ABSA Cape Epic Nutrition Plan 2023

This is a breakdown of what a rider would need to put back into their body to sustain them each day and be in the best possible shape for every day following while racing the Cape Epic.

Firstly, this is a general guide, and each rider should consider it and use their discretion based on their training leading up to the race. As a baseline we like to suggest 1g of Carbs per KG of body weight per hour. For a race like the Cape Epic, where you are racing on the edge of your ability this would be as high as 1.5g per kg body weight per hour. And when you need to perform day after day your carbohydrate intake becomes even more significant.

To successfully race multi stage events you must, as much as possible avoid using the glycogen stored in the muscles of the body. These glycogen stores take long to be replenished and use energy to convert your food to glycogen, and depleting them causes muscles to fatigue faster and recover slower. Fueling sufficiently during the race will reduce this. Fueling post race is when you get another chance to top up glycogen stores. Maurten is the most effective energy fuel you can use during the race, allowing the highest carbohydrate uptake rate possible, bypassing the digestion process, and allowing for smooth transportation of the ideal ratio carbs. Maurten allows for faster absorption of carbs because of the Hydrogel technology, also making it the perfect glycogen recovery aid.

Each day should start and end with a Drink Mix 160 and 500ml water, ensuring that you add an additional 80g of carbs into your day, for elevated hydration and necessary carbohydrates to assist with muscle repair throughout the day/night. If you have not finished all of the fuel on the stage, it could be a warning that you didn’t fuel correctly, and are possibly in a situation of lowered glycogen levels. Take the opportunity after the days stage to finish any left over hydration mixes and other food that can aid recovery. Continue consuming Maurten throughout the day to elevate the glycogen stores and raise the body’s level of hydration. If you find you are craving salty food, supplement with an electrolyte supplement. Aim to get in 400g to 700g of carbohydrates in your food and drinks following each day. This should be 40% simple carbs and 60% complex carbs.

2023 Race Fueling Guidlines

PL 27KM | 750M : 2 x gels | 1 x 320 mix (130g carbs)
S1 98KM | 2550M : 6 x gels | 4 x 320 mix & 2 x 160 mix | SOLID 225 after 3 hours (595g carbs)
S2 116KM |1850M : 7 x gels | 5 x 320 mix & 2 x 160 mix | SOLID 225 after 3 hours (700g carbs)
S3 108KM | 2600M : 7 x gels | 5 x 320 mix & 2 x 160 mix | SOLID 225 after 3 hours (700g carbs)
S4 47KM | 875M : 3 x gels | 2 x 320 mix (235g carbs)
S5 102KM | 2450M : 7x gels | 4 x 320 mix & 2 x 160 mix | SOLID 225 after 3 hours (575g carbs)
S6 82KM | 2300M : 7 x gels | 4 x 320 mix (495g carbs)
S7 78KM | 2400M : 6 x gels | 4 x 320 mix (470g carbs)

Instructions for following this plan:

Each day should start and end with a Drink Mix 160 and 500ml water mix.

Start with regular GEL 100 and then finish with GEL 100 CAF100. Aim to finish one 500ml bottle per hour or 20km.
Have a GEL 100 per hour, and on days where the ride is longer than 5 hours, have a GEL 100 every 45 minutes.
A note on water quality. It is recommended to have water which is not high in calcium ( water with <40mg/L calcium content ) as this effects how the mix dissolves. When in doubt use bottled water. All Maurten Drink Mix powders take only 500ml or less water per sachet. This fueling strategy will allow you to push to your limits without depleting your glycogen stores. So long as your training was good this will work.

This fueling strategy equates to the following per rider

2 Boxes of GEL 100 = R1500
2 Boxes of GEL 100 CAF100 = R1700
2 Boxes of Drink Mix 320 = R1600
1 Box of Drink Mix 160 = R700
1 Box Solid 225 R660