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  1. #1
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    What's your routine?

    Hello all, I've just started riding regularly last year. It turns out cycling is a good hobby for me because I'm a sucker for customizing and tweaking things, and I had no idea there was such a wide range of options for bicycles!

    I mainly do it for fun (riding), but if I can get in better shape doing it, awesome!

    So my question is regarding eating before/after rides. Right now I basically just ride when I can, never planning on food before/after. What/how much do you eat before a ride? Is it like swimming where you should avoid a big meal before a long ride?

    I've read on these forums recomendations of eating before a ride, and eating protein 30 minutes after to help build muscle. How much Protein are we talking about 30 minutes after a ride? Are we talking chicken dinner, or are we talking a protein bar? (some people have said they drink a protein shake?)

    Basically I'm wondering what you all do specifically on your typical routines? Examples of what you might eat before (how long before) and after (30 minutes?) your regular rides?

    Thanks!!

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    As far as quantity and content it depends where you are and on what the goals are. A good general rule or routine to help support your riding and your recovery is eat a decent size meal around an hour or more before, and eat another within an hour after.

    Welcome to the site and to posting
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    Immediately post ride consume carbohydrates. You can add protein in a 4:1 ratio carbs/pro. Repeat in about 20-30 minutes, and about an hour or so later you can have a big protein meal.

    The amount varies with overall activity level. One rule of thumb for an active individual (as opposed to a weekend warrior) is 1.5 grams protein per kilogram of body weight. This is total DAILY consumption, not the post workout snack. The post workout snack should not be more than ~25% of total daily protein consumption. So you can see there is not a lot of protein needed immediately post workout. Without getting into a lot of cellular biochemistry the muscles need glucose before they can begin to use the amino acids to rebuild.

    For the post workout snack almost any protein will work. The whey supplements work, but are not necessary IMHO. A PB&J sandwich on whole grain bread with a glass of chocolate milk is close to the ideal ratio and amount of carbs/protein. The fancy potions and powders work also, but the simple is cheaper. Whey is touted as better, but the difference is small. Whey is a structurally simpler protein, so it breaks down into the component peptides and amino acids faster, and thus is absorbed faster. This difference is minutes, though. Not hours. (Whey is the leftover waste from industrial cheese making. The cheese factories used to throw it out, or sell it as a cheap livestock feed supplement. Then someone realized they could make more money by peddling it at inflated prices to amateur athletes as magic stuff).

    As far as overall eating for performance, individual variations abound. I find a carb breakfast works best for me, with dinner being the protein heavy meal. Others have the opposite. During the ride I snack lightly on whatever trail mix I throw together. I haven't had much luck with gels during the ride. They tend to bother my stomach and bowels. Try different things, and keep a diary of how you feel during the ride. You will soon learn what works for you.
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    Thanks guys, appreciate the feedback!

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    You're welcome.
    Dave is right about 4 to 1 ratio but that's not 100% for everyone so if you share where you're at with stats and training, what your struggles are, and what your goals are I'd be glad to help further with more detail.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by theMeat View Post
    You're welcome.
    Dave is right about 4 to 1 ratio but that's not 100% for everyone so if you share where you're at with stats, what your struggles are, and what your goals are I'd be glad to help further with more detail.
    yeah, some research suggests 3:1, others 5:1. The key take-away point is more carbs than protein initially. There does seem to be some ethnic/racial differences in nutritional needs, but solid research is lacking in this area. The differences between individuals is probably greater than any ethnic differences.
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    I guess my goal is to just start taking advantage of the excercise of my new hobby/passion.

    I'm 6'2" 270lbs - I've been the same size/weight since college (age 34 now).

    Right now I'm considering changing up how I eat (not necessarily how well/what I eat, besides maybe more protein "snacks" after rides etc).

    I haven't eaten breakfast regularly since high school. I basically eat nothing before lunch, then dinner, then probably a snack or two in the evening. I've heard about how it's better to eat more often in smaller doses to keep your metabolism burning, and I've seen bean pole skinny people eating all throughout the day that makes me think it works -also heard that not eating breakfast etc your body thinks its starving and stores fat, burns muscle etc.

    Typically in the summer I try to ride each day after work and the weekends (mostly on a bike path right by my condo), my typical circuit is 9 miles, but I do the full lap sometimes depending on time/energy of 18miles. Last weekend I did some exploring off the bike path through the woods and ended up going 27 miles (and felt like I could have still done more). ...anyways right now I'm sort of limited to weekend riding as it's dark before I leave work. I've started getting some decent winter apparrell so I can keep riding as much as possible. Also, I've never really had any issues of over tiredness or bunking from rides. When I first started, then again the beginning of this last summer I had that "aches so good feeling" in my muscles the next day of my muscles waking up and strengthening.

