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Hey morning riders(22 posts)

Hey morning ridersJL
May 7, 2001 8:21 PM
I've been looking to get more time on the bike and the mornings look like the place to start (no pun intended) for me. I figure my newborn son has me up, I might as well take advantage of the hour.

How do you fuel up before that 6-7am ride? Eat and go? I've tried some rides later in the morning (9-10), but the afternoon rides always seem a bit smoother for me. I'm looking to avoid some of the coming summer heat too. Just wondering how the rest of you do it.

Thanks for any advice.

re: Hey morning riderstommyb
May 7, 2001 8:41 PM
Only one answer: two pop-tarts and a double shot of espresso.
re: Hey morning ridersmike mcmahon
May 7, 2001 11:06 PM
On weekdays, I usually hit the road between 6:15 and 6:30. Before going to bed, I set the coffe maker to go off at 6:00. I down a good sized cup of coffee, a 16 ounce bottle of water and eat a cup of yogurt, and apple, or a cereal bar. I do anywhere from 26 to 30 miles before work and feel fine with this pre-ride ritual. I also leave early on weekend mornings but fuel up more because my mileage will typically be double what it is on the weekday rides. I also bring along some food or stop at a convenience store for some fuel. I never eat a big breakast before heading out; it only makes me feel lethargic and even nauseated on occasion.
re: Hey morning ridersPressurecase
May 8, 2001 2:56 AM
Don't eat at all - can't ride that close to any food, and can't get up even earlier just to snack. Just a cup of tea, and go. Find that I can get an hour in no prob on the energy side, and boy do I enjoy my breakfast when I get back.....
re: Hey morning ridersAD14
May 8, 2001 5:20 AM
Just make sure you drink plenty of water if you take in a lot of coffee. I developed a kidney stone from the oxalates in coffee and not enough water. Most unpleasant.
May 8, 2001 6:53 AM
set that coffee maker and have a bagel ready to go! I drink the coffee, eat the bagel, drink a large glass of H2O and hit the road. I'm on the bike at 6:20 after getting up at 6:00. On weekdays, I'll ride 30 - 35 miles, Sundays 50-70 miles. I love riding in the morning - little traffic, nice and cool, and I have energy to burn! You'll get hooked.
re: Hey morning ridersMikeC
May 8, 2001 7:24 AM
I do a short ride (10-15 miles) starting at around 5:45 am about 200 days out of the year. Here's my admittedly very personal routine:
I get up around 5:20, brush my teeth, drink a single glass of water, and shave. By the time I've finished shaving, I'm ready to spend about five minutes in the smallest room in my house (my wife, a nurse, tells me that drinking the water stimulates the process). Next, I throw on my riding clothes, stretch for about 8 minutes, then jump on the bike and go.
If I eat before I ride, I feel sluggish. If I don't drink the water, I may not go to the bathroom before the ride, but may need to race back home when the urge arises (fortunately, I'm never more than 15 minutes away!). If I don't stretch, I sometimes get knee pain.
When I get back home, I'm really ready to eat! If I worked hard, I eat right away. If I took it easy, I shower first to take the edge off my appetite.
I don't know how much of this makes physiological sense, and how much is just personal habit, but it works for me!
What a strange man ;-)mike mcmahon
May 8, 2001 3:20 PM
You really shave BEFORE you ride? I can't think of anyone I've ever known who shaves before exercising. On the rare occasion that I have done a hard ride shortly after shaving, the sweat dripping down my face feels like salt being rubbed into an open wound. Do you find that you are more aerodynamic if you shave before riding? If so, I may change my morning ritual and endure the pain. ;-)
What a strange man ;-)MikeC
May 8, 2001 6:12 PM
Actually, it's not for speed. I've just found that it's easier to clean up road rash when I face plant:)
(In reality, the extra five minutes just helps my old body emerge a little further from the sleep it was just torn from...and gives that glass of water a little more time to work!)
re: Hey morning ridersMass Biker
May 8, 2001 7:55 AM
I leave the house at 5:50AM to meet the guys for 6AM training. The coffee maker is set up the night before to start brewing at 5:30AM. I wake up at 5:30AM, down some water, and then get into my cycling duds. While stretching, I drink a small, strong cup of coffee. If hungry, I will eat some fruit. That is usually enough to get me through the early AM workouts. Remaining functional at my desk later in the day is another story. - MB
That 2pm wall is a tough one...PaulCL
May 8, 2001 9:06 AM climb over. I hit it and crash after an early AM ride. I rarely drink caffeinated drinks, but on ride days I hit the coffee or mountain dew to get me through to dinner.

