Without proper fuelling it's impossible to get the best from your body. We have spoken to nutrition and hydration expert Andy Blow, founder of Precision Hydration, to find out more about how what we eat and drink helps to make every training session count.
Importance of Fuelling for Triathlon Training
"Getting your nutrition right is fundamental for all endurance athletes," Blow tells us, "If you aren't seeing the improvements from your training that you want it's one of the first problems to address."
"Not eating or drinking well compromises the quality of the work that can be done. Hard sessions can’t be hard enough to provide the stimulus for adaptation and without the right approach after your session you are going to experience poor recovery." Getting your diet and nutrition wrong can send you on a downward spiral but getting it right can see your performance hit new levels.
Andy Blow knows this from his own experience of competition " The Initial impetus for starting Precision Hydration was a selfish one as my hydration struggles were holding me back as an athlete. In my case I have a really high sweat rate and my difficulty in maintaining hydration levels meant I was constantly frustrated and unable to fulfil what I felt was my potential."
Precision Hydration was the first sports nutrition company that allowed athletes to learn about their sweat rate and customise their hydration to ensure the right amount of fluid and electrolytes for their personal needs. For many athletes this revolutionised their performance. "After this we widened our remit into energy products to try and help more athletes to understand how to fuel better. Not just by making products but with education to help users get better results with their sports nutrition."
Seven Tips to Nail Your Nutrition
Be an all-day athlete
Get the basics right, think like an athlete all day long, not just when you are wearing sports kit. All your nutrition counts towards improving your performance, not just when you are training.
Health comes before performance so look at the quality of your entire diet, not just the amount of energy consumed but the nutritional profile of your foods including vitamins and minerals. You cannot train and race to your best unless you are starting from a healthy base.
Plan your nutrition in advance
Athletes tend to think nutrition once the session starts but aren’t turning up to the session hydrated and fuelled. If you are training in the morning, prepare your food and drinks the night before, have your bottles in the fridge so it’s a get up and go situation. It's the same if you are training after work, eat and drink ahead of time so you are ready for your session.
Prioritise your well-being
It is very easy to barrel into an end of the day training session from an afternoon of back-to-back meetings and not be ready for it. Use your laptop or phone to put a ping in your diary to remind yourself to eat and drink enough to fuel your after-work sessions. There's even more advice on what to eat before, during and after training HERE
Water alone isn't the solution to hydration
Don’t drink a lot of plain water, as you will just pee it back out again. It is better to have a small amount of sports drink with electrolytes which will allow the water to be absorbed and used by your body. You can find our Precision Hydration Sweat Test HERE.
Eat early in endurance sessions
On long rides start eating after 30-minutes to maintain your energy levels. If you leave it too long you will have already burnt through a significant amount of glycogen and dug a hole it can be difficult to come back from nutritionally speaking.
Know your numbers
Understand as much as possible about yourself as an athlete and the type of training you are planning on doing. You can calculate your carbohydrate intake, water and salt you need per hour based on your body weight to create a personalised nutrition plan which takes a lot of the guesswork out of how you fuel.
All of our sports nutrition products are clearly labelled with the grams of carbohydrates and are made in 'easy to add up' units to remove the effort of working out what you need to eat each hour. You can find our carb calculator HERE.
Fuel your focus
Hunger and thirst are really fundamental drives, if you are under fuelled you won't have the mental space to focus on your technique or performance. Without glucose for your brain function you will be unable to make the best decisions on how to manage your efforts on race day or to work on your technique in the pool or on the track.
Using the data from your INCUS NOVA device displayed in the INCUS CLOUD to track your progress can show the impact of fatigue and under - fueling on all aspects of your technique and performance - and how you perform when you get it right.
Ready to benefit from the training insights of INCUS CLOUD? Find out more HERE
Data today = faster tomorrow