Nutrition & Fuel for VO2 max or SupraThreshold sessions

There’s lots of great discussion on here for longer rides (sweetspot trainer etc) but i’d be super curious to see if anyone has a specific approach to workouts above FTP intensity.

I know glycogen depletion is probably not to much of a concern but having heard @Nate_Pearson talk about having enough carbs lowering his RPE i’d be interested to know how people strategise and what they do … especially for supra-threshold as it seems somewhat in the middle ground between long and short.


I do high volume base and build plans and for sweet spot and harder workouts I have a water bottle with ~35 grams of dextrose powder, and sip it evenly throughout a workout. It makes a huge difference once you get into the 2nd hour of the workout.

More deliberate fueling has been the single biggest improvement in my training this year. Very evident effect even for workouts of just 1 hour. For the hardest workouts (VO2max or over/unders), I’ll have a SiS gel during the warmup, and another about halfway through the workout. This is in addition to a bottle with skratch for hydration.

At @Pete said in the podcast-after-amber, focus on really nailing three quality workouts a week. Fueling has made that difference, for me at least.



Just Match Calories.

Works for me - any workout, any intensity.

Then the higher the IF, the more carbs I’ll have in my recovery drink ratio.

Even just the taste of sugar in your mouth causes your body to respond differently and allows to you go harder.

There are some really interesting studies where they put a feeding tube and either sucked the sugar solution out (taste in mouth but no absorption) or added solution and bypassed the mouth and the results showed that your taste buds signal to your brain that “energy is coming” which allows you to go harder, sooner, even before the calories are usable.

I’ll try and dig up the study, pretty sure it was in the book Endure.

1 Like

I use three level scoops of SIS Energy in a 500ml bottle. I’ve never had to eat on the trainer. That said, I do all of my workouts fasted and that isn’t because I’m trying to lose weight or any other reason you might think of. I’m just not hungry.

thanks all …

i do employ a lo of the strategies listed above - iwas just curious if vo2 and supra-threshold might require a slightly different approach … due to intensity level …

thank you for all advice …

@stevemz i am familiar with these studies - a lot of marathoners use this - i find chewing gum a really good one for this between intervals … odd i know! but feels like i am taking in sugar… :slight_smile:

1 Like

If you’re using SIS Energy, then the ride isn’t fasted. A true fasted session would be on water alone (well, perhaps a coffee too :wink: )


Then I stand corrected.

1 Like

n=1 update

before Raymond +7 this week i opted to massively increase carbs pre workout. approx 2g per kg of bodyweight … might be complete coincidence but this workout’s RPE was so SO much lower than Red Lake +8 last week.

i did start each interval at lower % of ftp and work up but i felt way stronger.

1 Like