Intermittent Fasting, Gaining Weight, Race Nutrition, and More - Ask a Cycling Coach 404

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(0:19) Gaining weight while trying to fuel workouts
(37:51) How to train while intermittent fasting
(59:46) Race week nutrition
(1:21:20) Is table sugar the best carb mix?
(1:31:29) Are high-resistant starches ideal training fuel?
(1:36:46) Signs your race nutrition isn’t working for you

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Dang it, I was hoping to sneak in a live Q.

@Nate_Pearson how’s your 60sec Power training going?

@Jonathan how’s the new bike (if it’s arrived) and can you wear a GoPro for ST6?

@IvyAudrain are you still racing the MTB race with Jonathan? Ventum looks awesome, what MTB will you choose?

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@Jonathan Early in the episode you mention that your BMR is roughly 1,800 calories, and that you add your training expenditure to this in order to calculate your total intake for the day. I may have misinterpreted what you said, but just adding the 1,500 calories of exercise expenditure to your BMR would not be taking into account any other movement or activity throughout the day. No NEAT, dietary thermogenesis, etc. BMR is literally just what you need to maintain homeostasis while lying down for 24 hours, so unless you’re bedridden all day except for during training, this “BMR + exercise” equation would underestimate your TDEE by quite a bit. Even if you were sedentary for the rest of the day, your TDEE outside of training should land in the range of at least 2,160-2,200 calories. Did I misunderstand what you meant when discussing daily calorie intake?


Yep, sounds like @Jonathan is under fueling - if his exercise is 1,500 kcal - his TDEE must be in the 1700-2000 range, then he should be consuming way more than 3k a day. I estimate my TDEE at about 2100 per day and my TR workouts are on average 1000-1200 and I can easily consume over 3k.


Excellent Podcast today. Nutrition is SO HARD, but talking about it and knowing that it’s going to be work and that we’re not the only one doing it helps so much.

@Jonathan Race the Sun for the 2023 Unbound 200 is 14h 40m according to sunrise sunset, so targeting 14h is reasonable.

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When calculating protein and carbohydrate by body weight, should you use total body weight or lean mass?

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So I had never heard of high resistant starches. Sounds like I get a lot of them with my mostly-whole foods, vegan diet.

Question: there was a comment about oatmeal being a good source of these high resistance starches, and that cooking foods lessens the effect. I eat overnight oats at least 6 days a week. Is there a difference between cooking, as in boiling oats, and just soaking them?

Total body weight


Right? So funny how everyone on the podcast, including a registered dietician ™ just glances over the fact that jonathan is underfueling and just proceeds to talk about how important it is to fuel accordingly lol.

Also Ivy mentioning instant oats as a good fuel source directly before workouts in contrast to complex carbohydrates. Wtf? Instant oats are as complex as regular oats and take hours for the body to absorb. Again, no mention of this from the registered dietician ™.

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Don’t confuse an academic title with practical prowess.
I don’t doubt their qualifications, but it has to be said that registered dietician™’ 's main focus is on being an Instagram influencer, which might mean saying / not saying some things that don’t correlate with reaching that goal.

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I have to say that the bit about using sugar as fuel triggered me a bit. They talk about how it can be heavy on the gut, then 2 minutes later they talk about the need for gut training in sport nutrition. Also Jonathan not really trying to defend his stance - he’s been fueling with the “taste of speed” without any apparent gut distress yet he’s just so nice as a host that he doesn’t try to mention that.

My experience and I’m sure that of many others is quite different - it’s totally possible to get used to the sugar/salt/water solution with no gut distress - I’ve been taking in between 30-100 g/hour of sugar in my training and racing for a year now and it’s been a revelation. Cheap, easy, effective. It took a few weeks to train the gut initially but it was nothing compared to the usual issues with regular sports nutrition products.

Also all those comments about sugar not dissolving properly - honestly you just fill half of the bidon with cold water, add sugar and salt, shake vigorously for 20-30 seconds and add the remaining water. Job done.

