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Post Bike Energy
#1
Lately I've taken to (metric) century rides first thing in the morning (I've recently graduated university so I'm currently unemployed and have the time on my hand (coincidentally if anyone knows of a mechanical engineering job available, let me know)) and have been trying to find ways of perking myself up for the rest of the day. My current method is chocolate milk, espresso and lots of fruit, but that doesn't seem to cut it. Does anyone else have any methods of getting going after a long ride?
Live life one century at a time.
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#2
You don't really want to completely deplete your reserves while riding so try to eat during the ride. During the Tour de France the riders consume up to 50% of their daily calorie intake while riding. You can get fancy energy drinks, gels etc. but you can also eat fruit, or drink fruit juice, basically anything that is easy to digest, but not chocolate, sweets (candy) or any food or drinks that contain refined sugars, these can actually lower your blood sugar levels.

If you eat refined sugars that are very quickly absorbed, the body over-releases insulin which can then quickly lower the blood sugar levels leaving them lower than they were originally, so you get a short initial energy boost which quickly declines. You want complex carbohydrates and sugars that are slowly released to give you sustained energy levels.

If your riding very soon after you wake and without having a carb rich meal a couple of hours before you ride, you will likely have very low blood sugar levels, which could lead to the bonk. You could try carb loading by having a meal a couple of hours before you go sleep the night before, something with plenty of complex carbs, wholemeal rice, pasta, porridge oats that sort of thing which are slowly absorbed and should ensure that your glycogen stores are topped up ready for your ride the next morning. Don't eat too much protein before a ride, it's hard and slow to digest and diverts blood from the muscles to the digestive tract which can make you feel sluggish. Protein after exercise is good as it helps repair and develop muscle tissue.

Cycling nutrition: http://www.bottombracket.co.uk/cycling-nutrition.html - there are plenty of others on Google Smile
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#3
Xerxes, are you sure the TdF riders consume half of their caloric output while riding? That's a helluva lot of calories, especially for Tourmalet and the other bigger days. I thought I heard Phil Schwinn say that Andy Schleck and Contador went up Tourmalet at an avg of 19mi/hr. I bet the average rider burns 5000-8000 calories a day.

While riding, I'll drink energy powers (Gu, Clif, Nuun, etc) along with water. And every 45min to an hour I'll eat a gel. On bigger rides, I'll eat half a Clif bar and the other half in a future hour.

After a big ride (big is > 60 miles), I'll have a non-caffeine gel, Clif bar, or Bonk Breaker and some milk within the first half hour, along with plenty of water the rest of the day. I'll watch my output color to tell me if I need to drink even more.
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#4
(08-06-2010, 04:04 PM)AndrewB Wrote:  I'll watch my output color to tell me if I need to drink even more.

As long as it doesn't glow in the dark I wouldn't worry too much. Smile

I wouldn't swear on the TdF calorie fact, but I vaguely remember reading it in an article somewhere. I also remember reading that Lance Amstrong eats 7000 calories a day whilst on the tour, but I'm not sure where I read that now either. I spend far too much time trawling around the web reading random articles and picking up useless information. Smile
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#5
Heh. Just consider the math...

7000 calories a day. Assume a 8 hour stage ride time. And assume 100 calorie gels.

8*60 / (7000 / 100) = 6.9

So, they'd have to eat a 100 calorie gel every 7 minutes over 8 hours. That's a lot, and a good recipe for cycling induced indigestion.

Smile
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#6
(08-05-2010, 07:46 PM)Kloosty Wrote:  Lately I've taken to (metric) century rides first thing in the morning (I've recently graduated university so I'm currently unemployed and have the time on my hand (coincidentally if anyone knows of a mechanical engineering job available, let me know)) and have been trying to find ways of perking myself up for the rest of the day. My current method is chocolate milk, espresso and lots of fruit, but that doesn't seem to cut it. Does anyone else have any methods of getting going after a long ride?

Hi...
I was gonna ask that kind of question. We got the same situation simular.

Thanks
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#7
You need fats to carry you the distance.

Anything butter. That will be in your post ride meal. Butter contains bountiful amounts of lipase, which are essential for metabolizing fats for energy. Avoid oils because they don't contain any lipase to facilitate the amount of fats they supply.

I make a prep meal from Goya Yellow Rice and Pict Sweet Roasting Vegetables Mexican Street corn. Just cook them up and mix them together. Just heat, add butter, and eat.

On the way, topping off with carbs will want to be mostly grains. Bread items are best. Gatorade protein bars are great. And Cliff bars can carry you the same. Actual carb supplements/gels that don't contain large amounts of fructose are a good key-in. The body has to convert fructose and that's taxing on the metabolism. You're wasting metabolites, and there's an undesirable time-lapse in availability. You can also get carb supplement powders to add to your drinks. That would be like waxy maze and dextrose. I would suggest an EAA aminos supplement and omega fatty acids supplement. Get a full spectrum omegas 3 5 6 7 9. There are various thermogenic supplements also to aid the metabolism. I prefer the non-stim ones because you can effortlessly stack them with pre-workouts containing caffeine. Beyond Raw Burn MF non-stim is a great one.
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#8
(08-05-2010, 07:46 PM)Kloosty Wrote:  Lately I've taken to (metric) century rides first thing in the morning (I've recently graduated university so I'm currently unemployed and have the time on my hand (coincidentally if anyone knows of a mechanical engineering job available, let me know)) and have been trying to find ways of perking myself up for the rest of the day. My current method is chocolate milk, espresso and lots of fruit, but that doesn't seem to cut it. Does anyone else have any methods of getting going after a long ride?

