Low GI Carbs Before Cycling

For fueling competitive sports, carbs are carbs, right? Not according to research published in the International Journal of Sport Physiology and Performance. Scientists fed 8 male cyclists 1 gram of either high or low GI carbohydrates per kilogram of bodyweight 45 minutes before they engaged in a 40 kilometer time trial. That meant a 150 pound rider consumed about 68 grams of carbs. The ones who got the low GI variety finished their trial an average of 3 minutes faster than cyclists who consumed high GI carbs.

The Bigger Picture: Researchers theorized that the low GI carbohydrates supplied working muscles with more glucose through carbohydrate oxidation, sparing muscle glycogen stores. Whether that was the case or not, cutting 3 minutes off a 95 minute race appears well worth the effort. The fact that low GI carbohydrates are generally considered a healthier choice is an added bonus.
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