I work in the industry and have access to free sports nutrition products - part of my contract. This means I’m in the fortunate position of not having to care about the cost. Yet since last year I really mostly resort to sugar anyway, it’s just so much faster to ingest and easier on the gut.


Haven’t listened to the podcast yet, but here in Ireland “instant oats/ porridge” are normally lower fibre/ lower fat and lower protein than rolled oats/ porridge. And quite often they’re have added sugar (particularly the pots). However, they’re still classified as wholegrain afaik.


@Stevie_Dee @pnzr Exactly what I thought too. If ANYONE is qualified to pick up on such a simple mistake it should be a RD, right…? I mean I’m about 140-142 lbs, and on any given day I have to eat at least 2,300-2,400 calories just to maintain my weight when doing no training. Granted, I walk and move quite a bit outside of exercise, but if I were to just add my exercise expenditure to my BMR (1,650 cals), I would be in a massive deficit to the tune of at least 600-800 calories! As for Jonathan specifically, he keeps mentioning how demanding his life is outside of training with work and kids. Taking that into account, he probably has quite a large NEAT, so the BMR + training is just bonkers.

I’ve actually heard it being mentioned many times on the podcast when calories are discussed. They rarely refer to TDEE but often to BMR, and in my opinion, BMR is sort of useless for most people. TDEE is 20% higher than BMR, at minimum, for a sedentary person. Most athletes are not sedentary. People that partake in exercise regularly also have a much higher tendency to walk more and be more active in general. Hence, most listeners probably fall into the “mildly” or “moderately” subset of people for TDEE calculations - and this is NOT taking cycling into account. TDEE for this activity group tends to be BMR x 1.3-1.5, which means that eating to meet just BMR would have an individual missing 30-50% of calories needed to maintain weight and physiological functions. I’m not saying this to crap on the hosts, they do a great job with the podcast, but listeners with less insight than I personally have into the nutrition space may take these as guidelines and just run with it. That can definitely cause some issues in the long run.


I thought the exact same thing. For starters, sucrose (table sugar) has a 1:1 ratio of glucose to fructose which is very close to the nowadays optimal 1:0.8 ratio. Second, it dissolves great in water, has a very neutral taste, and works great for workout fuel. I have a ton of friends who use it for every ride with no gut distress. Personally, it is the only workout fuel I use, and I can easily put down 100 grams of carbs per hour of sugar water regardless of workout duration and intensity. Sure, maybe some people, including the hosts, struggled with it. However, I think that disregarding it completely is just making people spend money and time on unnecessary experimentation. As I recall, the guy writing in with the question didn’t even have any issues with it, but they still recommended that he should switch to other fuelling strategies, no?


Sorry TR team but i was not impressed with the quality of advise given out on this video.



I’d love if the podcast team explored weight loss strategies for folks who have no self control.

We hear that (paraphrased) “if you do the work and fuel and eat whatever you want your body will sort out it’s ideal weight and composition”. But what about athletes that will eat an entire box of ice cream sandwiches if it’s in front of them (it me (being hyperbolic dont @ me).

I get that weighing foods, doing strict meal planning, and tracking calories using myfitnesspal or similar can lead to, or be a manifestation of, disordered eating, but I feel like there isn’t enough information or emphasis on anomalous eating on the opposite end of the spectrum.

I’d love to explore strategies for weight loss and strength gain for the people who can’t just fuel the work and have the rest sort itself out.


Don’t have problem foods/drinks in your house. Period.

Eat mostly single-ingredient foods, like chicken breasts and brown rice.

Fill up with fiber and water.

Don’t drink calories.

That will get you like 90% of the way there.


I wonder how common it is for athletes to underfuel. Personally I find it a bit of work and planning (they touched on this in the podcast) to make sure I’m fueled properly especially if I’m trying to eat reasonably healthy.

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