Steroids, DIY Cheap Nutrition Products, Inflammation and More – Ask a Cycling Coach 289

SARMS are banned substances surrounded by plenty of confusion, so what do we actually know about them? Tune in for a deep dive into SARMS, DIY nutrition products that are cheap and accessible, and how to reduce inflammation but still prioritize recovery.

Join us live on YouTube tomorrow at 8:00am Pacific, or catch it afterward on YouTube or your favorite podcast app!

YouTube Video:

Topics Covered in This Episode

  • What are SARMS and why are they illegal?
  • Are SARMS steroids?
  • What are the side effects of SARMS?
  • How much inflammation is too much?
  • Why inflammation is necessary to getting stronger and faster
  • Are antioxidants bad for recovery?
  • Do NSAIDS blunt recovery?
  • Should you lick your heart rate strap?
  • How to use Plan Builder if you don’t have a race on your calendar?
  • Strength training without a gym
  • How to identify limiters
  • Ultra-distance training with short workouts
  • How to train for a Gran Fondo
  • How to change training plan volume with TrainerRoad
  • DIY cheap nutrition options
  • Why we produce mucus when training
  • Does blackcurrant make you faster?

Studies and Resources Referenced in This Episode

TrainerRoad Podcast Network

Submit your Question to the Ask a Cycling Coach Podcast

Subscribe to the Ask a Cycling Coach Podcast

Subscribe to the Successful Athletes Podcast

Submit your story to the Successful Athletes Podcast


Did @Nate_Pearson post a link to his weighted blanket?

  • Here is one from an older thread. Not sure if it’s the same one?
1 Like

ZonLi Premium Weighted Blanket 20lbs(60’‘x80’’, Queen Size), Cooling Weighted Blanket for Adults, 100% Cotton Material with Glass Beads


Much appreciated for the bike fitter touch-up comments. :smiley:


Just wanted to say thanks again to @Nate_Pearson for teaming up with me for the paraolympics attempt. I don’t think I’ve ever had this much motivation to train.


Thanks so much for the birthday shout-out guys. That was so crazy. I could not believe it was happening.

Huge fan of the product and the podcast. You’ve turned a random, middle-aged, out-of-shape guy, off the couch into a cyclocross addict and someone who already had a half-respectable Mt Washington Hill Climb time (in 2019) after my first 7 months with the app, and hopefully bigger and better things in 2021. Really appreciate everything you do, thank you.


Was reading a bit about making your own sports drink for during the ride. Something that came up, that was not mentioned in the show was how you should have carbs at 6-8g per 100 ml (which is 60-80g per liter for the metrically challenged). Supposedly this is the same particle concentration as your blood, such that it will be quickly processed in your body.

If your drink contains more carbs, your body will first need to dilute it with water from elsewhere before the carbs can be used.

Some cheap/accessible nutrition ideas from my low-budget college kitchen;

-freezer waffles
-fruit snacks/rolls
-granola bars (check the label, as the macro breakdown can vary pretty considerably. the fruit-filled ones or anything oat based are usually higher in carbs and lower in fat/protein)
-salted licorice
-rice krispy treats. Also protip you can make those with any cereal.
-mochi (these are my favourite!)
-apple chips
-roasted root veg- taro, sweet potato, plantains etc.

Bottom line: go for anything aggressively marketed towards children, because it’s almost always carb-based and low on fiber (go figure)
Also vegemite sandwiches > PB&J.


The anti-oxidant discussion is so interesting. so if I am getting it right…

  • training produces the required stress
  • not pushing anti-oxidants straight after allows for long-term adaptive response
  • anti-oxidants close to activity, reduces the adaptive response, prioritizing short term recovery over long-term adaption?

so in most cases, there is little reason to be reaching for the anti-oxidants straight after the workout, rather leave it as part of a balanced diet to ensure there is sufficient long-term adaption. exceptions to this rule woudl be when short term repetitive performance is needed, so the stage race example, or maybe during a taper period heading into a big event?


Rice cake recipe, you’re guaranteed* to win World Tour races after eating.

*guarantee not guaranteed.


With current evidence, that’s our opinion and a lot of researcher’s opinion.

But…it could change with future research.


Biggest takeaway from today is if I get abducted I don’t have to worry about the duck tape any longer


My chest strap HR wetting trick:

  • Get a bit of spit on my fingers (not really gross?) and then transfer that to the strap pickups with your fingers. No need to directly lick that lovely nastiness with your actual tongue :wink:

is there any other way? :joy:

Falling behind on podcasts because its the most wonderful time of the year (to steal a line from a song). This was probably mentioned in the podcast, however I’ll offer my best practice

  • if I’m getting dressed and my skin is dry
  • and its cold and dry in garage/outside
  • then a dab of this:

is exactly what you need!

Original idea from DCRainmaker:

Note: one tube will last a lifetime! Giveaway- electrode gel for chest straps


Omg salted licorice is THE BEST

came in here for rampant speculation re: what Jonathan’s teased announcement might be. Disappointed at lack of rampant speculation.


Vegemite toast is a go to for me before a TR session (and nearly every morning for breakfast).

1 Like

+1 for @Jonathan / @Nate_Pearson’s recommendation to find a good ENT and get checked out. Since this year’s racing was cancelled I finally broke down and went to see an ENT about my deviated septum (I’ve had a broken nose my of my life). I’ve always had some rhinitis, but in the past year had had worsening post-nasal drip and put it down to allergies. In my first appointment at the ENT they CT scanned me and found I had a sinus infection - I had probably been living with it for a year! They also did an allergy test and found a bunch of trees/grasses that are common here in Austin that I was pretty allergic to that I had no idea. I’ve subsequently had a course of antibiotics to clear the infection, surgery on my septum, and now on allergy drops and a nose spray antihistamine and it seems to be helping a lot. I’m sleeping better and can actually breath through my nose. :raised_hands: Wish I had done it years ago.