What Are The Top Meals & Beverages When Cycling?

What Are The Top Meals & Beverages When Cycling?

Getting the proper nutrition is important in keeping your keeping your energy throughout your bike trek. During your exercise, your body is fueled by carbohydrates.

While carbohydrates can be stored in your body, your body still needs extra fuel during long bike rides.

Starting off well-fed and hydrated are essential, but the more intense and longer the ride, the more your body will depend on healthy snacks to keep it going.

We suggest getting a few snacks on board for any bike ride that last longer than an hour.

On average, cyclists need:

  • 30-60g of carbohydrates an hour
  • 16oz or 32oz per hour

In this quick post, we'll teach you the top meals and beverages you should consume while cycling. They will keep your body operating during long distances and improve your cycling performance. By the end of the post, you'll know which meals and beverages will give your body the boost it needs.

Meal & Drink Plan For Cyclists

Here is a nutrition plan that you should follow. It details exactly what foods you should eat before and after your cycling trip:


Recommended Food

2 - 3 hours before riding

Scrambled eggs, Muesli, porridge

30 minutes before riding

Bananas, apples

During cycling

Energy drinks, dried fruit (raisins)

After the ride

Fast recovery foods: cereal + milk (high in protein)

2-3 hours after riding

Grilled salmon, sweet potato mash

Before you start riding, you want to have a meal that's high in carbs. This ensures that your body will store it inside of your muscles and liver. Foods such as scrambled eggs will give your body enough energy to get ready for a long race.

During the race, you'll need food that provides quick energy.

Get something that's high in carbs (energy drink, protein bar) to have enough fuel to keep going.

After the race is completed, your body needs protein. Your muscles use protein to help it grow and recover after an intensive exercise.

Protein-rich food such as salmon provides a natural amount of energy to help your body recover for the next race.

Amused cyclist eating banana

Remember, you need to eat just enough carbohydrates to give your body a sufficient amount of energy. Overloading your carb intake can lead to nausea and other gastrointestinal diseases. Keep your carb intake at a balanced level to prevent this issue from happening.

Also, limit your total drinks to about 1-2 drinks per session. Drinking too much can cause for your muscles to tire out faster and a reduction in your overall stamina. Only drink energy drinks as they provide a sufficient amount of carbs to keep your body functioning correctly.


Most riders forget about their diet before they cycle. This can be dangerous, as it can lead to a reduction of performance and can cause health injuries. Thus, we suggest you keep your body filled with carb-rich meals and drinks while cycling.

Ultimately, you need to watch what you eat before, during, and after your bike race. Doing this ensures that you'll improve your riding speed, stamina, and effectiveness while you cycle. Keep these tips in mind before you cycle to see a drastic change in results.

This post was last updated on June 5th, 2018 at 01:59 pm

About the Author Max Shumpert

Over the last few years, I’ve taken my love of the outdoors, hiking, skiing, trekking and exploring to the next level by starting this site. I started a bike shop in Denver, CO, and have seen amazing growth over the last few years. Getting paid to do what I love has been a dream come true for me. That’s also what led me to start BikesReviewed.com. In my shop, I spend a large amount of time helping people find the perfect bike for them and the style of biking they’re going to be doing. It only made sense that I expanded my reach and got online, making it possible for me to help people all over the world. If biking and staying fit is your priority, too, you’ve come to the right place.

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