Sunday, April 18, 2010


Since I started cycling, I have often read about the dreaded bonk. That state where you do not have sufficient fuel in your body and you have enormous difficulty cycling and moving in general.

Today I went with the KNBC for an 86 km trip with a slight wind. I signed up for the faster S3 group as I had been riding with them since March. The difference is, since March I have been on a somewhat drastic protein fast which enables me to lose about 4lbs a week. It has lowered my blood pressure to 100/60 and I feel great.

I lift weights four times a week and am stronger than ever. BUT this was not enough.

10km into the ride, I was in trouble. My legs were exhausted and I could barely pedal. I waited for the slower group and limped into the restaurant for lunch. I was exhausted and exasperated. This had never happened to me before!

After lunch of a salad and soup...I was fine and once again able to resume my riding even with a headwind. Bonk is real!

The moral of my story is in order to ride, you need fuel. From now on on my endurance ride days, I will bring small snacks like the nut bars that I make that will slowly release sugars into my system.

I don't need a lot of fuel, or the extra calories but food that slowly releases sugars into my bloodstream is clearly what was needed. I had read about Bonk before,and assumed it only applied to endurance cyclists or marathon cyclists. I never assumed it would hit me on an 85km ride.

It is obvious that a protein fast where your sugar intake is almost zero, and your caloric intake minimal, while effective is simply NOT a good idea for endurance sports.

Lesson Learned...DEATH TO THE BONK!

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