How eat 100g CHO hourly during mtb?

I have been making my own gel mix w 45g of ea fructose and maltodextrin. No problem w that per hour. At 2 hours on the trainer, my stomach starts to complain (180g CHO).

Got to looking at the gels. 25g CHO per gel. So to get 100g per hour, I have to eat 4 gels per hour.

At what duration do you start eating? Coach Chad has said you don’t need to fuel on the bike for 90 min or less efforts.

My real focus are off-road triathlons. So the mtb portion is like a Sport or Cat 2 XC race (90-120 min) but there is a nice run afterwards (5 - 10k). So eating is especially important.

My gut can take the 100g per hour. But dang if I can figure out how to get it in there while on single track. 4 gels an hour? How do you freakin carry it? (No pockets in tri suit)

I doubt liquid is an option as I am a VERY heavy sweater w high sodium expenditure. So I need the hydration to stay pretty separate so I can get enough of that in. Course determines bottle vs pack.


Even if you don’t need to fuel, doing so at your max absorption rate will lower RPE, and thus you’ll perform better, even during shorter events.

Yes, the answer is to put it in your drink. Diluting the drink mix is not a problem.

You can also try Maurten or SiS gels that are significantly less viscous than say, a Clif Shot or a Gu, and don’t require water to wash it down.

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I ride and race XC expert/Cat 1. My fuel is 100% liquid now. I do 90g an hour (GU Roctane) in bottles or hydration pack (USWE). When I’ve used gels it’s been a supplement on top of liquid if I feel I need it. One of my XC races in the series is a bit longer lasting 2:15 and I’ve taken an additional gel around 1:30 if I’m struggling.

The biggest challenge w gels is how to carry them for quick and easy access?

I’ve taped gels to my top tube for shorter events. For longer endurance races I used a small top tube bag for gels, chews, and electrolyte tabs.

@Jonathan has mentioned putting them on your water bottle as well.

Camelbak Chase vest is a good minimalist option as well and you can tuck some gels into the pockets on the straps.

Are you sipping on a bottle per hour, or chugging it during the feed zone to get all the carbs in your system at once? I’m trying to figure out how to do this next year when I level up to Cat 2. Any info you can share is much appreciated.

Definitely not chugging it in “feed zone”. My races don’t have feed zones and sometimes laps are 40:00 long. So I drink it constantly throughout the race. I used to do bottles, but have since switched to hydration pack because I drink a lot more when I do.

This is exactly what I do. I get most of what I need with Roctane in my bottle(s), and for longer rides I take cliff shot blocks in addition to the roctane.

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