On 3rd September Kasabian Bassist, Chris Edwards and his brother Jay start their gruelling MONSTER Lejog cycle challenge from Lands End to John O’Groats in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust. Lucky me, they’re stopping over at my place in Bristol for a Go Faster Food Supper! So on 6th September, after a little photo shoot with the local press at the Clifton Suspension Bridge, I’ll be preparing a Go Faster endurance meal special for Chris, Jay and their dad, who is accompanying them in a support vehicle. Will it be Moroccan Lamb Shanks with Toasted Almond Couscous or Smoky Black Bean and Chorizo Chilli with Herby Salsa and Basmati Rice? Decisions, decisions…
They’ve had lots of training advice from my lovely friend and chief supporter of my flapjack recipes, Charlotte Thompson, although how they find time to do any training in their busy tour/work schedules completely defeats me.
Now they need to get their nutrition right!
Riding any distance burns a vast amount of calories and makes you ravenously hungry. The boys need to make wise food choices to help them complete their challenge with consistently high energy levels. High mileage on the bike day after day means the boys need to keep their glycogen levels (ie the carbohydrate stored in the muscles which provides the body with energy) topped up all the time . They’ll also need plenty of water and electrolytes to replace fluid loss, and protein to repair muscle cells.
For sustained energy levels, Chris and Jay should base their main meals on low-to-medium Glycaemic Index (G.I.) foods, and try to have heaps of carbohydrate (about 60%) and a fair amount of protein (about 20%) each day. They should also steer away from too much fatty food, as this could make them feel sluggish. Low to medium G.I. foods break down slowly during digestion, releasing glucose gradually into the bloodstream and thereby providing the body with a more consistent level of energy. A good low G.I. breakfast of something like porridge or muesli and fresh fruit, followed by poached eggs on wholemeal toast will set them up for the day. ’Little and often’ will be the key to a good day’s ride - they will need to ‘feed’ every hour or so with a mix of salty and sweet foods like wholemeal sandwiches, healthy snacks, flapjacks, malt loaf, nuts and raisins and they’ll need to take on plenty of fluid (both water and sports drink, a cup every 30 mins -see my hydration post) Snacks during the day should also include some higher G.I. carbs, carbs which will be absorbed rapidly into the bloodstream to give instant energy, such as honey and jam sandwiches, sports drinks, jelly beans etc.
The main focus of each evening will be eating! Plenty of carbohydrate to replenish depleted glycogen levels, plus some protein to aid muscle repair, so that they can start the next day with renewed strength and energy.
Anyone wanting to make a donation to the cause, click on Teenage Cancer Trust.