I am just starting to up my training on the bike and I need some help with nutrition. I am planning on doing some bigger event rides next year, one 60k and one 100k. I am fine with the training part of it, but the more I read about how to eat the more confused I get.
So, I have read The Cyclist's Training Bible by Joe Friel. He is pretty paleo, and the food and diet sections are written by Cordain, I believe. Friel explains that 90-95% of training for riding should be done at a low exertion level, ie <75% of lactic threshold. This is in the fat burning zone. The other 5-10% should be really hard training, such as hills and sprints.
So my questions are based around the paleo nutrition for the two different training methods.
Low effort - I plan to 4 rides a week for about 2-2.5 hours each at a low pace. As this is in the fat burning zone, should I eat carbs beforehand (riding after work, eat rice with my lunch) or can I do this on fat alone (coconut oil before ride)? Or should I do both? That Paleo Guy has written that you can ride at a fairly low impact without eating carbs, he has a coconut cream and berry smoothie. Is this optimal? What about fasted to increase fat burning ability?
High effort - I have some pretty amazing hills on my door step, so 1 ride per week in the hills for 2.5 hours, consisting of flat, and medium to high level hills, up to 12%. If I plan to do this on Sunday, I am definitely going to have carbs, but how much? Should I have starch for the night before, and something for breakfast? I like to ride really early in the morning and normally fast until lunch time. I understand that this is probably not going to work, so do I need to eat before the ride or would eating starch for dinner the night before be enough? I should have a huge carb feed when I get back, right?
Sorry that this is a pretty long and complex question, so I appreciate any answers.
Note, I appreciate that someone will say "you need to experiment and find what works for you, N=1". Thats fine, but I want to know what works for people, so I have a headstart.