“We train like rocky, sleep like a baby and eat like a lion”. We all know the in’s and out’s when it comes to training or bike set up, but do we also know how to fuel or body? Anneke Beerten is not only an extremely fast and successful racer, she also has a diploma in sports nutrition and was only too happy to give us some valuable advices about nutrition.
We spend a lot of money on our bikes and have mechanics that help us out. We train like crazy and some have coaches
telling us what to do. But how many of you have a nutritionist? Who knows what they have to give the body after a hard session in the gym smashing weights or when you come of the bike after a couple of hours riding in the heat.
Did you know that by losing 4% of your hydration your performance will decrease around 20 to 30%! After losing over 5% of your body fluid you will get that annoying headache! 8 years ago I looked for help and found that help from a nutritionist. I’m not going to lie, it opened my eyes about food and nutrition and I decided to study Sport and Nutrition myself, passing my exams last year. Everybody’s body is different and everybody has their own preferences. I am going to give you a couple of do’s and don’ts that will help you fuel your body in the correct way on a long Enduro day!
The human body is made up of 60% water! Water takes care of our temperature, transports all our blood and drains all our toxins. Make sure you drink a lot the day before you race, not just water but also some fruit juice with some fruit sugar and carbohydrates to build a little buffer. Make sure on race day that you use a Isotonic sport drink to get the right amount of carbs and salt into your body. When it’s hot you can also look at a sports drink with some extra magnesium, to avoid cramps.
Gels / Energy bars:
Sometimes I see riders at the start of an Enduro race squeezing a energy gel into their mouth! I would NOT recommend doing this, there is so much sugar in a gel that the body gets an immediately sugar rush. Your blood sugar level will go through the roof and soon after you will get a good rebound effect with less energy. It’s way better for the body to start of with something easier to digest like a banana, a piece of cake or a fruity energy bar. The energy gels are perfect when you are over halfway through your race or before you just drop down into that last stage of the day. Keep eating during the long enduro day even when you are not hungry…. You’re body needs energy to keep pushing the pedals. Make sure to take a good variety of products in your backpack, banana’s, cakes, energy bars, proteins (I like to take some nuts on a long day) gels and I personally like to eat a small candy bar towards the end of my race.
Its important to refuel your body right after training or racing, the best would be between 20 to 30 mins after finishing. For an optimal recovery it is good to combine carbs with protein. This way the protein gets absorbed faster into your blood and muscles.
The body can absorb a max of 30 grams of protein in 3 hours. Personally I like to make a protein shake with 30 grams of Whey protein and mix it with any kind of fruit juice (with the exception of apple juice, too much sugar and a high risk of diarrhea). Also refill your carbs by eating whole wheat pasta with veggies. Choose whole wheat because this contains more vitamins and antioxidants. And last but not least don’t forget your fat cells, and i’m not referring to the bag of chips. Products like nuts, avocado and olive oil are good and the right source.
If you want to know more about Anneke visit: annekebeerten.com
Words: Anneke Beerten | Pictures:Diverse
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