Cycling Nutrition

Healthy Eating

Cycling Nutrition

As one of sports most physically grueling disciplines, nutrition plays a huge part in cycling success at all levels, from fighting fatigue to supporting recovery. The intensity and effort required in cycling demands a nutritional programme that provides energy, power and stamina to succeed.

Whilst distances and workloads vary, the common factor with any cycling discipline is that your body must produce the power and intensity to reach the finish line as quickly as possible.

Cycling Nutritional Guide

Although the concept is quite similar, the nutritional requirements for endurance and sprint events are different; long distance cyclists must be proficient in utilizing all forms of fuel in the body - whilst sprint cyclists need the type of fuel that can provide explosive bursts of power.

In all disciplines of cycling, exercise must promote a number of physiological changes to help make the body more efficient and improve physical performance

Before an event

Carbohydrates are essential to fuel both long and short distance cycling by keeping muscle-glycogen concentrations high. When concentrations are low, performance will be negatively affected. It has been shown that insufficient amounts of carbohydrates can also affect an athlete's co-ordination as the Central Nervous System becomes fatigued.

Extremely effective carbohydrate drinks can be consumed before, during and after exercise to great effect. Carbohydrates will fuel your exercise for a short, medium and long period of exercise whilst helping to keep the body hydrated; particularly important during long distance events. Sprint cyclists may find Caffeine to be an extremely effective performance enhancer when taken before exercise. Caffeine can increase adrenaline levels, provide extra mental focus and boost energy.
Read our blog on Caffeine

Both disciplines would benefit from the addition of Creatine Monohydrate. Particularly beneficial to sprint cyclists, Creatine Monohydrate helps your muscles produce ATP, which can improve explosive power and strength, perfect for a sprint or hill-top finish. During a long distance race, cyclists will benefit from its ability to re-produce ATP, enhancing the ability to perform repetitive sprints.


During

Whether you're a competitive cyclist or you simply ride for fun, it is vital to ensure you have sufficient glycogen stores and hydration levels to maximize your performance.

The combination of carbohydrates and electrolytes found in good quality sports drinks can make it the perfect option to help keep your energy levels up until you hit the finish line.


After

Due to the high work rates in both distance and sprint cycling, it is advisable to consume high amounts of protein and carbohydrates upon completing a session.

A recovery supplement will provide a great ratio of carbohydrates to protein to aid the recovery process in preparation for your next race.

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