Hydration is MORE than just WATER!
Photo by Holger Link on Unsplash
You work hard in your workout and give yourself a big pat on the back.
BUT what about your choices after the session?
Are they removing some of the shine that your efforts deserve?
Your choices in the minutes and hours after your workout will either enhance the effect of your workout or detract from it.
A good time to remind you that your training effort is just the stimulus and your post workout period is vital in terms of adaptation and regeneration of the newer stronger YOU.
Over the next few weeks, I want to share with you some common mistakes that you NEED to avoid making if you want to keep progressing!
Today we start with hydration. Yes, I mentioned it before. BUT I am seeing more and more athletes sweat away think that water alone will build them back up!
Sweat is NOT just Water!
We can debate whether you need to prioritize eating after a workout (depends on the duration and intensity of the workout and how soon you’ll be training again), but there’s no debate about the need to rehydrate after training.
During a week of recording sweat loss from 10 riders doing the Kinetic LIVE sessions the numbers ranged from 0.8kg – 1.9kg in single sessions. One rider lost a total of 7.1kg doing all 5 sessions! That is almost a stone!
So just drink more?
Not always the case! You need to make sure that you are not flushing out key minerals. Your sodium, potassium and magnesium levels can be altered, and this can lead to feelings similar to dehydration e.g. headaches, tiredness, irritable moods etc. So, you believe that you just drink more!
Well this will help but, in some cases, you may be diluting your blood even more and excreting more minerals. Studies in IM events have shown that athletes can lose anywhere between 3g-30g of sodium in a 10-hour period. That is a massive discrepancy! It means that your unique system needs to be monitored and you need pay close attention your feelings post workouts.
How do I do that Scott as I already take electrolyte tablets in my water so surely, I am ok?
Firstly, are you weighing in and out?
Record your weight at the start of a session and after. Do this in a way that can be repeated so without kit is easier (indoors obviously easier as some places still have rules about naked weighing!)
Add on weight from any bottles that you have drunk. Start to get an idea of what the loss is. I always suggest aiming to replace 150% of what you lost during the effort within 5 hours of finishing.
Then look at your diet. Hopefully, it doesn’t contain too much additional salt but consider supplementing your diet with minerals from sea salts. A favourite amongst top pros is Himalayan Pink Sea Salt (or just pink sea salt – it’s the same thing).
Sounds fancy coach, what about normal table salt? Remember, that table salt contains additives. Pink Sea Salt has a huge additional source of minerals than your electrolyte tablets. It contains around 84 minerals, from sodium to iron, calcium, magnesium and potassium. Pink sea salt also contains trace amounts of copper, iodine, zinc and selenium
Your diet should never be aiming to have more than 2.3 milligrams of sodium per day. But adding a little amount of pink sea salt during long hard workouts or in the post 20 min cooldown period may just be what you are missing in your training!
However why not start with the sweat loss measuring and see where you at and make sure you are rehydrating fully during the day!
Want some more?
Here are the latest videos uploaded to YouTube