domingo, 1 de octubre de 2023

Evaluating the impact of popcorn in recovery

Yesterday we decided to go to the movies. 

That’s actually a pretty good recovery activity if you ask me. You don’t have to move much, you can always fall asleep and blame the film for it and you get to eat popcorn. 

I didn’t know much about popcorn’s recovery properties but I’m always happy to run a scientific experiment and find out. 

So, when I was asked what bucket size I wanted I went for the biggest one. The only right answer considering I was pretty hungry after yesterday’s ride ( 

Now, when I saw the size of the thing I almost panicked. The thing was quite big, even for a pretty hungry cyclist.

Luckily I managed to control myself and pretend it was ok. I wanted my wife to believe I knew exactly what I had ordered. I think there is still a (small?) chance she doesn't think I’m stupid.

After all, I told myself, the film, Oppenheimer, is three hours long. Plenty of time to finish it.

I started at a very good pace. By the time all the trailers had finished I had gone through a quarter of the bucket.

An hour into the film I had gone through half of it but my pace was slowing down dramatically. That thing of starting a bit too fast and slowing down seems to apply to other things in life beyond cycling.

Not long after that I found myself with my stomach threatening with a big explosion and very, very thirsty.

Yes, it was salty popcorn and I didn’t order water.

Totally on purpose. You don’t want other elements to confound in the effect of popcorn in your recovery. It could ruin the science behind the experiment.

Somehow I survived the rest of the film. I didn’t eat the whole bucket but I’m confident saying I ate all that was humanly possible. 

How did I feel today?

Well, n=1 and all those details scientists insist on mentioning, but I felt pretty good actually. Legs felt fresh.

As soon as we started to ride I found myself at the front of the group. Not only that, I returned to the front of the group a few times. And you know that rarely happens.

The pace felt easy all day, the final sprint felt easy (we had to call it off due to a car though) and legs are not that tired after the ride. 

So, as far as I can tell, eating salty popcorn (without drinking any water) until you feel you are about to puke contributes positively to your recovery.

I would recommend conducting additional research with a smaller popcorn dose and, maybe, combine it with some water as a potentially better recovery strategy.

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The ride in Strava:

Take care

Javier Arias González

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