Grains – The Pros and Cons

Grains offer a great staple to any diet. Most of you can probably agree with this knowing they provide steady release of complex carbohydrate, high in fibre and B vitamins.

Finding the perfect pre-ride meal is something of trial and error with some people not being able to manage high fibre, lactose or large amounts of fructose before sessions (this especially being apparent in Triathlon or as duration of exercise increases)


  • If you have 2-4 hours before heading out grains are a carb dense option that isn’t too high in volume so you shouldn’t feel bloated– and provide a nice steady release of energy.
  • If it’s a big, big day or “the” day you should have probably carb loaded for 1 day prior and have your muscles saturated with stored carbohydrate, so on the day you only need to top up your depleted liver glycogen stores.
  • Grains in can be combined with other ingredients– like Maple syrup and bananas to increase the amount of carbohydrates and to further aid in the above mentioned liver glycogen replenishment – something that’s needed to help maintain blood glucose levels after an overnight fast I.e sleep.
  • On a Sportive? Grains like bread, oats are available pretty much anywhere in the world (same for bananas and maple syrup), making it ideal to have in practice and on the day, helping you to keep to your usual routine and safe knowing you’re going to feel great because of it.
  • Aiming for about 100-120g of carbohydrate before your ride or event should ensure you’re topped up, and will aid in performance.


RECIPE: Overnight oats

  • 100g porridge oats
  • 250 ml milk of your choice
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • zest of one large orange
  • 50g dried cranberries

MIX together the oats with the milk

ADD the rest of the ingredients except the cranberries STIR

NOW add cranberries

LEAVE to soak


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