Introduction to sports nutrition for mountain biking
Specific nutritional concepts and related articles can be found at the bottom of this page.
Mountain biking is a classic endurance sport. Competitive mountain biking on the other hand also relies strongly on the lactic-anaerobic metabolism, especially for shorter distances
Insufficient energy and hydration, as well as lactic acid build-up and poor concentration, are the main factors limiting performance. Recreational athletes require lightweight energy-dense snacks such as bars or sports drinks that can fit into a pocket. Gels, bars and sports drinks are an ideal source of energy for long, intense training sessions and competitions. LONG ENERGY and COMPETITION® are ideal well-tolerated sports drinks for competitive sports as they are nonacidic, hypotonic and mild-tasting. Solid foods such as HIGH ENERGY BAR are recommended for training sessions lasting longer than 3-4 hours. For shorter high-intensity races LIQUID ENERGY gels are highly recommended, as they don’t disrupt breathing, nor do they require any chewing. Cyclists that experience excessive sweating especially during hot weather or have a tendency to develop cramps can benefit from SALT CAPS or MUSCLE RELAX shots. During the starting and acceleration phases of the race in which cyclists dramatically increase their intensity, typically a shift to anaerobic metabolism occurs which can result in lactic acid build-up. A high lactic acid tolerance is thus one of the key factors to success. Products such as LACTAT BUFFER and BETA ALANINE are especially advantageous to achieve maximum performance during competitions. Cyclists can also benefit from creatine supplements which influence the development of muscle and strength. Creatine supplements should be tested in advance as their effect vary from person to person and may possibly result in weight gain.
SPONSER® also offers highly specialized products, so-called PERFORMANCE OPTIMIZERS. The NITROFLOW PERFORMANCE2or RED BEET VINITROX contain nutrients that support nitric oxide (NO) metabolism by dilating blood vessels. As a result, microcirculation is enhanced which positively influences performance but also recovery.
Apart from physical performance, cognitive and mental factors such as quick reflexes and concentration also contribute to success in mountain biking. ACTIVATOR is a caffeine-based product that targets these factors. Caffeine has been shown to enhance cognitive and mental performance and is taken about 30-60 minutes before the desired time of effect. As sensitivity to caffeine varies from person to person, ACTIVATOR should be tested in different doses at first. SPONSER® also offers MENTAL FOCUS, a caffeine-free alternative specifically designed for cognitive and mental performance.
To promote recovery, SPONSER® recommends shakes with protein and carbohydrates such as RECOVERY DRINK or PRO RECOVERY. They are based on milk or water and are available in single portion sachets or bigger tubs depending on the preference and use. Athletes that travel often, go to training camps, bigger events or competitions are at higher risk of getting an infection. It is thus particularly important to strengthen the immune system and to take precautions against infections. Multinutrient supplements with immunoactive substances such as IMMUNOGUARD along with a healthy lifestyle and balanced diet will strengthen your immune system.