Estimated reading time: 5 minutes, 3 seconds
Need to know how to recover from Etape du Tour?
Reader Steve dropped me an email with some great questions the other day, 2 of which are below.
Also, as we are doing both…any sources to assist us get over one and prep for the 2nd within a week?
Steve asks a great question because how you fuel before an event dictates how well you’ll go in the event (along with training) as well as how you pull up. It also dictates how you go in subsequent events (like a second Etape).
However, it’s not just about the eating before an event, it’s the riding leading up to an event and the nutrition and recovery that are important.
Recovering from Etape du Tour – Body
What better way to show you how to recover from Etape du Tour than make a quick video!
Who this is for:
- Those doing one or both Etapes, or any Etape in the future.
- Those doing any sportif.
- Those doing intense training or racing.
- Those wanting to condition their bodies a little better.
It’s really important to work your knots out before stretching! Otherwise, you just tighten the knots (imagine pulling an elastic band with a knot in it, very tight – you’ll get the same effect on your muscles).
If you have the Tackling Etape guide, there is a bunch of information in there with photos and explanations, on working the muscles in this manner. Or you can check out the Recovering from Etape guide.
I’ve had this type of information planned for a while. Whilst it isn’t as professional as I want it to be yet, nor does it cover all the areas I want it to, for those who needing some tips of physical recovery, it is more than enough.
Please let me know if you want this made available as a download.
Steve and others, this is a big topic. First up, I am NOT a dietitian, so take everything I say with a grain of salt. What I eat is based on my experience. Here are my tips.
For people like Steve, who need a nutrition plan for Etape du Tour, Marmotte, Haute Route and other similar epic events, I do have a special guide – Fuelling For Etape and other gruelling events. A special nutrition plan constructed in conjunction with am accredited sports dietician and nutritionist, it gives you all the information you need properly eat leading up to a big event.
Carbo loading – I don’t think it works for everyone. It makes sense physiologically (starve body of carbs for a week, then overload) but in practice it may not make a difference, given you can only store a limited amount of carbs in the body anyway. Bear in mind my “testing” has too many uncontrolled variables so the data isn’t qualitative. All I can tell you is that I eat normally during the lead up.
My diet is usually high(ish) protein with lots of vegies and healthy fat (avocados, nuts, eggs, oil etc) anyway. I find I get the best response from this mix.
Excess carbs make me feel like rubbish, so I steer clear. I don’t see the point in carbo loading if it makes me feel like crap on the bike (and it does). Lean, mean and green.
A couple of alcoholic drinks the night before, balanced with water and electrolytes, in my experience, has minimal effect. I’ve won hard races off the back of a few Shiraz’s the night before.
On the Day – I have a muesli or better still Kapai Puku. I am taking Kapai to Europe for the plane trip and the morning of Etape.
I will take one banana and a bunch of gels. Check out my video for more info on eating on Etape. I specifically talk about the gels and bars I use.
Recovering from Etape du Tour – Food
Food is a bit trickier – remember I am not a dietitian, this is just what works for me. It’s also a very lengthy issue, and I want to keep this short.
Post Race (Etape, sportif, whatever) I will usually have a recovery product. I currently use Australian Sports Nutrition’s Evolve Anabolic Injection (which is awesome), but you can also check out SIS’s Recovery stuff (next on my shopping list). Use this link if the previous one doesn’t work.
Torq Recovery is apparently awesome but it’s way too expensive in my opinion. They do not ship to Australia from Chain Reaction (brand protection yes but also lost sales) but for the UK/US and other readers, check Torq Recovery out here.
I also will usually have a chocolate milk if one is around. It is important to have fat, protein and carbs (from what I have read). Don’t overeat.
I will eat quality food that night, but not too much (a few beers is totally ok Steve!)
If you need to back up quickly for another Etape, it’s important to keep eating properly, and also stretching, riding, and working the knots out (see video above).
Hammer Nutrition have a bunch of useful information for prepping and fueling which I think will be useful for a lot of you. It also covers dosing during the ride, which is super important.
The Hammer Nutrition website has a bunch of awesome information on dosing electrolytes.
Products, Posts and Videos to Check Out
- TDF Tips 2XU review check out my 2XU review here.
- TDF Tips Guide to Recovering from Etape (this info is already in the Tackling Letape guide).
- Foam Rollers
- SIS stuff from Wiggle
- Last Minute Etape preparation video I made -> YouTube
- Electrolytes from Wiggle (look at SIS)
- Clif Bars from Wiggle
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