Cycling, Your Brain, & Calories

Lyndsey Cure Tour 2.jpgCycling is a great form of low impact & potentially high intensity exercise, especially if you’ve visited a local spin class.  Some people cycle strictly because of the above and the calorie burning potential.

Depending on how long you ride, how much you weigh, and how fast you go determine how many calories you burn & need to maximize the cardiovascular and muscular benefit.

Below is a quick calorie-burning calculator for cyclist:

  • BASELINE: 150 lb rider @ 15mph burns 12 calories/minute
  • less 15 lbs @ 15mph burns 1.2 less calories/min (135 lbs = 10.8 cal/hr)
  • add 15 lbs @ 15mph burns 1.2 more calories/min (165 lbs = 13.2 cal/hr)

If you ride more than 1 hr/day with at least moderate intensity, your daily carbohydrate load should be 60%.  As humans we have bigger brains and smaller livers than other animals.  So when we test on animals to determine sugar and calorie needs, it’s not always the most accurate.  Because of our difference organ sizes, we require more glucose (NOT fructose, maltose, other process & chemically separated versions) for our brains to function.  Smaller livers mean a lower ability to produce glucose without the presence of food.  The key is consuming healthy natural versions of glucose/sugar like Stevia (not Truvia or Stevia in the Raw), organic agave nectar, local unprocessed honey, and fresh fruits.

Beware of processed gels, goos or gummy chews.  Make some homemade Energy Balls that are travel-friendly. Or Reload Energy Gel which is made from 100% fig paste, berry extract, sea salt, and CoQ10, and is available at Awakened Living.  Or make your own and post your creations.  For a simple start, try with bananas, water, and sea salt to start.

Remember: refuel within 30 minutes of activity with fruit to replenish glucose then add some  protein (i.e.) within the hour to help build and repair muscle tissue.  Longer workouts require greater pre- & post-nutrition.  Know your needs and inquire for help as needed.

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