Norseman – Fueling the body in long distance triathlon

” Most products are similar „

Some say triathlon is not 3 different disciplines but rather 4.

The fourth is fueling your body!

There are countless products each swearing they are the next big thing.

Boasting 14876mg of whatever ingredient you should use etc.

Please note that most products are similar anyway, well except for the price tag.

What’s not similar is your body vs my body.

If I can give one advice it would be that you try the low cost gels/bars etc first to see how you respond.

Go for a bike ride over 2 hours and eat the gels/bar during this time. Keep it fast so you drain your stored energy in your body.

If you push yourself towards your threshold and your stomach is OK, then you might as well use this over other over priced products.

And even then, stomach problem can still come when you least expect it.

If you have stomach problems, go to another product and try that one.

Taste is another personal thing. Go for what you like even if it will cost you more.

Remember you will probably eat so many gels that you will be shitting it for a month, so it’s worth to eat the tastier ones.

Anyways, enough ranting.

” Evening before „

The days before you should eat a lot of carbohydrates.

HERE is my carboloading for my previous Ironman 2014.

I will NOT be doing the same this time!

Reason is I know what happens if I eat this much during three days. The stomach takes a beating.

Only do this if you have practiced it before, which I have not.

I will eat more carbohydrates during the next days, however not 4800Kcal.

And the evening before I will only eat something light as I have to wake up very early to eat a light breakfast.

Many makes the mistake to eat a lot but that will only make your stomach feel very full during the swim.

The breakfast will consist of regular oat bran with honey and coconut flakes.

On the way to the ferry I will eat some nutella sandwiches to keep the sugar levels high.

Coming up from the water I will immediately eat a gel and drink some carbohydrates.


” 3 Gels an hour „

After getting on the bike and feel I have control, I will eat a caffeine pill.

The caffeine pill is from Body Science and contains 400mg Caffeine.

During the bike leg I will consume 3 gels an hour. To top it off I will also drink some carbohydrates.

My plan is to take a sip every 5 minutes.

As experienced during my other races and during training I tend to not need to drink so much.

So the liquid is primarily to help the stomach handle the gels.

My liquid carbohydrates consists of water mixed with High5 Energy Source Citrus flavor.

Per 250ml it will be 44g Carbohydrates.

The gels I use are High5 Energygels+ with Caffeine.

These contains 23g of carbohydrates and 30mg caffeine.

I will mix these with 32Gi Sport Chews which are like jelly!

This means they offer some chew resistance and are dry, but not hard to swallow.

Content of the Sport Chew is 33g carbohydrates

Also a snickers or banana will find its way down the hatch during the ride.

The snickers and banana is for the stomach as it needs some solids as well to function properly.

Depending on how much I sweat, and I sweat a lot, I will eat salt sticks.

They will be maybe 1 or max 2 per hours.

I do not want to get to salty as this will only keep more fluids and can be hazardous to the stomach.

After 4-5 hours on the bike I will eat another Caffeine pill.

” Salt and vinegar „

Coming in to the run I will have my support, Johannes, set me up with salty pickles and coca cola.

I will follow my routine of 3 gels an hour but will probably not drink as much.

Hopefully I’m enough hydrated from the bike leg that I just have to top it off every now and then.

I also have chips with the taste of salt and vinegar. It’s a nice break from all the sugar.

Counting carbohydrates it comes to about maybe 90-100g of carbohydrates per hour.

This is probably pushing my limits on what my stomach can handle, but I’ve trained several sessions with this many carbohydrates.

As always, try everything before you actually race 🙂


Well, this was a summary on how I plan to tackle Norseman.

I will have an alarm on my watch signaling when to eat and drink. It’s easy to forget and you can’t replenish it by eating more next round 🙁


Next post will be about the ride up to Norway and some thoughts on what has happened since I received the Norseman slot.

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