Training and a standing job

Hey Trainerroadies,

Ever since I started cycling last year, I’ve gotten too into it. I fell in that dark hole and just nearly became consumed by cycling. I love it though.

Now, I want to become a better, faster and fitter cyclist. I want to sign up to a 160km sportive in October. So I gotta train right? cool, no problem. I’ve already started doing my fair share of structured training and longs rides anyways.

Here’s the thing though: I am a cook and work 4 days a week, standing 10-14 hours for the 3 days and usually about 5-8 on the Sunday. No breaks. My days off are monday to wednesday.

So my question to you experienced folks is this: how can I plan my training and recovery effectively around this physically demanding job?



Compression socks! You need them. I used to wait tables and I would ride long and hard not long before my evening shift. Once I figured out compression socks it really helped.

I don’t have any other advice :man_shrugging:. I wasn’t doing any structure just blasting myself on the bike as a young ‘un.


Start slow and don’t rush your training.

While I am in an easier job now, I used to work for a contractor doing HVACR work. Carrying large amounts of tools and equipment up and down roofs of buildings and such all day, often in hot weather, and the hotter the weather the longer the work day. I was more of a runner back then and tended to run immediately after work.

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I’m a chef also my friend. I feel your pain! Compression socks can definitely help, I also have a good stretch routine I can do while standing.
Almost every time I go to the bathroom I’ll stretch. For example bent over hamstring stretch, hip flexor stretches and some type of back stretch. Who cares if someone sees you, take care of yourself. Also a good stretch In The morning and when you get home feels great to get the blood flowing and work out the kinks of the day.
Honestly your body is probably accustomed to standing for long hours and shouldn’t affect you too much. Except those long busy ass days in season or your busiest times. That’s why I stretch and wear compression socks. Also when I get home I’ll usually put my feet up and try to sit as much as possible.
Of course daily chores around the house don’t always make that happen.
My recovery has been great following those simple things plus nutrition is the silent helper.
So I would say:

  1. stretch as much as you can (even if it’s a couple stretches that you can do anywhere will be good)
  2. get some good compression socks and comfortable shoes
  3. try to stay off your feet as much as you can when you are home
  4. make sure you’re eating and drinking enough water.
  5. respect your sleep!

I’m on mid volume plan plus extra rides, I wake up very early before work to get the work done. I don’t always get extra rides but I take them when I can.
If it gets really busy and you know when the times/season is that is where the low-volume plan is gold. That way you can maintain your fitness and not stress about five rides a week instead just nail the three workouts.
Finally check out this podcast, some good tips. Although he is not a chef he seems to work hours like we do and has some tips on how to maintain his fitness when it gets really busy. You got this :facepunch:


I’m on the same boat here. I’m always on my feet as a US Postal worker. It’s a hard balance especially if you had a tough work day. I think recovery should be pretty emphasized. Sometimes if I have a hard intensity day and I don’t have the legs, I just go at zone 2 endurance pace. I also found pacing myself at work helps as well for the next workout. It’s like a ride in itself lol.

The struggle is real chef! haha. Now that restrictions have lifted, times are busy and recovery is a bit tough. What do you think of this schedule:

Sunday(half work day)- Train
Monday(off day)- Train
Tuesday( off day)- Recovery
Wednesday(off day) -Train
Thursday (full work hours)- Recovery/work
Friday (full work hours)- Recovery/work
Saturday( full work hours) -Recovery/ work

So, with this I am having a block of three days off, where I’m not necessarily recovering(as im running around in the kitchen) but also not doing any training. I feel that putting a training session in that 3 work day block can be detrimental without the full recovery available. Does this make sense?

Thanks again for the response, certainly did not hesitate to buy those socks!

Great advice! Definitely ran to the store to get some right after reading this response! Cheers.

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Sounds good, if you can fit any easy endurance rides during the week you should. Don’t make them hard, just to get the blood flowing and help with your endurance.
Other than that my biggest helper has been trying to sleep 7-9 hours a night. It’s the ultimate recovery tool lol.
Hopefully things get back to “normal” for you and doesn’t get too crazy :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

+1 for compression socks. I wear them every day at work. Don’t know if they help my recovery but they’re so damn comfortable. Also consider a good pair of insoles for your work boots/shoes - something from the Superfeet range maybe?

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