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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am going to ride a century on Saturday and another on Sunday and was looking to use HEED as my sports drink. However I read that it is for rides of 2 hours or less. Each of my rides are pure pleasure rides. Nice easy pace. For an easy paced ride would eating regularly and using HEED and water suffice or should I use something like Hammer Nutrition's Perpetuem or Sustained Energy?
 

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seattle said:
I am going to ride a century on Saturday and another on Sunday and was looking to use HEED as my sports drink. However I read that it is for rides of 2 hours or less. Each of my rides are pure pleasure rides. Nice easy pace. For an easy paced ride would eating regularly and using HEED and water suffice or should I use something like Hammer Nutrition's Perpetuem or Sustained Energy?
It's not a great idea to try new stuff on a long ride. As long as you manage it correctly, pure sugar can work for hours and hours, so this "HEED is only good for 2 hours or less" stuff is nonsense. It's more nonsense in that you don't usually need any calories for rides shorter than 90 minutes, leaving only a 30 minute window for HEED use, which is pure bull. Also note that the prepared energy foods you're looking at cost far more than real food, and offer nothing more than convenience for that cost.

For myself, I much more enjoy eating real food on long rides. It tastes better, and research has shown that a mix of carbs absorbs faster than a single carb food (typical of many "energy foods"). I eat fig bars, salted mixed nuts, and tasty Archway raisin oatmeal cookies, plus a Coke at the break. For 110 or so miles, I consume about 700 calories while riding, and another 700 or so at the mid-ride break. If the weather is going to be warm enough to ride in short sleeves, I add table salt and lite salt to make sure I get enough electrolytes.
 

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I've used HEED for 8 hour races and long training rides. I like it a lot. I have heard of a few people getting an upset stomach from it but it's great for me. Perpetuem tastes nasty to me but doesn't cause me any stomach upset, so I will use it if that is what is available. You may like it, lots of ultra folk do. There is also "Spiz" but it comes in chocolate and there is no way I am going to be glugging down warm chocolate goo during a ride. Even the flavored HEED doesn't have much taste and the unflavored stuff really doesn't taste like anything.... perfect.

HEED doesn't have any protein and with that much riding you may find that you want a small amount. You can get that from your regular food- sandwich with a slice of cheese or two. Don't get a mega-meat mound sandwich- you'll cramp up or spew.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for your advice. I am still going to use the HEED and water combo. I plan on using fig bars and bagels, bananas, but not sure what to carry for protein since I won't always be near a market.
 

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There should be plenty of choices for food at rest stops if it's an organized century...so my suggestion is to just carry some basic stuff with you in case you feel the "Bonk" coming on at which time you can stop for a minute suck down some GU packets (what ever brand you use) and get to the next rest stop.

BTW...if you don't want to purchase GU packets...the little honey packets you see at restaurants work just as well and are a natural source of sugar for a whole lot less...go to Cost-co and purchase a big box of them. They also tend to be pretty easy on the stomach.

For long rides like that make sure you eat some real food along the way...some of which you mentioned (figs, bananas, etc). The PBJ idea is also a good one (Protein, fats and carbs all in one).

For hydration....take a swig of water every 15 minutes or so whether you are thirsty or not. That will keep you hydrated longer through the ride, then fill the bottles up at rest stops. You should be going through a 24oz bottle every hour at a minimum so figure 5-7 bottles of water during a century and even at that you will likely be a bit dehydrated at the end.

Also if you are a "salt sweater"...i.e. sweat out a lot of salt during workouts (if you see salt stains on your jersey or shorts after a hard workout, that's your sign)...you might bring along some salt tablets, drinks with lots of sodium or salty foods like saltines to make sure you keep your electrolyte levels up.

Overall...take your time, ride your own pace and don't get suckered into jumping wheels and going faster than you want because you can draft/wheelsuck off somebody/group. If you take your time, ride your own pace, you will be just fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Wookiebiker said:
There should be plenty of choices for food at rest stops if it's an organized century...so my suggestion is to just carry some basic stuff with you in case you feel the "Bonk" coming on at which time you can stop for a minute suck down some GU packets (what ever brand you use) and get to the next rest stop.

