Nutrition plan for a Sportive

The Mountain Fuel system was originally designed for Ultra endurance racers so has to be energy dense, very easy on the stomach and also replenish your muscles so that you wold be able to not only race a long way but be able to do this day after day in a multi stage race. Tried and tested now with some of the world’s best runners as paying customers so you can be rest assured whether you use the system or even just some of the products they will help you get the very best form your Sportive ride.

A sportive is a great day out,  it’s not (officially) a race although many of us do enjoy using it as an opportunity to see how well we can go over a certain distance. However, whether we are pushing ourselves or just enjoying the ride we can enjoy the whole experience more if we get our fuelling right.

General diet
Eat as you normally would (unless of course you have a rubbish diet of processed and fast food!) in the build up and drink plenty of water to ensure you are fully hydrated.

To ensure you wake up ready to go you could take a Night Fuel, a hot chocolate style drink that feeds your muscles while yo sleep with carbohydrates, protein and minerals.

Morning of the event
Avoid a ‘heavy on the stomach’ and large breakfast – we mean fry ups, too large a bowl of porridge etc, especially if it’s an early start. Having too much in your stomach is not going to help you when you start pedalling.  Go for a calorific but easy to absorb breakfast, a small bowl of porridge along with a boiled egg, or poached egg and wholemeal toast; or if you want something lighter but is energy dense then a sachet Morning Fuel (with water or milk) which you could also have with a banana and/or some seeds. Or simply have a FeelGoodBar as they are energy dense yet light on the stomach and are very nutritious.

You can also sip an energy fuel just after breakfast and on the way to the start line too.

During the ride
Less is more when it comes to a Sportive as you have aid stations on the route so you only need to carry your preferred fuel.

We’d suggest allowing an energy fuel per two hours which also contains minerals (electrolytes) to ensure you are hydrated. In addition to this you could nibble on one of our new FeelGoodBars, these are not a standard flapjack (there is no butter or syrup) these are the most nutritious and tasty bars you can eat on a ride and they don’t require sluicing down with water (which is a waste of your drink) as they crumble and melt in your mouth without the need to chew for ages. Packing 360+kcal in a small they will keep you going for literally hours.

If there is a section where you feel you want to give it some oomph or are facing some hills then our unique Sports Jellies, think sports gel, but without the sticky, sickly taste are perfect. The Sports Jelly is like a drinkable jelly in convenient gel wrapper, they are refreshing, used by Chrohns and IBS sufferers (as testament to how easy on the stomach they are) and you really look forward to having them, tasty (but not strong) and no need to have with water as they are isotonic and also contain electrolytes.

For folk who are wishing to push hard then you may want a more structured plan and not relay on stopping to restock at feed stations. For you we’d suggest;

Allowing 1 sachet per 750ml for every two hours
1 x Sports Jelly per hour
1/2 FeelGoodBar per hour

This equates to 60g of carbohydrate per hour.

The finish
If you’ve had a hard ride we’d suggest getting a Recovery Fuel in at this point, this will not only help you feel better sooner, it will also help offset DOM’s the next day and that painful walk down the stairs may just be that little bit easier!

Good luck and have fun and let us know how you get on with your next event.

If you also compete in Triathlon or enjoy running then look at our other sports nutrition plans

We’d also suggest reading the following articles which discuss how differing weather conditions affect your body during activity Running in the heat and  Running in adverse conditions