Post ride recovery tips needed



boba8888

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Mar 8, 2004
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Hello.. Started my websearch to find out some recovery tips for mountainbiking and came upon this forum. I ride about 2/week, 10-15 miles each ride and usually complete my ride before 12:00 (noon). My last two rides were 15 miles each and I rode quite hard. I am totally fine during my ride, drink Cytomax during but was totally spaced out the rest of the day (bascially worthless) and somewhat out of it the day after. No pain, just an exhausted feeling. I am obviously missing something....

I have read many posts here about carbs, sugar, the science of it all but couldn't find any concrete ideas about what to eat/drink after the ride. What I need are some simple ideas of what to eat right after my ride to minimize the post "bonk" exhaustion factor if there is such a thing. For that matter maybe some pre-ride tips are in order as well.

If age matters, I am 48, 185 lbs deemed healthy and can ride just as well as the youngsters. If anybody has some "simple" ideas, be it a supplement or as easy as eating a bananna, it would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for reading and happy trails... Bob in Georgia, USA
 

brightgarden

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Oct 19, 2003
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carry bars/ banana something to eat as soon as you can after the ride.

--first fifteen minutes, if i get home in time, i eat frozen yogurt (up to a cup of it). but if i don't get there in time, i leave off on that and go for a-->

-->smoothie with one scoop of frozen yogurt or sorbet, strawberry, banana, protein powder (i use endurox), orange juice. it isn't the greatest tasting thing in the world unless it's right after the ride. i often get a jambajuice smoothie.

-- one huge meal of pasta with my favorite sauce. i'm not a vegetarian, but for some reason, meat after a ride upsets my system.

-- i munch on bread or cheese and crackers for the rest of the time up to 4 hours after the ride

and most importantly DRINK WATER or something to rehydrate. i continue to dehydrate for hours after my ride. but if I don't do this, i crash, and it is more a mental thing.

i also try to stretch the entire four hours after my ride, wherever i am, whenever i get a moment to put myself into some kind of position to stretch.

if you are really crashing hard one day when you need to be on your toes, drink a red bull. seriously. but don't get in the habit of doing this because your body will acclimate to the caffeine and then it won't be as effective.

well, that's what i do. i could probably be more scientific about it, but i can't be bothered with such details.
 

boba8888

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Mar 8, 2004
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Thanks brightgarden .... I will keep in tune with the ideas you gave me. Yesterday I just relaxed, went for a walk, didn't eat a real meal until 5:00 then crashed heavy right after eating.. I will try out some of your tips until I get a combo that works. More importantly I need to eat something RIGHT after I am done. great ideas...
 

zaskar

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Aug 3, 2003
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Originally posted by boba8888
Thanks brightgarden .... I will keep in tune with the ideas you gave me. Yesterday I just relaxed, went for a walk, didn't eat a real meal until 5:00 then crashed heavy right after eating.. I will try out some of your tips until I get a combo that works. More importantly I need to eat something RIGHT after I am done. great ideas...

Brightgarden gave you good advise, remember also if you are just starting to ride recovery time will lesson as your body adapts. 50 mile rides use to lay me on the couch all day, now 80 mile fast rides are nothing, i can go about my day and have no pain from the ride., i ALWAYS eat during and right after hard long rides anything over 1 hour.
 

Longevityproduc

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Apr 25, 2004
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Originally posted by boba8888
Hello.. Started my websearch to find out some recovery tips for mountainbiking and came upon this forum. I ride about 2/week, 10-15 miles each ride and usually complete my ride before 12:00 (noon). My last two rides were 15 miles each and I rode quite hard. I am totally fine during my ride, drink Cytomax during but was totally spaced out the rest of the day (bascially worthless) and somewhat out of it the day after. No pain, just an exhausted feeling. I am obviously missing something....

I have read many posts here about carbs, sugar, the science of it all but couldn't find any concrete ideas about what to eat/drink after the ride. What I need are some simple ideas of what to eat right after my ride to minimize the post "bonk" exhaustion factor if there is such a thing. For that matter maybe some pre-ride tips are in order as well.

