Endurance Sports Nutrition
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Hydration for cyclists: how much do we really need to drink? | CyclingTips

Hydration for cyclists: how much do we really need to drink? | CyclingTips | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

Summer might be finished here in Australia but staying hydrated on the bike is as important as ever. In fact, for years we’ve been bombarded with messages about hydration and performance – “lose more than 2% of your body weight and your performance will decline by x%”, or words to this effect. It’s become burnt into the minds of cyclists the world over. But it’s surprisingly rare that anyone thinks to question this message. Where did it come from? What science is it based on? And can aggressive hydration actually make that much difference? Alan McCubbin investigates.

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I wrote this piece for CyclingTips on the science of hydration and performance.

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Nutrition tips for the everyday cyclist - health.com.au

Nutrition tips for the everyday cyclist - health.com.au | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it
Sports nutrition is often thought of as something that elite athletes pay close attention to, but not something that should concern the average cyclist. But no matter what level of riding you do, it’s likely that some adjustments in how you eat may make you faster or stronger on the bike, and get through your rides with plenty of energy. Here’s a few quick nutrition tips to make the most out of your cycling.
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I first wrote this piece for The Daily Tour - an e-zine published each day of the Tour Down Under. The folks at health.com.au who sponsored the e-zine have re-published the article here for you.

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Next Level Nutrition: Reflections on London - The Sports Dietitians Australia Update

Next Level Nutrition: Reflections on London - The Sports Dietitians Australia Update | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it
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Sports Dietitians Australia is the leading professional organisation for sports nutrition professionals in Australia. In May 2013 they held their annual update day, focussing on the lessons learnt from the 2012 London Olympic Games.

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High-fat, low-carb diets: how to try one for yourself |

High-fat, low-carb diets: how to try one for yourself | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

In the first part of this two-part series, Joe McQuillan and Alan McCubbin introduced us to high-fat, low-carbohydrate (HFLC) diets and compared two athletes who were about to start a HFLC diet. In the second and final part in this series our authors show how the two athletes responded to their diets and show you what a HFLC diet actually looks like.

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Making Weight | Sports Medicine Australia

Making Weight | Sports Medicine Australia | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it
Young athletes competing in a sport with weight categories should avoid being in a weight class that requires them drastically diet to “make weight,” they
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Weight category sports like lightweight rowing, combat sports and horse racing place athletes under constant pressure to make weight for competition. The AIS lightweight rowing dietitian Bronwen Lundy explains the potential pitfalls when athletes try to lose too much weight at the last minute.

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Bicycling Video | Bicycling Magazine

Bicycling Video | Bicycling Magazine | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

Chef Biju Thomas of Skratch Labs feeds the pro peleton at races like the Tour of California and walks us through his rice cake race food (video).

Next Level Nutrition's insight:

I make these rice cakes with the search2retain p/b health.com.au team for races of >5 hours. They're a great alternative to gels and bars.

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Sports nutrition strategies |

Sports nutrition strategies | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

Back in April 2010 CT wrote a post on the benefits of time trial equipment to performance, based on wind tunnel data. I remember thinking I’d love to do the same for nutrition, and compare to other strategies cyclists use to get an edge.

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What are the benefits you can expect to see from different sports nutrition strategies such as carb loading, adequate hydration, caffeine and others? In this article for Cycling Tips I looked at the scientific literature and what it said about the performance gains to be made from each strategy.

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NUTRITION TIPS FOR THE WARNY AND THE GRAFTON |

NUTRITION TIPS FOR THE WARNY AND THE GRAFTON | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

It’s just under a month now until the 262km of pain that is the Melbourne-Warrnambool. There are also a host of similar one day classics around Australia such as the 228km Grafton-Inverell and the just gone 208km Launceston-New Norfolk. No matter whether your aim is to win the thing, have some fun or just survive to the finish, here’s some nutrition information that might help you achieve that goal.

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Weight Loss for Cyclists |

Weight Loss for Cyclists | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

I'm a larger bloke who struggles with keeping my weight down. I have to admit, I don't feel all that comfortable in lycra in the winter months. I like my food and under no circumstances will I feel hungry and sacrifice my lifestyle to shed a few pounds to get up the hills quicker. I've never lost weight without a plan. "Eat less and ride more" is not a plan I've had much success with. I recently had a nutritional consult with Alan McCubbin and I asked him to outline the strategy he's using to help me get down to race weight. Watch out Tour of Bright....you are mine!

