Eating During a Marathon Race

Forums Mountain Bike Forum Eating During a Marathon Race

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    • #91763

      Hello all, Im fairly new to the racing game and was curious what people have to say about their race diet. I have read in alot of places different things people eat during endurance races. The most common items are PB and J, trail mix, power bars (or candy bars), bananas, etc. What I am wondering is what about RACE DAY? Its easy for me to eat different things when im training, but as far as a 50-100 mile race, what do you eat while still riding???
      I have my first long race coming up (60 miles) and was planning on having (with me on the bike) a few bananas, some hammer gels, a few Payday candy bars, and maybe some trail mix. I had figured on getting through the first 30 miles or so before stopping at a food station and getting into anything there. I also eat alot of almonds when training but am afraid they require to much water for digestion during such a race.
      So… with the pre race meal aside, what works for long miles ON THE BIKE? Obviously calories, protein and complex carbs (fruit) are the necessary ingredients. (With the pre race meal being heavier on the carbs the night before). How do more expirienced athletes handle carrying everything they need in the bag, atleast everything needed for 3/4 the race. Any info would help me out… Thanks!!

    • #91764

      Use the SAG stops. You don’t want to carry all that stuff with you. Most races you can send items ahead to the SAGs, do that. You’ll only be stopped a minute or two, just grab your stuff, and then get rolling again. Eat on the bike if you can, like if you’re on a gravel road. If you’re on singeltrack, walk and eat. But keep moving, always keep moving. You lose less time this way, and you don’t cool off and have to warm up again.

      I personally don’t like solid food during rides…I’m a big fan of gels, my stomach likes them better than real food when I’m putting out an effort. Everyone’s different tho, some people hate gels. I can handle banana’s okay though.

      Eat whatever you’ve been eating on training rides. Race day isn’t the day to try something new.

    • #91765

      It may be a high altitude thing, but when I go on long rides out here I have no appetite whatsoever and I have to force myself to take something.

      That said, I carry Hammer Gel, Gu, Jelly Belly Sport Beans and Clif Shot Bloks. On less intense rides I will also do a granola bar or small bag of trail mix. Anything else ends up still being in my pack when I finish.

      Some endurance racers who I know or know of have also mentioned packets of mayonnaise and cold chicken soup (left at a drop point, not carried)

      And don’t overlook good ol’ Coke as a recovery drink…it’s amazing!

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