Diet contributes to the majority of the way your body looks and feels. While cycling regularly comes as a huge bonus, a nutritious and healthy diet goes a long way.
To reach your ultimate goal whether it’s losing weight, getting pumped up for your high-intensity cycling training, or working on building endurance; diet is one aspect you cannot ignore and expect desired results.
So below is a detailed list and explanation of why and what to eat.
Let’s get started!
First Meal of The Day – Breakfast
A healthy breakfast undoubtedly gives you a great kick start to begin your day on a positive note. However, cycling with an empty stomach is also not that bad either! Now before you think this isn’t what you are in support of, it’s totally understandable.
The reason being, it does not matter if you prefer to ride with an empty or a full stomach is that there isn’t anything wrong with adopting either of the two approaches. Nevertheless, it does depend on the ultimate physical goal you are intending to achieve out of your cycling workouts.
Let’s see the distinctions and the benefits of cycling when you are fasting and cycling when your bellies are full.
a) Cycling With an Empty Stomach
First things first, after intermittent fasting that lasts for about 12-15 hours from the time you have your last meal (dinner), your body ends up using it as fuel for the next day’s work out. And the interesting fact here is, it uses your body fat energy that helps you shed weight and chubbiness around your belly.
Cycling without any food in your stomach also preps your body to make efficient use of the muscle glycogen storage that already exists within you but fails to work in the best possible way. This allows you to burn more fat and calories than a routine workout when you start the day by having a proper breakfast.
Once you get habituated to going for intense cycling sessions in the morning without binging solid foods, your body gradually adapts. It even works in your weight loss regime post the workout.
The additional perks include the formation of new muscle tissues, improving bone quality, promoting longevity as well helping you burn more fat in less time.
Can You Consume Liquids If Not Solid Foods?
Yes! You can. It’s okay to consume water, tea, or black coffee in moderate amounts which does not seem to have much impact on the benefits stated above.
In fact, a shot of espresso can give you an instant boost to burn fat faster via encouraging fat metabolism and retaining muscle glycogen.
For Whom is it Recommended?
Ride empty stomach when your ultimate goal is weight loss, otherwise, feel free to pass on this one.
b) Cycling After a Light Breakfast
Now that you have decided to consume a wholesome breakfast, you should totally go for it! Plus, a pre-ride meal in the morning has numerous health benefits attached to it. But remember to not feel stuff yourself and get full instead, eat a normal amount that does not make you feel hungry during the ride.
A meal that has a proper balance of carbs and protein is always a wise combination to get started with for you to be able to perform with utmost strength and endurance.
Protein helps you in repairing the damaged muscles while on the other hand carbohydrates keep you spinning for long hours by keeping your energy levels always up.
Also, it’s a good practice to have your meal an hour or two prior to when you are ready to start your cycling session. It will help the food settle down without making you feel heavy on the go.
Solid Food Options to Consume Before Going Out for a Spin
- Peanut Butter Sandwich
- Gluten Free Pasta
- Pan Cakes
Liquid Food Options Before Going Out for a Spin
- Banana Smoothie
- Beetroot Juice
- Black Coffee
- Coconut Water
Snacking Options While You Are on The Go
Carrying a quick bite on your way out never hurts. Especially when you have plans to be on the roads for more than an hour or so. Always keep your options ready with you whenever you feel the urge to stop and munch a little something.
Food options like nuts and energy bars are a great source of giving you instant energy upshots. Also, consuming energy bars are a great way to release energy for you to keep paddling without feeling fatigued, these usually help you with high endurance rides.
Also, don’t forget to carry your sipper with you for all your cycling workouts. You shouldn’t be feeling dehydrated at any point in time with all the solid food you consume throughout the day.
Mid & Last Meals of The Day – Lunch & Dinner
Well, the reason they are clubbed together is that you can interchange the food items or include them in both of the meals at your convenience. Post-workout meals are what usually contribute to the recovery of your body after an intense cycling session. It relaxes your tensed and sore muscles and makes your body prepared for the next day’s hustle.
Try opting for a meal that is rich in carbohydrates and proteins to keep you full as well as something that gets digested faster. Make sure to fuel your body well and give it the best of both worlds by including carbs and proteins in abundance.
Here are a few solid food options for a healthy dinner
- Green Veggies
- Baked Potato
- Scrambled Eggs
Only cycling and no proper diet can have little to even no impact, no matter how hard you try.
So why not balance the two integral elements for the glory of your physical health?