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Your Tricks for Carrying Energy Sources

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Your Tricks for Carrying Energy Sources

Old 07-19-12, 08:32 PM
  #1  
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Your Tricks for Carrying Energy Sources

Interested in hearing any little tricks you have for toting your energy sources. Here's why I ask:

1. I like energy gels...but...they are in pouches to dispose of after you down them, and I don't want to throw them on the side of the road or stop to have to put them in a bag. Put them in your shirt, and it gets nasty as well as getting it all over your fingers and gloves to begin with.

2. Energy gels in a flask is OK, but the top needs to be reinstalled to keep it from getting all over everything. Not too bad, but somewhat an inconvenience. If I carry a small bag on my top bar and just sit it in there without a top, works pretty well, but I'm the only one on the road carrying that silly little bag. Just bought one of those bite flasks, and I'll see how that works, but I'm afraid it will get all over my jersey, too.

3. Energy beans work well, but, again, you have a bag to dispose of, plus, if it's hot, they try to melt. Maybe the best solution I've found though ? Since you consume an entire bag, the melting is not totally a show stopper. But sometimes it's hard to chew when that helmet is tight and you're tired. But I like how they work by combining energy and electrolytes.
Chews melt like crazy.

4. Energy bars are OK, but bags to dispose of again, and they don't work as fast as gels to begin with. But maybe eating those before you get tired is the answer so they don't have to work so fast. Not as messy as gels for sure.

5. The good energy drinks I find terrible tasting in many cases, plus you have to drink a lot to consume enough to keep the energy levels high. Heed, for example, is awful in my book. Like dishwashing detergent. Plus, in a couple of water bottles, they'll only last you a couple of hours anyway. I usually have water in one bottle and gatorade in another. My alternate energy sources are where I still search for solutions as that water and gatorade is not enough on 3 hour rides.

Anyway....what tricks or processes work best and the cleanest for you ? I've even heard of guys taping gels to their top bar. It just seems I can't find a perfect solution that I can't complain about. I've been thinking of maybe dilluting gels in my water bottles. Then I just drink my water. Don't know if others do that or not and how it works ? I know Hammer says you can dillute them. About 4 servings each in 2 bottles of water might work for me, but haven't tried it yet.

Again, I'm looking for clean solutions that work and without having to stop.
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Old 07-19-12, 10:32 PM
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A scuba diving weight belt with pockets. They fit 3 energy bars each and there are 5 of them. Thus I can get my bar, eag my bar, and put the trash back in the pocket. Also offers good water proof, eazy to access pockets for my wallet and phone. Best solution I've found so far.
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Old 07-19-12, 10:55 PM
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Whether it's gel, a banana, or cookies in a bag, I just stick the wrapper back in my jersey pocket and dispose of it properly when I get home.
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Old 07-20-12, 09:49 AM
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I didn't think it was that complicated. If I'm going for a long ride I fill a couple of bottles with malto and gatorade powder and take a baggie full of dates.

For a 3 hr ride I would just take water & dates.
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Old 07-20-12, 11:09 AM
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I'm one of those riders who are not embarrassed to have a saddle bag, and this is primarily because I don't like to stuff my pockets. On long-unsupported rides, I usually carry everything in my saddle bag (save for a few gels and my flask), this includes any extra Perpetuem or Heed, Endurolytes, tums, keys, etc. The only thing I leave in my pockets is my cell phone/ipod, trash in one pocket if necessary.

For gels, I'll sometimes slip a couple of them under my shorts between my leg and the elastic. Leaving the tab exposed makes it easy to grab, for instance, at the base of a climb. You don't have to shuffle around your back pocket for the gel. When I'm done with a gel, I roll it up so that the open end is in the center of the roll, then I stuff roll , again, under my shorts on the other leg. So, left leg has the unopened gels, and the right leg carries the trash. I've heard of riders stuffing other consumables such as dates or bags of nuts under their shorts leg as well.

At any rate, it always makes sense to roll up your used gel with the opened end in the center of the roll so you don't get leftover gu all over the place (whether you stuff it back in your pocket or under your pant leg).

As for flasks, I usually use Hammer Perpetuem mixed to a pancake batter consistency. I've never had a problem with my flask leaking. Seems like OP has a problem carrying trash around till the next trashcan appears. Jersey's usually have three pockets? I usually leave one pocket just for trash if necessary. I dump my trash at every water stop.
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Old 07-20-12, 11:32 AM
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Squeeze as much gel out of the packet as you can, and then roll it up as suggested above.

If you had a bar before the gel you can put the used gel packet in the bar wrapper.

With a flask, when you are done squeezing some out, lick the end off. That gets most of the gel on the nozzle.

Last, learn to not worry so much about it. It's only gel. It'll wash out.
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Old 07-21-12, 01:43 PM
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I always use gel flasks, I just make sure to lick the nozzle off as good as I can before stuffing it back in my jersey pocket. The only time I had a problem was when I didn't click an EFS Liquidshot flask shut, that was a major mess but it all came out in the wash.


For energy bars (e.g. Cliff) I pre-open the pouches, when I'm done I just stuff the empties in a spare jersey pocket. They don't take up any room when empty.


As far as drink mixes go, you just have to experiment to find one that suits your taste. Try stopping in a bike store and picking up an assortment of the drink mix pouches.


If you're looking to stay perfectly clean with no icky-sticky on your fingers from gels, you may need to reconsider. Part of the fun of riding is getting a little (or a lot) grimy, that's what the post-ride shower is for. Just relax and enjoy the ride.
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Old 07-21-12, 11:04 PM
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One basic thing: when you eat, do you really have to ride at the same time? Just stop to eat and pick a stopping point that allows you to dispose of wastes like you normally do.
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Old 07-22-12, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Garfield Cat View Post
One basic thing: when you eat, do you really have to ride at the same time? Just stop to eat and pick a stopping point that allows you to dispose of wastes like you normally do.
If you're racing, you do.
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Old 07-22-12, 06:18 PM
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One basic thing: when you eat, do you really have to ride at the same time? Just stop to eat and pick a stopping point that allows you to dispose of wastes like you normally do.
Two young kids and my riding time on a Sunday is limited at best. I have about 6-7 hours to go as far and fast as I can. This means I only stop when I must. You can eat and ride no problem if you have bars or something similar. I also think it helps maintain the intensity of the workout. Especially on a longer ride I find stopping puts me off my stride for a bit.
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Old 07-23-12, 08:39 PM
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No problems whatsoever with the Hammer 5-serving gel flasks. Open/close with teeth and lick top to clean. Fits nicely in a jersey pocket. Apple-cinnamon flavor is my favorite.
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Old 07-24-12, 09:18 PM
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There are several powder products that are designed to be sole energy sources: Spiz, Sustained Energy, Perpetuem, and there are probably more. 2 bottles of Ensure Plus with enough water to fill your chosen bottle size is 700 calories. That and a spare bottle and some other goody will get you a long way. I use a 7:1 mix of maltodextrin and flavored whey protein, relatively inexpensive if bought in bulk and very mild in flavor. I mix it at 1 pt. powder/bottle, about 750 calories. You are right that most commercial drinks are much too strong in flavor when mixed at food strength. However, the ones I mention here are not. Hammer Gel in a Hammer flask works great for rides of 3-4 hours.
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Old 07-25-12, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by nkfrench View Post
No problems whatsoever with the Hammer 5-serving gel flasks. Open/close with teeth and lick top to clean. Fits nicely in a jersey pocket. Apple-cinnamon flavor is my favorite.
I think this is the best option short of the little top bar mount carry bag. DEFINITELY my favorite energy source.
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