Fueling the workload

Hi all,

Looking for some fuelling tips as I haven’t really got my head in the game yet this year, and commuting and kids weekend commitments it’s all got a bit complex.

I just did 1280kj on a coffee with two sugars. Not ideal.

I have high bodyfat, so plenty of stored energy…

Standard week.

If there is such a thing, it’s a bit aspirational with work and kids. I’m not at home wed, fri, and probably sat or sun so I need ideas on fuel to take with me, during the work, after the work and packed lunches.

AM Lunch PM
Monday Hard bike 1300cal Lift
Tuesday Easy bike 400cal Run 800-900cal
Wednesday Commute bike 600cal Swim 600cal Commute bike 800cal
Thursday Easy run 250cal
Friday Commute bike 600cal Swim 600cal Commute bike 800cal
Saturday Hard bike 1000cal
Sunday Swim 600cal Easy run 250cal

Are you making up water bottles in advance?

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I did last season; water, 75g brown sugar, half a lemon. I might just use coke this year as 750ml gets me 80g carbs and is simple.

I use protein powder occasionally, maybe I could take in some bidons and add water when I’m out of the house?

When I’m out commute or weekends I take a flask of sweet coffee to finish in the morning, four sugars in it.

Breakfast is sweet coffee two sugars and either a bacon sandwich for the protein or porridge with golden syrup and berries.

Do you eat breakfast before you ride?

that doesnt really matter with how much deficit a body can handle while also excercising.

I’ve been meaning to write something longer over in that weightloss thread, but here is an example of this week. Im sitting at 156lbs currently. eying <150

with training guidelines like:

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That’s sort of what I’m looking for but in real items rather than grams of carbs, and cope with protein demand too.

I did Mondays hard bike this morning, missed breakfast, had lunch, 218g carb, 28g fat, 64g protein, so I’m wondering what to consume before Tuesday nights run.

Tomorrow after my porridge and coffee, what should I putting in the bag and on the bike? Before/after the swim? Before the commute home?

Usually its simpler carbs. fruits are good snack pre session but arent super high in calories. Lots of rice, beans, bread. I’ve really had to shift my thinking. A lot of times my usual portions arent big enough to cover the cal requirements. I’ve yet to miss a protein target and I never need to worry about. My problem has always been not enough carbs. I just need to sometimes double the rice and pasta portions.

Like a banana before any swim bike or run, or just on hard days?

I’m under standard protein recommendations for triathletes in middle age, about 1.2g/kg. I’m assuming the majority is best consumed in the evening meal so over night repair is nourished.

guess it depends on how big or recent the last meal was. Skipping breakfast usually isn’t the best idea because for me at least I will 100% fall behind. Maybe not on day 1 but days 2 or 3
I had 900 cal at 10am breakfast. I wont eat before noon swim, but bringing 30g of sugar for 3k yards

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You’re trying to fuel to keep up for the next few days, and not just the current day. That isn’t to say you eat more than maintenance. What I mean is that after say a rest period, and easy monday, etc any of us could survive a full training day without taking in enough food. But the next day, you might be a little less topped up as you were yesterday. Then you undereat again. Probably survive, but then the next day will be rough.

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I do a smoothie with rolled oats, almond flour, and fruit for breakfast. It’s an easy way to get 600-800 calories quick. I used to bike commute and got into this to get calories quick and get out the door.

I just use table sugar and a pinch of salt in waters bottles for exercise. Just buy a kitchen scale and weight out the g/hour you want to hit. Anything else is a huge waste of money unless you really like the way something tastes.

I eat easy stuff like whole wheat bread PB sandwiches with chips and a fruit for lunch, another quick 800cal and easy to make and pack.
Maybe 4 eggs w cheese, some green veggie, and 4 slices toast with butter (~800cal) if I’m at home.

Pre workout snack could be some pastry, a bagel, or something high carb and hour or so before, or just nothing at all but try to train within 3hr from last proper meal.

I eat whatever for dinner but always is my biggest meal. Probably double in portion to lunch


It’s a good point. Over the week I’m in balance but day to day it’s under, over and days I don’t feel energised to train. Sorting this out I’m aiming to feel fresher at the start of the day as well as through the workouts, and less binge snacking.

Actually, to avoid the peaks and troughs, is it better to eat consistently, or vary day by day to demand? In the past I’ve aimed for a consistent healthy diet, and added in workout fuel and post workout protein.

varry somewhat. you dont want to be over maintenance. but the bigger the kj day, the easier it is to be in a weightloss deficit. for example a day off for me is 2400-2800. no deficit. the deficit day is reserved for like the 3500kj day

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Dr. Gabrielle Lyon specializes in muscle mass and protein. She advises that breakfast is critical as your muscles are primed for protein in their fasted state. So you should be aiming for a minimum of 30g (probably a bit more for you).

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Listening to the latest podcast is focussing me on protein and fat. The week I recorded everything I hit protein targets sometimes, but surprisingly the fat gram were low. I didn’t lose any weight so conclude it’s the high carb volume keeping me heavy.

To get 156g of protein everyday is tricky, given I don’t know what the Mrs will cook for dinner. So I think I need ‘protein/fat’ snacks around the house top up more than I need carb sources.

Nuts, milk, peanut butter.

And like you say, try to get 50g protein into breakfast. A rotation of eggs, bacon, Greek yoghurt, 300ml milk as well as the workout fuel; porridge, fruit or bead.

Then have fruit ahead of and coke during workouts.

And if I haven’t got there by end of day add a chicken breast in the evening.

Same on recovery weeks but drop the in ride fuel

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Do you already have/use a protein powder that doesn’t have added carbs (as opposed to a pre-blended recovery drink)? If not I’d suggest finding one you like and then keeping both a flavoured and an unflavoured one on hand at all times. Unflavoured can be added to a surprising amount of foods, and flavoured can give you a really quick and easy hit of 20-40g at just about any time of day.

I started doing this for a completely unrelated reason (was trying different proteins to eliminate soya due to a suspected allergy), but since splitting my protein from my carbs I’ve found myself using the powders much more regularly - even on rest days.

Also a 500g bag of vanilla pea protein powder will fit in almost any bag/suitcase I’d ever take with me, so I’ve started carrying it on work trips even when flying hand luggage only. If I have room I’ll also bring a shaker, but I’ve also managed an acceptable (if slightly lumpy) drink in a hotel coffee cup using a wooden stirrer. If you usually drive to work I’d say it’s a no-brainer to keep a bag of powder in the car (just don’t forget an un-cleaned shaker in there on a hot day :nauseated_face:)

I also buy protein bars in bulk so I can easily throw one into a bag (do pay attention to the nutrition facts when settling on a product though - some are great and some are pretty awful).

Beef jerky / biltong / veggie jerky is another really easy-travelling protein source (but be aware that it’s usually cured with sugar so can be roughly equal grams of carbs/protein.) Can also be comparatively expensive.

And when you’re at home, a poached egg works on top of a lot of meals, or you can boil a few eggs at once and then eat one a day as a snack.