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electrolytes

Hydration On The Run

in BLOGS/RECOVERY/RUNNING by
Adapted from Matt Fitzgerald

Hydration during running is not as complicated as you may have been led to believe.

When you run, you sweat. The more you sweat, the more your blood volume decreases. The more your blood volume decreases, the harder your heart has to work to deliver oxygen to your working muscles.

Sounds dangerous, but it’s really not. Runners almost never experience dehydration levels sufficient to cause major health consequences. But normal levels of dehydration will make you feel uncomfortable and cause you to slow down.

Drinking while you run will limit these negative effects of dehydration. But what should you drink, how much, and when?

SOS can be compared to an IV drip. It works just as rapidly but is safer and cheaper at combating mild to moderate dehydration. Try it here

In the past, athletes were encouraged to drink as much as possible during exercise, or at least to drink enough to completely offset dehydration (that is, to drink enough to prevent any decrease in body weight during exercise). However, it is now understood that this is bad advice, for two reasons.

Firstly, it is possible to drink too much during exercise. Forcing yourself to swallow more fluid than your body really needs while running may cause gastrointestinal distress, and in extreme cases it can cause a dangerous condition known as water intoxication, or hyponatremia. Secondly, research has shown that drinking to completely offset sweating offers no advantage with respect to performance or body temperature regulation compared to drinking by thirst.

The new exercise hydration advice is in fact to drink according to your thirst. As long as you keep an adequate supply of a palatable drink accessible during your runs, you will naturally drink enough to optimize your performance if you just drink as often and as much as your thirst dictates.

Dehydration only affects performance in workouts lasting longer than an hour, so you don’t have to drink during workouts that are shorter than an hour. However, you can if you like.

Spilling The Beans on Caffeine

in BLOGS/LIFESTYLE/RECOVERY by

Hydrate, caffeinate, repeat. It’s a way of life for those with an active lifestyle. So what is it about caffeine? Can it really be that good for performance?

Who can benefit from caffeine?

Caffeine can have positive performance improvements across a range of different sports and in both males and females.

Performance improvements of ~3% have been found in the lab, however, it’s difficult to predict precisely the improvements we can expect from caffeine in ‘real life’ training and racing, as other factors such as tactics or weather conditions can influence results. It’s also important to know that individual responses to caffeine are highly varied. Some athletes may find that caffeine can have negative effects on performance while others find that caffeine offers them no benefit at all.

Why use caffeine?

It was once thought that caffeine increased the use of fat as a fuel thereby ‘sparing’ muscle glycogen. However, we now know that the most significant benefits of caffeine come from its effects on the brain. More specifically, caffeine is able to act as an adenosine receptor antagonist. By blocking the action of adenosine, caffeine influences the central nervous system. This can improve your perception of fatigue, resulting in a longer period of sustained work.

In simple terms – you can improve your ability to ‘go harder for longer’ before the effects of fatigue set in, improving your performance.

What caffeine product works best?

Coffee, cola drinks, caffeinated gels, caffeinated gum…the array of caffeine containing products available is huge. But is any one source better than another?

In general, no.

Studies have found that the beneficial effects of caffeine are seen across a variety of different products. Where it becomes tricky is that different products (and even different brands of the same product) have different amounts of caffeine. Knowing how much caffeine you are consuming is important as there can be a fine line between the amount which improves performance and the level at which negative side effects can occur.

It’s important to consider the diuretic effects of caffeine, always remember to stay hydrated with SOS Hydration 

The list below provides some examples of how much caffeine is found in a range of products – be aware though, formulations frequently change so it’s best to double check the packing to be sure.

Product Serve Caffeine per serve (mg)
Instant coffee 250ml cup 60 (range: 12-169)
Espresso Standard shot 107 (range: 25-214)
Iced coffee (commercial) 500ml bottle 30-200
Tea 250ml cup 27 (range: 9-51)
Hot chocolate 250ml cup 5-10
Coca-Cola 600ml bottle 58
Diet Coke 600ml bottle 77
Red Bull 250ml can 80

When to take caffeine?

Unlike some supplements, you often feel the benefits of caffeine soon after consumption (regardless of when levels peak in the blood). Performance improvements have been found regardless of whether the caffeine is taken one hour before an event, split in to doses over an event or taken only in the latter stages of an event when feelings of fatigue are most likely to really kick in.

The duration of the event will obviously have an impact on timing of caffeine intake. In shorter events (e.g. cycling criterium, sprint triathlon) where there is little opportunity to eat or drink during the event, having caffeine before the event is the most useful approach. On the other hand, during events lasting several hours (e.g. ironmanmarathon) having caffeine before the event and/or topping up during the event, or saving the caffeine for the final stages, is more likely to be beneficial. Individuals should practise a variety of different strategies to determine the approach that works best for them.