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Keeping you cool on the bike – A role for nutrition? |

Keeping you cool on the bike – A role for nutrition? | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

If you’re like me you’re more than happy that summer’s arrived. But whether you’re training or competing, you probably already appreciate the difference the heat can make to your performance. What you might not know is that there’s some interesting nutrition science that’s investigating how we can maximise performance in the heat, and it’s very simple to put into practice. This was most simply demonstrated by the Australian Institute of Sport in the lead up to the Beijing Olympics Individual Time Trial.

Next Level Nutrition's insight:

Did you know that pre-cooling your body with ice-slushies before a race can actually improve performance? Here's an article I wrote examining some of the research behind it.

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Grand Tour Nutrition |

Grand Tour Nutrition | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

With the Giro in full swing and Le Tour on the horizon, I thought I’d take a different path for this nutrition post. It’s one thing preparing your nutrition plan for a single day race. It’s tougher for a week-long stage race. But nutrition for the grand tours is something else. Optimising performance and recovery, and maintaining a healthy gut and immune system whilst constantly on the move for three weeks is a massive logistical challenge for teams and their support staff. Here’s a rundown on the nutrition factors and practical considerations that are required to keep the grand tour pros fuelled and hydrated.

Next Level Nutrition's insight:

Here's an article I wrote for Cycling Tips, looking at the nutrition requirements and the dietary patterns of cyclists in the grand tours.

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Sports nutrition supplements :: untangling the science and the hype |

Sports nutrition supplements :: untangling the science and the hype | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

For as long as competitive cycling has been around, riders have been looking for ways to improve their performance, to gain an edge over their competitors. One popular method is the use of sports nutrition supplements. In this first part of a two-part series, sports nutritionist Alan McCubbin takes us through the life-cycle of sports nutrition supplements, from initial research to marketing and explains the role that science does and doesn't play in the process.

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Interviews with the elite – Louise M. Burke: “I am always suspicious when new dietary crazes hit”

Given your expertise in carbohydrate and fat metabolism, what is your take on the “train low, race high” approach that suggests endurance athletes should
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Prof. Louise Burke is the head of Sports Nutrition at the Australian Institute of Sport. In this interview she talks about the emerging trends in endurance sports nutrition, and spotting the fads from the genuine strategies.

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Finding the sweet spot with sports nutrition | CyclingTips

Finding the sweet spot with sports nutrition | CyclingTips | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

So often the mentality in nutrition (and particularly sports nutrition) is “if some is good, more must be better”. If one protein shake helps recovery, then three will make my recovery three times as good. Fluid prevents dehydration and improves performance, so let’s guzzle down as much as possible.

But as sports dietitian Alan McCubbin writes, this mentality is not only ineffective, in many cases it's detrimental to your performance and even your health.

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Another article I wrote for Cycling Tips, this time looking at the concept of "hormesis", or finding a sweet spot in sports nutrition

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Nutrition: Alan McCubbin Responds to Pester a Pro

Nutrition: Alan McCubbin Responds to Pester a Pro | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it
Interview by Functional Running reader submitted questions. By Will Lind Image © Eugenio Marongiu / Dollar Photo Club Pester a Pro is a unique chance for you, the readers, to pick the brains of elite runners, coaches and experts... #alanmccubbin #halfmarathonnutrition #marathonnutrition
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After my talk at the Australian Running Convention in September, the folks at Functional Running hunted me down for their "Pester a Pro" series and put 5 reader questions to me about running nutrition. Here are my responses...

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Analysis of Wilson Kipsang's marathon world record: Pacing and splits

Analysis of Wilson Kipsang's marathon world record: Pacing and splits | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it
Wilson Kipsang's 2:03:23 is the talk of the marathon world. I analyse the pacing, the splits and the potential for future improvement.
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Great review of the latest marathon WR pacing from Ross Tucker of the Science of Sport website

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High-fat, low-carb diets: good for you and your cycling? |

High-fat, low-carb diets: good for you and your cycling? | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

For decades the use of carbohydrate in a cyclist’s diet has been a given. We know from research findings that carbohydrate is necessary for improving both high intensity and endurance performance. But recently this theory has been challenged by a number of endurance athletes and researchers.

In this first part of a two-part series, Joe McQuillan and Alan McCubbin introduce us to high-fat, low-carb diets, discuss the benefits of such diets and look at how you can try one for yourself.

