Cycle food for those without much of a sweet tooth.
Longest ride ever has been 106 miles, longest this year was 63 for July Gran Fondo.
I’ve got several routes I like doing, which are over 80 miles, and am thinking one of them will be my next ride.
I’ve never taken nutrition or hydration very seriously, which isn’t very clever of me. All the rides I do, I’m kind of heading to a pub or two for a few beers. Sometimes I’ll have a meal there too. A lot of the times, I’m pretty knackered when I get back though, and I put at least quite a bit of that down to not eating. On an 80 mile ride, I might have something to eat at a pub after 40 miles, but that’s about it.
Trouble is, I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, so most bars just don’t do it for me. I eat chocolate very rarely, and get worried if a fancy some, because it’s often when I’m coming down with something.
So If I want to take hydration and nutrition a bit more seriously, what can I eat that I’d enjoy? I don’t really see why crisps wouldn’t work. Fairly high in Carbs. I could get low fat ones even. I’d much rather eat a Scotch Egg, or Pork Pie than a cake, chocolate bar, or energy bar.
One sweet I do like, is fruit jellies – especially if I can get Lion Brand, so I could take some of those for an energy boost.
For hydration, I might fit a bottle cage to my bike(which seems to be the way these days). I could at least then put electrolyte drink in the bottle. I won’t in a Camel Back, because it makes a mess of them, and I don’t fancy using them again.
Yes, I am a bit clueless on this topic.Posted 3 days ago
Sausage Rolls! Protein & carbs in a handy sized package – you can fit two jumbos in a jersey pocket.
Or marmite sandwiches.
Electrolyte tabs to the flavour of your choice. I don’t find the SIS GO tabs to be too sweet.Posted 3 days ago
Biltong or Jerky, pepperami is good too. Dried fruit and nuts.Posted 3 days ago
Peanut butter and strawberry jam sammich. I’m sure it was once suggested on here to then wrap it in cling film and squash it into a denser, easier to handle size.Posted 3 days ago
I’d much rather eat a Scotch Egg, or Pork Pie than a cake, chocolate bar, or energy bar.
Then do that. There’s much talk of ‘sports nutrition’ and ‘hydration strategies’ but, unless you’re an athlete working on the absolute rivet, it’s basically overcomplicated marketing bunk that’s trying to get yo to buy particular products. You just need food and water, the body will very cleverly get what it needs from that (and if you read any of the stuff about the TdF teams and what they eat through the day, there’s lots of ciabattas, rice cakes, that kind of stuff, they’re not stuffing energy gels down their neck constantly).
I did my first RideLondon with a couple of cheese rolls, some fig rolls and, I think, an apple in my jersey pockets. Admittedly I grabbed a flapjack thing and a banana from one of the feed stations too. Bottles had water in them.
And why shouldn’t you be knackered after an 80 mile ride? Although, if you’ve had a couple of pints (again, why shouldn’t you) you will need to drink more (water, not pints 😉 ) to counteract the dehydration effects of the booze.Posted 3 days ago
Pork & pickle pies are amazing IMO, the pickle makes them much easier to eat on the move.
Peanut butter and chocolate spread on a wrap is good, particularly with a less sweet chocolate spread such as the Aldi nutoka one and chunky peanut butter.
Another vote for SIS elecrolyte tablets – I find the pink grapefruit ones best, as I’m also not a fan of excessive sweet stuff when riding.
Make up some trail mix? Salted peanuts, cashews, raisins, mini pretzels etc in a bag. Don’t put them in a little Tupperware at the top of a camelback though, as the rattling will drive you insane!Posted 3 days ago
Thanks for the suggestions.
I could definitely go for sausage rolls.
Getting a cage, bottle and some of the SiS Powder in Orange.Posted 3 days ago
Feel a bit happier just eating what I fancy now. A think a few Sausage Rolls, and I’ll have a look for some Pork & Pickle, and try those.
I was going to order powder, but thinking about it, it’s not something I can refill with easy – so will look at the tabs.Posted 3 days ago
All my rides are fuelled by cheese sandwiches. Sometimes the odd flapjack will creep in if i’m feeling like a pro.
Drink? Ribena every time.Posted 3 days ago
If you’re currently using a Camelbak, keep using it, as it allows you to take a decent amount of fluid rather than the relatively tiny amount you get in a bottle, and don’t bother with the tabs/powder. Or, if you must, have a bottle with a tab in but keep the Camelbak for the bulk of your fluid.