    Anyways, back to eating:
    So I'm thinking of switching "to the norm" and having breakfast, maybe start packing small snacks to eat between meals (I guess protein snacks) at work. I'm just starting to google high protein foods and protein snacks to get ideas.

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    Seems like you've been doing some homework so that's good. It seems you have a pretty good grasp of the info too, even better.
    Few things I'll throw out there. As far as "mini meals" or the keeping your body from fasting, and keeping protein always available for fitness gains, and curbing storage throu this....It works for many, and many need to dial in some. It can/ may take your body some time to realize that it doesn't need to store, or store as much, and you may and maybe should gain muscle from this so don't live by the scale short term. Once you got it going a month or so you can start to dial into where your weight and fitness goals are.
    I'd say eat breakfast, especially for an active lifestyle, and whether you do mini meals or not and you just don't like to eat breakfast, if that works for you go with it, and try doing some more cardio type exercise before that first lunch meal, and at least you'll do more cutting as opposed to storing.
    Of coarse it's a matter of calories in and calories out, and for many timing and content is key while for others it's not. Same thing with cycling carbs, or intermittent fasting. Imo mini meals is less bad / more better than those, especially in terms of health, and more successful for more people, especially long term or toward fitness goals.
    No matter what you decide one thing is true for everyone. Don't make huge changes and make them for at least 3-4 weeks so you can see how it feels, and what it gives and takes.
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  9. #9
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    Long been realized frequent small meals is better healthwise than the standard 3 large meals. However, our entire societal norms, culture, and economic/political system forces you into the 3 meals pattern.
    So many trails... so little time...

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    Quote Originally Posted by dave54 View Post
    Long been realized frequent small meals is better healthwise than the standard 3 large meals. However, our entire societal norms, culture, and economic/political system forces you into the 3 meals pattern.
    Idk, I'm amazed how many people don't realize this. Furthermore think many people who start exercising start eating more often simply because they're more hungry, and don't have a clue that eating more often is 60% or more of that equation for feeling better and finding success.
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  11. #11
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    Bulwyf, you didn't share anything about the size or content of your diet so ? But you have shared that you're 270lbs and your now once week exercise routine leaves you feeling fine during and after. With that I'd say that 1.5 grams protein per kilogram of weight taken daily isn't that important, nor is upping carbs. If you want to be anal about it and make sure you get the most muscle and performance benefit from your exercise then maybe slightly up your carbs a couple of days leading to your exercise, and up proteins for a couple after. I'm a firm believer that for most the best way to make changes that last you should make small doable changes every few weeks or month or so. Since we don't know your diet I'm only guessing but will mention for your consideration that you start to replace simple carbs with more complex ones at most or all times other than right after exercise, that you consider that adding meals will up your calories unless you adjust the size and/or content of your other meals, and that you eat breakfast and a good small slowly digesting meal which includes proteins before bed.
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    I make it easy for myself. No meat for breakfast, does not sit well in my stomach. Eggs and some fruit an hour or so before my ride. Slam at least one water bottle right before we hit the dirt. Chocolate milk after a ride and a beer and try to get food in my stomach within an hour of riding

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    I work most nights leaving for work at 8:30 pm, and get home at 3:30 am. This is when I eat more of your junk food type things, then go to bed at 4-5 am. I normally get up around 10:30 am do a stretching routine I have done for years, then my age of sit-ups and pushups (54). If I ride during the day either a 25 mile round trip commute to town or my 22 mile regular loop ride I don't eat before the ride, don't usually drink anything or even take water with me.

    When I get back from the commute or road ride which I do everyday I will make a green smoothie which is my first food of the day:
    1 grapefruit
    1 orange
    1 apple
    1 pear
    2 bananas
    Tbsp flax seed
    1/4 tsp turmeric (heaping)
    1 tsp cinnamon (heaping)
    1 cup or more spinach raw
    1 cup or more kale raw
    5 ice cubes
    Blend until smooth, delicious!

    Supper is usually around 5:00pm, either chicken, pork, beef, sometimes with pasta, or potato, and another vegetable (cooked).

    After supper I go to bed till about 8:00 pm, leave home at 8:30 pm, commute round trip 25 miles to work and back, repeat.

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    I'm digging that chocolate milk is good source of protein. hehe, was always one of my favorites!

