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5 Favorites for Eating and Riding

I don't claim to be an expert on nutrition, but I've done a lot of trial and error when it comes to eating on a bike. When I first started riding I didn't give much credit to the calories expended on long rides. At this point in the season I've weathered some considerable rides and I'm pleased to report I've been feeling pretty dang good. So I thought I'd share what's been working for me lately.

Cytomax

Cytomax

I've always found Gatorade to be a bit too sugary and strong. It seemed to leave me gagging and my stomach nagging. I've found Cytomax to be a lighter flavor, therefore I end up drinking more. I like the orange flavor best. The label instructs to use it pre-ride and during. I've never used it pre-ride just during. I use it for long rides only as it does contain quite a few carbs.

Crystal Light

Crystal Light

Yes I know this isn't a big calorie boost. So I have one bottle full of cytomax and the other full of Crystal light. The secret here is I buy the kind with Caffeine. It keeps me going on the days when I can't muster much umph.

Clif Bar Cool Mint Chocolate

Clif Bar Cool Mint Chocolate

Right now I'm loving the Cool Mint Chocolate flavor. The mint offers a refreshing aftertaste. These bars pack a lot of calories, carbs and protein. Making this a good option for a long ride. A few bites later, my hunger is curbed and I'm not reaching to the back of my jersey for nourishment minutes later. In other words a little goes a long way, which is why they offer a mini of this bar. Genius!

Clif Shot Bloks

Clif Shot Bloks

I like this option for a quick and easy energy boost. I prefer the blocks over any kind of gel I've tried. The gel feels like medicine to me, where the shot bloks feel more like an oversized gummy bear. I guess it's all preference. However I learned a little trick about these once and I think it's added to their appeal. I saw a girl in a triathlon lick the block a bit and stick them to the frame of her bike. Easy access eating. Brilliant! I've been doing it ever since. I like this trick for racing, as reaching to the back of the jersey costs precious time.

Larry Scott Ultra Pro Powder

Larry Scott Ultra Protein Powder

Now lets talk about the best part of the ride; when it's over. I've been liking this protein powder paired with So Delicious Coconut Milk. A lot of other protein powders are loaded with calories. When the work is done I want to recover, but I want to keep it light, this powder allows for just that. You could pair this with your prefered milk choice or even water. I used to severely underestimate the importance of eating for recovery. In fact I'd hardly eat anything post ride, because my appetite was simply shot. Then I wondered why I was feeling completely depleted for hours after. Now I come home drink this and I truly am recovering faster. The most obvious result is I don't feel like I'm dragging the rest of the day.

For everyone this really is a trial and error process. What works well for one, may leave someone else with a side ache. You have to find what works for you. Some people are more calculated in their approach. Eating every 10 miles or drinking 20 ounces for every hour they are on their bike. While I find I do have to eat a bit before the hunger strikes I mainly do what feels good and so far this has been the best I've felt.

Happy Riding!

About the Author

Lindy P. Smith

Lindy P. Smith

Lindy is a wannabe athlete. As a Utah native and skier she’s a born powder hound and will steal your line if you’re not careful. In the summertime you can find her trail running, swimming in a lake and cycling her way around Cache Valley. Lindy Graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Journalism and enjoys writing about all her adventures and misadventures.

Lindy with daughter

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