Fueling for Ultra Distance Self Support Gravel


I’ve been using plan builder to train for long-distance gravel events, and have seen steady gains over the past 2 since I have used Trainerroad, with me being more serious about my consistency this year. I have gone from a 167 FTP up to 244 FTP. I have one race that seems to get the better of me each year, Ultra-Spotted Horse Gravel race. The “sprint” edition is 150 miles and the full course is 200 miles. It is an unsupported, no-drafting, gravel race across hilly gravel and dirt roads in October that almost always includes rain. Serious type 2 fun with roughly 9K to 13K of elevation gain over punchy hills. I have struggled with fueling during this ride (not enough, or way too much). You are allowed to stop at convenience stores, carry food with you, and this year to encourage us to not stop at convenience stores we are allowed one 2 gallon drop bag at mile 85ish. My deliema is that convenience stores are not the best to eat at while riding in rural Iowa for my body to process, and carrying all that food up steep hills is soul-crushing after the adrenaline wears off from the start of the race. Nate love a good logistic puzzle, and I looking for a better way of tackling the fueling issue, because I think this is my biggest limiter on finishing. Any advice is welcome!

Thanks and keep up the great work! 5 Stars!


You’d be surprised what you can “teach” your body to do with enough time, however, you probably don’t have enough time to do it at this point. I used to be this way but over the last year I have made a point of eating very untraditional gas station food (anything that sounds good at the time). Today I had powdered donuts and a chocolate milk but I’ve been known to grab breakfast tacos, brisket sandwiches, ice cream bars, V8 juice (nasty), etc.

What does your gut tolerate? Do you do well with drink mixes? Gels? I’m assuming you don’t do well with ‘real food’ since the gas station food doesn’t work.

The last 2 years have been hard. Nutrition is based off time and when you have 3 miles worth of hike a bike it gets harder to judge how much food to take with. Ultimate it’s not that much extra weight. 1KG of drink mix would be over 10 hours of nutrition. Assuming your bike is 10KG and your 70KG that 1KG of nutrition isn’t going to make the hills noticeably harder.

Here is my plan for Wind and Rock:

2L hydration vest With clean water, refilled at every opportunity.

3, 750ml bottles, each with a triple serving of Roctane. Refilled at each drop bag( this is enough fuel for 9 hours for me)

Assortment of gels, waffles and candy bars, restocked as needed at c stores.

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