Supplemental nutrition in a track cyclist is a controversial topic. A number of supplements are available that appeal to track cyclists trying to gain an edge over their competitors. However, majority of these supplements are not supported by scientific evidence. Moreover, these product manufacturers continuously mislead cyclists over the claimed advantages in using these supplements. It is important to note that supplements are only useful as an addition to quality training and a good diet. Despite the absence of scientific evidence, a lot of sports nutritionists and coaches suggest the use of these supplements in some situations.
Carbohydrate Gels: These are small amounts of gel usually packaged in 60-100 ml that contain complex and simple carbohydrates. Suggested uses include: as energy source for a quick carbohydrate hit. Potentially useful for multi-event competition days and as an energy source for athletes who have trouble with solid foods before competition
Sports and Cereal bars: Good source of carbohydrate for fuelling and refuelling. Suggested uses include: as a suitable protein/carbohydrate mix to facilitate recovery from resistance training sessions. Handy snack between events and on longer training rides.
Liquid Meal Replacements: Suggested uses include: recovery from resistance training and heavy training sessions. Can be used between events if short breaks don’t allow time to eat. Pre-race when solid food is not tolerated.
Sports Electrolyte Drinks: Between events for rehydration and refuelling, especially in hot environments. Good for pre-race hydration.
Buffering agents: High intensity short duration track events such as (e.g. pursuits) to neutralise lactic acidosis.