Exercise and nutrition go hand in hand all year long.  Your winter diet will depend on your training schedule, but winter cycling creates unique nutrition and hydration requirements.

Nutrition is especially important if you’re heading outside for your workout this time of year. Proper nutrition helps regulate your core temperature, keeps your body warm and provides enough fuel for your muscles to do their job.

Wet and cold weather conditions increase the amount of calories our bodies burn while cycling.

The best foods for cold-weather workouts are complex carbohydrates, ideally consumed two hours before exercising.

I’m talking about those amazing winter comfort foods we’re all craving, warm chili, soups, bread, pasta, baked potatoes and oatmeal — are you hungry yet?

But don’t forget to eat on the road too. It’s so important to continuously replace carbohydrate stores that are being used for exercise and warming you up. If you don’t, you’ll get tired faster and feel chilled. Carry items that won’t get too hard in cold weather. Baked goods like banana bread and chewy oatmeal cookies are a great choice.

After your ride, it’s important to consume a post training recovery snack within 30 minutes.

Eat a combination of carbohydrates and protein – carbohydrates replenish the stores in your muscles and protein assists in the recovery of muscle damage. And if you are adding any off road training to your exercise regime, remember that you should always fuel up a little more after a strength training session.

And finally, the biggest nutritional mistake people make is not drinking enough fluids when you’re exercising outside. Cold blunts the thirst mechanism, and so you’ll feel less thirsty even if you’re sweating more.  You also lose a lot of liquids just through breathing. So stay hydrated!  Warm beverages may be more tempting to drink in the cold, so use an insulated water bottle or thermos that fits in your bike cage.

For more cycling news and your #respecttheride intro pack join our cycling community here.

More Blog Posts

June 16, 2021

My return to the road has been slow and steady. My pace has allowed me an opportunity to observe the wide range of greetings offered by passing cyclists.

May 26, 2021

In January I experienced a crash and suffered a serious injury to my left knee. It gave me an understanding of what it means to be challenged so deeply by pain and injury.

April 14, 2021

Whether at fault or not, if you are involved in a crash with a car in Ontario you are entitled to Accident Benefit insurance coverage.

March 10, 2021

We take a look at why it can be so hard for cyclists that have been hurt to get compensation and how a lawyer can help cyclists get the compensation they deserve.