What should I be fueling myself with for my ride home?

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  • What should I be fueling myself with for my ride home?
  • Premier Icon maxray
    Subscriber

    I have been trying to do a full week of 22miles each way commute this week as an experiment to see what effect sheer milage/exercise but no real moderation of diet/alcohol has on my weight.

    Day 2 today and the legs were feeling a tad empty at the end of the ride in.

    So what (or how much) should I be eating through today to maximise my energy for the homeward leg?

    nbt
    Member

    Have a snack as soon as you get in from your morning commute. As I only do 6 miles, I have breakfast on arrival rather than before leaving – not sure I could do 22 miles without eating first!

    will keep an eye on this, as I find that if I do 3 days on the trot my legs are empty before I get half way home on day 3.

    When I commute I have a similar distance, I’d eat toast, banana, and coffee before I set off and then a large bowl of muesli at work, fruit for a snack then pasta/high carbs for lunch. A small sandwich and more fruit before I set off and dinner ASAP when I get home. Maybe even more muesli before bed.

    Eat little and often rather then simply lots.

    Drink water whenever thirsty.

    hilldodger
    Member

    22 miles doesn’t really require that much extra fuel if you’re just talking calories.

    ‘Normal healthy diet’ will see you OK for anything other than competitive riding &/or all day epics.
    It’s easy to convince yourself you’re poorly fuelled and should eat some sports nutrition products when really you’re just a bit unfit and not used to the ride (not meant personally!)

    If you really feel you need a pre ride boost, then banana and a cereal bar about 1/2 hour before will give you all the calories you need with quite a good balance of fast and slow sugar release (aka GI).

    22 miles doesn’t really require that much extra fuel if you’re just talking calories.

    It does if you’re doing it twice a day 5 days in a row, and still want to be productive at work!

    Premier Icon rOcKeTdOg
    Subscriber

    i have 4 custard creams before i leave for my 9 mile journey in

    Premier Icon piedi di formaggio
    Subscriber

    Probably worth switching from diesel to higer octane unleaded

    Premier Icon alfabus
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    I do 15 miles each way every day (at least I normally do… haven’t done it for a couple of weeks due to overtime).

    I don’t eat anything before my morning ride (if I do, I get indigestion), then I eat a big bowl of oaty cereal at work, a normal lunch and nothing else.

    I found I was getting really tired legs when I was only eating a small breakfast; When I switched to oat cereal (i eat jordan’s crunchy oats – they are really nice) I found I had plenty of power to get myself home.

    Normal dinner at home, and same again the next day. No need to do anything special.

    Dave

    Breakfast is key (big bowl o’ cereal); and lunch (as mentioned, pastafantastic); and snacking all day, everyday (bourbon biscuits: an endless stream of bourbon biscuits…)

    Seems to work for me! Good luck, and good on ya πŸ™‚

    (other diet plans are available)

    Premier Icon brassneck
    Subscriber

    Depends on the route too – if it’s hilly you’ll be cracking into your easy carb stores all the more quickly, so a bit of fuel might help you and save you eating the biscuit tin when you get home. I think 22 miles each way is worth taking in some extra carbs, that’s (wild guess alert) around 500 calories each way at a brisk pace?

    I eat when I get in, but take a bottle with torq in it, which seems to help top up on the way, and slightly more diluted (I’ve usually drunk half of it so top it out with water) on the way back. Banana mid afternoon. I try and avoid eating too close to riding as I find it has a bad effect (commute is 16/17 miles each way, 300M of climbing)

    hilldodger
    Member

    brassneck – Member
    I think 22 miles each way is worth taking in some extra carbs, that’s (wild guess alert) around 500 calories each way at a brisk pace?

    Sounds about right, so couple of snack bars or nana and muesli bar does it.

    Premier Icon cp
    Subscriber

    22 miles doesn’t really require that much extra fuel if you’re just talking calories.

    what??!!!!

    44miles a day on the bike and you don’t need to eat more than normal? rubbish.

    doesn’t need to be sports drinks and the like, just have mini meals all day.

    Depending on your past commuting experience, or riding frequency experience, you’re probably going to get pretty knackered after a day or two. Have you jumped straight into this? If so, might be worth starting on a couple of days a week first.

    Hope you’re not riding much on the weekend!!

    Premier Icon maxray
    Subscriber

    lol, not getting much weekend time at the mo as have recently got an allotment that needs loads sorting out. πŸ™‚

    Have been commuting in for ages but rarely doing the full 22m in and home.

    Im not unfit but accept that doing more than 2 days of 44miles a day will be a shock to the system πŸ™‚ As it is I only work Tues-Fri and Thursday is 5 aside day so I drive in so it will only be 3 days a week.

    Will have a bit of an afternoon snack on top of my usual lunch I think.. should hopefully add enough to the legs.

    Cheers for the replies.

    teacake
    Member

    I agree with the “Shock to the system” bit. I used to ride 22 miles a day 5 days a week and when I started that, I was getting really tired on Thursdays and Fridays for the 2nd and 3rd month. Once I was into month 4 I was fine.