If age matters, I am 48, 185 lbs deemed healthy and can ride just as well as the youngsters. If anybody has some "simple" ideas, be it a supplement or as easy as eating a bananna, it would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for reading and happy trails... Bob in Georgia, USA
Try a nutritional booster known as SPAM SPAM SPAM
 

dhk

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Sep 1, 2003
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Believe it's helpful to get high-glycemic carbs (sugar/starch) along with some protein as soon as possible after exercise. Idea is to to trigger the insulin response, which moves glycogen to the depleted muscles. A serving of sports drink, a soda or slim-fast along with a sandwich and fruit seems to work fine for me.

But, in my opinion, nutrition can only do so much. If you "ride quite hard" for 15 miles on a MTB, you'll need 24-48 hours to recover. Rather than just hammering every time you go out, you may do a lot better with a more disciplined training program. Even with good fitness, at age 48 you can't recover as fast as the youngsters you're competing with.
 

bone

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Dec 28, 2003
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Bob,
I'm 47 and going through the same difficult recovery you are. I had been previously ridding a MTB and my rides would generally last just over an hour. I was not concerned much with what I ate and would make a reasonable attempt to stay hydrated. I never had a problem with recovery. A couple of weeks ago I bought a Road Bike and my rides have grown in time to about 2.5 hours. Now, even though my average HR is slower, and I feel fine during and right after the ride, the bottom falls out about an hour and a half after the ride. I may get a headache and just feel tired and my wife says I get very grumpy. I started eating more before,during and after my rides, as well as drinking more, with very little success. I don't know if I need to eat more and or different stuff or take it a bit easier(decrease my Heart Rate) on my rides. Each time I go out I try something different.
Let me know if you hit on a solution, and I'll do the same. Any more advice out there?
Thanks, Bone
 

tomUK

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Oct 20, 2003
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I've experienced this from time to time. Normally I've found it is due to dyhydration or not fueling correctly before the ride.

It is worth remembering that a 2.5hr ride can (as mine Saturday ride did) use 1500+ calories. At the weight you currently are this would mean your days calorific need is in the region of 4000.

My suggestion would be to make sure you get in 700-900 calories (mainly Carbs) 3 hours before the ride. After about 1.5 hours into the ride consume about 240cals/hour.

Also, try to drink 8oz of water every 15 minutes once the ride has finished for the next 2-3 hours. Don't neglect your post ride meal (within 30 minutes of finishing). A bagel with a couple of slices of turkey breast on it should do you well.

The above seems to work well for me.
 

sandiegosteve

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Apr 12, 2004
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Eat! and quickly.

A beer also helps (seriously). Too many, and I am back to the "on the couch" problem. One is a good shot of calories, carbs, and anti-oxidants. I think Bicycling mag had an article on beer as a post ride supplemet a year or two ago.
 

dhk

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Sep 1, 2003
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Originally posted by tomUK
I've experienced this from time to time. Normally I've found it is due to dyhydration or not fueling correctly before the ride.

It is worth remembering that a 2.5hr ride can (as mine Saturday ride did) use 1500+ calories. At the weight you currently are this would mean your days calorific need is in the region of 4000.

My suggestion would be to make sure you get in 700-900 calories (mainly Carbs) 3 hours before the ride. After about 1.5 hours into the ride consume about 240cals/hour.

Also, try to drink 8oz of water every 15 minutes once the ride has finished for the next 2-3 hours. Don't neglect your post ride meal (within 30 minutes of finishing). A bagel with a couple of slices of turkey breast on it should do you well.

The above seems to work well for me.

Good tips Tom; these work for me as well. I like to have pancakes (without syrup or butter) a couple of hours before a big ride. I'll even take one or two with me on the bike for later in the ride....just cut them in quarters, put in a zip-lock bag for the jersey pocket.

Intensity of the ride matters a lot as well, at least in my experience. On Saturday, I did a hard 2.5 hours with the club group. Was above my LT (155) for almost the entire second half of the ride, and at 90-95% max HR for probably 20-30 minutes. That kind of effort leaves me shot the next day, even with the proper recovery nutrition. Real recovery takes rest time.