Winter in Perth seemed to drag on and on and then just like that, BAM! it’s summer and freaking hot. Mandurah 70.3 is on this weekend and with the forecast currently at 37 degrees, it seems like a good time to post about some key tips for hydrating in the heat .
Keep your pee in check
Focus on urine colour upon waking. Straw coloured urine indicates good hydration. Dark coloured urine indicates dehydration and starting training, or an event, dehydrated is not the best idea. Keep your fluid intake up throughout the day, so that you’re not playing catch up the next day. There’s even an app to help you track your hydration. Seriously. ipee daily
Set fluid goals
Not sure how much to drink? Be like Dr Karl and conduct an experiment. Weigh yourself pre and post training, in minimal clothing and don’t forget to towel off any extra sweat. Every kilogram that you lose is a litre of fluid you didn’t drink. For example, you start training at 70kg, ride for 2 hours and drink 500ml. At the end of the ride you weigh 69kg. In theory, on your next ride in similar conditions, aim to drink closer to 1.5L of fluid or aim for 750mL/hour. This may not be too important for a one hour session but when the ride stretches out to 3 hours or you back it up with a run after, the small losses begin to add up!
Be prepared at an event
How often do you get stuck waiting for your wave start at a fun run, open water swim, tri or any other event? Carry a disposable bottle with you to sip on if your race start is delayed, to keep hydrated while waiting in the heat (or, if you did City to Surf this year, in a jam packed pavilion!)
Have a plan and stick to it
During a training session or an event, set some goals. Aim to drink every 10 or 15 minutes and aim to finish a bottle of fluid by a certain time. For example during a 2 hour, 60km ride, you could aim to finish your first bottle by 30km, drinking ~100-150mL every 10 minutes.
What to drink?
There are several options; water, electrolyte (water and salts like Shotz tablets, Hydralyte or Powerade zero) and sports drink (water, salts and carbs like Gatorade, Bindi or Powerade). During a <60min training session, water or electrolyte should be sufficient as what ever you ate prior to training will fuel you for approximately the first hour. Consider a sports drink for training sessions longer than an hour to replace fluids and salts lost through sweat, the extra carbs will provide necessary fuel to keep you going. So as summer kicks in and the temps go up, the extra effort put into hydrating at training can really pay off. Best of luck to everyone competing at Mandurah this Sunday, we hope you achieve all your goals and enjoy the race!