Best way to ingest caffeine on a ride?

rodgers73
rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
edited March 2013 in Road general
Numerous methods, just wondering whats the simplest method -

Energy shot
Pro Plus tablets
Stop for a coffee (assuming you pass a place that sells hot drinks)
Caffeinated gels (do they have much more in than a cup of coffee?)
Couple of Red Bulls in your bidon
Caffeine inhaler (find them on Ebay!)

Or another idea of your choosing...

Comments

  • hipshot
    hipshot Posts: 371
    rodgers73 wrote:
    Numerous methods, just wondering whats the simplest method -

    Energy shot
    Pro Plus tablets
    Stop for a coffee (assuming you pass a place that sells hot drinks)
    Caffeinated gels (do they have much more in than a cup of coffee?)
    Couple of Red Bulls in your bidon
    Caffeine inhaler (find them on Ebay!)

    Or another idea of your choosing...

    Espresso of course. What kind of monster are you?
  • rodgers73
    rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
    One planning a ride that wont take me near many cafes! :-)
  • danlikesbikes
    danlikesbikes Posts: 3,898
    Dont go in use the drive thru
    Pain hurts much less if its topped off with beating your mates to top of a climb.
  • danlikesbikes
    danlikesbikes Posts: 3,898
    Sorry for a more serious answer you can't go wrong with these gels https://guenergy.com/store/guenergygel- ... l.html/#35 they are not the cheapest but they are very good.

    Mint choc tastes like after eights
    choc outrage - just like thick chic
    Espresso love - just like an espresso

    If you look around you can often find them on offer cheaper than their own website
    Pain hurts much less if its topped off with beating your mates to top of a climb.
  • marcusjb
    marcusjb Posts: 2,412
    I assume you are asking for your London-Edinburgh ride?

    The best advice I can give is to give up caffeine aproximately 3-4 weeks before the event. This will help you sleep better in the lead up, and then on the event, that first coffee will be like rocket fuel.
  • Grill
    Grill Posts: 5,610
    Keep in mind that with excessive caffeine consumption you will "crash". I cut all caffeine out of my diet about a month ago and feel much better for it.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • marcusjb
    marcusjb Posts: 2,412
    It is a very valid point on excessive consumption. Can also cause other issues with heart etc

    However, if you do cut it out prior to a big event, you don't need much to give a big impact. PBP I think I only drank 2 or 3 coffees during the ride. Less than I normally would. But each one gave a boost at the time.

    Caffeine should not be used to try and bypass the dozies though. If you are falling asleep on the bike, then you have to stop and cat nap(even for 10 minutes will make a difference). Caffeine will not work that well and your speed will drop and drop.
  • rodgers73
    rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
    marcusjb wrote:
    I assume you are asking for your London-Edinburgh ride?

    The best advice I can give is to give up caffeine aproximately 3-4 weeks before the event. This will help you sleep better in the lead up, and then on the event, that first coffee will be like rocket fuel.

    Yep, that's right.

    I drink very little caffeine at the moment (on purpose) apart from the occasional Diet Coke and cup of tea when I cant get decaf stuff. I'll go full cold turkey a couple of weeks before the event.

    I just want a boost for the last stretch when I'll be tired and wondered what the best way to do that would be. I'll probably just get a Red Bull or a coffee at a garage TBH. I checked the caffeine content for the gels and they've only got a weedy 50mg in them. I've got some Pro Plus pills but for some reason I don't trust them to deliver.

    Happy with the catnapping - did that last time I did an overnight ride, so I'm familiar with the 10-15 mins snooze time.
  • marcusjb
    marcusjb Posts: 2,412
    I think the London Edinburgh ride has feed stations on it yes? I am sure that they'll have coffees at them.

    It's the most enjoyable way to get your caffeine hit (and take a few minutes off the bike). You're not racing, so it shouldn't slow you down much.

    If you start the event well rested with a good week of getting to bed at a sensible time etc., you will be in good shape for a 2 day event. I'd guess you'll be away at like 6am? 320km(ish) - well I am no speed merchant, and I'd certainly hope to be tucked up in bed by midnight at the latest (I ride a flatter 300km audax in around 15 hours). Gives you another 5 hours of sleep before day 2.

    You'll be fine I am sure.
  • Scotter
    Scotter Posts: 52
    Google "Optimum Health 200mg caffeine tablets"

    They are about the size of those long, thin paracetamol tablets and so nice and easy to swallow.
    One tablet is roughly the same as two and a half cans of Red Bull so they pack a punch! :wink:
  • smoggysteve
    smoggysteve Posts: 2,909
    Why not really fu@k yourself up and eat a packet of pro plus? If you take caffeine tablets or drink coffee its not an energy boost, its a stimulant. eventually you will still get a drop off and the more caffeine you take the harder the fall.

    Also its a diuretic so you will need to drink more as your body tries to clear it out. You can cause kidney problems if you dehydrate yourself from excessive caffeine intake aswell. Not to mention hypertension and heart palpitations, irregular heartbeat etc. If you are going to take any caffeine make sure its used wisely.
  • I find using a pro plus tablet as a suppository is the best way for me to obtain a slow release. Particularly useful on longer club rides. Don't be afraid to pop in two if KOM chasing.
  • smoggysteve
    smoggysteve Posts: 2,909
    I find using a pro plus tablet as a suppository is the best way for me to obtain a slow release. Particularly useful on longer club rides. Don't be afraid to pop in two if KOM chasing.

