It’s Biking Season Again

Jane and Bob in our Easy Rider Shirts —
 Eat to Ride-Ride to Eat

We were in Kentucky over Memorial Day, riding Saturday and Sunday in one of our favorite large group rides, the Horsey 100.  In times past, we have both ridden 50 miles each day, and then enjoyed the wonderful meals the planners of the  ride provided at the end of each day’s substantial efforts.  This year, feeling the seniorness of our years, and not being too well-trained-up, we opted for two approximately 35 mile days, both of which were somewhat hillier than how  I remembered them from last year.  (We do this ride every year, and I say the say the same thing every year, “My, how these hills have grown!”)
We love this trip.  It’s a favorite for both of us. However, when I am away from home, and not entirely in charge of all my own food, I have to concentrate before we leave home on how I will continue to eat well when the options will be limited.  Here are the steps I took this year.  I hope that my sharing them will encourage you to create ways that work for you to pay attention to your food quality when travelling.

1-  I took my blender.  We were in a motel, I had a small refrigerator, and we brought a small ice chest with fruits and greens so that I could start each day with a reassuring Green Smoothie.  I’ve done this for awhile now, so that it’s almost second nature, and I’m very glad I took the time to figure it out…..not that hard, really, but ……you know…..a blender in the motel room??

Green Smoothies–
 the best start to any day
of physical exertion!

2-  I packed several snack bag sized servings (1/2 cup each) of my homemade trail mix, and before each day of riding, tucked a bag in the back pocket of my bike jersey.  One works well for me, others may want two.  There are no rules. I don’t eat the trail mix until after I’ve finished the day’s ride.  When I’m working that hard, my stomach doesn’t have much fun trying to digest anything, so I save the nuts, seeds, and dried fruits for after the ride.  They are delicious then, especially with a few special treats I include in them as a  well deserved reward for my hard work on the bike.( If you’d like a copy of my trail mix guidelines, email me at  I’m happy to share it!)
3– During the 3-5 hours on the road, I ate nothing but bananas.  I drank plenty of water, of course, that sometimes had a little date water in it.  I abstained from all processed sports drinks. ( Maybe I’ll write about that sometime.) Bananas contain lots of easy to burn natural sugar, digest easily, are plentiful at rest stop stations, go down quickly, and cause no gastric discomfort at all.  Nothing else provided– peanut butter sandwiches on whole wheat bread, oatmeal cookies, Snickers bits, etc., crackers filled with what not, does as good a job at providing ready fuel for endurance performance, with as little request on the system.  Thus, all available energy goes to the pedaling effort, rather than compromising it with trying to also digest difficult to manage foods. For good measure, I picked up an extra banana at each rest stop and put it in my shirt pocket, just in case there weren’t any at the next rest stop.  Perfect.
4- The ride planners put on quite a lunch spread for riders to enjoy at the finish of the ride.  I chose whatever was there that fit my raw vegan diet and enjoyed my trail mix.  Then,later, on our own for dinner, I made sure that wherever our group went for dinner, there would be some nice fresh salad options.  Later, if I was still hungry, I could enjoy some fresh fruit.

Austere cuisine, you may say.  I say that I really like the relatively quick recovery time I have, with very little muscle fatigue the next morning when there is another long day  of pedaling ahead, the lack of stiffness or bloating, or clogged plumbing.  You’ve heard it before, but nothing tastes as good as clean eating feels.  I’m for that.  Enjoy your summer sports, especially biking, and take care of your best interests when travelling!

Good fresh salads, with lots of dark
leafy greens and other vegetables
can’t be beat
 for fostering good athletic performance,
 no matter what the sport.


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