Race Nutrition Tips

The primary reason to consume calories during endurance exercise is to provide carbohydrate to the working muscles and brain. This becomes increasingly important as the duration of training/competition lasts longer than 60-90 minutes due to the body’s limited capacity to store carbohydrates (glycogen). There is good physiological data to support an upper limit in our ability to breakdown carbohydrate during exercise. However, the upper limit is increased if there are multiple sources of carbohydrate consumed. By selecting a product with more than one source (e.g. sucrose and fructose), you are able to absorb more than when you consume a single source (e.g. glucose only).

The general recommendation is to consume 30 – 60 grams of carbohydrate per hour or 120 – 240 calories per hour during endurance exercise. Alternatively another recommendation is to consume 15-25% of your caloric expenditure per hour. As the intensity of exercise increase carbohydrates become the primary fuel source, possibly requiring more to be consumed (depending on duration). Athletes who have a higher level of fitness and train their aerobic metabolism have a greater ability to use fat as a fuel source during exercise and therefore rely less on carbohydrates.

As you plan for your next race, consider the factors listed above to determine the best number of calories for YOU to consume per hour. Take a look at nutrition product labels to identify carbohydrate sources and amounts per serving. Most importantly make sure you test out any food/hydration sources before race day. Everyone is different and the type and amount of carbs your stomach can handle varies. Nothing is worse than a stomach ache mid-race due to eating something you have never tried before.


  1.  (<60 minutes) You can likely rely on glycogen stores typically ranging from 1,400-2,000 calories for efforts lasting less than 60 minutes.
  2. (2 hours) Requirements 60-120 grams of carbs 240-480 calories
  3. (3 hours) Requirements 90-180 grams of carbs 360-720 calories
  4. (4 hours) Requirements 120-240 grams of carbs 480-960 calories
  5. (5 hours) Requirements 150-300 grams of carbs 600-1,200 calories

Nutrition Facts:

Hydration Mix:

GQ-6 - Get a discount on GQ6 hydration products by using code: echelon17 at checkout for 30% off

1 Scoop of 3-2-1 Base Mix -  28 Carbs 115 Calories

Solid food and gels:

Cliff - Contact us via Facebook for assistance in placing your Clif Bar order

Shot        24 Carbs 100 Calories

Bar           45 Carbs 250 Calories

Block        48 Carbs 180 Calories

Pro Bar - Get a discount on Pro Bar nutrition products by using code: ECHELON40 at checkout for 40% off

Bolt    24 Carbs 120 Calories

Fuel   34 Carbs 190 Calories, 3g Protein

Bite    11 Carbs 190 Calories

Honey Stinger

Gel        27 Carbs 100 Calories

Bars         27 Carbs 190 Calories

Chews 39 Carbs 160 Calories

Waffle        21 Carbs 150 Calories

Shoot us a message on Facebook at Project Echelon Racing with any questions or if you are seeking further advice and we would be happy to support you in achieving your goals!

For other great discounts (52% OFF!!!) on Rudy Project eyewear and helmets, visit www.e-rudy.com/vip and use code: projectechelon at checkout!

Looking for more tips, tricks, and coaching like this to help maximize your physical performance and achieve your personal goals… Connect with Tim Savre, the author of this document, via the contacts below: