If you focus on consuming a sport drink or beverage rich in one electrolyte and not others, you risk spiking up serum levels of those electrolytes (while decreasing others) that can cause many issues. One example is beverages rich in potassium with little to no sodium. This can increase the level of potassium free-flowing in your blood so high that it becomes toxic, a condition known as hyperkalemia and on the opposite end of the spectrum, if you consume fluids without any electrolytes or very low electrolytes, you risk diluting your stores, especially sodium (known as hyponatremia). These conditions can severely impact exercise performance, and how your body normally functions.
Both hyperkalemia and hyponatremia are cause for serious concern and both can occur when electrolyte balance is off. It’s important to consume sport drink with a complete, balanced electrolyte profile.
In general, it is recommended to aim for (per 470ml):
sodium: 350-500 mg
potassium: 100-220 mg
magnesium: 20-30 mg
calcium: 15-20 mg
Dr. Stacy Sims, Environmental Exercise Physiologist and Nutrition Scientist shares her top tips to avoid dehydration on race day.
Please provide your top 5 tips to avoid dehydration on race day.
a) start the race euhydrated, making sure you eat plenty of watery fruit and veggies throughout taper week
b) sip sip sip, don't guzzle, both during taper week and on race course
c) there is no prescribed amount per hour that any one person should drink, but you may need to set an alarm to remember to sip sip sip along the way
d) plain water doesn't hydrate, you need a bit of sodium with the water to work with your physiology during exercise to pull the fluid into your blood
e) do not use salt tablets
Please provide advice on how to recover properly post-race and how nuun can help you bounce back.
Within the first 30 minutes you want to have protein with carbohydrate, (~20-25g protein) to encourage muscle repair; this opens your window for glycogen recovery to ~2 hours. Have your next real meal within this timeline, focusing on good quality carbohydrates and protein. To rehydrate, eat watery fruit and veggies with a sprinkle of salt, and sip sip sip nuun across the hours post exercise to facilitate rehydration and recovery. Your aim is to have light to clear urine by the end of the day and the next morning.
Tips on how to race City to Surf with nuun- so what to take and when?
Start the race hydrated and when you get into the run, Sip sip sip along the course. There is no prescribed amount of fluid intake for any one person; the best way to take in fluids is slow small sips.