open topic, for anything cycling related.
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A friend of mine and his son are about to do the 160K Lake Taupo challenge in NZ. I was thinking of ordering them some gels or bars or electrolyte drink mix thingies off T7 as a wee gift. I am a bit worried as the powerbar things say take with water/not suitable for kids/may upset tummy etc etc.
Question are these things any good, do they upset your tummy and is it worth it or should they just be eating fruit cake and drinking cordial???
For the highland fling (for me 7ish hours on the bike - or roughly equivalent to 200km on a roadbike onroad), I ate 3 gu gels, 9 uncle tobys muesli bars, ~4 (small) bananas, ~3 oranges, a bun, a couple of lollies, I drank 2 750ml bidons of reasonably watery sports drink and about a litre of water. I don't find a gel upsets my stomache, but then again little does. The bars I unwrapped and stuck in the jersey pockets, I had 1 gu with me, everything else I seagulled from the feed stations. If the feed stations didn't offer them, I'd have brought at least 2 bananas - probably larger than the ones at the feedstations.
I wouldn't worry about a teenager (ie someone old enough to do 160km) eating a couple of gels - I just haven't personally found using them as my only fuel very successful. I would recommend that for 160km that they drink at least 1 sports drink type drink as well as water.
You can go with rather less on-bike fuel if its not a race. ie if I just up and did a double century I'd just stop somewhere for lunch rather than carrying too much.
Anything over 100km and I always use these GU Brew Electrolyte Tabs, nice and convenient and taste great too. http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ws/eBayISAPI.dll ... 8795wt_909
The Gu gels are quite good, especially the Espresso one. I prefer them to Endura.
Haven't tried Gu Brew yet. Also I did try those Oatmeal/Chocolate bars that Clarence Street Cyclery has in Sydney. I believe they are made in NZ. I can't remember the brand of them, but they are really good for energy and taste great. (I'll check who does them when I get home).
I don't notice the Gu gels upsetting my stomach, nor Endura for that matter. Otherwise, I put a scoop of ELoad in a bidon of water. You can apparently adjust it with tabs, though I didn't try that yet.
Giant TCR SL1
Specialized Langster Pro
I think the thing with gels, sports drinks (any nutrition) is that you have to test out what works for each individual.
Go over to the triathlon forums where there are lots of edurance (ie 9 and 10 hour event) athletes and the one mantra regarding nutrition is 'don't try anything on race day that you haven't used with success in training...'
As an example, me and my wife have both run long events (marathons, 100km endurance events etc) and we have different nutrition needs.
I can't stomach very much solid stuff (ie I could have maybe one muesli bars etc) and manage quite well on gels. Although even here, some gels are better than others, I can't have ones with too much caffeine in them, for example. My staples are the Endura gels, one about every 45 minutes to an hour. plus lots of good old fashioned water... (I sweat like a dog).
My wife does much better on 'proper' food. And many of the gels/gu etc give her an upset stomach....there are only a few selected gels that she can use.
I guess what I'm saying is its a personal thing...
I would hate for you to buy something that they try for the first time on 'event day' and end up spending more time on the toilet than the bike, for example...
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