Eating right is as important as riding right when it comes to improving your ability to train at high intensities, increase your power and boost your sprinting and climbing. When you’re cycling, your energy comes from a mix of aerobic and anaerobic activity, which means a huge range of nutrients in addition to protein, fats and carbs is needed. Here are some of the best foods and supplements to find them in.
Power up The building block and fuel of muscles. Branched-chain amino acids make up 70 per cent of muscle proteins and are broken down fast during intense exercise.
Fuel up At least 1.2g per kg protein body weight. That will mean around four servings daily – and consider using protein shakes after training.
Find it Lean meat, fish, shellfish, eggs, legumes, dairy foods, nuts/seeds and whey protein supplements.
Power up An amino acid, L-glutamine aids muscle repair, and is essential for immune, gut and detox support.
Fuel up 1g to 4g a day as a supplement.
Find it Available as a supplement and in foods such as lean meat, poultry, fish, shellfish, eggs, dairy and legumes.
Power up Releases growth hormone and is a precursor to creatine for energy and building up muscle mass.
Fuel up Best taken as part of a protein supplement. The amount you will need depends on body size, but roughly 500mg to 2000mg.
Find it It is naturally found in protein-rich foods such as meat, dairy, fish, shellfish and soy, and can also be provided by protein powders and amino acid formulae.
Power up Stores energy in muscles for explosive exercise. Also increases insulin-like growth factor, building muscle power. Fuel up Creatine supplementation can increase sprint performance. Try a loading regime of 5g doses four times a day for a week, followed by 2g to 5g per day.
Find it Creatine supplements come as powders, capsules and drinks. Evidence shows taking glucose with creatine increases uptake, so take it with fruit juice.
L-arginine & L-ornithine
Power up Amino acids are needed to make growth hormone and build up muscle (anabolic), as well as energy production.
Fuel up Best taken as part of a protein supplement. Around 500mg to 3000mg depending on body size.
Find it Protein-rich foods such as meat, dairy, fish, soy and nuts, plus you can get it in protein powders and amino acid formula.
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