    I’d have big cereal before going to work. Occasionally 2nd breakfast at 10 of bacon sandwich. Then big lunch with cake and custard and boost home for more food at home.

    Since you’re doing 22 miles each way, I’d be having a sandwich or bananas and cereal bars about 90-45mins before leaving work [not realistic in the morning, but food as you get up is a must! BREAK the FAST.

    Good on ye mate!

    4x Weetabix with a heap of sugar before i leave in the morning. keeps me going till around 11ish.
    Sweets or chocolate before the ride home normally is enough.

    how long does the 22miles take you? an hour or so? as thats the limit of energy stores in your body, you might want to have a bite on route?

    Going for 0 to 5 times a week is a pretty big ask! Build up to it, recovery is as important as the ride itself. Alternate days should be enough.

    Premier Icon jonathan
    Subscriber

    I occasionally do a 35 mile each way commute – it’s hilly and usually under 2hrs on the way in and over 2 hours on the way home! Probably different doing it every day but I’ve found that I need a big pile of high carb breakfast – so 4-5 Weetabix with sugar as above! And then struggle to fit enough in during the day for the ride home. I try and keep it healthy but it usually ends up being whatever I can get my hands on. A decent high carb lunch (rice or something like that) tends to help though.

    And I always make sure I’ve got food with me for the way home!

    Premier Icon maxray
    Subscriber

    Takes me between 1.20 and 1.30. I would be chuffed with an hour, that’s how long it often takes in the car! I don’t go balls out though, I think I average about 14mph.

    Todays ride in: http://www.endomondo.com/workouts/ickwon_SsGI

    Don’t have time for brekky in the morning but will have some snacks around 4 today and see how it affects things πŸ™‚

    soobalias
    Member

    i recommend a handful of tangfastics just before you get on the bike, not enough to ‘fuel’ your ride home, just enough for a sugar hit to send you on your way.

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    This has got me thinking.

    My current commute is 17 miles each way, and flat. I don’t vary my diet (I already eat way too much). That’s fine, whether it’s the 3 days a wek in winter or 5 days a week in summer.

    My new commute will be 25 miles each way and hilly. I reckon 3 times a week in summer, and twice in winter (and other riding). I don’t mind doing 250 miles a week, but I need to be able to function at work and at the weekends).

    But, I’m not sure I’ll change my eating habits (other than eating less generally). Maybe a banana on the bike on the way in and on the way home. And an emergency gel in my pocket.

    hilldodger
    Member

    cp – Member
    what??!!!!

    44miles a day on the bike and you don’t need to eat more than normal? rubbish.

    doesn’t need to be sports drinks and the like, just have mini meals all day.

    Not really ‘rubbish’ is it, OP has clarified 1t’s a slow ride, no where near race pace or even redface pace πŸ˜›

    Premier Icon maxray
    Subscriber

    or even redface pace

    Steady on now, it’s not that slow! πŸ™‚

    Premier Icon shortcut
    Subscriber

    I did my first cycle commute in a couple of years last week (Friday) and rode in again today, there is a plan to ride this Friday too.

    It is about 17 miles each way and not especially flat. It takes about an hour which I reckon is good. Thus far I have been fine on a bowl of museli at 6.15 and on the bike by 6.30 with a bacon roll when I get in and nothing else that I wouldn’t usually have.

    I am unlikely to get above 2 or 3 days a week as Tuesdays and Thursdays are mountain bike nights so a commute on top is pushing it a bit – although I may give this a go with a train ride home after the mtbing.

    Have fun and if you don’t feel like it (22 miles is a long way in the rain) – take a day off and use the car or what ever.

    Premier Icon maxray
    Subscriber

    (22 miles is a long way in the rain)

    The first time I did it on my new bike it was torrential rain but rain wasn’t going to stop my maiden voyage… realised after about 10mins that it was a silly decision but pressed on. Never been so wet (other than when swimmming), my previously waterproof messenger bag was soaked through as were my change of clothes when I got in. At least I know it will never be that bad again πŸ˜€

    hilldodger
    Member

    maxray – Member
    Steady on now, it’s not that slow!

    😳 sorry πŸ™

    I used to do 20miles each way a day and didn’t eat anymore than normal. OK occassionally I’d feel a bit lacking in energy and sometimes I’d feel the need to really load on the carbs, but I didn’t eat much more than normal. Never bothered with breakfast either, cup of tea at 6am and on the bike, banana when I got to work, decent meal when I got home.

    It was a fairly flat route though.

    bellerophon
    Member

    that’s (wild guess alert) around 500 calories each way at a brisk pace?

    Hmmm, this calorie burnt calculator show calories burnt as 976 if I use my weight 174lbs, cycling time 85 minutes and speed 12-14mph; this will change depending on the OPs weight, obviously double it for the daily extra cals you’re using.

