KEY CONCEPTS FOR PEAK PERFORMANCE
Keep fluid intake during exercise between 16-28 ounces (470-830ml) per hour.In general, most athletes, under most conditions, will satisfy hydration needs with a fluid intake in the range of 20-25-ounces (590-740ml) per hour - roughly the equivalent of a standard size small or large water bottle. Lighter athletes and/or athletes exercising in cool weather conditions may only require an intake of 16-18 ounces (470-530ml) per hour. Larger athletes and/or athletes exercising under very hot and humid conditions are the ones that can consider a fluid intake in the range of 28 ounces (830ml) per hour, perhaps up to 30 ounces (890ml) /hour in extreme conditions. It's important to remember that regular fluid intake over 30-34 ounces (890-1005ml) hourly significantly increases the potential for serious performance and health problems.
2. Caloric Intake
For best performance, DO NOT follow the "calories out, calories in" advice given by some "experts." Instead replenish calories in "body cooperative" amounts, allowing your fat stores to make up the difference. For most athletes, 120-150 calories/hour is the ideal range. Fewer calories per hour can be processed while running, so adjust accordingly. In very rare instances, larger athletes and hyper metabolic types may need slightly more calories per hour.
Workouts/races of 2 hours or less: choose a fuel with complex carbohydrates, not simple sugars (glucose, sucrose, fructose, etc.). Simple sugars cause energy peaks and crashes, and must be mixed in weak concentrations for efficient digestion. Complex carbohydrates absorb at about three times the rate as simple sugars. Plus you get steady, reliable energy—no peaks and valleys.
Workouts or races of 2-3-hours, or more: Fuel primarily with complex carbohydrates, not simple sugars. Also, 10-15% of your fuel’s calorie content should come from protein, ideally soy, to help satisfy energy requirements and prevent muscle tissue catabolism.
Replenish electrolytes with a balanced formula (not just salt!) in amounts appropriate for conditions.
FACT: Salt (sodium chloride) cannot fulfill your entire requirements for electrolytes. The minerals calcium, magnesium, and potassium also must be replenished to ensure the proper functioning of key body systems. In addition, your daily dietary sodium intake, fitness level, acclimatization, and the environmental conditions (heat, humidity, etc.) all affect the amount of electrolytes you will need to replenish during exercise. For a balanced, full-spectrum formula of electrolytes, replenish with Endurolytes. Choose regular Endurolytes, Endurolytes Extreme, or Endurolytes Fizz in doses appropriate for the conditions.
4. Pre-Exercise Fueling
Before workouts and races, consume 300-400 calories. Complete your meal 3 hours before you start exercise.
To perform and feel your best during races or workouts, consume no more than 300-400 calories. Choose easily digested, complex carbohydrates, along with a small amount of protein and a little healthy fat. Avoid fiber, simple sugar, and acidic foods. Finish your meal 3 hours before exercise. Eating within 3 hours can seriously hurt your performance by 1) reducing the conversion of fats to fuels, and 2) accelerating glycogen depletion. Tip: If your race is early, don't sacrifice sleep to eat! Instead, consume a small amount of supplemental fuel, such as 1 Hammer Gel, about 5 minutes before starting.
Replenish your body with carbohydrates and protein as soon as possible after each exercise session, ideally within the first 30-60 minutes.
What you do immediately after your workout is just as important as your workout itself! "Refill the tank" as soon as possible (ideally within the first 60 minutes) to fully replenish glycogen and build and repair muscle tissue. Consume 30-60 grams of complex carbohydrates and 10-20 grams of protein. Recoverite supplies both in the ideal 3:1 ratio. Also be sure to take antioxidants after exercise to neutralize cell-damaging free radicals and speed recovery.
Less is More!
Hammer Nutrition has been advocating the "less is best" approach for more than 25 years. Proper fueling is achieved by consuming the least amount necessary to keep your body doing what you want it to do hour after hour.