Club Panache Tip of the Day - Eating and Drinking in Training AND Racing
This is the first in a series of ride tips. These are tips heard and shared on club rides often coming from the "wise", experienced riders who have been at it for a while.
This tip is about eating and drinking while training or racing. It's a simple one: Drink and eat often. More often than you think you need to. Don't wait until you're thirsty or hungry because then it's too late. So simple in concept, but most people don't do it. We wait to take our first sip or snack until it's too late. And once you're too late, it's very hard to get it back.
This tip is for training AND racing. Most people do a good job of planning their nutrition during a race, but we often overlook the importance of this same regiment while training. Better training makes for better racing...
Thus, here's the tip: Starting at just 15 mins into your ride, eat a mouth full or a bit of whatever food you've brought and then take a sip from your water bottle. After that, do the same every 15 mins. It ends up being a lot of intake, but this keeps you ahead of the curve.
Since temperature plays into the hydration equation, increase the amount of sips depending on the heat index. A good rule of thumb is one bottle per hour when temps are temperate. Two bottles if it's hot. Three if it's super hot. More is better than too little (*Don't make like a camel and super hydrate. This dilutes your electrolytes and can even cause cell damage - and even death).
For food, a mouthful every 15 mins is good, and then something slightly more substantial every hour. Obviously the amount of calories one needs varies on the output, but the key here is that you should be eating Something often.
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