How to Properly Hydrate and Fuel for the Perfect 10 Miler.
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How to Properly Hydrate and Fuel for your Race
You might find that you don’t feel as thirsty or dehydrated on your cool-weather run as you do during exercise in the dog days of summer. Just because the heat and humidity has let up, though, doesn’t mean that hydration is any less important, especially on race day. Drinking enough water and replenishing electrolytes will power you through your run and keep you feeling great afterward.
What are Electrolytes?
Electrolytes consist of sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, chloride, phosphate, bicarbonate, and sulfate. They help to stabilize your blood acidity, affect the amount of water in your blood, and promote healthful bodily functions. If you are low on any of these, you may experience side stiches and muscle cramps, dizziness, muscle spasms, or fatigue.
Because you lose electrolytes when you sweat and you cannot replenish your electrolytes from just water, it’s important to eat nutrient-rich foods in the hours before and after your race. Snacks like peanut butter can help you get a healthy dose of sodium for good hydration, and potassium-rich foods such as bananas, avocado, and kale can help with cramping. Getting your electrolytes in through your diet can also provide you with some energy-enhancing carbs to help you come out on top.
How much Water and Fuel do I Need?
For shorter races that can be run in under an hour, you should consume 16-20 ounces of water per hour. For mid-length races, like the Perfect 10 Miler and half marathons, be sure to eat back about 300 electrolyte-rich calories and drink at least 20 ounces of fluid per hour. For ultra-long distances and triathlons, it’s best to meet with a nutritionist to find out how to replace your calories, but you definitely want to eat plenty of potassium and drink at least 20 ounces of fluid per hour.
You can put additional ingredients into your drinking water to hydrate, replenish your electrolytes, and avoid drinking sugary sports drinks. Fresh-squeezed citrus juice, raw honey, and sea salt taste great when blended into filtered water such as ZeroWater, and they make for a great post-workout hydration drink.
Finally, and most importantly: listen to your body. If you feel thirsty, stop for a drink, and don’t drink so much at once that you get that “sloshy” feeling that causes you to slow down. Thirst is a very trustworthy cue for knowing when you need water – just don’t assume that hydrating is any less important in mid-fall than in mid-summer.
ZeroWater’s patented 5-stage ion exchange filter offers consumers the best filtration possible by removing all total dissolved solids (TDS) from tap water. No other filter pitcher or dispenser can make this claim. By removing virtually all TDS, ZeroWater is the only gravity-fed filtration system to match the TDS levels found in purified bottled water per the FDA’s standards. Learn more at ZeroWater.com.