FondoClinics Week 9 Newsletter

Fueling the Training Body

Here we are in week 9, which means we’re in the final stretch of your FondoClinic adventure, with 3 more weeks ahead of us! I hope everyone had a great week with some cooler temperatures after the Hill Climb. We’ve had a number of emails asking about nutrition, so this week we’re jumping into all things FUEL!

As I mentioned in the past cycling is not my chosen sport but as a marathon runner, I have hit a wall, bonked, whatever you want to call it many times. I can fully admit that I haven’t prepared myself for some of my runs as best I should so I want to make sure that you don’t make those same mistakes.

I apologize but this newsletter is going to be a bit wordy, so bear with me and let’s get to it!

Happy Riding
Online Communications Manager & InTraining Support
Janette Shearer


In case you missed my email yesterday, this coming Wednesday we have a webinar with Registered Dietician Nicole O’Byrne who will be discussing the following:

•            What to eat before training/competition day

•            Carbohydrate needs during training/for the Fondo and practical ways to obtain these targets

•            Considerations for fueling while riding (i.e.: gut trainability, fiber content of food choices, etc.)

•            Hydration: how to avoid excessive fluid loss and the role of electrolytes

•            Nutrition for recovery

Be sure to register using the zoom link below and please note that this webinar will be recorded and shared in the newsletter the following Friday (Week 10)

Nicole O’Byrne is a Registered Dietitian who graduated with honours from the University of British Columbia with a Bachelors of Science, Food Nutrition and Health. Nicole also completed a two-year Diploma in Sports Nutrition with the International Olympic Committee and holds an ISAK Level 1 certification in body composition assessment. Nicole is a member of the College of Dietitians of British Columbia and Dietitians of Canada. Nicole has worked with a wide range of clients from athletes to those suffering with eating disorders. She previously worked with varsity athletes from McMaster University and York University. Currently, Nicole is the Lead Varsity Sports Dietitian at the University of British Columbia and a contractor for the Canadian Sport Institute Pacific. 

Random Fact: Did you know that the Nutrition Facts on food labels are based on a diet of 2000 Calories?

Do you know how many calories you’re consuming?

Also, before we really jump in, I want to preface this by saying that each participant’s specific energy requirements will vary based on several factors.

  • Age, gender and body composition
  • Amount and type of physical activity
  • Growth and Development
  • Training and competition environment (exposure to heat or cold, for example)
  • Training volume and intensity.

Energy requirements may increase as a result of:

  • Exposure to cold or heat
  • Fear or Stress
  • High-altitude exposure
  • Some drugs or medications
  • special dietary considerations

Always do your own research on what is best for you, this is not a one size fits all journey.

Carbohydrates provide participants with fuel for activity. Daily carbohydrate requirements will depend both on the participant and the intensity and duration of their sport. Do you know how much carbs you should be consuming before you ride?


Low Intensity or skill based activities

Shorter duration and/or lower intensity

Longer duration and/or higher intensity

Approximate daily carbohydrate targets (grams per kilogram of body mass)

3 to 5



An individual participant’s energy requirements will vary based on the type and amount of activity they’re doing. Generally, the longer the duration and the higher the intensity of the sport, the more daily nutrients are required.

This table outlines general nutrition plans based on average amount of activity.

 Amount of activity
1 to 2 hours 2 to 3 days/week2 to 3 hours 3+ days/week3+ hours 3+ days/week
Food groupMinimum number of daily recommended servings
Grains and starches8 to 1112 to 1414 to 16
Fruits and vegetables8 to 1010 to 1313 to 15
Dairy products2 to 333 to 4
Meat and alternatives2 to 333 to 4
Oils and fats2 to 333
Extras (simple sugars)23 to 44 to 5
Total calories1,800 to 2,2002,300 to 2,8002,900 to 3,300

Remember that these are general recommendations. The needs of individual participants will vary.

Fueling up
Participants need to fuel up before activity to ensure they have the energy they need to perform. Eating the right amounts of the right foods can help them perform their best.

