Fuelling for workouts

Hi, just wondered what people recommended for 90-120minute rides. I tend to take 2 water bottles as I sweat a lot I don’t always finish both and usually put about 30-40g of carbs into each one, malto/fructose mix.
Does this sound about right or should I aim for more or less?
Also do you use carbs for all tougher rides and workouts? What about gentle zone 2 efforts do you still fuel for these?

Not a recommendation but what this old guy does. I fuel almost every workout.
If it’s a 30min spin during recovery week then I just use plain water.
Different mixtures depending on how I feel and how hot it is.
Heed, Gatoraide, Maureen, Cranberry Juice.
It all works for me. Sometimes I mix them.
I will even have a Diet Coke sometimes if doing an indoor workout. But don’t tell anyone.

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It all depends on intensity. I usually aim for 90-120 grams of carbs per hour on really hard intervals/races. For easier stuff I will do 30-60g.

Take the guesswork out of it. Saturday is a great app that can and will help you decide on fueling for every workout.


I’ve also been using Saturday and find it invaluable for planning my ride nutrition…


Honestly the answer depends on a) what you are doing in the kitchen, off-the-bike, b) your burn rate on the bike (roughly your average watts multiplied by duration), and c) your efficiency/physiology.

I eat quite well off the bike and have a protein flapjack before my rides too. Average burn is about 1800 calories according to Strava, don’t have a power meter just a hrm

For Z2 efforts I usually only tweak my standard diet for the day.
Before, I eat more fruit than I normally would, and after I increase the carbs quota in my following meal (more pasta, more legumes, …)

I just wasn’t sure if drinking 60-80g of sugar 4-5 times a week was a good idea. I more than burn the calories off I think

Your workouts are probably closer to 600 calories per hour. I only achieve 1800+ calories on an intense 3 hour group ride smash fest. I’m going by kilojoules and my power meter. I wouldn’t trust Strava’s calculations.

Most workouts, I just eat a banana or two and maybe a bar. Only on the 3 hour group ride would I put a ton of maltodextrin in my bottle, plus take a bar, and a banana.

You’ll get differing opinions on this. Personally, I don’t think 100 grams of sugar per hour on every single ride is good for you. I think a sliding scale is best - easy ride, no sugar - hard ride, sugar. You can decide if you need to fuel the middle intensity rides.

And FWIW, watch your dental health if you swill sugar. After decades of zero cavities, I got two cavities a couple of years after I started to experiment with sugar in my bottles.

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I also came here to recommend Saturday, like @wake and @Buckethead.
It adjusts my fueling and hydration needs for the intensity of the workout and also for the temperature/how sweaty I expect to be.
My life is made simple with it. Its recommendations are always spot-on for me.


I find my Strava calories close to what I get on my smart bike. Around 600-700 per hour is the normal for me on a gentle zone 2 effort. Also I find my HR sits a little higher outdoors 160+ average for 90mins so I’d imagine that increases calories burned.

Average Power * 3.6 * Total Hours = ~Total Calories

Usually I try to get at least 50% of the calories I will burn in my bottles for Z2 <2hrs. If I’m over 2hr or intensity is high I go to 90-120g/hr.

If you can, put sugar in one bottle and plain water in another, use the water to rinse mouth after a sugar drink. Your teeth with thank you.