Active lifestyles require plentiful amounts of nourishment to fuel performance. Whatever you work off, you’ll need to build back up to replenish what your body has lost. Along with the recommended three square meals a day, snacks throughout the day are important too. Check out some of our favorites!
Prior to your ride, snacking on a balanced mix of proteins, fats and complex carbs is the way to go. In regards to carbs, both complex and simple carbs are used to produce energy. However, the body breaks down complex carbs at a slower rate; making them ideal to start with before lengthy workouts like mile long bike rides.
You can’t go wrong with whole grains like granola. You can mix it in a bowl with milk as cereal, pour on top of yogurt with fruits or nuts, take with you on the go as a packaged bar or snack pack, etc. The variations to enjoy granola are endless.
Whole Grain Toast
Pop a slice or two of whole grain toast in the toaster for a quick energy boosting snack. You can lather it with an almond or peanut butter spread—Peanut Butter & Co.’s White Chocolate Wonderful is a guilty pleasure of ours. Or, layer it up with protein-packed toppings like avocado, tomato, hard-boiled eggs or salmon slices.
Your mid to near-end breaks are when the following snacks come in handy. They’re good for many reasons, but we mainly like them for their convenience and energy jump start. Remember how we mentioned earlier that complex carbs were good at the start of your workout? Here’s where simple carbs—good for short-term energy boosts—should come in to play.
Along with being easily storable (jersey pockets, seat bag, backpack), energy bars are perfect snacks to give you that extra boost you need to finish your ride. With so many brands to choose from, we’ll share our favorite two with you: CLIF and Bearded Brothers. CLIF bars are packed with carbs, proteins and fibers, and if you didn’t already know, were thought up on a bike back in 1990. You can purchase flavors like Crunchy Peanut Butter, Berry Pomegranite Chia, Mint Chocolate Chip and more. Bearded Brothers energy bars are 100% organic and made from raw ingredients. Choose from unique flavors like Raspberry Lemon, Blueberry Vanilla, Ginger Peach and more.
Honey Stinger Waffle Chews
You want to ride like the pros? Why not snack like them too. Honey Stringer Waffles are a big hit in the cycling community. These yummy snacks are created by sandwiching two thin waffles together with oh so sweet, natural honey. They’re also 0% trans fat and 0% cholesterol. Pick-up a variety pack to taste test flavors like vanilla, carmel, cinnamon, lemon and more.
They may not be organic, but you know what, they definitely get the job done with a sugar boost that will keep you from bonking. Peanut M&Ms are a nice sweet and salty treat that give you protein from the peanuts and some sugary goodness from the coated chocolate.
You did it! Now it’s time to—as Donna and Tim from the Pawnee Parks and Recs Department would say—treat yo self. Now, we want you to indulge, but at the same time not head to the closest fast-food joint. Be sure to treat yo self to some post-ride eats that are yummy, yet nourishing.
Pour yourself a tall glass of chocolate milk to replenish the glycogen that’s drained from your body. You get to enjoy a sweet treat while simultaneously gearing you body back up for your next ride.
Protein Smoothie or Shake
Protein smoothies and shakes are fun snack choices, because you can customize them. Whether you’re making one at home or hitting up a local shop, the combinations are endless. They also encompass all the goods that your body needs to recover. Combine your liquid base + your nutrients + your protein + your fat and you’ve got yourself a scrumptious post-ride snack! Feel free to add any additional flavors if it needs a little something.