So as not to sound finite, I will say almost always end with protein as the macronutrient. Carbs, especially refined sugar, does not help recovery, maybe storage for the next day, but you have to recover and repair.
My protein mix is always ready in the fridge. 22g per serving protein powder with frozen bananas and blueberries, flax seed, chia seed, greens powder, matcha, ashwagandha, oat milk and cold brew coffee.
Ready to go!
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#9
I'm surprised nobody's mentioned having a banana before the ride and another one after, especially if it's been a heavy workout. Am I wrong?
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#10
Bananas are very popular, but most people don't realize the carb value in bananas isn't as good. Over half the carb value is actually resistant starch. This resistant starch doesn't feed your body, but it does feed bacteria though (which is not good). When I researched this before, I found a nice chart showing the levels of available carb value versus non-available carb value, but I couldn't find it just now.

Apples are better carb value overall, and they also contain polyphenols, with antioxidant properties and metabolism support.

Grapes are also excellent, also containing resveratrol.

Mango and pineapple are high carb fruit.

Still, fruits are just supplement carb entries used to help assist better carb sources (breads, grains); and fill in small spaces between meals; but not to be relied on really as a performance carb source.

Not sure why that chart says this, but heat will actually make healthy starches resistant starches. Because of structure integrity of the molecule is damaged by the energy (starch retrogradation), which disrupts the recognition sites, and then cannot be identified by amylase. This is why it's commonly recommended to steam vegetables. Because yeah, this can happen to proteins as well, and is called protein structural integrity.


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#11
(12-16-2023, 07:15 PM)ReapThaWhirlwind Wrote:  Bananas are very popular, but most people don't realize the carb value in bananas isn't as good. Over half the carb value is actually resistant starch. This resistant starch doesn't feed your body, but it does feed bacteria though (which is not good). When I researched this before, I found a nice chart showing the levels of available carb value versus non-available carb value, but I couldn't find it just now.

Apples are better carb value overall, and they also contain polyphenols, with antioxidant properties and metabolism support.

Grapes are also excellent, also containing resveratrol.

Mango and pineapple are high carb fruit.

Still, fruits are just supplement carb entries used to help assist better carb sources (breads, grains); and fill in small spaces between meals; but not to be relied on really as a performance carb source.

Not sure why that chart says this, but heat will actually make healthy starches resistant starches. Because of structure integrity of the molecule is damaged by the energy (starch retrogradation), which disrupts the recognition sites, and then cannot be identified by amylase. This is why it's commonly recommended to steam vegetables. Because yeah, this can happen to proteins as well, and is called protein structural integrity.

I have my bananas blended in my protein mix. The glycemic index may also be a factor along with the carbs you mentioned.
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#12
(12-16-2023, 07:15 PM)ReapThaWhirlwind Wrote:  Bananas are very popular, but most people don't realize the carb value in bananas isn't as good. Over half the carb value is actually resistant starch. This resistant starch doesn't feed your body, but it does feed bacteria though (which is not good). When I researched this before, I found a nice chart showing the levels of available carb value versus non-available carb value, but I couldn't find it just now.

Apples are better carb value overall, and they also contain polyphenols, with antioxidant properties and metabolism support.

Grapes are also excellent, also containing resveratrol.

Mango and pineapple are high carb fruit.

Still, fruits are just supplement carb entries used to help assist better carb sources (breads, grains); and fill in small spaces between meals; but not to be relied on really as a performance carb source.

Not sure why that chart says this, but heat will actually make healthy starches resistant starches. Because of structure integrity of the molecule is damaged by the energy (starch retrogradation), which disrupts the recognition sites, and then cannot be identified by amylase. This is why it's commonly recommended to steam vegetables. Because yeah, this can happen to proteins as well, and is called protein structural integrity.

This is GREAT info, but carbs aren't the only thing your body needs. I was thinking more of the potassium.
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#13
Congratulations on your graduation and your commitment
Think about increasing the amount of protein in your breakfast after the ride. For muscular recuperation, try eggs, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, or protein smoothies.
After your bike, make sure you're adequately hydrated. Water is vital, and if the ride was very hot or strenuous, you might also want to add some electrolytes.
Your post-ride meals should include complex carbs such as quinoa, sweet potatoes, or whole grains in addition to fruit. They offer enduring vitality. Going for a short, easy walk or doing some light activity post-ride can enhance recovery by promoting blood flow without putting additional stress on your muscles.
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#14
(12-16-2023, 03:49 PM)enkei Wrote:  I'm surprised nobody's mentioned having a banana before the ride and another one after, especially if it's been a heavy workout. Am I wrong?

A banana right after a ride is the best thing ever! We have local bananas here that are a weee bit harder but is perfect for frying with brown sugar. This snack has everything you need to recover from a ride
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