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How To Fuel Yourself for A Long Bike Ride

Your diet for long cycling workouts should consist of four elements in appropriate proportions – protein, carbohydrates, healthy fat, and the right number of fluids to go with the solids.

How To Fuel Yourself for A Long Bike Ride
Written by Editorial

The longer the cycling ride stretches, the more significant it becomes to fuel your body at all times. When you feel extremely charged to hit the roads for straight 3 hours or more, don’t forget to prepare your body for that too! 

This combines how you choose to fuel your body before, during, and also after the cycling routine. Though it will depend on the intensity with which you cover the maximum distance and keep paddling, but the basics on how to make the most of your diet remain more or less alike. 

Your diet for long cycling workouts should consist of four elements in appropriate proportions – protein, carbohydrates, healthy fat, and the right number of fluids to go with the solids. 

Why Is It Necessary to Fuel Your Body Prior to a Long Cycling Sesh? 

Now that we know the importance of fueling up well before and during the ride, let’s see what to fuel our bodies with. 


Carbs are the energy sources of your body that go straight into the cells to produce glucose. The glucose instantly stimulates you with a high dose of energy and keeps some of it to use later, like a stock. 

It usually stores the excess glucose in your muscles and liver which later gets used by your body after it consumes all of it. Only then it uses the reserve which is called glycogen to help you stretch the ride for long.  

Before The Ride 

Carbohydrates work fabulously to fill you with all the endurance, stamina, and energy you need before your moderate to high-intensity cycling workouts. 

When To Eat

Aim to have plenty of complex carbs-filled diet for your dinner the previous day. It works like wonders when you have cycling training planned the next morning. 

What To Eat

What Not to Eat (or in a limited amount)

During The Ride

If you continue to be on your bike for more than 1.5 hours, your body’s stamina starts going down which should be refilled to let you complete your cycling session successfully. For that, a quick carb-rich bite benefits a lot. The quick carb snacks also get digested swiftly by your body as soon as you consume them and start to spin around again.  

What To Eat

What Not to Eat

2. Protein

A diet high in protein ensures the recovery of your muscles and glands never stops. It is a green signal for your body to keep going even if you get injured during your cycling sessions once in a while. 

Proteins help your body shield against any physical injuries and routine wear and tear. It also makes antibodies to fight every possible disease that attacks your athletic body.

Before The Ride

Consuming protein-rich solid foods 2-3 hours before your ride can immensely contribute to preserving your muscle mass as cyclists. It will also make sure when you are done with the ride, your body does not go through a lot of sore muscles, soreness, and pains. 

What To Eat

What Not to Eat (can consume on moderate amount)

During Ride

When you consume protein-rich snacks during your ride, you increase the chances for your body to get started with the muscle recovery process even faster. So consumption of protein ingested quick bites in moderate amounts works just fine. 

What To Eat (reduce the consumption)

What Not to Eat (in moderate amount)

3. Healthy Fat

Your body needs every sort of food to keep functioning right. So don’t worry about fat consumption once in a while as long as it’s healthy fat. It keeps your body warm and protected like a blanket or a cushion. But do remember, it’s ultimately fat and needs to be consumed in the tiniest portion possible. 

What To Eat

What Not to Eat

4. Fluids

Dehydration is your biggest enemy as a cycling enthusiast. You should be hydrated at all times before, during, and even after all your cycling rides. Consuming 3-4 glasses of water before the ride and sipping water after every 30 minutes during the ride has great health benefits as a cyclist. It keeps at bay all the fatigue, irritability, and dry throat so that you can pay full attention to your ride. 

What To Drink

What Not to Drink

Final Words 

Staying strong during the ride should be your goal. Once you make sure you are doing that right, your cycling workouts will automatically start showing results. 

The quality of diet plays an extraordinary role, always. Make sure you follow this for all your cycling training to never feel restless in any of your rides. 

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