Carb Loading on Hilly Races?

race-day
carb-loading

#1

I have a 190km race which has about 3000m of climbing this weekend. In the leadup, my training was going well, and i was dropping weight and sitting @ around 4.7W/kg.

After 2 days of carb loading i’m 2-3kg heavier which means my W/KG is only about 4.55. Being a climber, this really takes away the advantage i did have.

Any thoughts on whether carb loading is something best left for flat races? Not sure i’ll be doing it again. Maybe its because i went pretty overboard with the kcals, but that seems like a lot.


#2

I wouldn’t think about your w/kg like that. Adding extra weight by carb loading isn’t going to negatively affect your performance and is more likely to help. On such a long race, you’re going to be using that energy and you will lose that weight over the course of the race. Will there be aid stations along the way or do you have to carry all your nutrition?

Generally you would have to carry that weight anyways. Either internally, in your muscles, or in your bottles. The energy in your muscles are there, ready to be used. Energy in your bottles, or pockets, have to be eaten and digested which is slower.

Also, think about your weight in %. You’re about 100kg so 2-3kg is only 2-3% of your body weight. The accuracy of your scale and daily fluctuations in weight may even account for a big % of that weight difference.

Nothing to worry about. Just go out there, crush it and understand you’ll probably have a better performance carb loaded even with the weight gain.


#3

Same situation and looking forward to the replies. The weight is water which will help in the long event though. Twice as much water binds to carb than whatever else, AFAIK. Should sweat that pretty early on and feel fresher while being back on real ftp. My problem is that we start with a long climb that splits the groups and I also want to take additional water since insanely hot temperatures are predicted.


#4

Worth listening to this podcast (episode 14) where Nate addresses this exact question:

https://www.flocycling.com/podcast.php

In summary, better to have the extra glycogen and water on board, vs being a few pounds lighter.


#5

The carbs are going to power you to the finish line, go without and expect a slower time.