Cycling, whether on road, dirt or track, requires great efforts both physically and mentally.
The goal of every cyclist is to always improve in terms of speed and endurance, and the main enemy is always lactic acid.
Cycling is one of the sports with the heaviest and most intense training sessions from a physical but also a mental point of view.
Per the professional cyclist, but also for the amateur of all levels, nutrition is important, but it may not be enough to cover all the energy and recovery needs of an intense training session.
Per this 7 particular categories of food supplements can help. The world of supplements in cycling is in fact particularly confusing and it is not always easy to know which sports supplements can help to improve cycling performance.
#1 - Multivitaminici
Vitamins and minerals are very important for any sport, as they help the body use nutrients more effectively.
Multivitamin supplements for cycling help in energy production, support the immune system and contribute to the body's performance and resilience.
Read also: Vitamins and their functions
# 2 - Beta-alanine
Beta alanine is a non-essential amino acid, it occurs naturally in the human body (it can be synthesized from alanine).
A study published in 2009 in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition found that beta-alanine increases the energy and stamina of athletes. The study is based on athletes who did intense training 3 times a week, for a total of 6 weeks.
The group of athletes supplemented with beta-alanine showed greater resistance than the control group (training up to 115% of VO 2 max)
Read also: Integration and nutrition in cycling
# 3 - Creatine
Scientific studies have shown that creatine increases physical performance in case of repetitive, high intensity and short duration activities (the beneficial effect is obtained with a daily intake of 3 g of creatine).
Creatine is one of the main supplements in bodybuilding, but it is also a very effective supplement in cycling.
In fact, even cycling is full of short and powerful shots, and it is precisely in this performance range (of high intensity and short duration) that creatine shows its effectiveness.
An Oklahoma University study of women aged 21-24 showed that creatine significantly increased the electromyographic fatigue threshold (EMGFT).
Creatine therefore proves to be an important aid for improving muscle endurance for a cyclist.
# 4 - Caffeine
Caffeine is a "xanthine", an alkaloid found in various plants such as coffee beans and cocoa beans, tea leaves, guarana berries and kola nuts.
The effects of caffeine are a stimulating action on the central nervous system, on the cardiovascular system, on the release of catecholamines, on acid synthesis in the stomach and on metabolism in general.
Caffeine is an ergogenic agent: it increases energy levels, reaction times become more efficient and concentration sharper.
Per these reasons, caffeine has become one of the most used supplements in cycling.
Read also: The effects of caffeine in sports
# 5 - Whey protein
Protein is very important for every athlete, and even in cycling, Protein must be part of the basis of a good diet.
Whey protein, egg protein, casein, meat protein ... which one to choose?
Not all Protein are the same from a nutritional point of view.
Whey Protein are high quality Protein and are absorbed by the body quickly.
The body uses Protein to build muscles and to repair them.
Whey Protein (commonly called whey) are also rich in essential amino acids (they are those amino acids that an organism is not able to synthesize itself in sufficient quantities, but which it must take with food) and are also very rich of branched chain amino acids (BCAAs).
All these characteristics of whey Protein contribute to the maintenance and growth of the cyclist's muscle, favoring a faster recovery and consequently better performance.
Read also: Calculation of the protein requirement
# 6 - Ciclodestrine
Cyclodextrin, or Cluster Dextrin, is a new type of supplement that is well suited to cycling thanks to its absorption speed, as it provides the cyclist with an immediately available energy source.
# 7 - Electrolytes
Electrolytes are mixtures of calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium: they are essential for normal cell function, but unfortunately they are lost with sweating.
And we know how much fluids (and consequently electrolytes) can be lost during a long cycling training session.
Correct hydration is therefore important for the cyclist, which brings the electrolytes useful to avoid a drastic drop in performance.
Read also: Energy gels for cycling and running