I feel terrible all over after my first 100 km ride, suggestions anyone?

Discussion in 'Health Nutrition and Supplements' started by looseleftie, Apr 25, 2014.

  1. looseleftie

    looseleftie New Member

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    Hi newbie here, very brief history, have been riding for 4 weeks, in that time I have ridden over 650 km.. I love this sport!! I'm 44yr 69 kg and overall pretty fit, however today feel like bad all over!! I had a day off, and family were off somewhere else for the day, and I had decided that I really wanted to try a 100km ride, had been slowly extending the length of my rides, with today being the longest ride, prior to this was 60km.. For nutrition, I had 8 Weetbix and 3 bits of toast, plenty of water before hand, approx. 2 hours before ride.. I took with me 3 bananas, which I ate at 20km, 45 km and 70 km and plenty of water, and everything was going fine, till I hit 80km, wow, it was like a sledgehammer hit me..I finally made it home, immediately had 2 pieces of bread and butter, a mars bar, then baked beans on 2 slices of toast, accompanied with lots of water.. I did my last 20 km in about 1.18 hour really struggling, and feeling that my concentration and skills very dropping. I was literally out of gas, nearly falling off bike when I had to stop at crossing paths or roads... Made it home, ate/hydrated and went to bed feeling rather ordinary, and have woken up feeling similar.. My aims were too complete 100km and keep pace above 20kph, which I did (so happy with what I have achieved), not the fastest times, but have to stop at quite a lot of lights, as I ride on a bike path that croses roads, several decent hills, and a very meandering bike trail.. Did I fuel up well enough? or is this too far too soon? Any thoughts or suggestons on what I perhaps could have done better, or not have done are most appreciated. Cheers guys.
     
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  2. AyeYo

    AyeYo Member

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    If that's all the food I ate before a ride, I'd be dead after twenty miles, never mind 60+miles. What you're describing with the loss of concentration and feeling like you're going to fall off the bike sounds like low blood sugar. You need to eat a much more substantial meal before a ride that long. It sounds like you brought along good fuel, but if you're starting off in the hole then all the snacks won't catch you up. Also, for someone just starting out, you're doing a lot of riding. Don't forget to take rest and recovery days, that's when the fitness gains are made. If you don't feel fresh and ready for a big ride, don't do it. Take a day off or do a slower paced, shorter ride. You don't want to run yourself into the ground. The fatigue from lack of recovery days can have a cumulative effect and catch up to you.
     
  3. looseleftie

    looseleftie New Member

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    AyeYo, cheers mate for the respone.. So if 3 bananas and water are enough for 100km ride, then you mentioned that I probably didn't eat enough prior to the race, can u suggest perhaps what I might have eaten? I thought I fueled up well before my ride!:(.. Perhaps I didn't really need to do the 100km distance, this is down to my self competitve streak in me, and also because I find this sport so addictive, and really enjoy riding in general.. Perhaps in hindsight it was maybe a bit too far.
     
  4. danfoz

    danfoz Well-Known Member

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    I've experienced exactly the same. You ran out of stored glycogen. You bonked, no question about it.

    For my 50-60 mile rides I don't eat much during the ride (its usually a single energy gel at mile 20-25, or that plus one banana or fig bar). BUT an hour or two before the ride I have something a bit more substantial that will sit in my stomach like a a turkey sandwich on toast or a couple eggs on the same, along with a fruit danish, scone, or something similar. It sounds like you refueled immediately after the ride, and to be honest because it had the fastest absorbable sugar, the Mars bar was probably the best thing right away but optimally refueling needs to happen in two stages: 1) since that 3 hour distance, especially if done at a good clip, is enough to fully drain your stored glycogen and since there is an optimal 30 minute window for glycogen replenishment before the gates start to close, immediately after getting off the bike you need a liquid replenishment like a sports drink, a Gatorade, even a can of Coke or Sprite but something with plenty of simple sugars (not complex carbs) before your shower or anything else happens, and then 2) after the shower a nice meal.

