NEWSLETTER – June 2024


top dog events lake district 100 miler

NEWSLETTER No 29 – June 2024

yorkshire dales 68 mile loop sportive

Hi – we hope this month’s offering finds you and yours fit, well – and looking forward to some brighter weather 😊

News from the front –

With less than 3 x weeks to go – only 32 riders had entered The Raptor 24 – due to be held on 9 June 2024.

"the raptor" 63 mile forest of bowland sportive

As event organiser – this places Chris in a thankless position of going ahead with the event as planned – booking venues, paramedics, marshals and helpers – at a cost of £2500+ in the hope that enough riders will enter before event day – some 85+ are needed to cover the basic costs of running an event to our high standards.

Or taking the disappointing option of cancelling the event after several years of successfully organising it – and offering the handful of entrants a place in a future event or their entry fees back.

Chris, with Lynn and their team of helpers’ support chose the latter.


We have long felt that as both The Beast and The Boxer share some of the same roads, they should be run on the same day, giving riders a choice of a “short” or longer and more challenging Lake District route each year.

"the beast" 108 mile lake district sportive

"the boxer" 66 mile south lakes sportive







So, this is what we are doing this season, and it will be only event we plan to run annually in future.

Rather than face a similar dilemma with entry numbers too low ( only 18 thus far ) to run the planned Boxer event on 13 October 24, it has been rescheduled to 18 August 2024, the same day as The Beast event.  Again, the few riders that had entered have been transferred to the new date or fully refunded.

 Entries are open so why not book a place ASAP.   


We have all tried our hardest over the years to organise the very best cycling events we can, which have received rave reviews and complimentary feedback from all have taken part.  It is therefore hard to understand how our entry numbers are decreasing, but would welcome your opinions / thoughts please !


Why do similar events attract several hundred riders if not thousands – while we struggle to reach 100+ ?? and cover our costs !!

Coaches Corner –

Following on from April’s newsletter, this month we’ll be looking at nutrition. There’s a lot of conflicting information out there on what’s recommended for the ideal nutrition plan, so to keep this short and sweet, I will focus on advice everyone can use.

The best place to start when thinking about your fuelling is energy balance.

No matter what event you’re planning on doing it’s essential that you fuel yourself effectively. Not eating enough in the short term will reduce your ability to recover from training and make the last few miles of that long ride a lot harder than it needs to be.

In the long term, under fuelling can lead to more serious conditions such as chronic fatigue, RED-S, etc. If weight loss is one of your goals, then a calorie deficit is required. The current research suggests a deficit of 300-500 kCal per day (which should work out to losing around 0.5kg of body weight per week). Whilst it’s not for everyone, tracking calories can be very useful, apps such as MyFitnessPal help make this as easy as possible.

What a healthy diet whilst training?

I’ve included an example of what I eat in an ideal day without riding. It’s worth remembering that what works for me, may not work for yourself. There’s an element of trial and error based on your own preferences, and dietary requirements.


Breakfast Lunch Dinner Snacks Total
Food 3 Scrambled Eggs on 2 slices of Toast with Spinach and Mushrooms Pasta(100g) with Pesto, Peppers, and Chicken (~100g) Chilli con carne with rice (100g) and cheese 1 Cup Yogurt, fruit, and honey
Carbs (g) 52 50 129 106 339
Protein (g) 24 27 52 24 127
Fat (g) 30 33 24 12 102
Calories (kCal) 577 600 968 480 2625

Commonly within sport, we develop a mental perspective that food is fuel. As much as we count our calories and stress about our fat intake, it’s always important to take a step back to enjoy food as a little bit of what you fancy does you good!

For your body during training, your primary source of energy is carbohydrates.

I mentioned in April’s article the recommendations for how much carbohydrates you should be trying to eat.  For longer rides such as ultra-endurance events and stage-races. You will want to get a mix of carbs, fat, and protein. Fats are another good source of energy for riding, they contain more energy per gram compared to carbohydrates, but it takes longer for your body to process.  Your body will only use fats as a source of fuel at lower riding intensities.

During day-to-day training, it can be hard to consume enough fat and protein during the limited time frame you have before and after riding. If you want to hit your protein targets for the day (1.2-1.4g/kg/day), you’ll need to fit some in during your ride. For longer events, it can be hard to stomach so many carbohydrates. I recommend getting your energy from a second source of food such as fat as it can make it a lot easier on your gut. I know an ultra-endurance athlete who eats baby-bells for their events as it was the only thing they can handle after a long day. ( Chris @ Top Dog Events loves Baby Bells, home made Flapjack + Mini Malt Loaves on rides )

As a final side note it’s worth mentioning supplementation. Always prioritise on consuming as many nutrients as possible within your food before looking at supplements. As an example, protein shakes are good for people following plant-based diets, where it’s harder to source complete proteins from natural sources. As well as a quick fuel intake post event when it could be a few hours before you get chance to have a proper meal.

Ben Barlow

Apogee Performance Coaching


Team Rides –

Tim Norton will arrive home in Silverdale this weekend, after riding 1900+ miles from Gibraltar – well done mate.

 Read all about it –


Donate to Tims chosen charity – 



Hear all about it –

‘A Bike Ride from Gibraltar to Gibraltar Farm’
An illustrated talk by Tim Norton, at Yealand Village Hall, LA5 9SU, Lancashire, England. On Saturday 22 June at 3pm. In aid of Muscular Dystrophy UK. Admission £2, to cover costs, more if you’re feeling generous!



Chris + Lynn headed up to Glentrool in the Scottish Borders for some epic gravel biking days using our new “Base Camp” tent.



Steve and Emma have been making the most of the half term break for their own Scottish adventure exploring Arran.

Tell us about your riding adventures – 

Have a great months riding

Top Dog Events logo



All @ Top Dog Events Limited