Kevin Benkenstein is known for his adventurous spirit and epic mountain bike stories. He shares nutritional insight into what it takes to do a 162km race.
It seems like something everyone says but it is true. Stick to the foods that you know and your body (and tummy) will react much better than if you give it many new tastes on race day
Real food wins
Over such a long ride it is important to keep your blood sugar levels steady which is much easier when you eat whole foods rather than refined drinks and sweets. Stick to natural energy bars early in the race and save the sweet stuff for when you need a kick in the final quarter.
Hydration is key, and you should be drinking 400-500ml per hour of water to stay well hydrated, no more is needed and is as dangerous as dehydration
Eat from the start
Waiting until you are hungry or tired to eat is an easy mistake to make. Rather eat a little every 40min than waiting for the hunger to strike – it is too late then
Decide what your race fuel will be and eat that on your training rides, this will allow you to feel confident come race day and make sure you know your plan from trial and error
If you really do ‘bonk’ there is no ambulance like the red ambulance – Coca Cola fixes all things when you have no energy left