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Recovering from Extreme Efforts

Recovery might be even faster if I could eat after my double centuries. When I’m “on” as with Joshua Tree, I can eat a regular meal immediately with no issues.

When it has not gone as well and especially if I’ve over-efforted into mild nausea, then I cannot eat anything until the next morning (3 AM sometimes works!). In those cases, I just have to accept that recovery will be less quick than it might otherwise be since my body has to wait 8 hours or so for nutrition. But it does not seem to matter unduly so long as I pick up the nutrition by next morning; see my Alta Alpina experience as well as Davis Double. In part this may be because ultra endurance events are mostly aerobic.


This year after the past several double centuries, I have recovered faster than I ever had in the past 7 years of double centuries. I attribute this to two changes:

Together, I have seen nearly complete recovery in just two days, even after a hard day and winning (Eastern Sierra Double) with a fast-paced ~4800 foot ascent at high altitude less then 72 hours later—I could not tell I had even done a double less than 3 days earlier. And 3 days (Central Coast Double). After Davis Double, it was nearly full recovery after 42 hours—these are miraculously short recovery times.

Consider that my fastest double century was just under 10 hours, and a marathon is only 2-3 hours—that should lend some perspective on the relative effort and recovery times, for runners at least.

Primal Feast seems to correlate strongly with regaining muscle strength and never upsets my stomach. While I use and mix several protein sources, my “go to” protein after a double century or hard workout is Primal Feast as the dominant protein source for the first two days.

Update: I recovered from a totally wiped out state after Alta Alpina in only 40 hours, which is the closest thing to an exercise recovery miracle I’ve experienced.

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