What To Eat Before a Long Bike Ride?

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When it comes to endurance riding, preparation is important, especially in terms of nutrition, and to check the cycling nutrition during ride. Starting your ride or event with optimally spurred muscles is the easiest thing users could do to perform physically for just an extended number of hours for any ride or event that lasts longer than 90 minutes. And a decent breakfast is insufficient – ideally, preparation should start a day or two before a large event, and a few additional snacks or a pizza lunch will not be enough. According to noted former ultramarathon rider and boulder, colorado-based coach John Hughes, “Nutrition, not particularly training, is the limiting element in endurance cycling.”

Let’s have a look at what to eat before a long bike ride.

2-3 Days Before The Ride

If you are riding in an activity or training session that will last longer than two to three hours, you should begin your nutrition preparation two to three days before the show to assist carbohydrate-load the muscles, and for that, you should know what to eat while cycling. It doesn’t have to be complicated; just aiming for five to six carbohydrate-rich meals each day centered on rice, bread, pasta, fruit, and cereals can assist in completely fill your muscles with glucose in the form of glycogen.

 If you find it difficult to consume this large amount of carbohydrate, another option is to include a couple of extra carbohydrate-rich drinks in the form of low-fat fruit smoothies, juice, or shakes so you can drink your extra carbs, which are far less likely to leave you feeling heavy and bloated if you are not used to eating a lot, specially that falls under the norm and listing of what to eat before a century ride.

1 Day Before The Ride

Let’s have a look at the cycling nutrition for long rides. This is where things start to get a bit more serious, particularly if your ride is a race or competition where your muscles will be working hard for a lengthy amount of time. Again, five to six carbohydrate-rich meals every two to three hours will provide you with a solid foundation. It is not difficult to move your attention to carbohydrate-rich meals — simple adjustments like breakfast cereal instead of eggs in the morning or pasta or rice-based meal for both lunch and dinner instead of sandwiches or meat and veggies can readily shift your fuel consumption from protein to carbohydrate. Following that, be sure to eat a carbohydrate-rich snack in between your major meals. Thus it is very important to know how to prepare for a long bike ride. Low-fat fruit smoothies, bagels, low-fat muffins or banana bread, raisin toast, sandwiches, or toast are all good alternatives.

All of these meals digest fast yet provide a considerable glucose load to your muscles. Another simple method for increasing your fuel reserves is to drink a glass of 100% fruit juice with both your lunch and supper. The most common method is to eat a low-fat dessert— low-fat ice cream or custard paired with milo or banana are wonderful options. When you ask what to eat the night before a bike race, you should consider that these easy additions and adjustments can provide you with an additional 200-300g of carbohydrates the day before your race; a little more attention to carbs is well worth it. These are also wonderful answers to what to eat before an early morning bike ride. While a few days of carbohydrate-rich meals will help your fuel storage, fluid loading does not have the same impact. Because the kidneys are incredibly adept at keeping fluid balance in the body, drinking more and more is not the ideal choice; not only will your body eliminate any excess, but you will also likely be up half the night urinating given that you don’t know what to eat the night before a long bike ride. So, the day before a large ride just makes sure you have enough fluid, which is likely to be two to three liters depending on your body size. As a general guideline, an active adult needs two liters of fluid, plus an additional 500-1000ML for every hour of exercise. If you have cramping, you might try adding an electrolyte replacement to your water bottles, which may cause the body to retain a bit more fluid than normal – eight to twelve hours before a race is a good period for this. These are what to eat on long bike rides.


It is very important to know what to eat before a bike race. The carbohydrate requirements of professional Tour de France riders have been observed to range between 8 and 11g per kilogram body weight (480-660g carbohydrate for a 60kg cyclist). At this level, planning is critical since regular ‘grazing’ is the only method for riders to fulfill high-calorie demands and recover muscle glycogen. Recreational cyclists who exercise at a moderately high-level need 5-8g carbohydrate per kilogram body weight on a daily basis.

How Long The Rider Should Wait To Get On The Bicycle After Having The Meal?

