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Floyd’s of Leadville CBD Recovery Protein (vanilla)

It's hard to say whether this drink mix actually aids in recovery, but it appeared to have some impact on our tester post-ride.




Floyd's of Leadville

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Floyd’s CBD products aren’t the only ones on the market, but until recently, they’ve been the only ones to land on my desk. And I’m happy every time they do, because CBD has been a relief for me since I injured my back earlier this year.

Floyd’s of Leadville recently expanded its line with several CBD products, one of which takes the form of a recovery protein drink. Mix it in with your post-ride water bottle and let the CBD do its work. It aims to accomplish what every recovery drink does: help rebuild muscle proteins and preserve glycogen stores, the latter of which is used by your body for energy. If it runs out, it will use the former, which you’d hope to avoid. On top of that, Floyd’s of Leadville adds CBD, which aids in chronic pain relief.

The addition of the recovery drink was a focused decision. “People are putting it in all kinds of things, coffee and all those things,” Floyd Landis told me at the Sedona Mountain Bike Festival earlier this year. “At the end of the day it’s got all these medicinal properties that people want. I don’t want to just make a bunch of different food products and see what works. But I do think that, for recovery after a ride, once you’re over the age of thirty, things ache more, so it’s a good time to do it. So I think a recovery drink makes sense.”

How convenient. I’m over the age of thirty. And boy do things ache.

The drink tastes pleasant enough as far as drink mixes go, and it’s great mixed into a smoothie after a ride. In other words, regardless of any other benefits, you’re actually likely to want to drink this after a ride. That’s a crucial first step for any recovery drink. Floyd’s uses real organic vanilla beans to flavor the drink. And this stuff is all made right here in Colorado.

It’s always been difficult for me to determine whether recovery drinks are helping me “recover.” Such is the case with Floyd’s. It’s nearly impossible for me to tell you whether this made my muscles ache any less, or for less time. But there are key elements in this recovery drink that lead me to believe it’s as effective as any other drink making the same claims. Namely, Floyd’s Recovery Protein includes 8.5 grams of branch chain amino acids per serving — these BCAAs help preserve glycogen stores, thereby preventing your body from breaking down muscle proteins for energy instead — not to mention 27 grams of protein per serving.

Like Floyd’s other CBD products, the recovery shake does seem to have the same pain relief properties. I consistently get soreness and tightness in my neck and shoulders after three to five hours on the bike. After taking the recovery protein, that achiness began to dissipate within 20-30 minutes, much like it would if you took something like Aspirin or Ibuprofen (I’m allergic to both, so CBD has been a reliable and useful substitute).

There is a downside, at least for me: the recovery drink consistently makes me very sleepy. This isn’t so much of a problem if you’ve got nothing to do and nowhere to go after your ride, but if you’ve got the rest of your day ahead of you, be aware that you may have this reaction. Of course, you may not. That’s the thing about CBD: there are still a lot of question marks surrounding its benefits and potential drawbacks. We could certainly use a few more peer-reviewed studies in this realm.

For what it’s worth, I actually love the fact that this makes me sleepy if I’m winding down after a big day on the bike, on my way to bed. Just as often when I’m fully exhausted, I find it difficult to sleep even though I’m tired. This has helped me get a decent night’s sleep even when my body is fighting it.

I’ll keep this on the shelf for its pain relief properties, and the assumption that it’s offering the same recovery benefits as its competitors. Most importantly, I’ll keep it because it actually tastes pretty decent for a recovery drink.