If you struggle to get your eating and drinking right during a ride, take a look at the EatMyRide app.
This nutrition management cycling app advises you what to take on your rides to keep yourself fuelled. If you use a Garmin bike computer, it will prompt you when to eat and drink to keep your carbohydrate levels up as you ride.
Nutrition for peak performance has been revolutionised over the past decade and WorldTour pro teams such as Team DSM take a lot of care to eat and drink products that give them the right amounts of carbohydrates per hour at the right times during a race to fuel themselves correctly.
Team DSM uses the EatMyRide app to plan and manage its race nutrition and that same functionality is available via the app to amateurs who don’t have a team of sports scientists and nutritionists behind them.
Your internal carbohydrate stores (also referred to as glycogen stores) are quite limited, so to keep your energy levels up and perform at your peak, you need to consume between 60 and 120 grams of carbohydrates per hour. This number varies greatly between rides and riders, and is mostly dependent on the duration and intensity of any given ride.
You need to know which products work best for you and train your gut to use them effectively. You also need to know when during a ride you should take in nutrition. EatMyRide will help you to manage this via its real-time carbohydrate balancer, which works on a range of Garmin devices.
Tailored nutrition advice
Since everyone performs differently on the bike and so has different nutrition needs, EatMyRide doesn’t provide you with a one-size-fits-all solution.
Its nutrition plans are tailored to your own energy intake needs.
That starts with an analysis of your real energy intake and how much carbohydrate you need per hour during a ride, and an assessment of what you have available to you from your body’s glycogen stores.
Personalized metabolic profile
With fitness a large determinant of what you burn during a ride, EatMyRide uses details of your FTP and VO2 max to assess your energy needs per hour and the mix between your internal glycogen stores and fat stores that you’ll burn.
EatMyRide also learns from your ride history to fine-tune its assessment of your energy intake needs.
All of this data is used to develop a personalised nutrition plan for each ride or event, based on your planned route.
Usefully, EatMyRide interfaces with route-planning functionality in popular apps Strava, RideWithGPS and Komoot. You can also use an uploaded route file or link to TrainingPeaks, where all of your planned workouts will appear.
EatMyRide will then assess the climbing and wind speed profile of your route to determine how to calculate what energy and fluid intake you need to replenish the carbs burned and sweat lost on the ride.
You’ll need to take enough food and drink to meet this and EatMyRide enables you to input the products you like and that you’ve trained your gut to use.
It keeps data on carbohydrate content, other macronutrients and available calories across a wide range of sports nutrition bars, gels and drinks from all the main brands. You can add your own products too if you want.
EatMyRide will advise you on the suitability of the products you select to use for the planned ride, based on their nutritional content and balance of carbs, fats and protein – and at what point and in what order during your planned ride to use them to keep yourself fuelled up.
The next neat feature of EatMyRide is integration with your Garmin device, so you can follow your nutrition plan as you ride. You will be prompted what and when you should eat and drink to ensure you take in enough carbohydrates per hour. This EatMyRide Burn and Intake Tracker helps you keep track of your nutritional balance in real time.
There’s full integration with the majority of newer Garmin Edge cycling computers and also with most Garmin smartwatches. The nutrition plan resides on your Garmin, so you don’t need to take your phone with you to use it.
EatMyRide offers a range of Garmin apps that you can upload to your device, giving you the full nutrition plan functionality on a separate screen or a smaller data field with a prompt that works with a wider range of Garmin smartwatches.
Analyse your fuelling post-ride and plan your recovery meals
Once you get back from your ride, EatMyRide’s integration with ride-recording apps including Strava and Wahoo means you get an assessment of what you actually burned and what you ate versus what you expected from your plan. This will help you learn how to fuel better for future events.
It also feeds into EatMyRide’s meal-planning functionality, so that your post-ride carbohydrate intake is adjusted based on how you performed on your ride and what you consumed. It’s a feature used by the pros of Team DSM to adjust their post-stage meals during Grand Tours. It means they can eat sooner after the race and have more time for recovery.
There’s further advice on the EatMyRide app on what your nutritional inputs should be in preparation for the planned ride and post-ride to replenish your glycogen stores. You can also get a full meal plan each day to match your planned exercise and ensure effective recovery.
Free and paid EatMyRide options
There are three EatMyRide options.
The first is the free Recreational tier, which gives you the basic nutrition and drinking plan, integrates with route planning apps, and provides your nutrition plan on your Garmin.
Move up to the paid-for Fantastic tier and EatMyRide provides athletes with the functionality to adapt their nutrition plan depending on their training schedule and intensity, create daily meal plans fine-tuned to support their training and analyse their nutrition and performance post-ride.
The Fantastic tier costs €4.99 a month for the first three months, then €6.99 per month after that. Alternatively, you can sign up for an annual fee of €39.99 for the first year, then €49.99 a year.
When you first register, you’ll get 15 days access to the Fantastic tier for free before dropping back to Recreational.
Finally, Pro tier is designed for teams, with the Fantastic tier’s nutrition planning provided for up to five athletes for €29.99 a month or up to 25 athletes for €49.99 a month. Pro tier users also get access to a personal dietician and EatMyRide’s most advanced features.
To find out more, visit EatMyRide’s site.