Best Protein Powder For Cyclists: What the Elite Are Using? | 2024

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In a world, increasingly conscious about fitness and performance, cycling has emerged as one of the preferred endurance exercises for both casual fitness enthusiasts and professional athletes. 

This article will focus on guiding cyclists on their journey to better performance and recovery, specifically through the lens of protein powders – a popular nutritional supplement.

The importance of protein intake for cyclists cannot be overstated. According to a 2018 study from the International Society of Sports Nutrition, athletes like cyclists require a significantly higher protein intake, 1.2 to 2.0 grams per kilogram of body weight per day, compared to sedentary individuals [1]. 

This increased need stems from the role of protein in muscle repair and growth, essential to cyclist’s performance and recovery.

Protein powders serve as a quick, convenient, and precise way to meet these heightened protein needs. Whether it’s a smoothie after a morning ride or a shake during a multi-day race, these supplements can make a noticeable difference in a cyclist’s energy levels and recovery times. 

A 2020 study from the Journal of Dietary Supplements showed that protein supplementation had a positive effect on muscle strength and size in healthy adults when combined with resistance training [2]. 

While cycling is primarily an endurance sport, these findings are relevant given the muscle stress that occurs in long-distance cycling and the subsequent need for efficient recovery.

5 Best Protein Powder For Cyclists: Our Top Pics 2023

Here is a concise list of the best protein powder for cyclists available at the moment:

1. Myprotein® – Clear Whey Isolate – Whey Protein Powder

2. NOW Sports Nutrition, Egg White Protein Powder

3. Myprotein® – The WHEY – Whey Protein Powder

4. MuscleTech Nitro-Tech Whey Protein Powder

5. Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Powder

1. Myprotein® – Clear Whey Isolate – Whey Protein Powder

Myprotein® – Clear Whey Isolate is an exceptional protein powder choice for cyclists, mainly due to its potent blend of nutritional elements. 

What sets this product apart is its clear, refreshing taste and lightweight texture, a welcome departure from the typically thick and creamy protein shakes.

Available in five distinct flavors, the Clear Whey Isolate caters to a variety of taste preferences, making it more appealing to a broader audience. 

This protein powder is excellent for those who are mindful of their dietary intake, with zero fat, only 0.1g of carbs, 0.3g of sugar, and less than 90 calories per shake. It’s a guilt-free supplement that fits effortlessly into a balanced diet.

The real star of the show, however, is the Whey Isolate protein. Each serving delivers 20g of high-quality clear whey isolate, contributing substantially to your daily protein intake. 

This promotes the development and maintenance of muscle mass, a critical factor for cyclists looking to improve performance and speed up recovery.


  • High-quality clear whey isolate protein promotes muscle development and maintenance.
  • Low in fat, carbs, and sugar, making it a healthier option.
  • Available in five different flavors, appealing to a wide range of tastes.
  • Less than 90 calories per shake, fitting easily into most diet plans.


  • The clear, light texture might not be satisfying for those accustomed to creamier protein shakes.
  • The taste may vary between flavors, and some may find certain flavors less appealing.

2. NOW Sports Nutrition, Egg White Protein Powder

NOW Sports Nutrition’s Egg White Protein Powder is an excellent option for cyclists seeking a protein powder that aligns with their dietary and training needs. 

With a protein content of 16g per serving, it provides a substantial boost to support muscle development and recovery – a key factor in improving cycling performance and reducing downtime. 

This product is fat-free, cholesterol-free, and low in carbohydrates, making it a suitable choice for those who are mindful of their dietary intake.

One of the standout features of this egg white protein powder is its minimalistic ingredient list, with no added artificial flavors or sweeteners. 

This allows for greater flexibility when incorporating it into various meals and drinks, and it’s less likely to conflict with other flavors.

The fact that this product is reported to have no side effects also makes it appealing to cyclists, suggesting that it’s gentle on the stomach and easy to digest during intensive training periods.


  • The 16g of protein per serving aids in muscle development and recovery.
  • Fat-free, cholesterol-free, and low in carbohydrates.
  • Reported to have no side effects, indicating easy digestion.


  • Lower protein content per serving compared to some other protein powders.
  • The higher sodium content (260mg per serving) might not be suitable for those on a low-sodium diet.

3. Myprotein® – The WHEY – Whey Protein Powder

The WHEY from Myprotein® stands out as an ideal protein powder choice for cyclists due to its impressive protein blend and excellent taste. 

The product features 25g of protein per serving, offering a mix of whey isolate, concentrate, and hydrolyzed protein. This unique blend is designed to maximize the benefits of different protein sources, supporting muscle growth and recovery in cyclists.

This protein powder is available in two appealing flavors, catering to varying taste preferences and ensuring that the protein boost doesn’t come at the expense of enjoying the drink. Given that taste can often be a drawback in protein supplements, this is a significant advantage.

Despite its high protein content, The WHEY manages to keep the calorie count low. This is beneficial for cyclists who need to maintain a controlled energy intake while ensuring they’re getting enough protein for muscle repair and performance.

With its impressive protein profile and appealing taste, The WHEY is indeed a strong contender in the market of protein powders for cyclists.


  • Offers a robust 25g of protein per serving, derived from various sources for maximum benefits.
  • Available in two tasty flavors, making the protein intake more enjoyable.
  • Low in calories, allowing cyclists to maintain their energy intake.
  • High-quality product from a reputable brand.


  • The product may be more expensive than other protein powders on the market.
  • Some consumers might prefer more flavor options.
  • Those with lactose intolerance or dairy allergies may not be able to consume this product due to its whey base.