If you’re reading this, you already know what is a long bike ride. Although we cannot give you tips for long bike rides, we will surely provide you with the info on what to eat before a long bike ride. Everyone’s degree of comfort with eating around exercise varies, so it’s vital to experiment to find out what works best for you. Allow 2-4 hours before cycling after a bigger meal to allow for digestion, and 30 minutes to 2 hours after a smaller snack.

Consider the Glycaemic Index (GI) of carbohydrates: the GI of a meal indicates how rapidly it is digested and broken down into glucose. Lower GI foods provide a delayed release of energy and should be the major emphasis of training meals. High GI meals are rapidly converted to glucose and consequently to usable energy. These are excellent choices for short snacks before, during, or after exercise, as well as for ‘carbohydrate loading.’

What Can a Biker Consume While on the Road?

Too many bikers ignore the importance of carbohydrate consumption when riding. After all, you can’t bring a dish of spaghetti with you. However, spaghetti is the incorrect form of carbohydrate to consider. Instead, when riding, you need quick-release carbohydrates. Wanna know what to eat before a 100-mile bike ride?

The quantity of carbohydrates you need to ingest is determined on the length of your exercise. For rides lasting more than 2.5 hours, 90 grams of carbohydrates should be ingested throughout the ride, as opposed to 30 grams or fewer for exercises lasting 30 minutes to an hour.

Carbohydrate gels and carb-rich mouth rinses have been developed by brands such as science in sport for a rapid burst of energy throughout your bike. However, keep in mind that these solutions aren’t intended for long-distance travel. There are many snacks to eat before a bike race. Let’s look at some of the best from the best snacks for long bike rides. If you’re an endurance biker, the following quick-release carbohydrate snacks should be stashed in your mesh pockets:

  • Banana (high in carbs)
  • A trail mix (high in healthy fats, protein, and concentrated carbs)
  • A sandwich with peanut butter and jelly (high in protein, carbs, and healthy fats)
  • Cubes of cheese (high in protein and healthy fats)

The energy bar is another fantastic food for riders. Choose a gluten-free energy bar like the larabar if you’re looking for a gluten-free cycling snack. Alternatively, you may make your own cycling energy bars with the ideal carbohydrate-to-fat-to-protein ratio for your nutritional requirements.

What Can You Eat After the Finish Line?

You may have crossed the finish line, but that doesn’t mean your cycling nutrition journey is over if you don’t prepare for a long bike ride. When you eat the correct meals after your exercise, what to eat after a long bike ride, the probability of injury diminishes, muscle healing accelerates, and nutrients restore to normal levels quicker.

Cycling nutrition after a race should include a high-carbohydrate, high-protein lunch. If you want to exercise again in 8 hours or less, be sure to ingest carbs shortly after the event. Even if you want to rest the following day, drink 1 to 2 grams of carbohydrates per kilogram of body weight per hour during the first 4 hours after riding.

After you bike, be sure you consume protein to help with muscle rehabilitation. The longer your healing time, the longer you can go without eating protein. However, if you want to resume exercising shortly after your ride, be sure to ingest at least 20 g of protein within 3 hours for maximum muscle recovery.

Your cycling exercise is strenuous, but your nutrition plan does not have to be. Follow this cycling nutrition guide to maintain focus on the finish line today and invigorated to do it everything again tomorrow and thus maintain your cyclist diet plan.


Finally, and most significantly, although planning is essential for any long ride and cycling food while riding, just because you ate well the day before does not mean you can skip breakfast, no matter how early it is. The overnight fast of eight to twelve hours implies that your liver’s fuel reserves have been reduced, and replenishing them is critical to ensure optimum fuel delivery to the muscles across many hours. The best pre-ride meal options are easily digestible but include both carbohydrates and protein to ensure gradual fuel release to the muscles, avoiding the glucose high and subsequent low that can accompany a high carbohydrate meal such as bananas, cereal, or protein-deficient energy bars. Cereal & milk, toast with peanut butter, liquid meal drinks, or even a toasted sandwich if you can stomach it are all good protein and carbohydrate alternatives. Hopefully, we were able quite to answer the question “what to eat before a long bike ride?”

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