Nutrition in longer events



  • Stick a double bottle holder off the back of your saddle, that gives you 4 bottles, 5 if you use a aero bottle between your tri bars, thats  enough liquid for over 4 hours even in the heat of Dubai. One gel every 45 mins has got me through all my long bike rides, thats 7 gels which will easily fit in a bento box. Others tape them to the cross tube, pringle tubes are occasionally taped to bars as well! On a IM ist not necessary to carry all this stuff you get given drinks, gels, bananas etc at the aid stations. 

  • Cake and coffee stops destroy the idea of a training ride tho
  • PSC wrote (see)

    here is the bento box you need...


    Excellent. I can also put my picnic blanket inimage

  • Nice one SS I'll look out for you on the bike route, would be like a moving feed stationimage
  • as DD says, a 2 bottle unit behind the bars is useful.
    I've got a bontrager thing - plastic thingy at about £35.

    for a long ride, I carry 2-3  bottles - high 5 / torq, and high 5 zero. 
    I carry 1-2 packs of high 5 powder and stop at a shop after 2-3 hours and refill.

    In training I do maltloaf, bananas, maybe an apple as solid food on the hour.
    I do some gels as well as needed.  Gets expensive though

    Malt loaf in bento box, gels and refil powder etc in pockets or canister in bottle cage.

    In an IM race,
    I have 3 bottles, (1 on the frame of sports drink, 2 behind the saddle - one high 5 zero, one of 10+ gels in a bottle, (and a little water).
    drink a bike bottle of sports drink per hour (ish)
    solid food on the hour - maltloaf Iin bento box), bananas picked up from aid stations, even power bars by the end.
    Gels in a bike bottle, (ie 10..) and a swig on 20 / 40 minutes, with a high 5 zero or water chaser,

    pick up extra sports drink / water as you need.

    Simples image

  • I have an x-lab mini wing. Each cage comes with some metal work that fixes to the saddle rail on each side.

  • In addition to my gels in a bottle and my aero bottle on the front, ginger cake. And a cheese sarnie.

  • No idea I've ordered a high 5 race pack and a sis intro pack so I can trial run a few different things.
  • I've just had this thought.

    £700 buys an alloy bike weighing 11kg.
    £1700 buys a carbon bike weighing 10kg

    A litre of water weighs 1kg.

    Take two bottles on the down tubes. Forget the spare bottles behind the saddle. Refill the bottles en route, and add powder sachet if required. We are talking about 8 hours in the saddle so a 3 minute stop is probably a relief.

    Ginger cake, malt loaf, (Christmas cake anyone?), cheese rolls. This is the area that I'm most interested in. What can the stomach handle when it's started to get a bit tight?

  • It is amazing to see expensive and light bikes leaving transition with 4 big bottles of liquid on board. Presumably they can't cope with whats on offer at feed stations.

    I think you need to experiment on your long rides to see what you need. I usually manage one ride early season where I mess up completely and underestimate things massively. It's very interesting to do though - you get to see what it's like to 'bonk' and the appetite you have is amazing.
  • blister..i use ginger cake and fruit cake....i also use  cocktail sausages, mini sausage rolls.......and then a bag of mixed sweets including white mice ( unless hot)...........I drink water, squash and coke.........and take salt tablets for my electrolytes........

  • Blisters your absolutely right, which is why when I race the only liquid on board is in the aero bottle between the tri bars, on training rides I just live with the extra 2.5kg and count it as resistance training. Look at some triathletes prior to a race and you would think they were carrying sufficient food and liquid to scale Everest.

  • I start with:

    • One bottle on the bike (between the arms). No other cages or weight should be necessary.
    • Some gels in pocket
    • A gel in T1 bag (in future may consider a salt tablet too)

    On the bike I take water/sports drink from the aid station at each turn depending how I'm feeling, and try to grab a gel each time too. In the event I miss the gel, fluids are my priority and I can grab one of my gels from the pocket. If towards the end I've grabbed all my gels successfully, there's no need to grab from the stations.

    The run I've tended to avoid gels as in marathons I've suffered some distress previously - can't help but feel, though, that this is where I can improve. If I can take on nutrition better then I'll be able to push through a decent run split.

    You can't replace a day's "FOOD" during an IM. Fortunately you don't have to, and you make up the rest in the pub afterwards.

  • I normally just grab whats in the cupboards for trainng rides ... very rearly stick to the same things.

    Taht way my gut gets used to most things so i have no problem with what they hapen to be handing out on race day.

    On race day I have week mix in an aero bottle and a stronger in a frame bottle then just take what they are handing out.


    I use a bento box for a mix of Gels and bars but quite often just grab what they are handing out 

  • For the 3 lap bike leg in a half ironman I had 9 fig rolls and 3 gels in a little bag on my top tube. 3 fig rolls and 1 gel on each lap.. I would have thought it was a bit much but I ate every scrap! Had me well fuelled for starting the run as well.

  • Also had 2 500ml bottles of high5 zero on the bike and got through all of each bottle... more like a food-fest than a race!!

  • Just swam 2500m and got out feeling a bit light headed. I've a feeling that I'm going to be needing a frigging top box not a bento box.

  • Blisters its normal to feel light headed after the swim, after all you have been lying down for a hour or so, happens to all of us.


  • This subject is close to my heart as I bonked at IM Nice in 2011 and DNF'd.image  Combination of issues not helped by a tooth problem and the heat (and probably not enough training, but anyway you learn a lot on days like that...)

    I'm keen to fuel correctly at my next IM. At IMUK later in 2011 coke totally revived me on the run and I sailed through the second half of the (short) run so +1 for flat coke as a pick me up.

    WRT the bike, having read through these posts I have managed to list the following (sorry if I missed anything):

    Gingerbread men
    Baby food
    Malt loaf
    Shot blocs
    Kendall Mint Cake
    Dried fruit
    Fruit cake
    Energy bars
    Mini pork pies
    Mini sausage roll
    Cocktail sausages
    White mice
    Fig rolls

    Its almost a nice family picnic!I guess I need to try some of the stuff on here on my longer rides and see what works best.

    No real point in posting other than to summarise the thread for my own benefit.image


  • I use Nuun or SiS Zero, bananas, banana malt loaves and gels.

    If out and feeling a bit hungry I buy a bottle of water and a bottle of coke and mix the 2.

    In a marathon I ran I used Haribos and their sports drink.

  • Pre Race - 2 bowls of porridge with honey.

    T1 - Bacon, sausage, eggs, toast, tea

    Bike - 5 litres of cytomax plus Flapjack, donuts, pot noodle

    T2 - Pasta with chicken

    Run - bowl of corn flakes, mug of tea.

    Day 2 to 10 - pretty much the same :O)

  • theres gotta be pizza in there too Dave, and rice pud 

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