When you exercise, it is necessary for you to fuel your body correctly in order to support the activity. However, there’s so much info out there about sports nutrition that it’s easy to get confused. Knowing what your body loves to consume while cycling is an important basic to learn – some can survive completely on energy gels and drinks, while others can only stomach actual food such as biscuits, sandwiches or fruit.
Good sports nutrition could be the difference between a strong day in the saddle or seeing others fly by you. This part of nutrition really is subjective and characteristically follows a method of trial and error, or at the very least having thoughts about how you normally fuel yourself in order to perform at your best.
The Risk Of Bad Sports Nutrition
Turning up to a cycling event second-guessing what you can and cannot endure is a risk that could leave you suffering from regrets and a long slow bike ride to the finish. However, it’s not just on the bike that you should take note of your eating habits.
The significance of keeping up a healthy lifestyle in conjunction with your fitness routine is key to ensuring that you’re benefitting from the exercise you’re doing and the body needs a combination of all nutrients to be able to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Your body needs a certain amount of carbohydrates, fat and protein just to remain alive. The body stores energy from foods and then converts it in a number of different ways. Certain types of fuel give your muscles an instant increase in the amount of energy that you are feeling when you start cycling and your adrenaline kicks in. Other types are stored for use when your body truly needs them.
Why Carbohydrates Are Necessary For Cyclists
Carbohydrates are vital for giving cyclists energy. Sugars and starches rapidly break down into glucose. Your body may almost instantly utilise this glucose for energy, or it may be stored as glycogen and transformed back to glucose as your body requires it.
Your muscles store up glycogen and turn it into energy as it’s required. However, there’s just so much that your muscles are able to keep at a time. Research has revealed that the more glycogen you have stored within your muscles, the more time you can exercise ahead of you hitting a wall.
After you’ve burned off the glycogen that is present in your muscles, your body uses the glucose that’s flowing through your bloodstream. If you proceed to work out without refuelling, you can experience a dip in blood sugar levels. This can leave you utterly exhausted and weak. It’s just as important to replace your glycogen stores after working out as it is to keep them level while you cycle.
Keeping weight down is a key objective for every serious road cyclist however that doesn’t mean you have to not eat – or make yourself unhappy. In fact, the biggest mistake a cyclist can make is to go out on a fasted ride for hours where they have had nothing to eat. Not only will you lose fat, but then you’ll also lose muscle, too. And that’s the worst scenario when you’re trying to increase your power to weight ratio.
Are you keen to learn what optimal sports nutrition looks like? If you are, then you should really do our Sports Nutrition Diploma. For more information, please follow this link.