    When I experienced my really bad bonk, it was after getting separated from a friend who's car we drove to the ride site in, and in that car where I had left my wallet. I had no money or food on me (plenty of water though which was of no use), and had just been hammering in the big ring for two hours solid. But it got to a point riding back to the parking lot where I couldn't even turn the pedals, and any stop felt like I would literally fall off the bike. I decided it was better to take of my cleats and just slowly walk the last mile barefoot. When i finally got back to the lot I begged the attended for a couple bucks and immediately consumed a can of Coke and a Snickers bar. Within 10 minutes I was coming back to the land of the living and could have probably ridden a few more miles if I had to. Lesson learned, now my flat repair kit includes and energy gel just in case.

    If a ride like yours is done too soon on the fitness scale you may feel a bit sluggish a day or two after, especially if you didn't have that injection of liquid sugar immediately after the ride. The good news is even if not fully ready for it there is some evidence that suggests running down glycogen stores can lead to a nice little boost in aerobic capacity once you recover which will stick around a few weeks due to an increase in Interleukin-6, what some have labeled the "endurance hormone". I6 is also found in cancer patients but in those cases it plays a slightly different function in it's role.

    +1 on the rest and recovery. Digging deep holes leads to deep fitness, but good form emerges only if enough time to recover is factored in, and fatigue is allowed to subside.
     
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  5. AyeYo

    AyeYo Member

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    I do like danfoz does and eat a significant meal prior to riding. I usually bring one or two granola bars to eat on the ride. Pre ride meal needs to be balanced and something that'll last you. Try to get protein and some complex carbs. If it's a morning ride I usually have an omelette with sweet potato hash or fries and some orange juice. If it's an afternoon ride, I usually have a sandwich on wheat bread. If you find you're still running out of gas in rides, try bringing one water bottle and one bottle filled with a sports drink. Make sure it's original powerade or something that's not one of those no carb crap versions. The sugar in the drink can help keep your glucose up and you're getting hydration at the same time.
     
  6. looseleftie

    looseleftie New Member

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    Thanks guys for your input thus far, appreciated! I still after close to 2 days since my ride, don't feel 100%. It really took a lot out of me.. More than expected.. I thought the 8 Weetbix and 3 slices of toast were enough pre 100km ride!! Obviously not.. Thanks for confirming that my 3 bananas were a suitable choice during my ride, at least I got that right :) Just out of curiosity, my early morning rides, usually begin just after 6.15, I basically get up and get some water in me, and then do just over an hour of riding.. I generally don't eat anything before I go, how does this sound? good or bad training?!?! If it is bad, I may have to start with a banana.. I seem to like them , and they are easy to eat, although I dislike eating prior to exercise in general..
     
  7. Volnix

    Volnix Well-Known Member

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    Curious about that too, since that's what I am doing too... I am usually just getting up, have a coffee and go for a 20 or 30km ride... No food before, just coffee with milk and I dont even eat after, I usually just start drinking beer.
    I cant eat in the morning, it feels like hard work! [​IMG] My appetite usually starts working late in the afternoon.

    Btw, I had the same thing happening to me, the exhaustion thing, but with a bit different conditions.

    I was drinking beer till about 4:00am and then got up at 7 to do 120km of mixed flats, climbs and descents road cycling. My setup was a 25t biggest rear gear and I was carrying a small sleeping bag with me because I was doing some "credit card touring" (basically I was going to a beach resort for a couple of days which is 120km away).

    The start was cool, then there was a 300m total climb (or maybe that was 600m dont remember, it was last summer) and I did that Ok. Then stopped and had a toast in a cafe (with cheese, I kinda didnt want to risk it with the ham) and another coffee.

    Then there was a crazy 30km descent that took me to the seaside road with only 40km to go for the destination.

    Well... 20km away, at the 100km mark, the road started having small steep climbs followed by steep descents which werent really long enough for me to rest.

    I also run out of water and at some point started walking carrying the bike, when it also got really hot and that was about the point where I said "@^&* this" and called for some "automotive assistance" for the last 10km... [​IMG]

    But I am sure that if I had a bigger gear in the rear (I was also using just flat pedals) I would probably cover a few more km's...