    Just found this calculator which may be more accurate as it has cycling specific option also linked from the bike for all website.

    Having said that my commute supposedly uses 866 calories, but I don’t really eat that much more, but then I only do it tues and thurs so plenty of time to recover; I would though have porridge for brekkie and a protein shake masde with milk post ride, plus a banana about 1/2 an hour before going home….

    Premier Icon brassneck
    Subscriber

    Changed my mind, MTFU and do it on water alone πŸ˜€
    Nah, 22 miles is worth a little extra something unless you never leave zone 1, in which case it’d porbably take about 2 hours.

    Hmmm, this calorie burnt calculator show calories burnt as 976 if I use my weight 174lbs, cycling time 85 minutes and speed 12-14mph; this will change depending on the OPs weight, obviously double it for the daily extra cals you’re using

    I just don’t trust those calculators. If you accept you need a calorie deficit of around 250 per day to lose a pound or two a week, you’ve nearly covered that in one hour and a half ride. In my experience I need to be doing more like 5 hours a week with no calorie intake increase to get a result.

    Shame I don’t actually have the self discipline to do it πŸ™‚
    I’ve shifted to running for maintenance as I can squeeze a 40 minute run in on a lunch hour twice a week and appear to be getting more out of it for less time. Also means I’m free(r) to gorge on my commute day/days πŸ™‚

    hilldodger
    Member

    I just don’t trust those calculators

    They’re not very accurate at all, wildly overestimate calorie usage IMO.

    Measuring calorie usage under exercise is pretty awkward as it involves measuring net heat gain/loss, oxygen uptake, carbon dioxide production as well as power produced.

    As you say, if a couple of commuting rides burned nearly 2000 calories we’d all be thin as racing snakes……

    Premier Icon cp
    Subscriber

    They’re not very accurate at all, wildly overestimate calorie usage IMO.

    for me they tend to underestimate. I guess everyone is different & uses a different amount of calories for a given amount of work done.

    sensible answer to the OP would probably to do as he’s suggesting – eat a bit more and see how he feels. Then respond to that depending how feeling during the ride.

    Premier Icon maxray
    Subscriber

    Yeah I dont really pay attention to the cals it claims I have burnt, they seem far too high!

    ti_pin_man
    Member

    I am doing a similar thing, 15 miles each way building up to 5 times a week. I started in the first week of Jan and gradually built it up and by about day 3 I was knackered. I a’m not looking to loose weight but if I loose a bit then do be it. I also decided I needed to get a recovery drink and tried a few settling on torq. I peaked 3 weeks ago with doing it 4 times, and a’m building up again to do 5 times in 3rd week of march.

    I think on the face of it the mileage doesn’t sound much, especially compared to Sunday road ride mileage but through in work and life in the evening and I think it’s more effort than people are giving credit for here. My hours ride is pretty much like interval training twice a day…

    I can’t stomach food that early so now just have recovery drinks in place for post ride and eat normal meals aside from that. The recovery drink replaced my breakfast when I get to work.

    Keva
    Member

    So what (or how much) should I be eating through today to maximise my energy for the homeward leg?

    you will know your own energy levels better than anyone else but if I were doing that mileage I’d be looking at stocking up on complex carbs morning noon and night, three good meals a day plus high energy snacks before and after each ride. -I’d probably also need a bit of extra sleep.

    Kev

    Premier Icon brassneck
    Subscriber

    I can’t stomach food that early so now just have recovery drinks in place for post ride

    For Goodness Shakes are pretty good too I find and available at most Tescos if you’re short on the torq powder.

    I agree that anything like that sort of distance twice a day kicks you pretty hard unless you’re nails already. The trick is also trying to keep a bit in reserve to actually wan to ride for fun at the weekend too.

    foxyrider
    Member

    My training book suggests homemade recovery drink – 1 banana, 300ml of OJ & a spoon of glucose πŸ™‚ yum yum

    simondbarnes
    Member

    And I always make sure I’ve got food with me for the way home!

    Yup, that’s essential, even if you don’t eat it it helps loads knowing that it’s there.

    My commute is 28 miles each way. Been doing it far to infrequently of late but am slowly changing that. I don’t eat before leaving but carry a bottle of rego on the bike that I can drink as soon as I get to work. I’ve found this makes a big difference to how I feel on the ride home. During the day I make sure I eat plenty, sometimes healthy stuff, sometimes not πŸ™‚

    Premier Icon maxray
    Subscriber

    Got some fruit gums and was fine with a normal lunch. Mega tired tonight tho legs feel ok . Rest day tom and then ride in Fri and break 200km for the week πŸ™‚

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    break 200km for the week

    IT’s when you’re regularly breaking 200 miles in a week you know you’re onto a winner..!

    A tip that I never follow: try to have one easier week in every four.

    Premier Icon maxray
    Subscriber

    Lol in true stw fashion I probably won’t do it again this year πŸ™‚

Viewing 38 posts - 1 through 38 (of 38 total)

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