Regular coffee drinkers can relax – there is no need to stop having caffeine in the days leading up to an event if you want to use caffeine during an event. Withdrawing from caffeine offers no additional benefit and will more likely lead to negative effects associated with caffeine withdrawal (e.g. headaches, irritability).

SOS can be compared to an IV drip. It works just as rapidly but is safer and cheaper at combating mild to moderate dehydration. Try it here

How can I use caffeine during my training?

Here’s a quick summary of how you can use caffeine to help you go harder for longer:

  • More isn’t better. Usually ~1-3mg caffeine / kg body weight (e.g. 70-210mg caffeine for a 70kg person) improves performance. Higher intakes won’t offer an extra benefit and will more likely have negative side effects (e.g. shakiness or increased heart-rate)
  • You are unique! Individual responses to caffeine are highly varied – start small
  • Do the sums. Make sure you have a (rough) idea of how much you are consuming
  • Be flexible. Trial different amounts, types and timing of caffeine
  • Don’t sacrifice sleep. Will caffeine negatively impact your recovery?
  • Practise! Always trial during training to work out the best strategy for you

TRY SOS HYDRATION TODAY

One above the rest: Sir Ben Ainslie

in AMERICAS CUP/INTERVIEWS/SAILING/SOS MAGAZINE/SOS PRO'S/UK by

There has always been evolution within sport. Athletes continually jump higher, run faster, or hit harder than they have before. The rules almost always stay the same; the basketball hoop is still 10 feet high, the goal posts are 8 yards apart, the track is always 400 metres around. Yet in the oldest international sporting event on the planet, the rules are almost never the same.

At the 35th edition of the America’s Cup in Bermuda in 2017, Ben Ainslie will compete to bring the Auld Mug back to Britain where it was first contested in 1851. In doing so, Team Land Rover BAR would be the first British outfit to ever win the event.

The modern America’s Cup is barely recognisable to what it once was. For next years event, Land Rover BAR will have a boat that is designed entirely around the output that its sailors can provide.

This creates a unique situation whereby the design and fitness crew must collaborate closely. The sailors are the engine, which means Ainslie’s crew must be as fit and athletic as possible.

We sat down with SOS athlete Ben Ainslie to find out what him and his crew are doing to be as powerful of an engine as possible.

It’s been said that as the nature of the America’s Cup has changed, sailors have gone from being power/sprint athletes to more similar to endurance athletes like 10km runners or cyclists, given the need to produce constant power. How does this change the focus in training?

The focus has now changed from a requirement for short busts of intense power to much more of a constant power output over 20 – 30 minutes. This is needed to create the hydraulic power necessary to control the boat. Our sailors now train with much more of an aerobic endurance focus. Also, due to the introduction of an overall weight-limit of the crew, weight maintenance is now a critical factor.

You’d need to have an incredible aerobic base with which to then build specific endurance on for different roles on the boat. Given that you officially launched the Great South Run last year, can we assume that running is your go-to?

I do love running but sadly a long-term back injury currently prevents me from any serious running. My main tools for aerobic training are the ‘Watt bike’ and a trusty paddleboard.

“It won’t be easy, and it definitely won’t be fun… but it’s achievable.”

Improvements in training are entirely dependent on recovery, yet training for the boat is incredibly time consuming. How do you prioritise this time to rest with such a demanding schedule?

Our head trainer, Ben Williams, does a great job of factoring in the time spent on the water and amending our onshore training accordingly. The time on the water is incredibly stressful for the sailors both physically and mentally, so balance is crucial in order to avoid burnout.

“The boat needs a lot of power, and it hasn’t got an engine. We need to maximise what the boys can produce in a 20-40 minute window – not too dissimilar to a cycling time trial”.

Scott Dixon has said he can lose up to 7lbs from sweat during an IndyCar race, while you are essentially navigating a race car on the water – how important is keeping fluids down for you and the boys on the boat?

Hydration is going to be a critical factor in this next Americas Cup. The conditions for racing in Bermuda in June are going to be incredibly hot and very humid. Given the physical stress the sailors are under they’re going to need to work hard to retain fluids and need the best performance drink available.

How to Recover Like a Pro

in LIFESTYLE/RECOVERY/RUNNING/SOS MAGAZINE by

How listening less to college coaches and more to Lance Armstrong will help you run faster… legally.

There is a timeless saying, “you don’t get fit when you’re running; you get fit when you’re recovering”. If training was only about running then you’d barely stop, and Dean Karnazes would win every event from the 5,000m to the marathon at the Olympics. Thankfully, that isn’t the case.

EAT

The current obsession about weight in running is incredibly disconcerting. When female athletes become fixated on becoming as thin as possible it is rightly seen as a health concern, yet amongst males it is becoming an expression of masochism and bravado.

