The good, the bad and the hungry: diets for cyclists, rated by experts

What does a pro sports scientist think of these popular approaches to weight loss?

diets for cyclists
(Image credit: Daniel Gould)

It’s hard to avoid the power to weight equation in cycling. Extra grams weighted to the rider can suck up watts gained through hard training, but insufficient nutrition can have a devastating effect on power produced.

The obsession with weight threads its way through bike design and into lighthearted cake stop gags at cafe stops. It takes on a more sinister tone when we hear heartbreaking revelations about pro riders using meal replacement powder to balance the tightrope walk of managing an eating disorder alongside the demands of professional sport.

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Michelle Arthurs-Brennan

Michelle Arthurs-Brennan the Editor of Cycling Weekly website. An NCTJ qualified traditional journalist by trade, Michelle began her career working for local newspapers. She's worked within the cycling industry since 2012, and joined the Cycling Weekly team in 2017, having previously been Editor at Total Women's Cycling. Prior to welcoming her daughter in 2022, Michelle raced on the road, track, and in time trials, and still rides as much as she can - albeit a fair proportion indoors, for now.