    Typically I crawl out of bed and hop in the shower and jet out the door to head to work, minimal time to do anything in the morning.
    Today I got up early before work to go for a ride, didn't quite make it out of bed because it was dark and there were some rain / snow flurries mix. Did have time to have breakfast though! Hopefully go for a ride tomorrow morning. Body needs to adjust to getting up earlier/going to bed earlier: I'm feeling the missing sleep as I type this.

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    Diet is at least 70% of fitness. Track calories until you understand what's good and bad in your diet. Assuming you want to get your BMI in line, try limiting total carbs to less than 100grams a day. Fill up the rest of your caloric goal with fat/protein. Tunes your body into utilizing stored fat instead of burning ingested carbs/sugars.

    You will lean out and ride like an animal. Will take months of dedication but is very worth it.

  16. #16
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    So do most of you watch your carbs, and mainly intake them after a ride/excercise in the 4:1 carb : protein ratio?


    Edit: seperated : and p in the carb/protein ratio because it was making a
    Last edited by Bulwyf; 11-12-2013 at 12:15 PM.

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    Only those adjusting their power to weight ratio. Less weight = more power!

    I am convinced we all eat too many carbs daily.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bulwyf View Post
    So do most of you watch your carbs, and mainly intake them after a ride/excercise in the 4:1 carb : protein ratio?


    Edit: seperated : and p in the carb/protein ratio because it was making a
    Nope, At first, when I started to take diet more seriously as a means to fitness goals, there was a learning curve to figure what was around that 4 to 1. After a while you start to get a better idea and it becomes easy imo. If I start to get too skinny or my energy level falls off I up carbs some. If I start to gain too much I cut back to around 3 to 1 for a while. It's amazing how what you start eating might not be likable at first and then many times becomes what you prefer. Like whole wheat instead of white, or yam instead of white, used to love soda now i don't. The only rules i try to stick to are complex carbs instead of simple, and 4+ meals a day. But sometimes it's just not doable to eat 4x and for me it's not worth it if you can't have a slice of pizza or whatever once in a while. The other thing i find amazing is how once you stick to a cleaner diet and exercise for long enough you start to feel better, look better, sleep better etc, and it motivates you to do it more and it gets much easier.
    For me i eat around a 4 to 1 just about all the time and it works for me. If you're trying to loose weight and are/want to cut down on carbs then more carbs before and more proteins after is what you want, not the other way around. So before a pbj on ww with banana, and after grilled chicken with veggies is a good example.
    Last edited by theMeat; 11-12-2013 at 06:09 PM.
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  19. #19
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    Recent research is showing good results by not paying too much attention to total calories and just eat in the right ratios. The old ratio was 40% carb/30% protein/30% fat for diet averaged over multiple days. Difficult to maintain that exact ratio every day, so if it averaged that over a period of several days it is still OK. The current recommended ratio is 50-55% carb/20% fat/20-25% protein . Current WHO recommendations are even higher at 70% carbs.

    Carbs should be from whole grains, fruits and vegetables, not added sugars (gel blocks work well for most people; however they are not considered healthy). Avoid processed foods as much as possible. Minimize (but not completely eliminate) meat. I am not trying the start a vegan/carnivore argument. A vegan diet can be as healthy as a diet with small amounts of lean animal protein (<2-3 ounces per day, red meat 1x per week or less). If you eat this way you do not need to closely watch calories, you will be at or under a good caloric level.

    You can track your daily diet with the USDA food tracker on-line https://www.supertracker.usda.gov/ or any number of smart phone apps.

    I like the USDA site. You can print reports showing ratios, nutrient, calories consumed through activities, etc. (I gave my doctor reports for a month of daily records, and he put them in my file.)

    If you want some reading material on eating patterns for maximizing performance, google for books on Nutrient Timing.

    Check your local community college for correspondence courses on nutrition. Or check the on-line MOOCS. Take any advice from the .com weightlifting web sites with a dose of skepticism. Most of the time they are 100% wrong and potentially dangerous.
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    The USDA site is pretty cool. Trying it out. I might search for an app like you said. I use Sportstracker for my rides/any walking. Neat app also, helps motivate you to be more active as you can see any blocks of inactivity. Would be nice to find an app that does both so I don't have to enter the excercise into the nutrition app manually. That's not that major though.

    Quote Originally Posted by theMeat View Post
    It's amazing how what you start eating might not be likable at first and then many times becomes what you prefer. Like whole wheat instead of white, or yam instead of white, used to love soda now i don't.
    It's funny you say this, I was just thinking how everyone is saying whole wheat pb&j, I was going to just use regular white, but now I think I'll take the leap to whole wheat... heh. I know it's true that you adjust/get used to it, and it becomes the norm and you can actually like it/prefer it.


