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I am wondering if anyone has any tips, suggestions or general perspectives on feeling super hungry after hard rides. I find after doing a lot of climbing or otherwise hard intervals I am REALLY hungry the next day.

I've been trying to eat a good amount of healthy food after these harder rides, while not overeating, but still sometimes wind up feeling really worked and starving and just want to eat everything that isn't nailed down the next day. Most recent occurrence was last night, when I wound up eating 3 or 4 PB&J sandwiches in addition to 3 cliff/power bars and a little yogurt. Either really freaking hungry or a binge, depending on how you choose to look at things... People say you need to eat, but I'm pretty sure I consumed over 4500 calories for the whole day, which seems excessive...

For reference, I am new to racing; CAT 5, 6 feet, weight around 168-170ish. I would describe my build as medium. I don't have a big chest and don't put on upper body muscle real easily. I don't put on weight as quickly as some, but definitely have to watch what I eat and definitely like to weigh less. I have gained/lost the same 5 pounds a few times over the last 6 months, but haven't been able to sustain the lower weight.

I do have some issues around food and weight (don't most cyclists?) and until now had assumed the struggle was more psychological than anything else, but am wondering if there is more to it than that and thought I would ask if anyone else has experienced this and has figured out how to address it in terms of tangible factors like amount/type of food eaten, training load, rest, etc...
 

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waterproof*
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fat and protein. most riders over-do carbs and simple starches.

this month's Bicycling mag has a really good article on this.
 

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I agree with Creaky--it's not about the moment of starvation, it's about the overall picture of your diet. You should keep things balanced and planned to the point that you don't get to the crisis point where 4 PB&Js is the only answer your body will accept. (And yeah, I've been there) Healthy fats are critical, as are lean proteins. I think the Bicycling article is a bit suspect at points, but it's probably as good a place as any to start. If you have money to spend, put off the next bike "upgrade" and get a consultation with a nutritionist instead.

However, once things are under control, steamed veggies and/or a light, broth-based soup are great for filling up and taking the edge off.
 

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I have taken my focus a bit off my weight and put it more on performance. I weight a bit more at the moment, but my performance is much better. So maybe instead of asking your scale what it thinks, instead ask your power meter, or you GPS or computer. Are you getting faster? If so, then don't obsess about the weight. 170 lbs for 6ft is not too shabby.

But to directly answer your question, have you tried fiber drinks? They halp me get through the day without feeling as hungry.
 

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If you want to go pro and be one of the top climbers in the country, you'll just have to get used to that hungry feeling. Don't even consider a snack while at the movies. But if you are anyone else its important to be happy, and not walking around with a case of the hangries. Eat well, feel good, be happy. Then go out and stomp the pedals.
 

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Hot tea helps me squelch physical hunger pangs when my body thinks it needs more, but it's had all it should have.

Sometimes my body doesn't decide it is hungry until I lay down to sleep at night. When that happens, and I've already had enough to eat that day, I down a bottle of water and try to fall asleep before the trick is up!

As for the mental craving.... the tea/water does nothing for that. But more cycling does!
 

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Val_Garou said:
If you have money to spend, put off the next bike "upgrade" and get a consultation with a nutritionist instead.

If you try a little, you might get your insurance company to cover a nutrionist. I went last week and I didn't even pay a copay. Insurance companies tend to be very eager to cover a) preventative health care (a little cost now saves them a big bill later) and b) anyone who isn't an MC (costs are considerably lower). A nutrition/dietition is both of these.
 

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As someone else said, fiber can really work. A very small snack like a box of raisins and a bottle of water with a scoop of fiber and I don't feel hungry for a good while.

At your height and weight it might be better to eat another small healthy meal.

Good luck.
 

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Zipp0 said:
I have taken my focus a bit off my weight and put it more on performance. I weight a bit more at the moment, but my performance is much better. So maybe instead of asking your scale what it thinks, instead ask your power meter, or you GPS or computer. Are you getting faster? If so, then don't obsess about the weight. 170 lbs for 6ft is not too shabby.
Same here put on about 22lbs and while my p/w went down at first my power has kept on creeping up and now l am at the same p/w as before and still improving but the best thing is my new power on the flats just ripps went from 220w to 290w amazing what your body will do when you force it to addapt to a hard training block and feed it accordingly, all those years of starving myself and doing my head in trying to maintain a low weight year round what a waste of talant, now l am struggleing to maintain my new weight with all the extra energy l am expending when training (my old 1hr power is my new 3hr power) and constanly eat to keep up to the training plan so dropping 6-8lbs before target events will be a sinch and than after wards l can eat like a normal human knowing l won't get FAT, l guess the motto of the story is eat WELL before, during and imediatly after long or hard rides and when not riding my rule is if l eat something than l move, be it walk the dog clean the house or potter in the yard or go window shopping/ visit friends etc but food wise 2.2 lbs of pumpkin soup is like 300k/cal so l dare you to eat all that and try to eat more l doubt you will want to and 300k/cal damn l burn that while getting my kit ready for a long day in the saddle. Eat well train hard and be merry:thumbsup:
 

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slimjw said:
Most recent occurrence was last night, when I wound up eating 3 or 4 PB&J sandwiches in addition to 3 cliff/power bars and a little yogurt. Either really freaking hungry or a binge, depending on how you choose to look at things... .
you forgot gluttony.

but.....it makes my bowl of cereal that i felt guitly for last night look pretty good.
 

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I think it's a psychological effect of your brain telling you to "load up" on food after heavy workouts, a trait in your genes that probably dates back to the caveman days where storage of fat in your body is meant for survival. When you burn calories and excess fat in your workouts your brain is telling you to replace them because they are essential to your survival during famine periods.

This usually happens to me at the beginning of the season after I taken around two months off of riding during the winter season. Half way into the season, the desire to eat everything in the pantry decreases and I think my brain is starting to get the hint... until next season.
 
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