Back when I was doing endurance events I quickly learned that nutrition is everything. Just like a Ferrari goes nowhere without gas, an athlete will bonk and come to a near standstill without food. Cat 4/5 bicycle racing isn’t so much of an endurance activity and I’ve become somewhat lax in my pre, during, and post workout nutrition.
Yesterday I did fifty miles with my friend Lori up in my old stomping grounds: the Snoqualmie Valley, Sultan and Monroe, and I paid much closer attention to my fueling. Ten minutes before the ride I ate an almond butter and honey sandwich on whole wheat bread, during the ride I ate my usual mix of energy bars, Nuun and Hammer Sustained Energy and immediately afterwards I munched a PB&J and washed it down with sweetened green tea. Lori is training for Ironman Canada, which is all about consistency, and consequently we rode a cool, even 20 mph pace, and I felt great both during and after the ride.
Last Saturday I went out for two hours of hard hammering and come about ninety minutes in I began falling apart. I attempted to refuel on the bike, but it was too late, I’d already gone over the cliff. From now on I’m going to focus on taking in low GI foods before the ride, and will be sure to recover with some protein and high GI foods immediately after the ride.