    On another note, I did get up early before work and went for a 9 mile ride today. Was kind of cold (New England, was some frozen water on the ground) but I made do with some of the new cycling apparrel I'm starting to accumulate. Stayed warm, have ideas for next ride of where I need to increase warmth.

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    Ok, so let me know if there's a more efficient or better way to alter my new morning routine:

    I get up and have my breakfast, starting out w/ 1 fried egg w/ cheese in an english muffin. Then I get ready for the ride and get to it, a little over 9 miles in around 50 minutes. I get back and hop in the shower, get ready for work, and have a couple "pinches" of almonds for my post ride protein on my way out the door.

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    Either way this is a huge improvement over not eating till lunch but since you asked...
    If getting more fit is paramount then this works, althou i'd recommend at least 30 min between eat and exercise, 60 is ideal. If loosing weight is paramount then exercise first and eat after since when you wake you're in fasting mode regardless of what you ate before bed, and you'll start cutting into stores right away instead of 20-30 min into it when you're fed.
    Also.... if fitness is more important then your diet will/can greatly support those efforts. If loosing weight is more important then exercise will support that. But either way it's much easier to control your weight throu diet since it takes only a few min to eat what it would take hours to burn off.
    Not going to say that you should never eat fried foods, you only live once, but a poached egg on a ww english muffin with a piece of fruit is a much better plan.
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    Hmmm, never really thought of a fried egg as a fried (frialator) food. Is it less healthy just because of the squirt of spray to grease the pan? Never had a poached egg, I'll look into it.

    I'd say getting more fit and losing weight are pretty even goals for me. But factor in getting up early and time constraints before work, I guess I'll try getting up and going for my ride, then coming back and showering/get ready for work, then eat some breakfast and protein.

    Thanks for the tips and all the advice Meat, one day I'll be able to rep you again, but the site wants me to spread the love some before I can again

    I already feel a lot more healthy since starting to ride last summer, better stamina, etc. Took a tour of Italy this summer with a lot of walking and climbing hills and stairs to get to old fortresses, etc. and didn't really get too tired from it compared to the exhaustion I probably would have gotten before riding.

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    Thanx for thanx, nice is nice.

    Yeah when it comes to eggs it's not that big a deal, but it will cut some saturated fat, it's just as easy and imo tastes just as good so as a daily regimen that'll add up. It's also better to mix it up some and not eat the same thing too often, you know, moderation. Have witnessed many times that for most it's about making small changes that add up over time that make it much easier and easier to stick with as a lifestyle.
    Kudos for you for getting up and exercising, yeah it's been cold out in the NE.
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    Hard boil the egg, make the smoothie like the one listed above, skip the cheese - it's almost as bad as the oil, you don't need the muffin. Better yet, skip the egg, add ground chia seeds and almond milk. Any time you can eat lower on the food chain the better your health will be. Not a vegan/vegetarian but I only eat about 8oz of meat a week and get the rest of my protein from plant sources.

    The ratios of the smoothie listed are different than the ones I make but same idea. Fruit, tons of green veggies, etc. I haven't tried the turmeric but like the idea. Same with the cinnamon. Other additions include ginger root, almond milk, chia seeds, carrot, coconut water, parsley, celery, etc. Everyday it's a bit different. Once you get the routine down it's easier than cooking and faster. I save the eggs for the weekend meals.

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    Ya I've mainly taken the cheese out already, just using up the last of my supply (pet peave: I can't waste food, so I'll just occassionally use up the last couple slices). I'm trying the route of peanut butter (100% peanuts) and banana on whole wheat bread with a cup of chocolate milk after my ride (wake up, ride, get ready for work, protein heavy breakfast, out the door).

    *oh, just to note, when I fry the egg I use a 100% olive oil spray from Trader Joe's. Ingredients look healthy-ish on the can of spray. Not sure how much that matters. As I do get more free time to be adventurous and explore new ways of cooking etc I'll try the other methods of eggs. Also not quite ready for the smoothie route yet, but feel free to keep posting ideas/recipes here for them for when I am ready!

    hehe, I had ice in my goatee this morning during my ride. The gear I've collected for winter riding is holding out, ordered a few other pieces last night (balaclava, etc) to complete my set.

    Anyone have any tips or rules for winter riding? I'm riding a MTB bike on a paved bike path each morning. I'm a little concerned for when ice is more prominent. Right now I'm a tad bit chicken-sh!t around tight corners, afraid I might slide in heavy dew or slight ice. Should I be avoiding paved riding?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bulwyf View Post

    Anyone have any tips or rules for winter riding? I'm riding a MTB bike on a paved bike path each morning. I'm a little concerned for when ice is more prominent. Right now I'm a tad bit chicken-sh!t around tight corners, afraid I might slide in heavy dew or slight ice. Should I be avoiding paved riding?


