do these centuries?
I ride 4 or 5 days a week and run distance the other two or three.... I average about 220-250 miles on the bike each week and I ride about 10 centuries (event rides) each season.

My post was not meant to be a "hey look at me" thing at all. I am serious about not eating, or at the very least not eating much. I realized when re-reading my original post, I mistated they "never tire" business. I meant to say that I don't seem to feel any ill effects particularly at shorter distances. I do apologize for the confusion. I will have a banana or orange slices sometimes on the event rides, because if I am pushing it or the distance is long I do feel weak sometimes.

I eat well when I am not riding and I usually use a sports drink/supplements in addition to water. I guess all I am saying is that for shorter rides (<50 miles), I just don't eat while on the bike. I understand that if I wanted to be really fast/competitive, I would need to take on fuel during the ride.

Last edited by Romans8:28; 06-09-08 at 05:31 AM.
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Old 06-09-08, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Romans8:28 View Post
I guess all I am saying is that for shorter rides (<50 miles), I just don't eat while on the bike.
I guess you've been misunderstanding then. The general consensus on this forum is that one only needs to ingest calories on rides over 2 hours. Thats because at 2.5-3 hours people will start to become affected by depleting glycogen, so its recomended to start a early, which is around 2 hours.

So here you come along and say you dont need food for rides below 50 miles, which is about 2 hours of riding. So i dont understand your confusion, your only confirming what we've been saying all along.
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Old 06-09-08, 09:46 AM
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Romans8:28
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Originally Posted by Jarery View Post
So here you come along and say you dont need food for rides below 50 miles, which is about 2 hours of riding. So i dont understand your confusion, your only confirming what we've been saying all along.

I am not really "confused"...... more of a curiousity question really. Most riders I am with (or observe in general) tend to eat earlier/more often. I suppose I am just wondering if other people think that they go light on the food too as compared to most roadies.

Last edited by Romans8:28; 06-09-08 at 10:21 AM.
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Old 06-09-08, 10:00 AM
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Never-ever-eat on a long ride either (except for the ocasional banana, apple, grapes, food bars and the like). Hell have done double centuries like that!
Never say never!
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Old 06-09-08, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by zonatandem View Post
Never-ever-eat on a long ride either (except for the ocasional banana, apple, grapes, food bars and the like). Hell have done double centuries like that!
Never say never!
Well, if you are eating the occasional banana, apple, grape, food bar and the like then you are eating on a ride. I think that most people believe that they need to eat a lot more than they actually do in order to keep going. I really doesn't take that much. I've found that if I'm eating correctly throughout the week then I can easily go 2 to 2.5 hours with no food. If it's hot (like 95 degrees yesterday), I'll use gatorade for the salts/electrolytes which does give me 100-150 calories. At three hours or more, I'll have a 100/cal gel or half a cliff bar (~110-120/cal) per hour of riding. On organized centuries I eat a lot because darn it I've paid for those rest stops!

There a lot of 'rules of thumb' you can look at, but only you are going to know what works for you. If you can do three hours without eating and still feel good after the ride, that night and the next day; and you are progressing along whatever plan and goals you have for yourself then nobody can say you're wrong.

But I think it's a good point that was made above that while you may be able to ride long distances/time with no food you might be able to perform better if you did eat some on your rides.
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Old 06-09-08, 12:06 PM
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My riding buddy who rode 32,000 miles last year eats and drinks very little on "normal" rides. Last weekend, he did a 160 miler on 1/2 a bottle of water and a couple bars. He'll eat and drink more normally on 300k and up rides. He's not slow! Fastest climber in the group. So I think you can condition your body to do what you normally do. Oh, and when he gets home, he'll eat 1/2 a pan of lasagne and a bowl of chocolate soup!
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Old 06-09-08, 08:21 PM
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If you eat regular meals throughout the day, you've got about 2000 calories in storage to work with.

If you're burning 500 calories per hour, you could conceivably ride for 4 hours without needing food.

The general recommendation is to bring food for rides over 2 hours. Unless you haven't eaten a thing all day, you should be able to handle a 2 hour ride without food. When I commute, my commute is 1 hour and 40 minutes there ... I don't eat breakfast before I go, and I do the ride without food. I eat when I get there. And it's all OK.

But when I get over 2 hours, I want to start consuming about 250 calories per hour ... helps ward off the bonk.


If you want some further advice, comments, etc. on food consumption during rides, check out the Ultracycling site ... good articles:

http://www.ultracycling.com/
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Old 06-09-08, 09:43 PM
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What kind of sports drink do you use? I've been doing a 5-hour ride almost every Saturday (unless it's race day) for many years, and one thing I noticed is when I started drinking Accelerade I needed to eat a lot less than when I drink less substantial energy drinks like Gatorade o Cytomax - the stuff is like drinking a meal during the ride. Anyway, I'll drink 3 or 4 22oz bottles of sports drink on each 5-hour ride, plus at least one gel packet and one energy bar. I am typically doing a number of long climbs as well, so there's just no way I could fuel myself enough without putting in a good number of calories. Are you riding mostly flats and pretty slow? That would make sense, on the other hand maybe you just have a really low metabolic rate or something.
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Old 06-10-08, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
If you eat regular meals throughout the day, you've got about 2000 calories in storage to work with.

If you're burning 500 calories per hour, you could conceivably ride for 4 hours without needing food.