The head cross-country coach at Colorado State Art Siemers has become one of many coaches in the NCAA known for fixating on the weight and appearance of his athletes.

Heidi See

“Thin to win” is his catch phrase, and it’s a terrifying precedent to set on young, highly impressionable athletes.

Weight is just one variable in the training equation of stress, recovery, and adaptation. This is a delicate equilibrium that if thrown off balance can have devastating effects. Weight should not be used as a catalyst to precipitate training adaptations; rather it should be a carefully managed bi-product.

If we accept that fitness gains are made during recovery, then carrying less weight through diet restriction to complete a workout faster will only result in an inability to recover properly.

Eat good food; you need it.

 

HYDRATE

There are plenty of ways to skin a cat. Some are more effective than others, but the point stands – hydration has to be taken care of before all else.

Products used for recovery like chocolate milk are crucial for repairing muscle damage through protein synthesis, yet for this process to be as efficient as possible the muscles must be well hydrated. Without hydrating, protein synthesis will be less effective and increase the time needed for recovery.

Balance is also crucial, as our bodies endocrine system is affected by electrolyte losses. If one electrolyte is consumed in high volumes without the correct balance of the hormonal processes will be disrupted.

 

SLEEP

In a 2015 interview with Joe Rogan, Lance Armstrong stated, “naps are performance enhancing”. He’s not wrong. Sleep is when the magic happens, where the money is made, and most of us aren’t getting enough of it.

When we sleep, our body repairs damaged tissue. During the deeper stages of sleep, human growth hormone (HGH) is released into the bloodstream where it helps rebuild muscles and convert fat to fuel.SOS Hydration

The point is simple; when we don’t get enough quality sleep it becomes harder for our body to recover. The modern world isn’t making it easier; it is now commonplace to be looking at your phone in bed, with the emitted light telling your brain to remain awake and vigilant.

Try to avoid your phone, tablet, laptop or anything emitting that kind of light for an hour before you want to be asleep. A good rule of thumb would be 9hrs before you need to wake up. This can have an exponential effect on your ability to have quality sleep and recover.

Train hard.

Eat a lot of good food.

Hydrate.

Go to sleep.

Easier said than done, apparently.

SOS tops independent research trial for effective hydration

in SOS MAGAZINE/Uncategorized by

SOS subjects’ hydration status significantly improved in an independent research trial.

 

A combined independent study, led by Coventry University and Newman University, in the United Kingdom, analyzed the effectiveness of rehydration beverages following an interval training session in highly trained middle-distance runners.

 

SOS was compared against an electrolyte sports drink tablet (Nuun) and a placebo of flavoured water.

 

The results were resoundingly in SOS’s favour.

 

Within 12 hours of drinking SOS, the subjects had recovered their plasma volume and body mass completely.

 

When taking the electrolyte tablet, or flavoured water, neither plasma volume or the body mass of the subjects had recovered to pre work out levels, therefore increasing their risk of dehydration.

 

This study identifies that the subjects who used SOS hydrated faster and more effectively than those subjects who used other drinks.

 

See Fig 1. and 2.

 

What does this mean?

Simply put, taking SOS facilitates hydration and recovery better and faster than water or Nuun tablets.

 

In sports, hydration is critical. According to Gleeson et al., a loss of 2% body weight can lead to a 5% loss in performance over 10km and a 3% loss in performance over 800m / Mile. That could be the difference between a sub-4 minute mile or a 4:06 mile, a loss of 1 minute 45 seconds over 10km for a 35min target 10km, or the difference between winning and finishing out of the medals.

Fig1 Body Mass

Figure 1: Mean (±95% CI) percentage change in body mass. Placebo (PLA):6% chance of an unlikely benefit; SOS: 84% chance of a likely benefit and ESD (Nuun): 6% chance of an unlikely benefit (Hopkins, 2000).

 

Starting the day in a negative dehydration state will diminish recovery and quality of subsequent workouts. Dehydration can lead to headaches, tiredness, fatigue and potentially more serious complications.

 

 

 

Figure 2 Plasma Volume

Figure 2: Mean (± 95% CI) change in plasma volume. SOS: 81% chance of a likely benefit Vs. ESD; SOS: 96% chance of a very likely benefit Vs. Placebo and ESD (Nuun) 63% chance of a possible benefit Vs. PLA (Hopkins, 2000).

 

 

 

With proven scientific results, SOS should be in every runner’s bottle, whether to hydrate between rounds in competition, to use before, during and after a workout, or to help you stay hydrated for what everyday life throws at you.

 

SOS can be purchased from www.ineedsos.com

 

The Story Behind SOS Hydration

in SOS MAGAZINE/Uncategorized by

The Story Behind SOS Hydration

 

Who are they?

