My pre/intra/post-ride nutrition for a typical 100 mile ride.
I received an email asking about my pre-ride, intra-ride and post-ride nutrition/supplements for a 100 mile ride like the Horrible Hundred, which I did this past Sunday (see “Ride report: 2014 Horrible Hundred“). I thought I’d answer that excellent question in this morning’s blog.
I need to point out that my intra-ride nutrition will vary quite a lot depending on the conditions (course difficulty, pace, temperature and so on), but my pre-ride and post-ride routine doesn’t vary too much at all.
In the heat of the Florida summer I require more fluids, carbohydrates and electrolytes during the ride than I do during the cooler months. I’ll touch on that a bit towards the end of the article, but for now I’m going to focus on exactly what I consumed before, during and after the 2014 Horrible Hundred.
Note: for a detailed look at my supplement and indoor bike equipment shelves, check out this recent article.
4:30 AM / Breakfast: (1) cup (before cooking) Quaker Old-Fashioned Oats, (1) Large Banana, (3) cups strong black coffee, 40 ounces water, (1) Kirkland Daily Multi, (2) Kirkland Fish Oil, (2) Nature Made Triple Flex, (1) Jarrow Formulas Milk Thistle
7:30 AM / Ride Start: 50 ounces plain water, 25 ounces Gatorade, consumed while riding
8:30 AM / Mile 21: (1) GU energy gel
10:30 AM / Mile 63: (1) Clif bar
12:30 PM / Mile 102: Ride end, 25 ounces water, sipped during drive home
1:15 PM /Post-ride : Ultimate Recovery Smoothie
Of course the recovery process is not complete until I have my post-ride dinner, which is usually pizza and beer. Don’t argue, it’s science.
So, during the almost 5 hour / 102 mile / 5,200 feet elevation ride that’s a total caloric intake of 3 GU Gels, a Clif bar and 25 ounces of Gatorade, which amounts of about 720 calories. I find this to be sufficient for a ride of this type, provided that I’m not in a caloric deficit and have been eating at, or above, maintenance level in the days preceding the event. When I’m actively cutting body fat and in a caloric deficit, however, I require more intra-ride nutrition to avoid bonking.
I definitely perform best with a light load on my stomach, and that’s why I eat most of my pre-ride calories 2-3 hours in advance of the ride, and keep my intra-ride calories as low as possible. I’d rather have my blood shuttling oxygen to my muscles instead of working on digestion.
When it’s hot outside I consume roughly the same amount of gels and Clif bars, but I will consume more SaltStick capsules (about 1 per hour), Gatorade and water.