Your knackerdness is very probably down to not drinking enough rather than not eating enough. And you only need to drink water.Posted 3 days ago
I generally do long rides with pork pies. I’m a bit more vegetarian these days though so I’m experimenting with hard boiled eggs and crisps. Crisps aren’t as packable as pork pies.Posted 3 days ago
I usually put a zero sugar electrolyte tab in my water bottle, a weak mix.
Mini pork pies. Cooked new potatoes. Mini Soreen malt loaves aren’t ridiculously sweet.Posted 3 days ago
And you only need to drink water.
I get cramps if I only drink water, but then I sweat like a proverbial thing that sweats a lot.Posted 3 days ago
Cheese Sandwich – I could definitely eat that.
Yes, I’ll keep using Camelback. I’ve got a low capacity and a high capacity one, so I’ll use the high for longer rides. I got a fill up in a pub yesterday, and they kindly asked if I wanted ice in it as well. Damn, that was so nice. I’ll be asking for it again.
When I did the Gran Fondo ride, I took no drink, and it was 37 miles before I got to a pub. I was feeling dehydrated. Not sensible I know.Posted 3 days ago
Having seen grizzled audaxers banging out hundreds of kilometres eating whatever crap is in the pub/cafe/services, eat whatever you fancy.
Fwiw I find Veloforte bars not too sweet, but I usually get a savoury “need” on most long rides.Posted 3 days ago
Some good ideas in this book
Rice cakes work well. Easy to digest carbs.
I experimented with mini new potatoes with a bit of blue cheese inside. Works well.
Sausage rolls and things work but they can be a bit hard to digest.
You don’t need specialist food though. Wander around the snack food sections of a supermarket and see what looks nice, would be edible on the bike and survive in a bag or pocket.Posted 3 days ago
Peanut butter and marmite sandwiches cut into quarters.
Hot cross buns.Posted 3 days ago
+1 for mini pork and pickle pies.
Nuts are pretty good – as suggested above – make your own ‘trail mix’ with all the stuff you like in it.
Bananas are great, as are peanut butter sandwiches.
Dried dates and other dried fruit are packed full of energy.
I used to get pretty stressed about taking the right stuff with me on longer rides, but having done a few multi-day trips (London – Mt Snowdon, London – Paris, etc) where you end up eating anything and everything from salami/cheese for Breakfast to Magnum ice creams from petrol garages i think eat what you like unless you’re a pro athlete..Posted 3 days ago
The holy grail is food that is moist (doesn’t dry your mouth out) yet portable. I find pork pies better at the moistness than sausage rolls because of the jelly component. Ham sandwiches made with packet bread and butter also work well, the cure of the ham retains moisture, cheaper ham more so. I mean British ham, not Spanish style Jamon, which is dry.Posted 3 days ago
Thanks for all advice.
I’ve probably watched too much GCN, who I don’t think will ever be giving a thumbs up to Sausage Rolls and Pork pies.
Got a Cage, bottle, and some Berry SiS tabs ordered. Probably not here for my next ride though. Might be tomorrow, since I’m not working, it looks like it’ll be a bit cooler, and it’s rain forecast Sat & Sunday.Posted 3 days ago
Make up some trail mix? Salted peanuts, cashews, raisins, mini pretzels etc in a bag
This in a stem or top tube bag works well as it’s right there ready for a one-handed grab without the faff of stopping to open a camelbak, etc. e.g.
Posted 3 days ago
I have a very sweet tooth, but no longer take much sweet stuff for longer rides as the sugar peaks don’t help and I feel the craving for salty/savoury stuff.
Another big yes for a SIS tab in a bottle, not too sweet and helps when you’re sweaty. I keep one or two bottles for tabs as the aftertaste is there for ages, and also don’t put them in the camelbak.
As somebody mentioned above, boiled or roasted new potatoes are my new go-to snack. Put a bit of salt and pepper on them and stick them in a silicone food pouch in a jersey pocket or frame bag. They are good for energy and pretty healthy too, and they fill you up well.
Also a fan of peanut butter or marmite in sarnies – or preferably a bagel for some extra energy. Quite like almonds to munch on as a little and often snack.Posted 3 days ago
I’m not a great fan of SIS gels but I had one at the Kingston stop on the Ride London 100 and it got me to the finish without any trouble including the kicker up into Wimbledon. Before Kingston I was struggling, so having a gel for emergency use is probably a good idea on a long ride.Posted 3 days ago
I prefer to take actual fruit for something sweet/with sugars in, I reckon mini apples are actually better for jersey pocket portability and munching on the go (probably not to everyone’s taste) and/or picking blackberries from hedgerows. I do take the odd flapjack too.