    How do you manage to talk if you are constantly popping tablets? :D
  • nunowoolmez
    nunowoolmez Posts: 865
    What about setting up some kind of intravenous caffeine drip?
  • rodgers73
    rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
    marcusjb wrote:
    I think the London Edinburgh ride has feed stations on it yes? I am sure that they'll have coffees at them.

    It's the most enjoyable way to get your caffeine hit (and take a few minutes off the bike). You're not racing, so it shouldn't slow you down much.

    If you start the event well rested with a good week of getting to bed at a sensible time etc., you will be in good shape for a 2 day event. I'd guess you'll be away at like 6am? 320km(ish) - well I am no speed merchant, and I'd certainly hope to be tucked up in bed by midnight at the latest (I ride a flatter 300km audax in around 15 hours). Gives you another 5 hours of sleep before day 2.

    You'll be fine I am sure.

    Yes, I think they are every 50 miles. I'm really thinking about the final stretch when I'll be fading. I'm no Red Bull fan so a coffee would be preferable. Just thinking about the possibility of the effects of whatever I drink at the stop wearing off before the finish.

    Start time on day one is 5am and 4am on day two.
  • marcusjb
    marcusjb Posts: 2,412
    Don't stress it. See what happens.

    The adrenaline starts going as you enter the last couple of hours of a long event, so I certainly never get dozy on those last stretches.

    You're travelling pretty much unloaded I guess (they carry your clothes etc. to the sleep stop)? So you should be able to ride pretty quickly. You should be able to get a good sleep for sure.

    You will be fine. Two days of 320ish km will be tough for sure, but a decent night sleep and you'll be fine on day two.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    I find using a pro plus tablet as a suppository is the best way for me to obtain a slow release. Particularly useful on longer club rides. Don't be afraid to pop in two if KOM chasing.

    How do you manage to talk if you are constantly popping tablets? :D

    You didn't read his post properly, did you?
  • andy9964
    andy9964 Posts: 930
    Camelbak, filled with coffee, wear it upside down and use it as an enema.
  • upperoilcan
    upperoilcan Posts: 1,180
    Scotter wrote:
    Google "Optimum Health 200mg caffeine tablets"

    They are about the size of those long, thin paracetamol tablets and so nice and easy to swallow.
    One tablet is roughly the same as two and a half cans of Red Bull so they pack a punch! :wink:

    Dont forget that what goes up must come down.
    Cervelo S5 Ultegra Di2.
  • sheffsimon
    sheffsimon Posts: 1,282
    keef66 wrote:
    I find using a pro plus tablet as a suppository is the best way for me to obtain a slow release. Particularly useful on longer club rides. Don't be afraid to pop in two if KOM chasing.

    How do you manage to talk if you are constantly popping tablets? :D

    You didn't read his post properly, did you?

    I think he did, it just went over your head...
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Ah. I think you're right. :oops:
  • ooermissus
    ooermissus Posts: 811
    its a diuretic so you will need to drink more as your body tries to clear it out.

    Myth.
  • ooermissus wrote:
    its a diuretic so you will need to drink more as your body tries to clear it out.

    Myth.

    I think you're slightly mistaken.

    Caffeine is a slight diuretic. However, the diuretic effect of drinking a cup of coffee is outweighed by the water in the cup of coffee itself. Therefore it's a myth that a cup of coffee won't hydrate you, when you're hungover for example. Same goes for a pint of lager.

    If you're going to pop a caffeine tablet, you may need to take on a little bit of extra water to account for the diuretic effect, but you'll need to take on a lot more extra fluids anyway because presumably you'll be sweating more because you're working harder for longer.

    So, to sum up, SmoggySteve smells of wet wellies.
  • ooermissus
    ooermissus Posts: 811
    Maybe. Though I think there's not conclusive evidence that a caffeinated drink has any more of a diuretic effect that water, except at very high doses.
  • smoggysteve
    smoggysteve Posts: 2,909
    keef66 wrote:
    I find using a pro plus tablet as a suppository is the best way for me to obtain a slow release. Particularly useful on longer club rides. Don't be afraid to pop in two if KOM chasing.

    How do you manage to talk if you are constantly popping tablets? :D

    You didn't read his post properly, did you?

    Mmm shall I play your game???? Yeah !!! YES I DID
  • rodgers73
    rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
    marcusjb wrote:
    Don't stress it. See what happens.

    The adrenaline starts going as you enter the last couple of hours of a long event, so I certainly never get dozy on those last stretches.

    You're travelling pretty much unloaded I guess (they carry your clothes etc. to the sleep stop)? So you should be able to ride pretty quickly. You should be able to get a good sleep for sure.

    You will be fine. Two days of 320ish km will be tough for sure, but a decent night sleep and you'll be fine on day two.

    Wise words I'm sure - I bow to your experience
  • rodgers73
    rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
    ooermissus wrote:
    Maybe. Though I think there's not conclusive evidence that a caffeinated drink has any more of a diuretic effect that water, except at very high doses.

    If I drink a cup of tea and a Diet Coke during the day at work I get a headache and have a mouth as dry as dust. Urine colour is pretty dark too. If I just drink water I don't get any of those symptoms - can't help feeling caffeine IS at work there...