Participants should eat pre-activity meals or snacks that are rich in carbohydrates (65 to 70% of total calories), low in fat and moderate in protein. Foods with carbohydrates provide fuel and are easy to digest. Foods high in fat and protein take longer to digest.

Pre-activity meals should also be appropriate for the type of effort. The amount a person should eat depends on the duration and intensity of the activity they’re doing.

Foods to avoid.
Participants should avoid certain types of foods before activity. Pre-race day nerves can upset the stomach. Participants should eat foods they’re familiar and comfortable with before activity.

Fatty foods take longer to digest.
Protein-rich foods take longer to digest and don’t provide fuel for activity.
Spicy foods may be hard to digest.
Fibre-rich foods can cause stomach upset and may induce elimination.
Gas-producing foods can cause bloating.
High-fructose fruits, drinks or snacks can lead to a drop in blood sugar.

How to fuel your ride: Tips for staying happy instead of hangry while you ride. Presented by TREK
Having food on hand is key to successfully tackling longer rides and it makes shorter rides more fun and energy-filled too. If you’ve been riding for a while, chances are you know that horrible feeling when you’re about to hit a wall and bonk. For newer riders—trust us, and pack snacks on every ride! We’ve put together tips for staying fueled throughout your ride, including some of our favorite snacks.
Before your ride: It’s good to eat a mix of carbs and protein to sustain your energy throughout the ride, no matter the distance. We recommend eating an hour before your ride so you’re not cramping up during it. Be sure to hydrate! Continue Reading

Now if you were at the Cypress Hill Climb, you may have gotten the opportunity to try F2C Nutrition’s Hydra-Durance Glyco-durance Raw Endurance Hydration Formula, which will be at the aid stations at the RBC GranFondo in September. After a great chat, I was very pleasantly surprised to learn some very interesting facts about why their product is so great for athlete’s and anyone participating is physical activity.

“Glyco-Durance™ represents the dawn of a new era in carbohydrate supplementation. Two key elements help to reduce digestive upset while increasing physical endurance and performance. Karbolyn Endurance™ is derived from non-GMO potato and rice and this natural bio-engineered high performance carbohydrate offers rapid absorption and sustained energy. Karbolyn Endurance™ uses a proprietary multi-stage enzymatic milling process to reach optimal molecular size, yielding a superior natural bio-engineered carbohydrate for quick gastric emptying that is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream without any side-effects like stomach bloating or cramping. The second key element is Sustalyn® which is clinically proven to stimulate glycogen production and enhance electrolyte and water absorption in the intestine by up to 27%.”

Now SportMedBC has no direct affiliation with F2C nutrition, they are a GranFondo sponsor, but as someone on their own endurance nutrition journey, I wanted to share their product as it sent me on a nutrition label rabbit hole. I wanted to compare a product I already use to the comparable F2C product and was shocked to learn that equivalent F2C product has Magnesium Bisglycinate. I already take this take nightly as it helps with relieving muscle aches and spasms and helps maintain sleep patterns.

But in doing this research, I learned that it my normal brand of Electrolyte has Magnesium Oxide in it. For those that don’t know the different Magnesium’s, Magnesium oxide also may be used as a laxative for short-term, rapid emptying of the bowel (before surgery, for example) which explains a few things on race day.

Podcast suggestion on Magnesium

So, my suggestion, check out F2C Nutrition, familiarize yourself with why you may want something with a higher carbohydrate percentage and always read your labels. Knowledge is power and there is so much to learn nutritionally and many sources to find your information.

Water or Sports Drinks—Which is the Best Choice? (

After an intense workout, you lose water through sweat, but that’s not all that’s lost. You may also be depleted of carbohydrates and electrolytes such as sodium and potassium. Water can’t replace those nutrients, which is why some people rely on sports drinks instead.

Download Complete Training Program

If your clinic falls on a Monday, you will only download the Monday program. Tuesday participants will only download Tuesday program and so on.