19 Feb 2019 - Press Release
Making the right nutrition choices on race day will help ensure you have enough energy to complete your ride, and help you recover effectively once you are finished.
Before the ride
“The fuel source for exercising muscles is provided by your body’s carbohydrate stores, known as glycogen, and fat stores,” says Pick n Pay’s registered dietitian, Leanne Kiezer. “Glycogen is the fuel used during higher intensity cycling while fat is used for lower intensity cycling.”
According to Keizer your muscles will use both during a ride. “After a night’s sleep, your glycogen stores may be low or depleted, so it’s important to ensure the stores are replenished before you begin your race.”
To do this, Keizer recommends a pre-ride meal or snack that is low in fat and fibre but rich in carbohydrates as carbs are most easily digested and less likely to cause stomach problems. Some ideas include:
“Also remember to have plenty of fluids so that you start the race hydrated – have 300 to 600ml of water with your pre-ride meal,” says Keizer.
During the ride
Your glycogen stores are limited and can be depleted after 60 to 90 minutes of cycling, which means you’ll need to refuel with carbohydrates during the race. Keizer recommends 30 to 60g of low-fibre, easily digested carbohydrate per hour, starting early in the ride. Here are some examples:
|Food||Serving size||Carbohydrate content (g)|
|Banana||136 g (1 large)||31|
|Potato||167 g (1 medium)||33|
|Cream crackers||64 g (8 crackers)||44|
|Pretzels||40 g (1 small packet)||32|
|Bread roll||65 g (1 roll)||32|
|Banana bread||60 g (1 slice)||33|
|Jelly sweets||30 g (6 jelly babies)||33|
|Honey / jam sandwich||2 slices, 1 tsp jam||35|
|Powerade||500 ml (2 cups)||38|
|Sports gel||1 sachet||21 – 25|
Again, it is crucial to stay hydrated during the race. “Individual fluid requirements during exercise vary but, in general, cyclists should drink to thirst, with small consistent sips; avoid gulping or drinking too quickly. It’s a good idea to practice your fluid strategy during training – aim to limit weight loss from sweating during a training ride to less than 2% of body weight,” Keizer advises.
After the ride
Eating after an intense endurance effort like the Cape Town Cycle Tour is important as it helps boost depleted energy, fluids, electrolytes and carbohydrate stores. “Have carbohydrate-rich snack within 30 minutes of finishing to replace glycogen stores, and drink according to your thirst to rehydrate your body,” says Keizer, adding that you should back this up by consuming a mix of carbohydrates, protein, electrolytes and fluid within two hours of finishing. Here are some examples:
Things to remember:
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ISSUED BY: The Cycle Tour Media Office
ON BEHALF OF: Cape Town Cycle Tour Trust
DATE ISSUED: January 2019
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