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Mid race and post race recovery....

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I keep getting questions about this topic so ill just post a few helpful ideas. Sorry about the Austrailian metric measurements. You guys will catch up one day.

When your exercising hard the body moves away from homeostasis (the condition the body likes to be in eg 37degrees, BP80/120, 70% water etc etc). Recovery is all about returning the body to this position as quickly as possible.

The main variants are temperature, blood supply, hydration and glucose stores in the working muscles. First and formost you need to get the body back to a comfortable temperature utilising shade, air movement cool packs on the neck and removal of excess clothing. Whilst lowering body temp to normal, hydrate with an isotonic sports drink. This contains H2O, electrolytes , and glucose. The glucose s very important due to an enzyme released during exercise. As glucose in the muscle is converted to ATP energy the muscle cells release an enzyme called glycogen synthetase into the blood stream. This enzyme remains in the blood stream till about 15 min after exercise ceases when it is quickly reabsobed. Athletes wishing to speed recovery need to take full advantage of this enzyme and ensure they consume glucose during the first five minutes or so after exercising ceases to take full advantage of the synthetase. The synthetase acts like a high speed shuttle helping glucose move quickly through the cell membranes and into the working muscles. If you delay this proccess it can take up to 24 hrs to replenish te same quantities of glucose to the muscles that is possible in the first 15 minutes.

You dont have to consume copius quantities but you do have to consume some. As a rough guide.

Glucose = 4 calories per gram

Isotonic Sports drinks contain around 16g glucose per 100ml

The theoretical energy requirements are 30-60g (1-2oz) of glucose per hour of exercise. This requirement increase the longer you exercise.

Thus you should consume approx 200ml to 400ml per hour of exercise - this is dependent on exercise intensity. For some one racing moto x say a 15min race they need around 100ml or so.

Th other issue needs addressing during recovery is blood supply. Your body diverts blood away from unnecesary areas to the working muscles when exercising. You build up heat and waste products in the blood. If you simply step of your bike and crash into a chair that blood becomes almost stuck in the area of the working muscles. One of the main ways back to the heart is capillary and venous return caused by movement. It is so important that you remain on your feet and continuosly moving for 5-10 minutes after each race (cool down gradualy). This will help remove heat, waste products(lacic and free radical)and assist in the early stages of recovery to the working muscles.

Hope this helps.

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