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  1. #1
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    Cat3 RaceDay Nutrition/Hydration?

    Sorry if this has already been posted. This will be my first year racing MTB bikes (Cat3....I'm 30 so I'll be racing the 30-39 class) and curious as to what some of your suggestions would be for food on race day? I'm thinking oatmeal the morning off, maybe 2-3 hours before start time? Being Cat3, the race obviously isn't very long....an hour max....SO would taking a gel pack right before start time help any or would it hurt? Also, no real need to eat anything during race...right? I have had good results using Cytomax in my motocross racing days therefore I plan to have that in my Camelbak....is that a good idea? Thanks for any tips/suggestions!

  2. #2
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    Anyone have any suggestions?

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    Since no one has answered yet, I might as well give my opinion.

    I think you have a great plan coming into it. I would like to add that you have to hydrate before the race all the way up to the start. In my experience, it's good to get in a gel 15 minutes before the race and every 15-20 minutes during to prevent bonking. I haven't used Cytomax but if it's worked for you before, it'll probably work for you now. Overall, because this is your first year racing, it's great to learn what works and what doesn't for the future.

  4. #4
    Tailwind Nutrition
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    Because it's a shorter race, you're going to be relying primarily on your glycogen stores (your immediate fuel) and to a lesser extent the calories you are sipping during the race. Here are some pointers:

    *Eat a substantial breakfast 2+ hours before your event with carbs, fat, and some protein. This will give you time to digest what you've eaten.

    *Sip your Cytomax before the start to top off glycogen stores and electrolyte levels. Pre-load with up to a full bottle if drinking during your event will be hard.

    *Try to sip regularly during the event and keep your hourly calorie target in mind (physiologically you can only process between 200-300 calories/hour). You actually might find that your need to take in calories during a 1 hour race might diminish since your body presumably will be getting more efficient throughout the season. The other interesting data point is research has shown that during intense exercise lasting around one hour, performance can be improved by simply swishing a carbohydrate solution in the mouth which causes receptors in the mouth to send signals to the brain that carbs are on their way.

    Immediately post race, keep sipping your Cytomax. There is this "magical window" right after you race where your body is looking to replenish your glycogen stores. Protein will actually inhibit the absorption of the glucose so replenish your glycogen stores first, and then follow with the protein either through a recovery drink or just a nice meal.

    Most importantly, have fun!
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jennyv View Post
    Because it's a shorter race, you're going to be relying primarily on your glycogen stores (your immediate fuel) and to a lesser extent the calories you are sipping during the race. Here are some pointers:

    *Eat a substantial breakfast 2+ hours before your event with carbs, fat, and some protein. This will give you time to digest what you've eaten.

    *Sip your Cytomax before the start to top off glycogen stores and electrolyte levels. Pre-load with up to a full bottle if drinking during your event will be hard.

    *Try to sip regularly during the event and keep your hourly calorie target in mind (physiologically you can only process between 200-300 calories/hour). You actually might find that your need to take in calories during a 1 hour race might diminish since your body presumably will be getting more efficient throughout the season. The other interesting data point is research has shown that during intense exercise lasting around one hour, performance can be improved by simply swishing a carbohydrate solution in the mouth which causes receptors in the mouth to send signals to the brain that carbs are on their way.

    Immediately post race, keep sipping your Cytomax. There is this "magical window" right after you race where your body is looking to replenish your glycogen stores. Protein will actually inhibit the absorption of the glucose so replenish your glycogen stores first, and then follow with the protein either through a recovery drink or just a nice meal.

    Most importantly, have fun!
    WOW….thanks a TON for all your information! Hopefully you don't mind me asking a few more questions after reading everything you provided :-).

    1) What is your opinion on gel/goo packs right before the race (again, I assume 60 minute races don't require another pack during the race). I wasn't planning on taking them BUT that seems to be pretty popular….

    2) Is Cytomax OK….better than water during an activity like this?

    3) Do you have any particular foods in mind that you would suggest pre/post race? Pre race sounds like you don't suggest eating JUST oatmeal, what else should I consume? What would you suggest post race in particular other than my Cytomax?

    I realize that everyone's body is different and not everyone responds the same to certain foods BUT this will give me an awesome starting point….thanks SO much for the info!

  6. #6
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    Don't do anything new on race day. Eat something you're used to eating.

  7. #7
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    Hi Superx421:

    1. As everyone has noted, race day is not the day to experiment. Given that you will be topping off your glycogen stores prior to the race with your sports drink, you won't need the gels - in fact, you risk overloading the gut with too many calories and that could cause stomach ills during the race.

    2. A sports drink during a short race like this will really help more with recovery than the actual race itself (and, it also depends on how fit you are). The whole goal is to stave off the depletion of your glycogen stores (which will last you about 90 minutes...but again highly variable from person to person).

    3. Everyone is different, so you really need to experiment. There are a host of great books out there that cover this topic, and I'm sure if you do a search on this forum you'll find some great recommendations.

    Thanks,
    Jenny
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  8. #8
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    As Jenny mentioned above, everyone is different and you will need to experiment. Listen to your body, both in training and racing. Experiment in training to learn what works/does not work for racing. That way when things change right before / during a race, you know what to do. For example, I had to work for a couple of years to learn enough about my body to know how to deal with super high heat (90+ with high humidity) and still race. I'm nowhere the fastest in the group, but I can keep going.

    Everyone has advice and what works for them. Find what works for YOU. This takes time and lots of mistakes.

    Biggest thing to remember: have fun while you are doing it.
    If you can be blissfully ignorant to the notion that something is impossible, then you might surprise yourself. -- Andrea138

  9. #9
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    i eat a pb&j sandwich or 2 waffles with syrup and a cup of coffee
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  10. #10
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    Pick up a copy of "The Feed Zone". There is some good info in there as well as some great recipes.

  11. #11
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    Re: Cat3 RaceDay Nutrition/Hydration?

    I like to have oatmeal and a handful of almonds around 2.5 hrs before the race to get some good carbs/fat/protein. Then a gel about 20 minutes before, then just sip carb/electrolyte drink before and during the race.

    Experiment with some race simulation type rides to figure out what works for you. For a race less than an hour it really doesn't matter a whole lot, just don't do anything that's going to give you a gut ache

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