4. MuscleTech Nitro-Tech Whey Protein Powder

MuscleTech Nitro-Tech Whey Protein Powder is a potent blend that packs a punch in every scoop, making it a great choice for cyclists focused on muscle development and recovery. 

The product offers multiple sizes and flavors, which gives consumers the flexibility to choose based on their taste preferences and consumption rate.

This protein powder is unique in its composition, providing not just 30g of protein per serving but also a mix of other beneficial elements. 

It contains 5g of glutamine & precursor, 6.8g of BCAA, and a 3g dose of HPLC-tested creatine monohydrate, all of which contribute to lean muscle building and recovery.

In a 6-week, double-blind study involving Nitro-Tech’s core ingredients, the subjects gained 70% more lean muscle than those using regular whey. This research-backed result is an impressive endorsement of Nitro-Tech’s muscle-building prowess.


  • A substantial 30g of protein per scoop, aids muscle recovery and growth.
  • Additional elements like BCAAs, glutamine, and creatine monohydrate enhance muscle building.
  • Backed by a clinical study that shows significant muscle gain.
  • Uses Multi-Phase Filtration Technology for a cleaner product.


  • The addition of creatine might not be preferred by all cyclists, especially those with kidney issues.
  • Some consumers might find the taste too sweet or artificial.

5. Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Powder

Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Powder consistently ranks as a bestseller in the protein powder realm, and it’s easy to understand why. Designed with performance in mind, it’s an ideal supplement for cyclists looking to enhance muscle recovery and growth.

Each serving delivers a potent 24g of protein, primarily sourced from high-quality whey protein isolate, known for its excellent absorption rate. 

Additionally, it provides 5.5g of naturally occurring BCAAs and 11g of naturally occurring EAAs, ensuring a balanced supply of essential amino acids necessary for muscle tissue repair and growth.

The Gold Standard 100% Whey is gluten-free, catering to those with specific dietary restrictions. Its commitment to clean performance is further demonstrated by its banned substance-tested certification, which makes it a safe and trustworthy choice for athletes.


  • Provides 24g of high-quality whey protein isolate per serving, promoting muscle recovery and growth.
  • Contains naturally occurring BCAAs and EAAs, essential for muscle repair.
  • Gluten-free and tested for banned substances, ensuring safety and compatibility with dietary restrictions.
  • Renowned for its quality and performance, making it a trusted choice among athletes.


  • While it’s a bestseller, its popularity might make it sell out quickly, leading to availability issues.
  • Those with dairy allergies or lactose intolerance might not be able to consume this product.

What to Look for in a Protein Powder?

Choosing the right protein powder can feel like a monumental task given the vast array of options available in the market. 

Trust me, I’ve been there. I remember stepping into a nutritional supplement store for the first time, completely overwhelmed by the towering shelves stocked with jars and tubs of protein powders. 

Every label promised to be the best, but which one was truly the best for me?

The types of protein

The first step was understanding the different types of protein. Whey and casein, derived from milk, are often lauded for their complete amino acid profiles and fast (whey) and slow (casein) absorption rates. 

But as a lactose-intolerant individual, I had to consider plant-based proteins like peas, hemp, or rice. 

They can offer equally comprehensive nutrition with the added benefit of being vegan-friendly.

Important ingredients

I learned that some protein powders include additional beneficial ingredients, like BCAAs (Branched Chain Amino Acids) and glutamine, which aid muscle recovery and reduce fatigue. [3

As a budding cyclist who needed to recover quickly between training sessions, these ingredients became key factors in my decision.

Factors to consider

Beyond ingredients, other considerations included how easy the protein was to digest (no one likes to feel bloated after a shake), the taste (because no matter how nutritious, a bad-tasting shake is hard to swallow), the price, and the brand’s reputation.

Potential allergens 

Finally, I had to consider potential allergens. As I mentioned earlier, I’m lactose intolerant, so lactose-free options were a must. 

Other individuals might need to consider gluten-free or vegan options based on their dietary needs.

Navigating the protein powder landscape was initially daunting, but understanding my specific needs and knowing what to look for simplified the process. 

Now, I approach the protein powder aisle with confidence and the knowledge to make an informed choice that best supports my cycling performance and overall health.

Related: 7 Best Recovery Drinks For Cyclists: Get Ready to Feel Refreshed!

Final Thoughts

Throughout this article, we’ve explored the significant role that protein plays in a cyclist’s performance and recovery. 

The proper protein intake can optimize muscle recovery and repair, which is crucial after long and strenuous rides.

Given the convenience and high protein concentration, protein powders can be an efficient way to meet these dietary protein requirements, especially for those juggling high training volumes and a busy schedule.

Among the products we’ve reviewed, Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Powder stands out as a versatile and reliable option. 

It provides high-quality whey protein isolate, naturally occurring BCAAs, and EAAs and is gluten-free. Its reputation as a bestseller speaks volumes about its quality and the trust users have in the product.

Ferdy Wilson
Ferdy Wilson

Hello, I'm Ferdy. I've been passionate about cycling since I was ten years old, and it remains a major part of my life. As a cycling enthusiast, I am constantly inspired by the sense of movement and freedom it offers.

Previously, I worked for a tech company that specializes in creating cutting-edge cycling smart devices, including bike computers, GPS, and HRM. During my time there, I had the privilege of working alongside a highly successful CEO.

In addition to cycling, I have a keen interest in reading and typically enjoy a few cups of coffee each day. Writing for my personal blog is also a favorite pastime of mine whenever I have free time.

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