Optimal Recovery

Don’t do the following… there, you have been warned.
I received the following question on Twitter recently from an eager fan. Actually, those final two words, eager fan, are just an assumption. Maybe he’s an enemy or an arch rival or someone trying to get the inside scoop on what it takes to be iamtedking. Imitation is the greatest form of flattery, so while this request is certainly understandable, it’s also something to consider when answering this question. So as a message to my reading audience, I advice you to read into this advice only superficially, since I may now be trying to double cross you so that you don’t steal my training secrets.* After all, you are not Ted King.
Question from one Mr. ShortyHanus:

@iamtedking hey ted, any chance you can do a blog on post-race recovery? Nutrition, stretching etc? Always interested to hear different ways

Sure thing ShortyHanus! To begin, I recommend checking your inner pansy at the door. You need to ensure that you really earned it and that you’re not just being a wuss by chugging back on a 400 gram protein shake because you logged a “wicked epic two hour ride yo!” If you’re going to recover, recover right.

As the saying goes, chamois time is training time. Along those lines, having a strong upper body is an often overlooked aspect of road cycling. Holding your body in place for hours on end, ferociously yanking the handlebars during a 60kph sprint, or pulling your bike off your roof rack all require the elimination of telltale cyclist noodle arms. What I’m getting at here is that when you hear someone who thinks they’re really funny and say for the seven-millionth time, “Chamois time is training time!” I hereby give you permission to test your upper body strength and punch them in the gut. That saying was funny once – when it was first uttered. Since then it just perpetuates disgustingly unnatural bacterial growth of your undercarriage. Take a shower fool!

I digress. What I’m really getting at here is that the above saying is not the applicable one. The rhythmic cycling phrase should be, Not eating time is training time. So while some people (…like all exercise physiologists, coaches, and virtually anyone who has even the slightest bit more credibility than I do) recommend coming home and immediately eating some healthy grub rich with vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, and proteins in a particularly optimal ratio, I say continue your hunger bonk and don’t eat. Alternatively, take your mind off of how freakin’ hungry you are by participating in some or any of the following.

Staying limber is a necessity when you’re crunched into the unnatural position of riding a bicycle for dozens of hours each week and thousands of hours each year. You don’t want to end up hunched over like a turtle, so soon after I walk through the door I touch my toes three or four times. I also recommend between eight to ten sit-ups, one jumping-jack, followed closely by a nap. Additionally based on the paragraph two above this one, it goes without saying that this takes place after a shower, since cleanliness is the hippest thing since slap bracelets.

Now that you’re approximately two hours past workout phase, and you haven’t eaten anything, you’re obviously well bonked. In order to continue burning calories I think post-nap is a prime opportunity to crack open a book. Moreover, you will continue burning calories at the meteoric rate of 91 calories per hour while you merely skim your eyes over the pages of a book. It’s almost too easy!

LUNCH TIME! Worther’s Original Candies are unequivocally delicious and if you don’t immediately house an entire bag of those, I don’t know why you even train. That should be followed by cracking into a can of sardines accompanied by Triscuits Rosemary and Pepper flavor or flavorless rice crackers and then an entire pint of Ben and Jerry’s Phish Food ice cream… (or for the inside scoop – pun fully intended – go for either B&J’s Cinnamon Buns or Oatmeal Cookie Chunk. Never tried this one, but on principle I already love it. Those are two or three of iamtedking’s favorites and the term insanely good should be used in the company of these flavors).

Another nap might now be in order.

Or you can crack open that book again; at merely 1,000 calories per tub of Ben and Jerry’s, it will take you just 10-plus hours of hard reading to eliminate the ice cream you just housed! Booya.

Chances are you have a mechanic at your disposal, so this is also a good opportunity to give him your bike. Post-ride recovery isn’t just for your benefit. Nay friends, your bike needs some TLC as well. Moreover, as he lubes the chain and puts air in the tires – two tasks obviously well beyond your mechanical prowess – you can pick his brain about all the fun stories of him giving jerk-store customers a hard time back when he slaved away in the ol’ shop.

Finally, sitting down to read your favorite cycling blogs (yep, each and every one) should be the last step in your (sub-)optimal post ride recovery. See you at the races!

* I recommend not doing anything of the above.


  1. James

    I want my five minutes of life back

    • iamtedking

      Seriously? Seriously James? Well then why don’t you do something productive with your time like invent a time travel machine, go back in time, reinvest your five minutes in something valuable like not reading my blog, and then then you would be happy.

  2. Bravo Delta

    What if I already do all the aforementioned?!? Surely there is a 201 level recovery method that is for neo-pro wannabes such as myself..

  3. Emma

    You recommend not showering? Well, since you are Ted King, I guess if I wanna be pro I’ll have to follow your advice!

    These double negatives are confusing.

  4. james is right

    5 minute refund here too.

    Also, you should change the banner photo. You look like you have a chubby face in the photo, doesn’t fit the PRO look. You should know that, being the style master or whatever you call yourself.

  5. Brenda

    5 minute refund comments:

    You WERE warned not to read the blog. It was intended to be’tongue in cheek’ and therefore not to be taken seriously.

    Ted, I found it quite amusing.


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