Thursday, June 9, 2011

Training in the Heat by Nick

Training in the Heat
Now that we are officially in Summer and the heat will last for a couple months you will need to be extra cautious while training. Some things to consider when training in the heat:
-Train early or late in the day to avoid the heat.
-Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate with water and electrolyte (salt) drinks. Gatorade was formulated for this reason. A 2% loss in body weight from sweat loss can have up to a 20% reduction in performance.
-Eat foods that are full of water, such as fruits, vegetables and pastas.
-Control your heart rate. The higher your heart rate the higher your sweat rate, which leads to dehydration and an even higher heart rate.
-Choose training routes that have water stops to refill bottles.
-If you are thirsty it is too late. Do not follow your thirst mechanism. Drink even if you are not thirsty.
-Pre-hydrate the day before a big training day.
-Wear light colored and wicking material to avoid overheating.
-Keep your core temperature cool. Poor cold water on your head and body while training and take ice baths post workout to decrease your metabolism and aid in recovery.

It is necessary to take the above precautions when training in the heat. These things will help you with performance and safety. Safety is of the utmost importance. Please be safe out there while training in the heat.

Nutrition Tip
No matter what training regimen you have in store for the day, the physical benefits reaped will be greater if you start fully fueled, well hydrated, and feeling comfortable. Finding the right sports nutrition groove for you may take some experimenting, so early in your training season try different approaches to identify which ones leave you feeling your best.

- Most athletes feel best with a pre-workout meal somewhere between 2 to 4 hours before training begins. The idea is to replenish muscle fuel stores without overtaxing your digestive system. Stick to high carb foods with some protein mixed in. Steer clear of fatty foods or those packed full of fiber.

- About an hour before you start your exercise, top off fuel supplies by eating a carb-rich snack. POWERGEL or GU is a convenient choice. This same strategy also applies if your training starts very early in the morning where eating a pre-workout meal isn’t realistic.

- To ensure that you’re fully hydrated, but have time to eliminate the fluid you don’t need, drink 16 fluid ounces of water or sports drink about 2 to 3 hours before exercise. Monitor urine color before your workout to gauge your hydration status. A light color, like lemonade, gets two thumbs up. If urine is darker in color, akin to apple juice, you need more fluid.

- Remember that during routine endurance training you need to consume enough carbs each day to allow your muscles to fully replenish fuel stores. In general, for every 2.2 pounds of body weight, light training requires 5-7 grams of carbs; moderate-heavy training requires about 7-12 grams; and extreme training, on the order of 4 or more hours of exercise each day, typically requires 10-12 grams of carbs.

-Now that we are into the month of May it is very very important that everyone takes precautions with the increased temperatures. You should be constantly drinking, and not just during exercise, to help stay hydrated. The heat can really affect heart rate and performance but if you are hydrated and stay cool by wearing appropriate clothes and splashing yourself with water you can help counter the effects of the high temperatures. Be smart about what time of day you train. I recommend not only drinking water but and electrolyte replacement as well. Nuun makes a great product as does Zym. Both are sold at Tribe and provide the electrolytes you need without a lot of calories. You will also want to eat foods that are full of fluids, such as fruits and vegetables. These will help hydrate you throughout the day.

Be smart when you train. You must train for quality and not quantity. If you have to get a run on but the only time is at 3PM then it is not smart to go outside where there is no water or shade. Find a treadmill or move the run to another day. You must be smart about your training. If you are concerned then ask me to help. It is more important that you are healthy than to get the recommended miles in.

Nick Goodman
Durapulse Performance Company
7624 E. Indian School Rd. #101
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
(480) 862-3076

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