First road race (60 miles). How to fuel?

Liquid sugar gets absorbed much faster than solid food. Solid food should be chased by plenty of water to help your body break it down. Solid food also causes more blood to migrate to your stomach.

Thus it’s recommended to focus on liquids as your fuel for shorter, intenser rides. Solid food is needed when you get flavor / sweetness fatigue and desire something different. For many people that’s around 3-4 hours and not during a race.

Whatever you choose, practice it and refine it.

As many others said, in a group your speed will be much higher than solo. Look up some past times. You can simply search Strava for the race name.

I guess you are right. Over estimating as it is surprisingly difficult to find details for cat5 in my area.

There’s no way it takes more than three hours, I’d guess much closer to 2.5 than 3.

This duration should greatly simplify fueling strategies and hopefully mitigate your concerns about urination.

Others have covered how to fuel in more detail, but at a high level, for this time of race I’d run two bottles with mix and carry 5 or 6 gels depending on how strong I made the mix

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I’d fuel with whatever you like most for the amount of carbs you want, but prioritise that it is easy to eat while riding in a group and pedalling hard. Most people use gels and drink mix because it’s hard to chew when riding hard, or difficult to peel bananas .

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I haven’t done many long rides, so pardon for the maybe obvious question. Assuming this 60 mile road race takes about 3 hours and you have 2 bottles, are you putting 105-135 g in each bottle and then spacing that over the race?

I have been doing a number of longer rides training for longer events this summer and started doing the long rides by drinking a bottle per hour as most state. Was finding I had to stop every hour to pee which was concerning for long races so have been modifying hydration and found the following to work for me.

  1. Try not to drink a bunch of water couple hours before ride and pee before ride.
  2. Have found in cooler weather (40-60 degrees) I really only need about 20-24oz every 1.5 hours. This might change when it starts getting warmer.
  3. Have increased electrolytes to have better absorption.

In doing this I have been able to do 3-4 hour rides with no pee break!

I am also using Saturday app and put the sweat icon at the lowest level. It reduces hydration which seems to be close to what I stated above and allows me to figure out electrolytes and carbs.

Are you in the Cat 5 race? It’s only 46 mi this year if so. Last year the finishing times were 2:06 to 2:39. This isn’t really long enough to need a super strict fueling plan. 2 bottles with about 80g each CHO should be fine. Maybe get 1L bottles if you sweat a lot more than average.

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Things to take in consideration:

  • How comfortable do you feel eating in the bunch
  • What temperature will it be
  • How many carbs can you tolerate
  • Are there aid stations

By accounting for these variables you should be able to set up a plan.

Here is a plan for example (not sponsored, adjust to your own preferences/brands)
NutritionPlan-EN-Cycling-Bike.pdf (882.2 KB)

Hey there!

VoS is a great race – the road race is one of my favorite early-season courses!

For your fueling question, the answer is (as it often is) “it depends.”

It’ll depend on what you like to eat/consume during your rides. For a 60-mile road race, you’ll probably be out there for 2-3hrs. For me, personally, I mostly do gels because I have trouble digesting more solid food, especially if the race is 3 hours or less.

I’d encourage you to try out some different nutrition strategies during your training rides leading into the event if possible. See how you react to gels, bars, drink mixes, etc. and find what works best for you. :slight_smile:

Hope this helps – and feel free to ask any additional questions!

Looks like results for the Cat 5’s in 2019 show that it took just over 2 hours. If that’s the case, just make sure you are rested and are properly fueling prior to the event. For an event that duration, your most likely not going to be needed the high end of carbs/hour. I’d stick to a couple of bottles with plain water or mix for your needs and have some gels on hand too for back up. If your properly fueled prior to the race I can see 60-90 grams per hour per bottle, or 3 gels per hour plus hydration. Good luck!

You can, or you can load it up into one bottle. For 2-3 hours I’ll load it into one bottle and meter accordingly. For 4-6 hours I’ll do two bottles, but you’ll want to think about how much water you may actually need for these longer rides, so yhink about how you would manage the fuel and water and possibly electrolytes.

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