Nutrition: Preparing For A Big Ride Or Major Event + Energy Ball Recipe

Nutrition: Preparing For A Big Ride Or Major Event + Energy Ball Recipe

Hydration and vitamin are vital to the success of any large journey or Gran Fondo occasion as biking nutritionist Dr Gemma Sampson explains right here.

You have been fastidiously ticking off every session in your coaching plan for months to construct endurance, velocity, improve your FTP and make sure you get to the beginning line of your Gran Fondo in peak situation. But have you ever put the identical time, thought and coaching into your race vitamin?

It continues to amaze me how incessantly cyclists focus all their power and a spotlight on meticulously finishing each coaching session and perfecting their bike set-up with all the most recent gear with out placing a second thought into what vitamin goes to gas their efficiency. Without the correct gas, that coaching might all go to waste.

Whether you might be aiming for the rostrum, a private greatest or just simply need to end a Gran Fondo distance in a single piece, what you eat the day earlier than and through can have a HUGE impression in your efficiency.

Create And Test Your Nutrition Plan In Advance

Events could be nerve-racking sufficient with out worrying over what and when to eat—having your vitamin plan sorted means one much less factor to consider so you may deal with driving your greatest.
Testing out your race day vitamin plan upfront offers you time to find what does and doesn’t be just right for you. This goes past the precise meals and fluid consumed, but in addition takes under consideration the sensible components of carrying, opening and consuming whereas on the bike.

Don’t overlook how essential flavour fatigue can also be! Say you like a particular blackcurrant-flavoured gel and often use one or two in your coaching rides with no downside. You might take 10 gels all the identical flavour for simplicity and to maintain the burden being carried down. However, in the event you discover that after 4 gels you might be fed up of the sweetness and flavour—and begin feeling sick—chances are you’ll unintentionally under-fuel, even if in case you have the correct vitamin in your individual.

Don’t Try Anything New On Gran Fondo Day

A key tip is to not attempt something new on occasion day! Stick to tried and examined vitamin and hydration.

The golden rule with race-day vitamin is to NEVER attempt something new on race day. Just such as you wouldn’t threat utilizing a brand new saddle or untested bib shorts for concern of creating saddle sores, consuming one thing new throughout a Gran Fondo might trigger main gastrointestinal stress that leaves you sprinting for the portaloo as a substitute of the end line. 

Testing out your race-day vitamin plan in coaching classes of an identical distance, length and depth just a few weeks out helps keep away from any undesirable surprises.

Creating a easy vitamin plan can dramatically enhance your large time out on the bike.

The Simplified Three-step Process To Creating Your Nutrition Plan

Step 1: Distance and time to finish

To efficiently create your subsequent Gran Fondo vitamin plan, you first want to contemplate some logistics beginning with distance, elevation and what time you realistically assume it’s going to take you to finish.

For instance, I intend to journey the Snowy Classic 170km journey this March, which has 2830m of elevation. While this would be the first Fondo I’ve entered, I do know from earlier hilly rides and races I’ve finished over time residing in Europe that, relying on my health ranges on the time, that is more likely to take me someplace between 7.5 and 9 hours. Let’s say 8 hours.

Step 2: Self-sufficient or use meals stations?

Next—are you going to hold every thing you want your self in your pockets, or are you going to make the most of feed zones alongside the route? Looking on the course map, I can see that there will likely be two meals stations and 4 hydration stations alongside the best way. Event organisers typically checklist what will likely be on provide at these occasions so you may check these merchandise in coaching and be assured that they may be just right for you.

Step 3: Carbohydrate preferences: Solids, liquids or each to attain 60-90g carbohydrate per hour.

There is not any proper or unsuitable right here, as will probably be influenced by your intestine tolerance, what you prefer to eat or drink the velocity and depth you need to journey. Look at how a lot carbohydrate in every choice you propose to make use of after which combine and match.

Bike distance: 170km

Target end time: 8 hours

Carbohydrate goal: 60-90g carbohydrate per hour (~480g carbohydrate whole)

Fuel choices: Jelly snakes (80g carb/100g), (muesli bars 20g carb every), Super Carb drink combine (80g carb), dried peaches (80g carb/100g), Vegemite wraps (60g carbs every), rice muffins (20g every)

Once you know the way a lot carbohydrate you want, it’s then potential to work backwards to resolve how a lot you’ll take or accumulate upon route at meals stations. 

For instance, if I used to be desirous to take nearly all of what I need to gas my journey with me from the beginning, and choose up muesli bars alongside the best way from the meals stations after I accumulate water this may seem like:

2× Super Carb drink combine
(2× 80g)
1 100g bag jelly snakes (80g)
2× Vegemite wrap (2× 60g)
6× muesli bars (6× 20g)
Alternatively, if I solely needed to make use of a drink combine and gels, my Gran Fondo vitamin plan to gas 8 hours of effort may also seem like:
4× Super Carb drink combine
(4× 80g)
8 gels (8× 20g gel)

Your excellent Gran Fondo vitamin plan is exclusive to you.

Some athletes swear by gels, others want actual meals. We are all completely different, and what your driving buddy swears by might ship you straight to the portaloo. The greatest vitamin plan and what that consists of ought to to be individually tailor-made to you and the occasion. 

Feel free to combine and match, experiment—and don’t overlook that you’re higher off carrying just a bit bit greater than you assume you’ll want than operating out of power earlier than the end line comes.

Specialist biking nutritionist, Dr Gemma Sampson.

Fuel To Go
With an added caffeine kick, Gemma Sampson has a tasty recipe for healthful mocha power balls that assist maintain her fuelled and energised on rides. They freeze properly so make a batch and maintain them within the freezer prepared in your subsequent lengthy journey or occasion.

Energy balls
1 cup oats
2/3 cup desiccated coconut
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
3 Tbsp immediate espresso
3 Tbsp chia seeds (non-obligatory)
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup honey


Stir all dry components collectively into a big bowl. Mix the peanut butter and honey collectively, pour over the dry components and blend in properly till properly mixed. Roll small handfuls of the combination into balls. Store in a hermetic container within the fridge or freezer.
Nutrition (per 18g ball): 81kcal, 4.7g fats, 6.7g carb,
1.5g fibre, 2.1g protein.

Dr Gemma Sampson is an Advanced Sports Dietitian working with newbie {and professional} cyclists and triathletes. Her Doctorate analysis explored how endurance athletes gas throughout competitors and developed the Carbohydrates for Endurance Athletes in Competition Questionnaire (CEAC-Q) to information athletes aiming to optimise vitamin for peak efficiency.

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