Best food for bonking?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Best food for bonking?

    Best on board food item for when you have bonked and need every little ounce of energy to get you back to the trail head. What say you?

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    raisins

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    gels.
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    Beer!
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    Gels with Caffeine get me going quick. For something more substantial on an all day ride, a PB&J Sammich. Best thing is to avoid bonking in the first place by eating before your blood sugar drops too low.

  6. #6
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    Snickers and a Coke.....seriously.
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    Tailwind Nutrition BEFORE the bonk!

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    +1 for Gels. They last forever, I keep one in my Camelbak just in case. I eat real food when I plan on being out for a long time, the gel is just an "In case of emergency, break glass" kind of thing.
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    I take it the gels are just a fast-digesting carb? I agree proper nutrition pre-ride is most ideal, but there are those days when you run through your reserves.

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    Anything with sugar or highly refined carbs that digests easily. You want to increase your blood sugar as quickly as possible. Fat, protein, and fiber slow digestion, so I avoid foods with these. Keep in mind, this is unhealthy if you aren't bonking! I prefer to eat real healthy food, and stay ahead of the bonk, but in an emergency I prefer gels since they are convenient and work well.

    It also helps if the food is something you like that gives you a mental boost as well. For example a potato increases blood sugar faster than Snickers, but I'm not going to be too excited about eating a potato when I'm bonked on the trail!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by WillTheGreat View Post
    Anything with sugar or highly refined carbs that digests easily. You want to increase your blood sugar as quickly as possible. Fat, protein, and fiber slow digestion, so I avoid foods with these. Keep in mind, this is unhealthy if you aren't bonking! I prefer to eat real healthy food, and stay ahead of the bonk, but in an emergency I prefer gels since they are convenient and work well.

    It also helps if the food is something you like that gives you a mental boost as well. For example a potato increases blood sugar faster than Snickers, but I'm not going to be too excited about eating a potato when I'm bonked on the trail!
    Exactly! Typically, gels are faster acting and more effective than solid food. I prefer Hammer gels and their Tropical and Espresso have caffeine which can accelerate the path to feeling better. On long rides, I try to pay attention to how my head feels. At the first sign of lightheadedness or mushy thinking, I up the calories to try to prevent a bonk.
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    I have noticed foods with proteins are rarely mentioned. Is that because it takes longer to metabolize?

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    I agree with the gel +caffeine for a quick emergency boost. Easy to store and forget about so you can have 1 when you need it.

    Protein is typically more for post ride nutrition because it can be harder to digest and doesn't always sit well in the tummy while riding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GnarBrahWyo View Post
    I have noticed foods with proteins are rarely mentioned. Is that because it takes longer to metabolize?
    Yes, proteins (and fats) slow down carb absorption.
    Simple sugars are quickest into the bloodstream.

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    +1 on gels.
    They'll get you home but it's best not to bonk in the first place. Nothing is going to make you feel human again except some rest.

  16. #16
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    Sorry, I thought this thread was about something else entirely.

  17. #17
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    I had to google bonking

  18. #18
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    Urban Dictionary: BONK

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    Dates. It's key for me to eat 2+hrs(while riding) before I need the energy. I eat breakfast 3+hrs before the ride starts.

  20. #20
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    Taters n Eggs

    Frequently my morning breakfast is about two hours before the ride and I cut up one small potato and onions...dry fry (no oil) in non-stick pan with two eggs. That usually keeps me pretty strong till mid afternoon.

    I like the caffeinated gels for those moments when you feel the low coming, but act quick for non-interrupted performance.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave54 View Post
    Beer!
    yep a beer works quite well, after that maybe a yogurt lasi drink with honey.

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    Beer has carbs! We need carbs!
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    Taters n Eggs

    Frequently my morning breakfast is about two hours before the ride and I cut up one small potato and onions...dry fry (no oil) in non-stick pan with two eggs. That usually keeps me pretty strong till mid afternoon.

