Food - daily intake

dinyull Posts: 2,979
edited September 2016 in Commuting chat
I've been commuting for a few years now, but this past week my miles have increased a little.

Used to do 2 days of 8 miles each way but due to wife's new job I'm commuting 5 days a week. On top of this I'm on trainerroad 4 days a week and do a 60 mile (road) ride at weekends.

Sat on one of my usual routes I almost bonked and again cycling home last night felt pretty drained of energy.

Just asking what people usually eat during the day to keep energy up without pilling on the lbs.

Usual day is:
porridge for breakfast
tuna/chicken salad, yogurt and apple for lunch
banana mid afternoon snack
dinner is something along the lines of (homemade) curry/lasagne/spag bol/steak chips etc.
no tea/coffee, but drink plenty of water


  • fenix
    fenix Posts: 5,437
    Without weights this isn't going to help you. Some people may be having twice as much porridge, or half as much.

    I'd be suprised if an extra 3 days of commuting has put you over the edge unless you were very much balanced with your calories.
  • iPete
    iPete Posts: 6,076
    I used to have these issues but there was a time when I went hard on every ride.
    Adapt to ride hard/easy days on and off. This way you don't end up progressively more drained through the week.

    Are you following hard trainerroad sessions with recover pace commutes?
  • dinyull
    dinyull Posts: 2,979
    I've just started a new base plan on TR so they aren't "hard" sessions. But yes, I go as easy to and from work as possible.
  • davis
    davis Posts: 2,506
    It would help if you gave an idea of exactly how much you're eating. Is it 50g or 200g or porridge?

    Also probably worth having a go with something like MyFitnessPal or similar, working out your approximate Basal Metabolic Rate, and how much you're actually taking in (I know, you'll say "a plate of lasagne", but is that a 6" plate or a 12" plate piled high?)

    It doesn't sound like you're eating loads, honestly, but you might be 65 years old, really short and skinny, and do a really sedentary job...
    Sometimes parts break. Sometimes you crash. Sometimes it’s your fault.
  • iPete
    iPete Posts: 6,076
    I think you're experiencing what many of us have done when switching up to a longer or 5 day commute. Think I posted the same thread a few years ago!

    No need to over think, up the portions, maybe throw in some healthy snacks and carry an emergency gel/banana/chocolate bar. You'll start to adapt to riding nearly every day.

    Monitor your weight if you're worried about overeating.
  • How hard do you ride the commute?
  • fat daddy
    fat daddy Posts: 2,605
    iPete wrote:
    Monitor your weight if you're worried about overeating.

    ^^^^this ..... if your weight is dropping, then eat more .... if its going up, eat less.

    BUT ... 8 miles it isn't that much, probably 200kcal ... so 400kcal a day for 3 extra days .. it would take you 2.5 weeks to loose a lb of fat at that rate
  • You bonk when you run out of glycogen... you run out of glycogen when you ride hard. Normally you have a storage of about 1-2 hours worth of "hard riding" glycogen. As you slow, your body uses a mix of glycogen and fat as fuel... you typically have anough fat to keep you going for a few days without ever stopping. The secret to avoid the bonk is to learn to ride mainly on fat or to keep the supply of sugars up with bars/gels/cake etc... the former is the better way of doing it, without distroying your pancreas.
    I can't ride hard on my way to work and back, so have to choose one of the two (normally prefer the morning)... if I want to ride hard on my way back too, then I need some carbs mid afternoon on top of my usual lunch

    Hope it helps
    left the forum March 2023
  • dinyull
    dinyull Posts: 2,979
    How hard do you ride the commute?

    Not very. I know that's not scientific, but I don't use the HRM for commuting....I guess I could though.
  • The banana mid afternoon should be replaced with something more substantial, carbohydratw but slow release. Yoghurt and muesli would be good if you want something healthy.

    Bananas are high give and therefore produce sugar/insulin spike. Might be you're on a post sugar low.

    Just a thought
  • MrSweary
    MrSweary Posts: 1,699
    What made the difference for me from feeling constantly fatigued by commuting to feeling ok was moving from having porridge with blueberries and a dash of honey for brekkie to having greek yoghurt with blueberries and a dash of honey! A small bowl generally keeps me going until lunch and on top I don't seem to get post lunch slump now either. I have also lost some weight around the gut which is a nice bonus.

    Also I really notice the difference if I have an electrolyte tab - probably because I sweat so much. Just seems to work.
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  • gbsahne001
    gbsahne001 Posts: 1,973
    I don't eat much more and I usually do 15miles one way and 13miles return; 5 days a week with a 50 - 80 mile ride at the weekend. I think it's just what your body gets used to, also I usually ride in steady and often hard on the way back.