 

Brothers James (British Champ) & Tom Mayo (sub 4 miler), who are two ex International Middle Distance Athletes & Blanca Mayo (James wife) a Medical Doctor.

SOS Founders 

 

The Background:

 

Back in the 2004 Tom was in the shape of his life and was racing in Spain where he got severely dehydrated due to the unusually hot temperatures. On his return to UK, Tom was consoled by older brother James, who himself was a former international athlete, they discussed the ‘Why’s, What’s & If’s’ after Toms experience and missing out on a huge opportunity to PB and Olympic selection because of his poor preparation and the lack of a decent retail sports hydration product on the market.

 

It was here that the brothers James and Tom vowed to embark on a quest for a suitable alternative to the mass market surgery sports drinks and maybe they just could create the “best in class” product for sports hydration? They began by comparing notes, researching and mixing different products together, from the classic flat coke and salt mix used by athletes in the past, to mixing one part orange juice to four parts water, however no one seemed to offer a solution that could help the active sports person or solve high level performance hydration requirements.

 

Some years later in 2011, by pure chance a seminal moment happened in Tom’s living room, whilst Tom, James and Blanca were chatting about the quest to find a better hydration solution for athletes, James turned on the news, which was reporting the drought in East Africa and the serious critical issue of dehydration in children. It was this ‘Eureka’ moment that Blanca turned there attention to medical products that treat extreme dehydration used in disaster zones and ER departments – the first drop of SOS was born.

 

 

The Problem:

 

  • Dehydration can lead to a 25% loss in performance, which is BIG.

 

  • Sports drinks don’t replace the correct amount of electrolytes in the body

 

  • We (and most runners) used to make our own concoctions because the sports sugar based drinks just don’t work.

 

  • The so-called sports drink companies have formulas that are almost 40 years old.

 

  • The sports drink companies sponsor ‘Teams’ and ‘self fulfilling research’ at universities they pay, which endorse the ‘sugar is needed’ myth to please the general population’s artificial sweet taste buds – in the meantime contributing to kids obesity and poor dental health and also ignoring the fact that their sponsored elite athletes don’t use their products (We know. You should see our SOS delivery address book).

 

We can honestly say we never met ANY athlete on the world circuit in our day that said ‘WOW’ that sports drink helped me perform today. Because they DON’T till NOW!

 

The Solution:

 

So with real medical credentials of treating dehydration and first hand world-class athletic experience, SOS have a team who could test and medically trial the best formulas to solve dehydration once and for all.

 

(Doctor) Blanca set to work creating a hydration formula specifically designed for active lifestyles based off the best medical science and the best sporting research into sweat loss using Tom, James and friends as the product testers.

 

The Result:

 

  • A hydration drink mix as effective as an IV drip.
  • A hydration drink that replaces the correct amount of electrolytes and not a token gesture.
  • A hydration drink that is Low in calories / Low in sugar product.
  • A hydration drink that’s focus is purely and only electrolyte replacement for the athlete.
  • Oh, and it’s also good for active lifestyles and the odd celebratory next day hangover too (yes, we know, we tested it, it works).
Those were the days ...
Those were the days …

 

The Wish:

 

If dehydration can lead to a 25% loss in performance what could we have achieved had we had SOS back then?

 

Check out the rest of the story of SOS here:

www.ineedsos.com

 

Craft Beer, Running and SOS .. what a combo!

in SOS MAGAZINE/Uncategorized by

Three of the best weekend activities all combined into one.

SOS Hydration is excited to announce that we will be continuing our sponsorship of the 2016 Rocky Mountain Brew Run’s (RMBR).

RMBR

The RMBR series is a running tour of some of the best microbreweries across Colorado, a state that produces almost 2 million barrels of craft beer per year, the 3rd most in the United States!

 

The 7-event series begins April 30th (just as it should be warming up!) at Oskar Blues Brewery in Longmont. Each event kicks off with an informal 5k; run, walk, skip, jump… whatever you feel like doing to get your weekend started off the right way in the Colorado sunshine!

 

Following the 5k each participant receives a well-earned SOS, a microbrew and a signature pint glass before the real fun and festivities begin: the Beer Olympics, a series of fun challenges that of course involve the best beer on offer.

 

To make the day complete, select breweries will have food-trucks on site with gourmet twists on classic meals and music to make sure there is something for everyone!

 

This year RMBR have opened applications for “Team Brew”, an exclusive group of 20 ambassadors that earn free beer, entries and merchandise for volunteering at a couple of events and spreading the good word of beer and running! Submit now as entries close soon. Link here

Team Brew

Check out the RMBR website: www.rockymountainbrewruns.com

 

 

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