    I like the caffeinated gels for those moments when you feel the low coming, but act quick for non-interrupted performance.
    This works very well for me as well. Taters are a great source for those usable carbs. After about an hour of riding, I might take in a GU or a Honey Stinger Waffle but I roll with Tailwind Nutrition drink and that helps keep my glycemic index up while I'm hydrating. I bonked once or twice when I first started back into mtb about 2 years ago and I caught on to what that's all about quickly. Since then, because I pay close attention to my intake, I've never bonked. I sometimes wish I could get my riding buddies to pay attention but for some reason, they just refuse to listen and several regularly go through the "crash" on even moderate rides.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by GnarBrahWyo View Post
    Best on board food item for when you have bonked and need every little ounce of energy to get you back to the trail head. What say you?
    Hard question if we're just discussing recovering while still riding through a Bonk. (That sounds kind of funny reading out loud, hehe)

    Anyway, for me, it's a gel and a mouthful or two of the cheap single packages of salted peanuts from the checkout aisle washed down with a half bottle of water. The gel does what it does and the peanuts flood in some salt, fat, and protein.

    I've had the misfortune of needing to do this twice due to my own improper fueling on longer ride efforts.

    Of course, like others have said, proper fueling before and during would prevent the bonk in the first place.

  25. #25
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    The first time we cycled round Arran one of the guys had a big fried breakfast on the ferry. At the time I thought he was mad, now I reckon he knew what he was doing. Lots of works needs lots of fuel.

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    I did this right up for a friend of mine who was having issues with nutrition on a ride. this system works for me:
    Bike nutrition on the ride
    You know this stuff, it just might not have been presented in this type of way.
    When I was a raft guide, I had to keep up on first aid. In a wilderness first aid class, the instructor who worked aid stations in the big wilderness foot races in Alaska, had this to say about feeding the body during aerobic activities. Look at fueling the body like a fire. Tinder, kindling, log. If you put a log on with out any coals the log donít burn. If all you do is eat tinder and kindling, the fire burns hot and fast and goes out quickly. The fire is our body.
    On big rides, I like to eat every hour. Usually tinder and kindling, but sometime in the 2- 3 hour mark you have to start adding some logs to your food. And keep adding logs every couple of hours, with more tinder and kindling.
    Tinder,
    I like gu brand gels and dried fruit. Dried pineapple is awesome.
    Kindling is good with nuts, donuts, bagels, etc. complex carbs
    Logs for me are usually some type of salami, meat stick etc. something your body is used to.
    One thing I was taught by the Alaska first aid instructror was combinging tinder and kindling.
    M&M peanuts fit this bill. I like to use fig newtons for this one.
    When I do add the log, I usually add some tinder and kindling. So my lunch on Saturday was a gu, with a peanut butter ritz cracker package. I cut 4 small slices of salami and put them in a bag and stored them near my water, to keep the salami cool. I ate the gu, than had some salami on peanut butter ritz crackers. The combo of everything kept me pretty fueled for the ride.
    Another good log is cold pizza. If you think about it, pizza has kindling and logs built into one thing.
    Also donít underestimate nuts. They just seem to work well.
    Raisins for tinder are awesome also.
    One thing to remember is that the old endurance racers used to swear by jelly donuts. Tinder and kindling in one thing.

    For breakfast, I do whole wheat waffles with peanut butter or donuts.
    Hope this helps.

  27. #27
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    Best food for bonking?

    Peanut butter cups. Fats protein simple carbs all in a neat little package. When I'm on a big endurance hike ski or bike ride I always throw a handful in my pack. It's like rocket fuel.

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    Banana.
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    I carry Fig Newtons in a ziplock bag in my jersey pocket. Never have been much for gels/bars. I've stopped and gotten powdered donuts and apple pies a couple of times. Wasn't the best, but got me back to normal pretty quickly.
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    I only bonked once, but it was a combination of exhaustion and severe cramps. No one has mentioned sodium for fending off those cramps. Cliff Blocks Margarita are really good for this, compare 210mg sodium to 60mg sodium in a Gu gel. Your body won't digest the sugars and carbs as fast as it will with the Gu, so I think a mixture of gels and something with sodium is a good bet.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zachariah View Post
    Snickers and a Coke.....seriously.
    I was in a long race/event and they had small cans of original coke at an aid station, they had them opened already trying to get them less fizzy...I was absolutely beat so I was willing to try anything...I was breathing pretty hard when I took a sip/gulp and thought I would die...the fizzyness, the syrup taste on my rather raw throat...I would have spit it out if I wasn't choking and coughing at the same time. I was like how the heck do people drink this?! In hindsight it probably wasn't the best thing to try in a race for the first time while breathing hard.
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    Viagra!?

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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    Viagra!?
    Yeah, I guess that could be considered a food for bonking.

    Perhaps we need to define 'bonk'.
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