Fueling the Long Ride

To keep yourself feeling strong throughout your Century Challenge, it is essential to put some thought into nutrition and hydration before heading out. Exact fluid amounts will be influenced by heat and exertion level, but you generally want to aim to drink around one bottle per hour. You can mix something in the water if you prefer, but it is really the H2O that your body needs to maintain a sustained effort. The aim is to start any session well hydrated. This requires drinking regularly throughout your cycling effort. Try having a drink with all snacks and sipping on fluids regularly. You should also try and eat consistently throughout the ride, taking a bite or two every 20 minutes or so. A range of foods and liquids can be consumed during long rides including bananas, energy bars, gels, sports chews, fruit cake/fruit buns, jam sandwiches, dates or sports drinks. Digestion can get a bit harder as rides get longer, so eat more solids at the beginning of the ride, and switch to gels, chews, and other easily-digested foods during the final part of the ride. Both Coles and Woolworths offers a great range of sports nutrition powders and bars and gels.

Pre-ride: Light source of protein and hydration (e.g. scrambled egg or porridge and half fruit juice, half water).
During cycling: Carbohydrates (e.g. carb-based energy bars or gels).
Post-ride cycling recovery: Protein and Carbohydrates (e.g. recovery bars, nuts or dry fruits, 600ml chocolate milk).