Early morning pre-ride fueling?

Hey all,

I’m wondering if what I do prior to my midweek rides is okay or should I try to eat more? I wake up around 4am and I’m on the bike by 4:30. In that 30 minutes, I eat some sort of bar, a cup of green tea and then I drink heed during my rides for calories. If I don’t drink the heed regularly, I start to notice in the last hour of the workouts. I go from feeling a little flat, couple gulps of heed and 5 minutes later, I’m cruising at the high end of Z2. I don’t have any trouble completing the workouts but I’m more comfortable if I drink heed regularly. Should I eat another bar or is riding this line okay?

Thanks in advance!


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Following this.

I have been doing my 1-1.5 hour training events at 0430 as well and only drink water before and during. Since I am doing them in a fasted state I was curious what the impacts would be. In my assessment I have been seeing better performance on my weekend long rides, although that may just be the result of #FTFP.

Here is what we recommend for fueling early morning rides (no fasting):

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Thanks Frank. That’s pretty much what I’m doing but I’ve been eating a bulletproof bar instead of the banana. Gel and heed for the SS workouts and just heed for the tempo and Z2 stuff.

X-nay a bar and get the fiber and carbohydrate from a banana - better for you! I do not like the “Bulletproof” brand for their association with the keto diet.

Go au natural and get your fiber!


Unless your following the strictest version of the Keto diet and doing the 1 - 3 day fasts to completely rid your body of carbs, it’s likely you’re not riding in as fasted of a state as you might think. Your body can store 1,500- 2,000 calories of carbs or 400 - 500 grams (give or take). So unless you’re doing the multiple day fasts to completely rid your body of all carbs and then sticking to a strict keto diet, it’s unlikely your fasted ride is actually doing what you’re hoping. Assuming part of the goal is to only fat stores. One way to actually measure whether you’re burning any of your fat stores is to buy Ketosis test strips and before/after your ride pee on the strip. I think you’ll be surprised how little Ketones are in your urine even after a 1.5 hr Z2 ride.

Thanks for the reply Quincy. I am not Keto and by fasted I was mostly referring to the fact that I slurp down a glass of water and then jump… i mean climb on the trainer. regardless of how depleted my actual stores are, I do feel pretty strong during my 1 and 1.5 hour SS intervals which surprised me. I’m going to follow Frank’s advice about the 1/2 banana next week and see if I notice a difference.

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Sorry if my reply sounded dismissive of what you were trying to do, wasn’t my intent. I actually did a 18 hr fast a few weeks ago and then did a 1.5 hr z2 ride. Then checked my keto levels afterwards, so part of my response was based on having just done that. I was sort of surprised how little power I had. I struggled to keep my zone at a moderate Z2 level, my legs just had nothing in them, so nice job being able to do it consistently for your rides.

Didn’t sound dismissive at all. Appreciate the sharing of information. It’s what makes this forum great.

What is heed? I see the reference a few times above.

Maybe that’s why they ended up at grocery outlet. That and the beach sand texture. I eat so many bananas but I’ll give it a try. I can’t say that I get much out of the bars other than they’re cheap at grocery outlet and the ingredients are decent.

Electrolyte and carb drink from hammer nutrition. I’d link it but I don’t want to violate any forum rules. I have no association with hammer, heed just works well with my chemistry. Just be sure to flush your hydration bladder well after using it.