There are an abundance of choices these days when it comes to sports nutrition and energy products, from bars and gels to electrolyte drinks and mixes. Planning your on the bike nutrition early will give you time to experiment with what your body does and, more importantly, doesn’t respond to well in advance of the event.
Take the time during your recon to simulate as closely as possible what you plan to do on the day. This not only means what you are eating and drinking but also how often you’re putting the fuel in throughout the ride.
It can be easy to save the more technical energy products for that special occasion and opt for the cake and coffee stop during training.
Whilst this will get you home, it’s unlikely that you’ll be wanting to stop for a slice of the good stuff mid event so use your recon ride to really dial in your nutrition plan.
Torq’s fuelling system can act as a useful and simple guide to understanding how to maintain your energy levels through the use of bars, gels and drinks.
The most important thing is to experiment with everything that you plan to use on the day beforehand. Now is the time to try new things out, not half way through your ride after months of training and preparation.
Time your nutrition intake to coincide with the course. For example, if you have a big climb on the horizon then take on some fuel in the 30 minutes prior instead of waiting until you’re on the climb and breathing more heavily.
Not only will it be harder to consume it in this state but it will take longer to digest and absorb as blood flow is directed away from your stomach and towards your hard working muscles.
It may seem silly but another point to consider is how easy your ride food is to open whilst on the move. That sandwich covered in eight layers of cling film can be a real mission to get into with cold hands.
Pre-opening some bars in advance can help tremendously, and gels with easy to open tops are a nice touch especially as fatigue starts to kick in. Use your recon time wisely to experiment and hone your nutrition plan ready for the big day.