Not sure if that Macs pre-ride breakfast is worth it? It’s probably not. Check out our list of what you can and cannot eat before a ride…
CANNOT EAT #1: EXCESS FIBRES
High fibrous foods such as beans take longer to digest, which means it will stay in the stomach longer. This means the nutrients are not breaking down fast enough to provide energy throughout the ride.
DIE DIE DON’T EAT: Kacang Pool. You’ll start farting in no time.
CANNOT EAT #2: SPICY FOOD
If it’s not obvious enough, spicy food can cause a tummy upset. But it can also make you sweat more than you should, causing you to be dehydrated faster.
DIE DIE DON’T EAT: Anything with sambal. It adds flavour to your food, but it also adds problems to your tummy!
CANNOT EAT #3: FRIED FOOD AKA MACS
Did you know that fried food takes longer to digest? So if you’re chomping on Macdonald’s hash browns before your ride, be prepared to feel sluggish on the bike.
CANNOT DRINK: CARBONATED DRINKS
If you think the sugar in fizzy drinks helps, you’re wrong. It may give you an immediate sugar boost, but it is temporary and can leave you more lethargic than you already were.
DIE DIE DON’T DRINK: Coca Cola
CAN EAT #1: CARBOHYDRATE
Carbohydrate is known to be fuel for the body, but that doesn’t mean you can eat rice and bread as and when you like. Cyclists are recommended to eat food with low to moderate levels of glycemic index (GI) so that it will digest in time for the ride.
Said Chef Bruno (Masterchef Asia judge):
“Your pre-ride fuel should be a good source of energy that breaks down quickly. Fat and fiber don’t qualify. High-fiber foods, such as salads or large portions of non-starchy vegetables, take a while to digest and therefore stay in the stomach longer.
The same goes for foods with high-fat content. Apart from potentially making you feel sick, foods that sit in your stomach aren’t digesting fast enough to do you any good. This means that the food is not efficiently breaking down to provide energy to the muscles. Instead, opt for carbohydrates and lean proteins.”
GOOD FOR YOU: Muesli bars
CAN EAT #2: HEALTHIER CAFFEINE
If you feel like you need a perk me up, go for green tea instead of coffee! Not only is it filled with antioxidants, but research has shown that drinking green tea regularly helps to boost endurance exercise performance by up to 24 percent.
GOOD FOR YOU: Green Tea
CAN EAT #3: GO PRO WITH PROTEIN
Protein is essential as part of a pre-ride meal as it helps to provide energy. If a cyclist doesn’t consume any protein before a meal, the body will borrow from muscles to meet its needs.
Apart from that, protein slows digestion and lowers a food’s GI. Thus, making you feel satiated throughout the ride. No tummy rumbles while cycling!
GOOD FOR YOU: Steamed chicken rice, but cut on the rice!
BONUS TIP FROM CHEF BRUNO: ALWAYS GET FRESH INGREDIENTS
Author: Fasiha Nazren
Fasiha is only afraid of three things – cockroaches, her parents and the deafening screamos of post hardcore bands.