    Interesting thing though: At some point I stopped (at around 80km) and picked up a couple of Fanta's (Fizzy Orange stuff). My stomach felt reaaaally bad after, like I was going sick or something...

    I kinda passed out in the hotel that night after a beer, but the next day I was pretty refreshed. Stayed for a couple of days and then just loaded the bike in the bus for the way back. [​IMG]

    Maybe the trick is to keep the exercise "aerobic" instead of pushing hard on fast gear ratios...
     
  8. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    It depends on your goals. If your #1 priority was to lose weight than maybe so, but if training for performance improvement I would lean toward "fuel your training" first. It also depends on the type of training. For lifting I can get away with going to the gym on an empty stomach because the glycogen that I have stored from the previous night's dinner is enough to fuel that training and I have been doing that for many years.

    However, cycling is something that you will need to get an hang of how to be balanced between fueling training and maintaining body composition that is beneficial to cycling performance. At the moment all I can say is that if I followed your current diet I would not excel in cycling performance.

    Since you are only in this for a few weeks you have plenty of time to learn. I certainly had to learn and I now feel like I have most of it worked out depending on varied duration and intensity levels. For long routes it is easier for me to break it into 20 mile increments where I take in something every 20 miles, but my bottles are loaded with a homemade mix of Maltodextrin, water, liquid electrolytes and other goodies so that each sip I am in fact fueling my training, recovery and also keep in mind getting leaner.

    Keep at it and best wishes
     
  9. AyeYo

    AyeYo Member

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    That's called fasted cardio. Do some research on it and see what conclusions you come to. I personally am very much against it, but that's partly because it doesn't really align with my fitness goals. There may be some benefits for weight loss, but that's not what I'm looking for so I've never dug into it enough to feel adequately educated on the subject.
     
  10. alexiso

    alexiso New Member

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    same here, got me lot of thinking about my next ride
     
  11. maydog

    maydog Well-Known Member

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    I think your intake was OK, not unusually low or high for a ride of that length.

    Nutrition during a ride is important, but you can only process so many calories per hour. At higher intensities, you ability to process goes down and your demand goes up. On a hard ride, there is no way to ingest sufficient amounts of energy to stay steady state - the tank will eventually empty regardless of your intake.

    I used to think that I could just stuff my face during a long ride to keep the energy up - that doesn't work. You need to start a ride with plenty of reserves in the tank and supplement along the way. Eat a hearty meal the night before and get a lot of rest. I think that filling up just before a ride is counter-productive, I just eat a normal sized breakfast. For afternoon rides, I try not to ride an hour or two after a large meal.

    Underway, I stick to easily digestible, soft and liquid nutrition. One of my favorite bonk busters is a shake made with one can of sweetened condensed milk, coca powder and water. That's 1300 calories of easily absorbable nutrition for rides longer than 3.

    Hydrate often. Drinking every 20K sounds like too long between pulls on the bottle. Consider a sports, or sugary type of drink.

    As you train and adapt you can learn to pace, improve you fat-metabolism and better tolerate and recover from glycogen depletion.
     
  12. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like you tried to drink half of the Atlantic Ocean with all those references to 'lots of water'.

    You ate enough at breakfast and a 2 hours before the ride is about right.

    Bananas are always good on a ride. Supplement with the odd energy gel or sports drink. On a long ride I'll start nibbling on stuff within the first 15 minutes of setting off.

    I don't think this is just a nutritional thing. You could add a ton of calories and all you'll end up with is gut ache but not feel much better. Not only do you have to get used to riding such distances but you also have to get used to eating and processing food whilst riding. Add to that as you ride more you'll more likely use more fat as an energy source.

    I've never had much success with trying to take on more than 350Kcal per hour while riding fairly hard and down to even 250Kcal when it gets really hot.
     
