Energy balance, macronutrient intake, and hydration status during a 1,230 km ultra-endurance bike marathon.
We report about energy intake and energy expenditure in an official finisher of the Race Across AMerica (RAAM) in 2003. Energy intake from nutrition was continuously recorded. Energy expenditure was measured by continuous heart rate recording with a portable heart rate monitor POLAR S710 to estimate energy expenditure during physical activity. Our athlete (33 years, 179 cm, 73 kg, VO (2)max 60 ml . min (-1) . kg (-1), lactate threshold at 77%VO (2)max) finished the 4701-km cycling race with altitude differences amounting to 25,826 meters in 9 days 16 hours and 45 minutes in 4th place. He completed 470+/-72.9 km (372-541 km) per day with 2,582+/-1,576 (683-5,047) meters of altitude. During the whole race, he expended a total energy of 179,650 kcal with 17,965+/-2165 (15,100 - 23,280) kcal per day. Total energy intake was 96,124 kcal with an average of 9,612+/-1,500 (7,513-12,735) kcal per day. Of total ingested calories, 75.2% derived from carbohydrates, 16.2% from fat, and 8.6% from protein. He ingested an energy of 9,612+/-1,550 (7,513 - 12,735) kcal daily, consisting of 1,814+/-310 (1,336 - 2,354) g of carbohydrates, 172+/-47 (88-251) g of fat, and 207+/-52 (128-286) g of protein. The average daily energy deficiency amounted to 8,352+/-2,523 (4,425-13,631) kcal. A total deficiency of 83,526 kcal resulted after the race while the athlete lost 5 kg of body weight. These results provide data about energy intake and energy expenditure in the RAAM for future athletes, nutritionists and coaches. Further investigation should be performed in order to determine whether either muscle mass or body fat will be lost in extreme endurance cycling.