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Next Level Nutrition: Marathon des Sables - A test of body, mind and dietitians!

Next Level Nutrition: Marathon des Sables - A test of body, mind and dietitians! | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

Endurance sports take many forms, which is why it's so interesting to work with endurance athletes from a nutrition perspective. The general aims are more or less the same, but the practical reality of each event type creates enormous diversity in how those basic nutiritonal goals are executed. And at the extreme end of the practicality scale lies the Marathon des Sables - a multi-day, multi-stage foot race across the Sahara in Morocco. 

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In 2013 I got the opportunity to work with two clients to plan their nutrition for the Marathon des Sables. Here's some information about I put it all together.

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Nutrition and Muscle Cramps – What does the science say? |

Nutrition and Muscle Cramps – What does the science say? | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

There are a lot of opinions about why cramping occurs and everyone has their own advice when the topic comes up. Many sports drinks tell you that they key to preventing cramps is magnesium, bike fitters will tell you your saddle is too high, and I've heard dozens of different home remedies. Personally, I've always maintained the belief that cramping is most often caused by extending yourself beyond your fitness abilities (but I have no scientific proof of that). In this post, Alan McCubbin from Next Level Nutrition tells us what the research says about cramping.

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Sports Foods and Supplements – Where Do You Get Your Info? |

Sports Foods and Supplements – Where Do You Get Your Info? | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

One of the first things I always get asked is as a sports dietitian is “what supplements should I take?” But what really gets me is that everyone wants to know about supplements without even considering what they’re eating for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Fruit and yoghurt isn’t a sexy recovery snack compared to ionised whey protein isolate and a PowerBar.

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A look at the use and marketing of sports nutrition supplements in endurance sports.

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Attitudes To Nutrition, Weight, Health and Performance |

Attitudes To Nutrition, Weight, Health and Performance  | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

The question that has always been on my mind as a sports dietitian who works with many young National Road Series riders here in Australia is how our attitudes to dieting, weight loss and performance compare to those encountered amongst the pro peloton in Europe. We hear stories of coaches who demand that their stick-thin cyclists lose even more weight, and riders secretively bingeing on cakes when no one is watching. European journalist Gregor Brown managed to catch up with four professionals to get their take on eating, weight management, health and performance. We chose four riders who come from a diverse range of teams and cultural backgrounds.

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A series of interviews and commentary with four pro cyclists on their experience, beliefs and attitudes to nutrition and weight management in the professional peleton. Put together by cycling journalist Gregor Brown and myself.

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The Pursuit Of Leanness |

The Pursuit Of Leanness  | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

A few months back I wrote about weight loss for cyclists, for those trying to shed some unwanted kilos. But there’s also a group of cyclists who always struggle to gain weight, or those cyclists (and coaches) who become obsessed with weight loss at all costs. This raises the question of how much weight can you lose, in terms of your performance, your health and your sanity.

Next Level Nutrition's insight:

I wrote this article for Cycling Tips, looking at the potential health and performance issues that can arise when cyclists are overly obsessive with weight loss at all costs. 

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Protein For Cyclists |

Protein For Cyclists | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

We've all be taught that protein is important for recovery when training but there are lots of questions surrounding how much, when, and what type to take after a ride. In this article our nutritional expert Alan McCubbin talks about protein for cyclists and answers all these questions with the research that's out there.

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Periodised Nutrition – Why Timing is Everything |

Periodised Nutrition – Why Timing is Everything | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

With the majority of big events over for 2012, it’s time to start thinking about next year’s goals. Many cyclists will be starting to think about the races and events they plan to target, sitting down with their coaches and working out their training plans for 2013.

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The concept of matching your nutrition to your training schedule is not new, but recent research has helped highlight the best ways to do it. Here's an article I wrote for Cycling Tips on the topic.

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DIY Sports Nutrition |

DIY Sports Nutrition | | Endurance Sports Nutrition | Scoop.it

When you’re heading out for a ride it's easy to grab a couple of bars or gels and shove them in your jersey pockets. They’re convenient and perfectly packaged for easy consumption when you’re enjoying your ride. But for a variety of reasons there’s a number of cyclists who’d prefer to make their own sports nutrition products from scratch. In this article, Alan McCubbin from Next Level Nutrition takes look at some of the basic principles behind sports nutrition products, and shares some recipes you can make yourself.

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