Reprinted from May 2006 issue of SBBMW Riders Newsletter
This month’s Tip comes to us from Lisa Welch. Lisa is a local Santa Barbara endurance athlete, and potential new club member. She has a Tip to give us on how to maintain proper hydration while on a long ride.
Proper hydration is key to peak performance, whether you are running a marathon or on a marathon bike ride where long periods of exposure to wind and sweating cause the body to loose water and electrolytes. Dehydration negatively impairs neuromuscular performance, coordination and concentration, key elements for a safe ride. When you experience thirst you are already suffering minor symptoms of dehydration.
Key is to hydrate early and often. Water is important, but in extreme temperatures or very long rides (possibly over a period of days) you might want to consider a drink mix like Gatorade, Cytomax or something that provides sodium and potassium (to maintain electrolyte balance in your blood) and carbohydrates (to provide energy to working muscles and maintain mental alertness – brain food!).