Bicycling (South Africa)
Optimise Your Ride Fuel for Peak Performance
F The American College of Sports Medicine recommends 30-60g carbohydrate per hour of endurance exercise; but few athletes understand the reason for this amount. The average person can process, or oxidise, only about 1 gram of carbs per minute, no matter how much is consumed. The bottleneck isn’t your muscles; it’s your intestines, which can only transport glucose from the food you eat into your bloodstream so fast. Dumping more carbs into your gut doesn’t necessarily increase the absorption rate, but can increase your chances of an upset stomach.
One of the easiest ways to optimise your carbohydrate intake during rides is to drink a low-carb, hydrating electrolyte drink while you eat light, digestible snacks, like fig bars or bananas. Just separating these two categories – hydration and solid food – typically brings people back into the range of 30 to 60 grams of carbohydrate per hour, while also ensuring they get adequate sodium and fluids. – Selene Yeager