WHAT TO EAT BE­FORE A BIG RIDE?

Australian Mountain Bike - - Skills - WORDS: ZOE WIL­SON PHO­TOS: MATT STAGGS

Prepa­ra­tion is ev­ery­thing if you want to nail a long day in the sad­dle and your nu­tri­tion prepa­ra­tion is as im­por­tant as pump­ing up your tyres and pack­ing spare tubes. For any ride or race that lasts longer than 90 min­utes, start­ing your ride hy­drated and with op­ti­mally fu­elled mus­cles is the sim­plest thing you can do to per­form at your best. Not sure what to pre­pare ex­actly? Let’s take a ride…

FIRST THINGS FIRST…

Be­fore you start even think­ing about your pre-ride nu­tri­tion, it’s im­por­tant to make sure you are eat­ing a nu­tri­ent-rich diet ev­ery day. Choose a va­ri­ety of foods from the five food groups (fruit, veg, whole­grains, lean meats/ pro­teins and dairy) and try to min­imise the “ex­tras” (al­co­hol, sweets and savoury snacks like chips or pas­tries). Think about mak­ing ev­ery mouth­ful count so you are get­ting the nu­tri­ents your body needs ev­ery day, in par­tic­u­lar the carbs and pro­tein you need to sup­port your train­ing and rac­ing. Car­bo­hy­drate is your body’s main source of fuel for train­ing, so make sure you are eat­ing foods con­tain­ing carbs through­out the day. Eat­ing enough car­bo­hy­drate is es­pe­cially im­por­tant around train­ing ses­sions or if you are ramp­ing up the vol­ume of your train­ing. If you’re a week­end war­rior, your re­quire­ments

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