help in eating for an athlete

Hello All I just did race this weekend and it did not call well. I am wanting to totally change elements again in my life to be more successful.
some questions to ask about Power Bars

But maybe new way to eat? such as doing smaller meals? eat more frequent during the day.

I do work midnights at my job. often 11pm to 730am

I for many years. never eat during the shift at all, don't feel like eating, maybe just a coffee?

Would this be bad?

I will eat like a piece of fruit the evening prior to shift.
But that is all, with more less my next time i eat after shift when i get up is like a lunch around 130 - 2pm the follow day etc.

Should i consider eating during a night shift? or am i ok just getting the nutrition prior the hours i am working etc?

Also a second question. On road trip down to race this weekend, was a 6 hour drive. i was snacking on Power bars most of the time, no real food.
would you consider Power bars a decent meal replacement? prior to race ? item? or should i eat more real food etc?

only time i eat those is on road trips to bike races , as convenient. and easier to eat when driving.
and i hydrate on gatorade most of the day, really suggestion please.

Thanks again


  • DrifterBear
    DrifterBear Posts: 265 Member
    So many things to consider here but I would get too anxious about your diet. It could be a million other things including it just wasn't your day. Was training going well? In general, experiment with your diet as you train and be as consistent as possible as you approach the race. If power bars were working when you were training, they didn't suddenly fail you in the event. However, if you rarely eat PBs and suddenly give up 'real' food for PBs, then maybe that was your problem. People make the mistake all the time of carbo loading the night before an endurance event with food they never eat in training. This can be a huge mistake! The big question on your diet and performance should be were you improving heading into the event? If so, the diet was working, something just didn't go well prior to the race. Maybe you had a small cold, nerves, weren't familiar with the course, etc.
  • ClubSilencio
    ClubSilencio Posts: 2,985 Member
    How much sleep are you getting? I'm estimating 6 hours at most?
  • Packerjohn
    Packerjohn Posts: 4,855 Member
    What type/distances are you doing?
  • worldtraveller321
    worldtraveller321 Posts: 150 Member
    Hi all , you are correct about the food. I never eat power bars except that day. I am in need of a new way to eat. The Road Bike Races at moment are about 66 km at moment. What I need help is really a better way to eat.
    I am active and keep up with good food.
    What I need help with is being give a more eating schedule and good and better idea of a good daily meal plan to follow. Like types of foods to consider. etc
    as i am an endurance athlete.
    I already do eat healthy. But i what i need is a change again. I have elmininated many bad foods out of my diet, such as Soda/pop etc. cut down on sweets . almost eat no ice cream or cookies and almost never drink alcohol at all.
    However I dont really eat 5 to 6 small meals a day. but i am thinking i should consider that. What i need is a good example of a way to eat 6 small meals a day, including types of foods. as well an idea of how to incorporate that into doing a big race. such as eat that way 2 to 1 day prior to big bike race. Examples of foods to follow etc.

    So more less what i ask is i want to reinvent my eating habits. So all the help is welcome.

    So here we go. I ask your help everyone. and I am serious. thanks
  • kavahni
    kavahni Posts: 313 Member
    edited April 2017
    I'm only going to address your Gatorade comment. When you say I hydrate on Gatorade most of the day, do you mean that's your primary thing that you're drinking, Whether you're exercising or not? Because gator aid is really for athletes who are doing so much activity that they are sweating excessively. It shouldn't be used as a general drink. Water is your friend. The electrolytes in Gatorade, while they help out people who are sweating, put a great deal of stress on your kidneys if you aren't exercising to thelevel of sweating. If you just mean you're using Gatorade when you're exercising and you're sweating up a storm, then ignore this!
    OK, I lied. There is another thing I want to address. You would probably benefit from a visit with a sports nutritionist. Check with your local running store or other small, local, athletic store – – not a big box like dicks – – and askif they know of any sports nutritionist in your area. We have one in my town who is amazing and I only had to see her once. It was worth every penny I spent on her. Which really wasn't all that much.
  • wernertraut
    wernertraut Posts: 19 Member
    edited April 2017
    I would say you need to get your macros in order, based on body mass and activity level. Carbs will be the most important energy source for exercise because it is stored as glycogen in your liver and muscles. Try and eat slow releasing complex carbs / low GI (0-54) for sustained energy release. Inadequate glycogen stores will result that proteins start to break down to replace glucose and then lose their primary role as building blocks for muscles.

    You can get all the micros through a good balanced diet but if you have some deficit, you can replace with supplements but do NOT take in more than you need. Especially the fat soluble vitamins (A,D,E,K) as it stays in your body and can result in hyper-vitaminosis if the upper limit for intake is exceeded.

    On hydration, you need to maintain a state of water balance. Males (>19) needs to drink at least 3.7 liters per day of which 0.7 liter comes from food sources. If you have a higher Kcal intake due to your exercise, at least 1ml per Kcal of food. 2% dehydration will result in impaired performance. Take 5-7ml per kg of body weight (2-3ml per lb) at least 4 hours prior session and aim to replace at least 80% of losses during session. Addition of small amounts of salt helps replace losses during exercise - sustains "drive to drink" Post exercise, drink fluids containing both NA and CHO. You will also need to know how much you lose during training. Get on a scale butt naked and weigh yourself prior and then again after exercise. If you need to drink during, bring that into the calculation. Best is to bite the bullet and get the result from no fluid intake. Just remember one thing, drinking too much water is also very bad for you and can result in Hyponatremia (dilution of solutes in extracellular fluid), causing muscle weakness / incoordination.

    There is much more to it but the main thing is to get a diet according to performance needs (you need fuel to perform) and stay well hydrated.