    You'll likely figure out the routes that have the least amount of water/ice. If it does get icy you might look into some studded tires, although they are good for nothing but riding on ice and snow. If it becomes to treacherous you could switch to an indoor trainer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bulwyf View Post
    *oh, just to note, when I fry the egg I use a 100% olive oil spray from Trader Joe's. Ingredients look healthy-ish on the can of spray. Not sure how much that matters.
    The main bad thing that comes from frying is oils that get oxidized. However, an egg doesn't take a lot of power or heat to fry, so you should be ok. Also, saturated fats, like butter, are harder to oxidize than other types of fats, so go ahead and fry your eggs in butter, like all the pro cooks do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by beanbag View Post
    The main bad thing that comes from frying is oils that get oxidized. However, an egg doesn't take a lot of power or heat to fry, so you should be ok. Also, saturated fats, like butter, are harder to oxidize than other types of fats, so go ahead and fry your eggs in butter, like all the pro cooks do.
    What's your opinion on ghee, especially for cooking in high heat. It's better than butter because it doesn't smoke and doesn't have some of the negative properties oil in high heat.

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    Re: What's your routine?

    Quote Originally Posted by Poe4soul View Post
    What's your opinion on ghee, especially for cooking in high heat. It's better than butter because it doesn't smoke and doesn't have some of the negative properties oil in high heat.
    Yes, ghee, macademia oil, lard, bacon grease, rendered duck fat, goose fat... are all great for high heat cooking.
    Another good fat for cooking would be coconut oil.
    Olive oil only in cold kitchen, if heated it oxidezes.
    The worst are vegetable oils, very unstable and oxideze fast. Margarine, like most know is a big no no.

    I am a big proponent of primal eating.
    No grains whatsoever, low carbs, high fat diet.
    Grass fed organic meat, low mercury wild caught seafood. Bacon, grass fed eggs and butter. Sticks of butter are one of my favorite treats.
    Lots of organic veggies, fruit in moderation, sprouted nuts and seeds,berries.
    Dairy free.

    I also do intermittent fasting - eat only in 6-8hour window, usually between 11am and 6pm.

    Feeling great

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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzanova View Post
    I also do intermittent fasting - eat only in 6-8hour window, usually between 11am and 6pm.

    Feeling great
    That's basically how I used to eat, lunch around 12 noon, dinner around 5-5:30, then probably a snack later on around 8pm. Nothing in between. Of course I was even more clueless about calories etc then and ate whatever was cheap/convienient/i was in the mood for. Educating myself 1 step at a time slowly but surely about calories and what foods are good for this or that.

    edit: hehe, upon reviewing this post it kind of sounded like I was comparing how I ate to how you eat. Not what I intended, I ate like sh!t.


    about resting your muscles:
    So I've been pretty good about riding before work every morning, haven't skipped any days in just under 2 weeks. I've read somewhere on the forums you're supposed to rest every now and then so your muscles can recover/grow. Looking at my Sportstracker logs, when I was riding just a couple days after work when I could get out early while it was getting dark earlier and earlier, and riding on the weekends if I was free, I was going about 12.5mph avg over the 9 mile lap. When I was riding more frequently I notice it gradually slowing down to about 11 mph avg. That was on my 20 year old 26in. bike. I've recently started up again on my new 29er since this weekend and this morning I avg'd 13.9 mph trying to keep constant the whole ride. I'd have to check my old phone but I thought when I first got the new bike my avg' was in the 15's mph.

    Anyways, to make a long story short, when I got back after a 10 day trip this summer w/out riding I remember feeling like I was killing the route, legs not getting tired etc. So any thoughts on if I should plan a few consequtive days off to rest, or just let those days naturally come (weekends I'm not around to ride, heavy rainy days, etc)

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    When you'r pushing hard, Imo 2 days off in a row each week, or at least 2 days real easy in a row.. Yeah, and some days/weeks you feel stronger faster than others, and on some of those days you're actually right about that feeling, and on some it goes away faster/stays longer than others etc. Also what's real limits for that day in terms of condition and diet, and what's in your head and everything in between. Wouldn't be surprised if your extra clothing is slowing you down some.
    As far as getting ready for a race or marathon you shouldn't take off too many days, but for fitness gains, to avoid plateauing and over training, take off 2 days in row each week, and think in terms of 6-8 week cycles. Mix one cycle up some from the last, and also mix it up some within a cycle. Then even thou you may come back a bit weaker for a few days, take off, or largely take off a week or two every one or 2 cycles. After that first few days back, you should get back to where you were and be getting stronger/faster with each cycle, if not then it's likely you're not pushing hard enough, or you need to tweak your diet.
    Last edited by theMeat; 11-22-2013 at 11:28 AM.
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bulwyf View Post
    Hello all, I've just started riding regularly last year. It turns out cycling is a good hobby for me because I'm a sucker for customizing and tweaking things, and I had no idea there was such a wide range of options for bicycles!