BTW...if you don't want to purchase GU packets...the little honey packets you see at restaurants work just as well and are a natural source of sugar for a whole lot less...go to Cost-co and purchase a big box of them. They also tend to be pretty easy on the stomach.

For long rides like that make sure you eat some real food along the way...some of which you mentioned (figs, bananas, etc). The PBJ idea is also a good one (Protein, fats and carbs all in one).

For hydration....take a swig of water every 15 minutes or so whether you are thirsty or not. That will keep you hydrated longer through the ride, then fill the bottles up at rest stops. You should be going through a 24oz bottle every hour at a minimum so figure 5-7 bottles of water during a century and even at that you will likely be a bit dehydrated at the end.

Also if you are a "salt sweater"...i.e. sweat out a lot of salt during workouts (if you see salt stains on your jersey or shorts after a hard workout, that's your sign)...you might bring along some salt tablets, drinks with lots of sodium or salty foods like saltines to make sure you keep your electrolyte levels up.

Overall...take your time, ride your own pace and don't get suckered into jumping wheels and going faster than you want because you can draft/wheelsuck off somebody/group. If you take your time, ride your own pace, you will be just fine.
Wookiebiker:
I too am a "salt sweater". Like I said earlier that I am going to be using HEED as my electrolyte replacement, but I was wondering if this would be enough. How much salt tablets do you normally take?
When I was working construction 25 years ago in Maryland, it would get very hot and humid and we would take a tablet an hour because we sweat so much.
 

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You guys worry about what to eat way too much.

Our Saturday/Sunday group training rides are 140 km at close to race pace. At 110 km we stop for coffee/pop and to pick up those who do a 100 km route. Two water bottles and a coffee are sufficient for the 4 to 4.5 hours it takes. A gel pack in the back pocket in case of emergencies. That seems to be the norm on this ride.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toronto_Donut_Ride
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
pretender said:
Hammer recommends two to three pills of Endurolyte per hour. One scoop of Heed has roughly the equivalent amount of electrolytes.

I think you'd be fine with two to three scoops of Heed in 25 oz water per hour. If it's exceptionally hot, maybe one or two extra Endurolytes, but no more than 30 oz water per hour.

http://www.hammernutrition.com/za/H...EXPERTS&OMI=&AMI=&RETURN_TEXT=Ask the Experts
Thanks for the info!
I checked the link and went to the Enduolytes sales page and the first two sentences of the "benefits" explained exactly what happened to me last Wednesday. Man was I hurting. I only had Gatorade available at the time. Thats why I am really interested in getting the proper hydration/nutrition for my long ride coming up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
ewitz said:
You guys worry about what to eat way too much.

Our Saturday/Sunday group training rides are 140 km at close to race pace. At 110 km we stop for coffee/pop and to pick up those who do a 100 km route. Two water bottles and a coffee are sufficient for the 4 to 4.5 hours it takes. A gel pack in the back pocket in case of emergencies. That seems to be the norm on this ride.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toronto_Donut_Ride
I appreciate your viewpoint.
I am a little concerned because I am getting back on the bike after a couple of years of no riding. I have gained a lot of weight and I slowed way down and cramped up on my last ride.
So iam trying somethings a little differently until I return to shape.
 

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seattle said:
Thanks for the info!
I checked the link and went to the Enduolytes sales page and the first two sentences of the "benefits" explained exactly what happened to me last Wednesday. Man was I hurting. I only had Gatorade available at the time. Thats why I am really interested in getting the proper hydration/nutrition for my long ride coming up.
Well, don't expect any magic. You still need to be fit and heat-acclimated. Also, Gatorade has electrolytes too, you realize?
 

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There is no way I could do a fast 4.5 hour ride on two water bottles and a coffee. Not even one of those sugar-laden Starbucks monstrosities. If you can do 4.5 hours with no calories that's great. But I don't think that is normal. Most people seem to need something for rides longer than an hour or two. It seems to be a poor recommendation to make.

Salt needs also vary between individuals. Many don't need anything. Some need more than what's in Endurolytes. I'm one of them. I got to feel really bad on a lot of rides before I figured it out.

Instead of following to blanket recommendations, you need to think about how you are feeling, read up on some symptoms, and experiment on yourself.
 
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