Drink To Win
This nutrition tip is courtesy of Sydney Jacobson, registered dietitian at Hy-Vee in Windsor Heights, IA.
Heat Stretch Keeps Focus On Hydration
The protracted heat wave that has dominated the Midwest this summer has made one aspect of everyone’s training plan far and away the most important, and that’s proper hydration. Everything else falls by the wayside when you’re exercising in triple-digit heat. I know my own training is sure taking a beating due to the heat, and I’ve found that water makes all the difference.
When exercising in high heat and humidity, athletes should take extra caution to replace fluids and stay cool. Fluids can affect performance more than any other nutrient. Excess heat can cause heavy sweating and dehydration if nothing is done to replenish lost fluids. Not only does dehydration diminish performance, its symptoms can become life-threatening.
Consequences of minor dehydration can include impaired concentration and coordination, decreased reaction time, and reduced endurance. More specifically, if muscles become dehydrated by as little as 3 percent, you can experience a loss in contractile strength (about 10 percent) and speed (up to 8 percent). Drinking plenty of fluids (mostly water) before, during and after exercise is key to avoiding dehydration. Don’t rely on your sense of thirst to tell you to drink more fluids. Once you are thirsty, you are already dehydrated.
During exercise, drink 4 to 6 ounces of water every 15 to 20 minutes. For every swallow, estimate that you have consumed 1 ounce. If you are training or competing in extreme heat and humidity, or your event lasts longer than an hour, drink Gatorade or other sports drinks to refuel and replace electrolytes lost in sweat. You can maintain energy levels by drinking 5 to 10 ounces of sports drinks every 15 minutes. Gatorade, for example, is formulated with just the right amount of sodium to help your body hold on to the fluid. The amount of carbohydrates in the drink is also purposely chosen to enable your body to readily absorb and use it for quick energy.
If you need a specialized plan to stay hydrated, a dietitian can help design a personalized plan that considers thirst, urine color and body weight changes under varying conditions.
Sydney Jacobson earned a dietetics degree from Iowa State University and is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. She is also a marathoner with an interest in sport nutrition. Contact her at email@example.com
This information is not intended as medical advice. See a medical professional for individual consultation.
From the coaches at Zoom Performance
Race Prep and Taper
In the four-phase training regiment, the race prep phase is the final, intense period before going into taper mode. In prep, intensity and volume are peaking. It will be hard, but this phase will leave you feeling satisfied.
Race prep takes what you’ve built in your base/aerobic and build phases and ties it all together. In the base phase, you focused on moderate volume and intensity, and the build phase focused on longer, more intense workouts. Race prep typically features lower weekly volume and lower workout duration, but the intensity is very high. When your season is planned correctly, these phases, along with a good taper, will set you up for peak fitness on race day.
The length of the taper phase will depend on your experience and distance of the race. Shorter races will require less taper time, while taper for an Ironman can be three weeks of progressively reduced training. A good rule of thumb is to reduce your training volume by about 20 percent each week of the taper. For an Olympic distance race, first-time racers might want a three-week taper, while a more seasoned triathlete might taper just one or two weeks. The final week of a beginner’s taper may look like this:
- Monday swim: 200-yard warm up; 100 kick. Fast start for 200 and then settle into zone 2 pace for 800 more, 500 pull to finish, 100 cool down.
- Tuesday run: 30 minutes at zone 2 with 4 x 30 second strides.
- Wednesday brick: Warm up followed by 30-minute ride at race pace; 10-minute run, also at race pace.
- Wednesday swim: Open water swim for 20 minutes.
- Thursday swim: 200-yard warm up; 200 kick (alternate back/board); 8 x 100 at race pace with 30-second rests; 300 pull easy; 100 kick cool down.
- Thursday bike: 10-minute warm up; 3 x 3-minutes at race pace, high zone 3, with 5 minute rests; five-minute cool down.
- Friday: Rest.
- Saturday: 15-minutes ride with 3 x 2-minutes pickups at race pace; 10-minute shake out jog with 4 x 30-second strides.
- Sunday: Race Day. Don’t forget to enjoy the day. This is what you’ve been working for.
Zoom Performance is a professional endurance coaching company that is devoted to ensuring your experience exceeds expectations. The Zoom Performance team of coaches is committed to providing the knowledge and support athletes need to be successful. Our USAT-certified coaches provide customized programs along with metabolic testing, bike fitting, one-on-one analysis, clinics, camps, as well as sports nutrition programs. From beginners to elites, Zoom Performance coaches specialize in getting you to Reach the Next Level! Find out more at www.getzoomperformance.com.
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And You Are?
We are Elan and Mandy Fleetwood from Parker, CO. We both love Harry Potter and Phineas and Ferb.
Shredding on my snowboard and wakeboarding are two of my favorite hobbies.
I do not like food! I eat as little food as possible before my race, but Mom and Dad still make me eat whatever I can and as much as I possibly can (which is not much).
I rock the National Anthem, and love to sing and play the guitar.
I love to play guitar, compete in swimming and snowboard.
My USA swim coach, Sheli Hemming, got me involved in triathlon and this is my 2nd year in the sport.
My pre-race meal must contain spaghetti, pizza, ice cream, and cotton candy.
I am determined to keep up with my big sister Elan.
This is Elan and Mandy Fleetwood’s second year participating in IronKids. The sisters, from Parker, CO, were introduced to the sport by their swimming coach and they have each qualified for the IronKids Championship in Des Moines on Sep. 1—Elan in the 9-year-old division and Mandy in the 8-year-old division.