As for savoury stuff, mini sausage rolls make sense as, again, you can pop one in yor gob on the go. I’m also a bit weird and like taking ~1″ chunks of Chorizo sausage (peeled of their ‘skin’, wrapped in foil and discretely taped to the back of the bar or on the TT) again pop it in you gob and chew away on all that delicious oily dead pig and paprika.
I like Cashews and (already shelled) pistachio nuts, but stuffing down a handful of nuts on the go can be a bit of a shambles, if I take nuts I tends carry them in a nice open topped feed bag so I can shove in a hand and grab some…Posted 3 days ago
I prefer to take actual fruit for something sweet/with sugars in
Yeah, I’m coming round to this. I took a satsuma/clementine/some kind of little orange thing out on a ride last week and it was blimmin lovely, really refreshing.
having a gel for emergency use is probably a good idea on a long ride.
Doesn’t need to be a gel, just something packed with sugar, so jelly babies/haribo/sweets, or indeed an apple.Posted 3 days ago
I wish I could eat fruit, but I just don’t like it.
Doubt I’ve eaten an Apple, Orange or Banana in 20 years. It’s a bit of a shame really. Only thing I can manage is Melon with Parma/Serrano ham, or Rasberries, but then I have to buy cream. Like I said, I wish it weren’t so.
I don’t know why I don’t like Chorizo or Pepperoni, as I like other continental cured meat, but I don’t. I don’t like pork pie with cured meat either – much prefer Melton Mowbray none cured pork.
The oily dead pig did sound delicious though. I do like Cashews and Pistachio nuts, so could try that.Posted 3 days ago
Couple more suggestions
Sweet potato chilli cheese wraps (go heavy on the chilli)
Carbohydrate + hydration powder in your drink instead of plain hydration tabs.
Little and oftenPosted 3 days ago
Nuts.Posted 3 days ago
If you are going savoury then remember to eat lots of small amounts and to eat before you are hungry. complex carbs take longer to get into your system
also don’t forget the big dinner the night before and proper breakfast – thats what will be fuelling much of your ride
Gels and the like get into your system quickly. a packet of jelly babies is much cheaper and basically pure glucose so a good emergency fuelPosted 3 days ago
Gels and the like get into your system quickly. a packet of jelly babies is much cheaper and basically pure glucose so a good emergency fuel
Yep, but we all know that if we have stuff like jelly babies around the house they’ll either get munched by the kids or yourself, but you aren’t going to feel peckish and nip out to the garage to chow down on a gel 🙂Posted 3 days ago
Thinking about it, other savoury snacks to consider (cold):
all worth considering?Posted 3 days ago
+1 (thickly-spread) peanut butter sarnie. Has been my default for many decades. Not planning on changing it anytime soon. Veggie samosas get an outing sometimes but they tend to explode/scatter unless contained in something heavy/bulky/annoying (delete as applicable)Posted 3 days ago
Depends on the sausage rolls, I find sometimes (if cold) they can be a bit too stodgy to eat and they dry your mouth. I find scotch eggs and pork pies better in those situations. Just eat the food you like, but do it in smaller amounts and regularly. That’ll be finePosted 3 days ago
IHN’s suggestion of eating regular food is very sensible. I think like many folk I’ve been lured into the marketing of “You must eat special space nutrition bars” on your bicycling riding. It’s mostly all crap, and now I stop for a sarnie and some nuts and a banana if I’m doing longer rides. There’s these things called “shops” they have a huge range of stuff so you don’t need to carry it all with you. There’s probably one near you.
Although this nugget…
Doubt I’ve eaten an Apple, Orange or Banana in 20 years.
Sort of fills me with inexplicable horror…You know that humans are essentially supposed to be powered by basically just eating fruit and veg, right?Posted 3 days ago
If you eat proper food you won’t need carb drink as well,just stick to water. Also if you are doing long rides then a bag and camelback gets annoying, bottles are way more comfortable and lighterPosted 2 days ago
Mini pork pies, fig rolls and cherry n almond flapjacks.Posted 2 days ago
Cycle food for those without much of a sweet tooth.
I’m not an expert, but something involving peanuts and salty-glue-type substance (not semen)?Posted 2 days ago
One sweet I do like, is fruit jellies
York fruits. Rolls Royce of fruit jelliesPosted 2 days ago
I like to get bread rolls thickly buttered and some of them I put cheddar cheese, sliced onion and salad cream. The rest are grilled streaky bacon, peanut butter and apricot jam. Wrap up in cling film and the more squashed they get the tastier they are.Posted 1 day ago
Not only do they have a good mix of carbs, protein and fat, they’re very tasty, as sometimes as you get more drained your appetite disappears. You never don’t want one of these though!
Odd 504 Bad gateway double post!Posted 1 day ago
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