Creative ways to carry gels/bloks in a race

Hello, I am looking for ideas used to carry my quick fuel during races. I usually need to eat a BLok or gel every 15-20 minutes during a high paced group ride or race. Pre-cutting wrappers, etc helps but sometimes my back pockets are difficult to reach (too high, small opening, etc). Plus it is very hard to even think about eating during these time, and I will bonk after a couple of hours because of this. Sometimes I just keep a pack of gels in my hand b/c I need the fuel now and fast. I’ve tried taping bloks to my top tube, but if I hit a bump, I’ve had by gels fly off my bike, and then I have even less food. A neat thing I do is stuff pre-opened packs in my sports bra (sorry guys) and that is my current method and it works most of the time, except in the cold when I’m zipped up. Any creative ways to get bloks/gels fast during high paced rides? Thank you!

Nothing beats a decent top tube bag, IMO. I have an old Specialized one with a magnetic flap that takes just a moment to open, grab a block and let it close on it’s own.

Easy to reach and I can load it with 2 open packs of chews. I slice it the long way (like butterfly of a fish or chicken breast), and then leave it still around the blocks. Allows stacking of 2 packs without them all becoming a sticky mess.

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If you’re eating that often, are you also drinking calories? The homemade drink mix I learned from TR/these forums has really changed my fueling and heavily reduced my need to carry gels/blocks.

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Lick the back of cliff Bloks and stick them to your top tube

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I coach NICA and this was hugely popular with the kids. A fleet of bikes with blocks spit glued to the top tube!

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Stuff under the legs of your shorts (on top of the thigh), or the arms of a long-sleeved jersey.

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Chad, do you have a link or name of the top that bag that you are mentioning. Thanks for your input !

I bought this one maybe 10 years ago and they stopped making them not long after that.

Here is the bag for reference. Might be able to find old stock or a used one somewhere.

There are other brands that offer magnetic lid top tube bags. I haven’t tried them yet, but some look decent.

Or wear cargo shorts with pockets in the sides / back of the shorts.

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An old school triathlon trick is to tape gels to your top tube. Tape each one separately by the tab and then you can rip one off and open it in one move.

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Nothing beats a gel flask for ease of use. And immensely leas disgusting than sticking chews to your frame :face_vomiting:

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I’ve tried that but even in my XS skinsuit I’d eventually lose it. Lol, I usually down one before a TT (just stuff it up my leg for the warm up) but on my best race I was too busy gossiping and forgot. After about 21miles to go I remembered as it came flying out. Lol I know I’m a litter bug but I wasn’t stopping on the busy dual carriageway to try and retrieve it :joy:

I’ve tried the lick trick, and the bloks either fall off or slip off the tube…. Thanks for the ideas!

I often shove gels down my sports bra but that might not be super helpful :joy:
From an ease of access standpoint I don’t think you can beat liquid nutrition, but a top tube bag also works well. I sort of “line” the inside with an ziploc and then just dump everything in there unwrapped so I don’t have to mess with packaging.

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As mentioned above, if I’m in a race, I will tuck my gels under the leg gripper on my bibs. This is also a great place to stuff your rubbish and save littering in a race.

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Revelate Designs makes a good one:

Borrowed a friend’s when I did Leadville last year, worked great, plan on buying my own. I’ll put a plug in for their product line as a whole. I’ve got their ‘Jerry Can’ for my MTB tool kit that I switch between bikes and works great.

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Agree with top tube bag. I like to dump 2-3 bags/sleeves of chews in and that allows me to reach down and easily grab one or two every few minutes.

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Best options I’ve found, outside of a top tube pouch, is to either pre-cut and tape to top tube in a shingle pattern (popular for ironman races) or add a high calorie mix like Skratch super fuel to your bottles to get in the calories and electrolytes.

I did this trick for a marathon mtb race. It felt silly, but it worked really well.

Top tube bag and gel flask. I use the Revelate top tube bag, and a Hammer gel flask that can hold 5 gel servings.

I usually fill the flask with 4 servings, and top the flask off with water. Then shake we’ll to mix. The flask is so much quicker vs opening individual gel packets. I can consume 2 gel servings in about 2 seconds.

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