Tomorrow is one of my riding days....its' supposed to be about 60 early in the AM. Just perfect. I'll come into work a little late, but pumped to do the job...then 2 o'clock hits me between the eyes....
re: Hey morning ridersThioderek
May 8, 2001 8:11 AM
I am out of the house by 6:45 every morning. My commute in is 7 miles and then I hit Central Park for another 20-30 miles. I take a multi vitamin and a bottle of water and I am good to go. The water is gone by the time I am out of the park. I just cannot eat and ride that close together. I usually eat after I get out of the gym after the ride, some yogurt and a cup of coffee.
re: Hey morning ridersLLSmith
May 8, 2001 8:14 AM
I have one cup of coffee and some kind of a cereal bar. Its a 25 minute drive to where I ride so I will drink a little water on the way. This time of year its around 60 degrees at sun up. I take 24-32 ounces of water with me. I will go 20-30 miles during the week. As soon as I get back to my car I start drinking 16 ounces of cytomax mix. It seems to help control my hunger later in the day. I will have a bowl of cereal when I get back home. Larry Smith
Just get up & go!Miklos
May 8, 2001 11:29 AM
I just get up and go. This morning I was on my bike by 4:30am. If I eat anything before I go, I get a major upset stomach. I usually have enough energy stored from dinner to ride two hours without any trouble. Just drink lots-o-water as you go.

Why eat?mr_spin
May 8, 2001 12:48 PM
You didn't say how far you were going, or how hard. But when I used to ride in the morning before work, I would do 25-30 miles, often at high intensity. I would only have a glass of orange juice. Riding on no food helps teach your body to burn fat. When you get back, stretch, shower up, shave (if applicable), etc., then eat. Waiting until 30 minutes after stopping gets even more fat burning in.

If I were going any further, I would definitely eat something. But for rides under two hours, I don't bother. Eat a decent dinner the night before--that's really what is important.
Thanks ALLJL
May 8, 2001 2:31 PM
I forgot to put time/mileage, but I was looking at 20-30 miles, or under 2 hours. The consensus seems to be eat little or nothing and just go. I'll have to try it and see how it works for me.

Thanks again for the helpful advise.

Thanks ALLmichael
May 8, 2001 4:03 PM
Yeah - thats mostly what I do.
I get up around 6:00, get dressed, hop on the bike and ride between 20 and 30 miles - When I get to the office I shower, shave, and change into a suit.
My Vote for No FoodStewK
May 8, 2001 7:32 PM
If I'm riding at 5:30 or 6:00. I get up, stretch, do some jumping jacks to get the blood circulating and ride.

On weekends we go riding a little later and I'm sometimes up an hour to an hour and a half before the ride. In those cases I have a power bar an hour before hand with 16 oz. of water. Anything longer than an hour and a half and I have a medium sized breakfast - tomato juice, shredded wheat and maybe a banana.
What about "nature" calling?E3
May 8, 2001 7:59 PM
My apologies for offending anyone's sense of decency, but I didn't notice anyone mention doing #2 as part of their pre-ride ritual.

To me that's absolutely essential before any ride of duration, especially in the early morning after a cup o' coffee. As most of you may have experienced, exercise can trigger certain bodily functions.

Is this not an issue for anyone else?

I've considered doing early morning rides regularly. I've done it two or three times, but damn, it's tough to get going before 6 am. The advice all of you have posted so far is helpful.
I also avoided that subject.mike mcmahon
May 8, 2001 8:26 PM
However, I typically don't leave the house in the morning without voiding my bowels. I find that nothing happens during the first 15 minutes that I'm awake but have also discovered that a cup of strong coffee helps to get things moving. On the rare occasion that I can't relieve myself before leaving the house, I really feel uncomfortable throughout the ride.
What about "nature" calling?LLSmith
May 9, 2001 4:03 AM
I thougt that was why people started the day with coffee. LLS
Re-read my posts further up the thread ;)MikeC
May 9, 2001 7:02 AM