The general recommendation is to bring food for rides over 2 hours. Unless you haven't eaten a thing all day, you should be able to handle a 2 hour ride without food. When I commute, my commute is 1 hour and 40 minutes there ... I don't eat breakfast before I go, and I do the ride without food. I eat when I get there. And it's all OK.

But when I get over 2 hours, I want to start consuming about 250 calories per hour ... helps ward off the bonk.


If you want some further advice, comments, etc. on food consumption during rides, check out the Ultracycling site ... good articles:

http://www.ultracycling.com/

Don't think this your correct, although you may be right about eating 2000 calories in a day, your body burns calories throughout the day. Just because you eat 2000 calories the during the day, doesn't mean you have 2000 calories to burn when you start your ride.
Maybe I am misunderstanding what your saying but I don't agree.
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Old 06-10-08, 10:21 AM
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Originally Posted by jaa1085 View Post
Don't think this your correct, although you may be right about eating 2000 calories in a day, your body burns calories throughout the day. Just because you eat 2000 calories the during the day, doesn't mean you have 2000 calories to burn when you start your ride.
Maybe I am misunderstanding what your saying but I don't agree.
I think you miss understood. What Machka is saying is that if you have a good diet, which can and usually is above 2k calories, you have about 2k in reserve.
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Old 06-10-08, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Bikecentric View Post
What kind of sports drink do you use? of calories.

Are you riding mostly flats and pretty slow? That would make sense, on the other hand maybe you just have a really low metabolic rate or something.
I drink gatorade the most often and sometimes I will squeeze the contents of a gel pack into the water bottle.

I ride a good mix of hills/flats and consider myself to be an above average climber. My average speed (solo) is 17-21 depending on the terrain and wind, so I don't consider myself to be particularly slow or fast.

I am pretty slim at 5'10" and 137 lbs and I think my metabolic rate is slow considering my diet, pulse rate, level of activity, etc
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Old 06-10-08, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by UmneyDurak View Post
I think you miss understood. What Machka is saying is that if you have a good diet, which can and usually is above 2k calories, you have about 2k in reserve.
Well you better eat more like 3000 to 3500 calories, if you expect to have 2k in reserve.
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Old 06-10-08, 11:26 AM
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Glycogen as a supplement form work well?

Like the powdered kind you can buy? Would that be good to take before a ride?
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Old 06-10-08, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by jaa1085 View Post
Well you better eat more like 3000 to 3500 calories, if you expect to have 2k in reserve.
According to the book, Endurance Sport Nutrition, by Suzanne Girard Eberle:

"Glucose can be used immediately, or it can be stored in the liver and muscles as glycogen. During exercise, muscle glycogen is convereted back into glucose and can be used as fuel only by muscle fibers. The liver also converts its glycogen back into glucose and releases it directly into the bloodstream to maintain your blood sugar or blood glucose level. During exercise, your muscles pick up this glucose and use it in addition to their own private glycogen stores. Blood glucose also serves as the most significant source of energy for the brain at rest and during exercise. Your body constantly uses and replenishes its glycogen stores. The carbohydrate content of your diet and the type and amount of training that you undertake influence the size of your glycogen stores.

The capacity of your body to store muscle and liver glycogen, however, is limieted to approximately 1,800 to 2000 calories worth of energy, or enough fuel for approximately 90 to 120 minutes of continuous, vigorous activity."

----------------

A portion of what we eat each day goes into storage to top up anything we may have happened to have used out of storage (the rest goes toward supplying us with energy for our daily activities). But if we are regularly eating well, the amount in storage stays in storage ... and if our liver and muscle storage areas full, and we're not using up all of the calories of what we eat in our daily activities, anything extra goes to another storage location ... fat cells. 1 lb of fat is 3500 calories.

If you are maintaining or gaining weight, your liver and muscle storage areas are full.

Once the more readily available glucose in our blood stream is used up, our body turns to the glycogen stored in our liver and muscles, and as that gets depleted, some of what we've got stored in fat cells is metabolized and brought into the system as well. So, most of us have quite a bit of energy available to us in one form or another.

Last edited by Machka; 06-10-08 at 06:50 PM.
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Old 06-11-08, 08:44 PM
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yup me

I cannot eat during a ride but I will have a power bar gel to refuel my muscle and tissue. and lots of water never experienced cramps or soreness after the ride either just climbed mt diablo and just got tired from not riding up hill for about three months. and just started riding since I do however am looking into finding long rides to go on no too fast but long 50 to100 miles
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Old 06-12-08, 03:35 AM
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When speed is not very high and you're fat-adapted, you can draw most of your energy from fat stores and more specifically from intramuscular fat (called IMTG).
A very interesting phenomenon happens actually during prolonged rides: heart rates dropping below 130bpm despite equal speed. This puts you well into the fat burning zone, while normally you'd be burning more glycogen at the same speed because of a higher HR.

I've done hundreds of metric centuries , dozens of 200Ks and about 10-15 rides of over 300K barely eating anything and not consuming much liquid food either.

Yep, surely I'd be slow, but I'd never hit a wall either. Probably getting into quite deep ketosis as one of the side -effects of ketosis (and stress!) is a total lack of appetite. Doing timed rides would stress me out so much that appetite would leave me entirely, which was the direct cause of not eating anything.
About 24-48hrs after a ride of over 200K , the suppressed appetite would leave and I'd go into a (re)feeding frenzy. And then next weekend .. rinse-repeat.

AFAIR, the furthest I've cycled w/o any substantial food (solid or liquid) was 550K (340mi).
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