    I mainly do it for fun (riding), but if I can get in better shape doing it, awesome!

    So my question is regarding eating before/after rides. Right now I basically just ride when I can, never planning on food before/after. What/how much do you eat before a ride? Is it like swimming where you should avoid a big meal before a long ride?

    I've read on these forums recommendations of eating before a ride, and eating protein 30 minutes after to help build muscle. How much Protein are we talking about 30 minutes after a ride? Are we talking chicken dinner, or are we talking a protein bar? (some people have said they drink a protein shake?)

    Basically I'm wondering what you all do specifically on your typical routines? Examples of what you might eat before (how long before) and after (30 minutes?) your regular rides?

    Thanks!!
    I usually never really have a set plan; however, i use the following "plan" as a general rule of thumb. I find that it is best to be slightly hungry before hand. Then about 10 minutes before your work out consume about two servings of honey or one serving of a gel. Oranges also work well. Make sure to also consume at last one cup of water with the food, this will help your body metabolize the fuel more efficiently. I have found that this method works best to optimize performance because your body will gradually replenish lost carbs that are burned from your workout with the easily digestible source from your gel, honey, or orange.

    Afterwards I consume about 20 grams of protein. I have read studies that show that when consuming protean within this time frame subjects recovered faster from their workout in addition to building muscle faster. As far as obtaining that source I would shoot for gold standard egg protein mix . I like it because it contains all of the amino acids and bcaa's that make a complete protean. It is also sourced from egg whites so you don't have to worry about cholesterol.

    If you want to do further research remember that the principles for nutrition for an active person usually work for all active people (a runners meal and a cyclists meal don't really differ because their bodies essentially require the same nutrients.) Basically don't get hung up on nutrition specific to cyclists, and always remember that what works for someone else may not work for you. Experiment! But most importantly eat a balanced meal and consume 8-10 cups of water a day. I hope this helped, and good luck out there!
    "If you have built castles in the air, that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them."
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  35. #35
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    The more that one sticks to a whole natural food diet, the less you have to worry about diet.

  36. #36
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    Best fuel for rides is a bowl of oatmeal, with fruit(apples, bananas, or berries). It won't hunker you down in a food-induced coma and all the energy will be sustained-release.

    I'm on a different mission than most and rides to lose excess body fat. Therefore, I ride immediately upon waking on an empty stomach. Instead of utilizing ingested food as fuel - my body switches to burning stored fat, as the primary energy source. However, I must remind myself to keep my efforts moderate....or else I will deplete all my muscle glycogen and collapse(bonk).
    "Just because I drive a Porsche... doesn't make me Pete Fagerlin"

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zachariah View Post
    Best fuel for rides is a bowl of oatmeal, with fruit(apples, bananas, or berries).

    I'm on a different mission than most and rides to lose excess body fat. Therefore, I ride immediately upon waking on an empty stomach. Instead of utilizing ingested food as fuel - my body switches to burning stored fat, as the primary energy source.
    If you want your body to burn fat, then eat more fat and less carbs. Carbs are fast / easy burning fuels, so if you eat only that before a ride, your body will use that for energy instead of your fat stores.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zachariah View Post
    I'm on a different mission than most and rides to lose excess body fat. Therefore, I ride immediately upon waking on an empty stomach. Instead of utilizing ingested food as fuel - my body switches to burning stored fat, as the primary energy source. However, I must remind myself to keep my efforts moderate....or else I will deplete all my muscle glycogen and collapse(bonk).
    This works great but for most looses it's effectiveness with time. Take 2-4 weeks off and come back to it for a month or 2 for better over all progress.
    Round and round we go

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by beanbag View Post
    If you want your body to burn fat, then eat more fat and less carbs. Carbs are fast / easy burning fuels, so if you eat only that before a ride, your body will use that for energy instead of your fat stores.
    It's true, there seems to be a tipping point or a balance thou. Cut out enough fats/carbs and your body starts to store/crave whatever whenever it can. Eat too much and how much storage? Exercising while wanting/needing carbs your energy will not be as great so ? You might be burning more stores for the moment but if getting more fit, more muscle or quicker recovery is a goal this isn't ideal, or at least can be a delicate balance. Why not use food amounts, fats and carbs included, since it takes only a few minutes to eat what it could take hours to burn off anyway, even if you're exercising while fasting/starving. Leave riding to having fun and getting better faster stronger.
    Last edited by theMeat; 11-25-2013 at 07:53 AM.
    Round and round we go

  40. #40
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    Interesting read. Gave me some good ideas.

