What should a cyclist eat for breakfast?

This question is about Cycling

Sarah Achleithner

Cyclists should aim to eat a mixture of carbohydrates and protein for breakfast to help prepare muscles for aerobic activity and provide energy needed to enhance subsequent physical performance [






]. Carbohydrates are the preferred fuel of muscles during moderate-high intensity activities such as cycling.

Examples of breakfast options include scrambled eggs or an omelet with toast and fruit, a protein smoothie with nut butter and banana, or oatmeal with milk, berries, and seeds. Water and electrolytes should also accompany breakfast to ensure adequate hydration. Ideally, cyclists should consume 45-100 g of carbohydrates at breakfast, staying towards the lower end 30 minutes prior to exercise, and eating towards the higher end hours before exercise [



Oatmeal with berries in a wooden bowl


  1. Learsi, S. K., Ghiarone, T., Silva-Cavalcante, M. D., Andrade-Souza, V. A., Ataide-Silva, T., Bertuzzi, R., de Araujo, G. G., McConell, G., & Lima-Silva, A. E. (2019). Cycling time trial performance is improved by carbohydrate ingestion during exercise regardless of a fed or fasted state. Scandinavian journal of medicine & science in sports, 29(5), 651–662.



  2. Correia-Oliveira, C. R., Bertuzzi, R., Dal'Molin Kiss, M. A., & Lima-Silva, A. E. (2013). Strategies of dietary carbohydrate manipulation and their effects on performance in cycling time trials. Sports medicine (Auckland, N.Z.), 43(8), 707–719.



  3. Ormsbee, M. J., Bach, C. W., & Baur, D. A. (2014). Pre-exercise nutrition: the role of macronutrients, modified starches and supplements on metabolism and endurance performance. Nutrients, 6(5), 1782–1808. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu6051782