100 mile hangover/better recovery

Back in the day there was a great thread about the best way to help that '100 mile hangover' feeling. The search bar didn't help me, so I'm re-asking ;)

After being focused on jump starting a new chapter in life, I now--finally--find that I have the time and resources to start training again for my bucketlist goal of the Cascade 1200. !Exciting!

I rode my first 200k in over a year (it was super rad) yesterday and though I'm not sore today, generally feel crappy/wiped out otherwise. I felt I ate a lot during the ride and kept close to hydrated so am a little surprised to feel this out of it today.

Favorite ways to eat/drink for recovery? I'm much more into low-tech food/drink (my favorite brevet things are dilute mountain dew and snickers) but am open to all suggestions.

I miss riding with you all! Someone go do my favorite training ride over Kobu tunnels and Kazahari for me and tell me it was awesome ;)


Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
200k! Wow Kori! Awesome! You know the biology here probably better than anyone! That length of exertion depletes glycogen nearly everywhere in your body, causes mild dehydration and quite a bit of micro-damage to the tissues. Not to mention corresponding increase in immune response. So do what you need to do! Just eat, sleep, drink and rest. You can't 'force' recovery anymore than you can 'heal' a broken bone by doing anything more or less than the body does on it's own. Give it the raw materials and nature will follow at it's own pace. All the supplements, snake oils, procedures, etc are mainly just marketing B$. I'd say you'll <recover> as quickly with PB&J Sandwich and a glass of water as you would with the highest tech schmuck out there. Timing is more important. If you neglect to eat (and drink) on the ride, you do more damage which in turns takes longer to recover. The sooner you start the recovery process - which is nothing more than simply less exertion than the previous 'stress' activity, the better. So, if you go out and hammer another 200km, you won't 'recover' as quickly. That's all. No big deal.
Likes: Forsbrook
Wait Tim, you're telling me now that I'm no longer in my 20s it will take me longer to recover. crap. (I already knew that)
Adjusting to the altitude probably can't be rushed either. sigh.
Thanks for endorsing my classy during ride diet of Snickers, Cliff bars, gummy worms (totally made this ride awesome), and Mt Dew! ;)

so what's the theory on recovery ride the next day vs letting the body rest? is it movement of lactate and other waste from tissues to kidneys etc while extra duper reperfusing all those micro injuries? Or does it have to do with encouraging the body to better remodeling?


Maximum Pace
Sep 20, 2012
Asakadai, Saitama
One of my favourite recovery drinks is a juice, made in a juicer from raw ingredients. After a long run or ride, I like to throw 3 bunches of Japanese mustard spinach, half a lemon, 3 carrots, 1 apple and a decent sized chunk of ginger (sometimes with green peppers or strawberries) into a juicer (not a blender) to extract around 1 pint of fresh, nutrient charged juice. The juice is great at rehydrating you and also . I find 35+ km runs are more taxing on my body that 200+km days in the saddle but the juice really helps me recover quickly (obviously some of this will be the placebo effect, but every little helps huh).


Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
Agree with Tim, what you eat while riding is the most important thing. This is damage limitation. Eating after is of course really important. This is damage repair.
I too did a big ride yesterday. 190 km.
My basic formula is eat something for every hour you ride for a ride up to 3 hours. Over 3 hours, 2 things per hour.
So for my 6 hour ride yesterday: 6 bananas, 6 soy joy bars, 6 bottles of water, 1 can of caffeine “Samuride”.
So eating every half hour. I would have drank more had it been warmer (I’m riding early morning in Niigata).
Once home eat something straight away. A protein shake and some cheese on toast.
Another big meal in the next 2 hours. I finished at 930, so I had lunch at 1130.
And rest too. A good bath. Stretch. In bed with the kids at 8 o’clock!
I feel okay today. Another 130 km this morning. You can’t expect to go as hard after a big ride. This is where you have to understand your body, know how hard to push it.
I’d go with active recovery over rest after a big ride. However, only you know your body and how it reacts….

Likes: joewein


Maximum Pace
Oct 25, 2011
Setagaya, Tokyo
I second @andywood's advice on eating and sleeping, though I'm kind of agnostic / skeptic about active recovery after a long ride. I neither seek nor avoid rides the day after a long ride, usually do my grocery shopping on the bike as always and if I had a big ride on Saturday would still go 20-30 km on Sunday if I have time. When at home I like to keep a full bottle of water on my desk to rehydrate.

My theory is that "recovery rides" are rides while you let your body recover, not rides in order to let your body recover. I don't believe that riding at an easy pace the next day will make you recover any quicker than just spending the day at home, getting plenty of fluid and enough sleep, but will happily change my opinion if someone can post scientific studies to the contrary.

There's always the mental aspect of cycling though. By going for a ride the next day you say to yourself: "See, that wasn't too bad! You can still ride OK." That's a positive message worth getting.

I hear some people talking about moving to flush out the lactic acid from your sore muscles, including the next day, but according to Tim (@GSAstuto) lactic acid levels actually drop quite quickly after exercise, which makes sense, given that it's water soluble. What you feel the next day is more the result of dehydration or of micro-injury to the muscle fibre, which needs to heal. That means, avoiding exercise levels that are too intense and just taking it easy.

So I still do easy rides after a brevet or other long ride when I have the opportunity, but it's because I enjoy cycling, not because I think it will make me recover more quickly.
Likes: bawbag


Maximum Pace
Oct 25, 2011
Setagaya, Tokyo
As for food for recovery, I like to have some yoghurt as a protein source after the ride and while recovering. But then I also eat yoghurt on most days when I'm not recovering, so it's not specifically a recovery food for me. My ride food is also low tech, mostly bananas and dried fruit, with the odd onigiri, bread, yoghurt and cocoa.

Congratulations on the first 200 km in a year, @koribeyer. I feel that keeping up those distances is partly mental, knowing that you're capable of doing it and not letting them scare you. I've been doing at least one century a month for 20 consecutive months now (this month I did three).