How to Recover After a Big Ride

While ''train, eat, sleep, repeat'' is something we see on a workout shirt there might just be a bit of logic hidden in there.

A few key recovery points to help you after a big day in the saddle include hydration, good nutrition and rest.

After such a long day in the saddle you should actively hydrate not only directly after the event but for the rest of the day.

Ideally, you want to add some electrolytes to your water to ensure you replace those electrolytes lost during the race as sodium is the main element lost during sweat. Bear in mind electrolytes cannot be created by the body but need to be ingested. By replacing the minerals you are assisting your body with muscle contraction, immune functions, antioxidant activity, acid-base balance just to name a few.

You might not have a big appetite directly after the race because of all the sweet tasting supplements you took during the ride but your body will thank you for a recovery shake or well-balanced meal following the event.

After extensive exercise you want to consume some protein as this is the key to muscle repair - but don't forget to have some carbohydrates along with the protein to replenish your glycogen stores and help digest the protein. Most recovery shakes have this ratio dialed in but a well-balanced meal still takes the win. 

Lastly, to recover is just as important as the training and racing efforts. Rest is the time where your body can re-build and make the gains from those big days in the saddle. By skipping this rest and recovery phase, you actually just hinder your long term performance and put your immune system under pressure. Taking a day off the bike and including an easy ride with a good stretch session after your race day will do wonders for you to recover mentally and physically and have you itching for that next ride.

Lastly enjoy the fact that you completed your big ride, you definitely earned it!

Training and fitness

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