  41. #41
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    Ok, quick question regarding fasting:

    So if you don't eat for long periods, say skip breakfast and don't eat until lunch, your body thinks it's starving and starts burning muscle and storing fat. ...but if you wake up from fasting and start doing excercise you burn stored fat? Is it just the difference between basic motor functions (nothing stressful) and for heavy excercise the body needs to burn stored fat over muscle to keep up?

    I'm guessing if the body thinks it's starving it will burn the muscle to preserve the stored fat for when it needs it? Is the stored fat more efficient for excercise, or more burns quicker than muscle to meet the demands of needing the energy right then and there?

  42. #42
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    No quick or easy answer, and certainly not the same for everyone across the board.

    Your body doesn't store or store more from exercise. It stores from having excess food and/or from fasting/starving in preparation for the next fasting/starving event. That's why eating smaller more often to curb storage can take a few weeks to a few months or not be very effective at all, and it's a matter of how long or if at all your body will realize it doesn't have to store for times of need simply because it doesn't have any. If you or your genes are from the deserts of Kenya for example, there's not much you are likely to try that will help stop storage short of eating less.
    More often meals thou is better for everyone at building and repairing muscle because most proteins get used up within a few hours and when that protein's done so is your muscle growing and repairing.

    Exercising while fasting...
    for the most part for most people your body burns fat before muscle, then at whatever intensity, or whatever duration it will start to consume muscle.

    Hope this helps, and it may take some experimenting to find what works. For me i start to consume muscle pretty quick, and also start to store more if i fast too often for long enough.
    Round and round we go

  43. #43
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    It'll be interesting to hear the responses from those the suggested this.

    No matter what, the body burns glycogen stored in the muscle and in the blood/liver first. Fat is usually the next used when glycogen is depleted. I would guess that since you are fasting in the morning the body has less reserves of glycogen in the blood/liver and will metabolise fat stores next. Protein/muscle is hard to convert to energy than fat.

    Fat conversion depends on percentage of body fat available and intensity of the workout. Moderate for a longer period is generally thought to be better. But then there is the HIIT crowd and the dreaded tabata protocol.

    If you want to lose fat faster, do more strength training. It won't help your aerobic or become a better/faster cyclist but it will increase your metabolism. This and drink lots of water. If you aren't peeing every hour you're not hydrated. The next low fruit is to reduce stress and sleep at least 7-8 hours a night. (magnesium supplement helps me a ton for good sleep. I take this every night Natural Calm: The Anti Stress Drink)

    If I was going to try intermittent fasting/training idea, I would make my dinner meal early and have at least 12 hours before my ride. I'd probably only do it twice a week.

  44. #44
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    The best exercise to lose fat (some say the only exercise that reduces fat) is pushaways at the dinner table.

    There is a general misunderstanding about burning fat. Poe is correct -- the body's preferred fuel source is glycogen. The body uses fat when glycogen stores get low. Fat is then converted to glucose, and most of us have ample stores of energy in the form of fat (average 130,000 calories). Not all of it is stored in the visible places, like the middle. Fat is found throughout the body, and in several different forms. The membranes of every cell in the body are made of phospholipids, a type of fat.

    When you are laying on the couch watching TV, you are burning almost exclusively fat. You are not burning very much, but the little fuel you are burning is nearly all fat. As activity level increases the body starts using more glycogen. You are burning more fuel, and the percentage that is fat decreases as the percentage of glycogen fuel increases. At maximum exertion you are burning mostly glycogen and only a small amount of fat. This is where the concept of 'fat burning zone' comes in (although the term is a misnomer). As your activity level increases the percent of energy from fat decreases. BUT you are burning more total fuel, so you are still burning more fat than you are at lower levels. At maximum exertion you are burning a small percentage of fat, which is a smaller percentage of a large amount of fuel, so you are burning a lot of fat. So why is the 'fat burning zone' usually considered at a submaximal exertion level? Because you cannot maintain that level very long. The 'fat burning zone' is the highest amount of fat burned over a sustained period -- at a pace you can continue long enough to be a good workout and burn a lot of fuel.