  13. Charlie M

    Charlie M New Member

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    This winter/spring I have been stretching out my long rides to 60-100 miles. So there are a few rides that I have gotten the fueling aspect right, and a few that I haven't. My biggest issue is drinking enough. I would go 1-2 hours without drinking anything if I didn't feel the need or was just being lazy. Now I force myself to drink something every 20 minutes. I usually bring a bottle of Gatorade and a bottle or two of water. I also eat a Picky Bar or some Honey Stinger Chews every hour.

    Before I head out I usually do a bagel with honey a hour or so before I leave.
     
  14. Viking55803

    Viking55803 Member

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    I don't think the problem is nutrition, it's over-training. 650 K in 4 weeks! Starting from what kind of base training? Week to week increases in total workload (intensity X duration X frequency) should be in the range of 10 to 15%. If you follow a structured plan to build to peak fitness, every 4th week should be a rest and recovery week - essentially back to a week 1 workload.

    The body simply cannot adapt to increases in any sport that quickly and if you over-train, you risk having to spend MONTHS recovering or you will have no motivation to ride due to persistent fatigue or injury. The science of endurance sport training has advanced incredibly in the past 20 years and whether you are training to compete in the Tour de France or just want to ride long and fast, following some kind of simple plan would help enormously.

    The first step is "base training" and unless you are unusually fit from other endurance sports at the beginning, it is usually recommended that you put in something like 600 to 1,000 K of VERY easy riding before adding more stress in the form of speed work, intervals, hill work etc. Worrying about speed this early in your cycling career will severely limit your ultimate performance. Remember, you don't improve fitness on the bike, but during the rest intervals between rides. Hard days (long or fast) should always be followed by a rest day or easy day.

    Enthusiasm is great, but you don't want to be like a yo-yo dieter - go like hell and then crash and burn!

    Just my thoughts - the nutrition/fueling issues are also very important of course.
     
  15. looseleftie

    looseleftie New Member

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    Cheers guys, love the feedback I'm getting here.. Viking and Swampy, I think u are on the right track with your advice.. I think I pre fuelled up and during ride, and post ride satisfactory.. In hindsight, I was not fit/strong enough to comfortably and most importantly, safely, complete my 100km ride.. Yes I did it, but it damned near killed me, in particular the last 20km, and the next two days after that. Since then, I have gone to 20km hill rides 4-5 days a week on the working mornings, and I do 40km on either Sat or Sun.. Trying to keep it to around 120-140km a week, and NOT over doing it.. Also family and kids sporting commitments on the weekend mornings and afternoons seems to give me very little time, so I do what I can! At this stage, I'm not sure where I want to go with my cycling, in terms of competing in social rides, competitions, or just focus on keeping fit, or really push myself to see improvement on the bike.. I know this after 6 weeks now, that I'm hooked! My times are getting better, and seem to be that little better at climbing hills just that smidge better now.. My base fitness, was good, nothing extreme, but I am an active person for sure!
     
  16. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    Go out, have fun and ride to enjoy it. If you feel better when you get fitter then go out and ride more. Don't ride too much that it becomes a constant source of pain and suffering the day after - every once in a while ain't a bad thing though - but only as long as it's from over exertion and not something like muscular pain caused by a bad position on the bike (bars/stem/saddle/cleats)

    Eat, drink, ride and be merry...

    ... says the man that overdid it on Saturday and will be paying for it for a few days. [​IMG]
     
  17. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    You need to make sure that you're adequately fuelled up in terms of food before you decide to do a long distance ride.

    If your limbs are aching after your ride, what works for me is going for a swim! It's an excellent way to relax overtaxed muscles, I find.
     
  18. JunkyPenguin

    JunkyPenguin New Member

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    Eat a good breakfast and don't go out to late. It may seem obious, but it really helps. Glad you're getting into cycling!
     
  19. westmixxin

    westmixxin New Member

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    Having the right amount of nutrition in your diet when you're doing your long-distance rides incredibly important. Sometimes I go out on a long-distance ride and I don't necessarily packed the right food with me and things get really complex. Got to make sure you're getting electrolytes in your body and you also to make sure that you have a lot of protein.
     
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