    HIIT (High intensity Interval Training, Fartleks, Wind Sprints, et al) also helps burn fat because you partially recover between intervals. HIIT also has another benefit -- over time it increases the number of mitochondria in muscle cells, so more ATP is generated, giving you more muscle endurance before fatigue.

    Also note for fit people the limiting factor at maximal exertion is the lungs. The lungs can only process so much oxygen at any one time. There is a limit where the muscles can do more work, but cannot get any more oxygen because the lungs cannot keep up with demand. Training will increase this limit, but not indefinitely. The world class endurance athletes seem to top out VO2 max around 90 ml/kg/min There may be a few that have surpassed 100, I have not heard of any.
    So many trails... so little time...

  45. #45
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    Wow there's some fart smellers round here. While i completely get the push away from the table exercise since it's much easier and faster to control weight throu diet than try and burn it off for anyone, that's where it ends. Exercise burns calories period. It also raises your metab and has an after exercise burning calorie effect which goes up with intensity. Not to mention the rate at which glycogen fat or muscle burned and at what level of intensity varies greatly.
    Round and round we go

  46. #46
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  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bulwyf View Post
    Hello all, I've just started riding regularly last year. It turns out cycling is a good hobby for me because I'm a sucker for customizing and tweaking things, and I had no idea there was such a wide range of options for bicycles!

    I mainly do it for fun (riding), but if I can get in better shape doing it, awesome!

    So my question is regarding eating before/after rides. Right now I basically just ride when I can, never planning on food before/after. What/how much do you eat before a ride? Is it like swimming where you should avoid a big meal before a long ride?

    I've read on these forums recomendations of eating before a ride, and eating protein 30 minutes after to help build muscle. How much Protein are we talking about 30 minutes after a ride? Are we talking chicken dinner, or are we talking a protein bar? (some people have said they drink a protein shake?)

    Basically I'm wondering what you all do specifically on your typical routines? Examples of what you might eat before (how long before) and after (30 minutes?) your regular rides?

    Thanks!!
    Here is what I do most days when I don’t ride

    Wake up and drink a 12oz glass of water.

    6:00 Eat breakfast. Normally Greek Yogurt, thin slice of Turkey Meatloaf (don’t knock it until you try it!) and sometimes a slice of Ezekiel bread Food For Life

    9:00 eat two hard boiled eggs (no yoke) and some fruit (banana / apple most days).

    11:00 Small salad.

    12:30 Hit the gym. Weights with little to no cardio.

    1:30 Snack…Maybe Muscle Milk Light and some more fruit.

    3:30 Snack…Nuts or Turkey Jerky…something along those lines.

    5:30 Dinner…Something good (Very little processed food) and a light beer

    7:30 Light Popcorn with Tapatío Hot sauce and another light beer

    9:00 Almonds or some other nuts.

    10:00 Bed time.

    On the days I ride I skip the gym (sometimes) and eat more carbs before the ride and more protein after the ride. In June 2012 I was 235lbs. March 2013 I was 185lbs. Worked for me.

    The key for me was small meals, giving up bread and weight training. I rode less and got faster due to the loss in weight and added strength. I am 6'2" and still 185 but want to get down to 180lbs.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeeZee View Post
    Here is what I do most days when I don’t ride
    ...

    Ezekiel bread .
    I've seen this in the store but never purchased it. I see they decided not to make Ezekiel 4:12 cakes which were cooked over human feces.

    I really don't understand the Ezekiel bread. It was made during a time of famine with the only ingredients around that would grow. But it doesn't have all the crap, sorry for the pun, most breads have. I'd have to guess it doesn't have any GMO ingredients. That would be a total slap in god's face.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poe4soul View Post
    I've seen this in the store but never purchased it. I see they decided not to make Ezekiel 4:12 cakes which were cooked over human feces.

    I really don't understand the Ezekiel bread. It was made during a time of famine with the only ingredients around that would grow. But it doesn't have all the crap, sorry for the pun, most breads have. I'd have to guess it doesn't have any GMO ingredients. That would be a total slap in god's face.
    It is made of sprouted grains and not processed flour like other breads (including "Whole" wheat). It tastes good especially the cinnamon raisin. Give it a try!

  50. #50
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    Cool beans DeeZee. Don'tcha love it when some well placed knowledge helps your efforts pay off and can make ALL the difference. The best to me is when someone finds a way to make it work, that works for them, that fits into their lifestyle, and reaches their goals. Then there's always the added bonuses that aren't as obvious as feeling and looking better. Like more longer and better sex, sleeping better, don't get sick as often, living longer, etc.
    Good for you, thanx for posting
    Round and round we go

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