Friday, March 9, 2018

KSI Results Part 2

Aside from the physical testing I went through at The Korey Stringer Institute, we also thought it would be beneficial to do a Sodium Balance Test, which consisted of a 24 hour diet log and urine collection. The purpose of the this test was to calculate my total sodium loss throughout an entire day, including what I lose through sweat and urine, in order to make sure I replace what I lose through my diet. We wouldn't be able to get to the bottom of my nutrition and hydration issues on race day without looking at the overall picture of how I'm fueling myself on a regular basis.

Here is the total sodium balance from the 24 hour period (which included both of the Sweat & Electrolyte Tests):

BalanceSodium (mg)Potassium (mg)
Intake 34282161

If we isolate race day, it's clear that with my previous nutrition and hydration plan for Cabo, I had a pretty significant electrolyte deficit, relative to what I was losing. But if we look at the whole picture, and take into account that I'm at a deficit already, due to my daily intake vs. loss, my race day fueling becomes negligible.

Ok, so now that my brain is at it's capacity with data, where do we go from here? The first step has to be correcting my daily electrolyte intake, so that I'm not starting out on race day already at a deficit. I have exactly what I lose right here, so this is what I'm aiming to take in:

24 Hour UrineTotal Loss (mg)

The next step is addressing my exercise electrolyte deficit and finding the right sports nutrition products that a) provide adequate sodium, potassium, and chloride; b) provide the right proportions of each electrolyte since I seem to lose a greater proportion of potassium; c) make sure that the concentration of the sports nutrition product has an appropriately low osmolality in order to prevent gastric distress.

Taking the numbers from the Sweat & Electrolyte Tests (in the previous post), in Kona-like conditions, I need to aim to take in between 70-90% of fluid loss and replace my electrolyte losses accordingly:

  • Bike: 1L of fluid per hour, 682mg of sodium, 207mg of potassium, 920mg of chloride
  • Run: 1L of fluid per hour, 1030mg of sodium, 364mg of potassium, 1384mg of chloride

The next ironman on my schedule is IM Texas on April 28th. Since I'll be training in mild Colorado weather leading up to Texas, it's going to be important that I get myself heat acclimated. In a non heat acclimated state during testing, my body kicked ass at dissipating heat on the bike. My core temperature got up to about 101.5 at the highest, and then just hovered around that number for the 2 hour ride. However, on the run, my temperature response looked like this:

Aka- not good.

In an ideal world, I would travel to Hawaii for 10-14 days leading up to Texas (actually in an ideal world, I would just move to Hawaii). This is the amount of time it takes for your body to absorb 90% of the effects of heat acclimatization, some of which are: reduced core temperature at rest, increased plasma volume at rest, and more efficient sweating- which is a higher rate of fluid loss combined with higher retention of electrolytes.

The protocol for heat acclimatization if you're in a cool climate, is to simulate your own little indoor Kona, which in my case will be my guest room, and exercise for an hour once every 3-4 days (depending on how quickly you want to acclimate) in those conditions. So I'll be turning up the heat in my house, adding a space heater, a humidifier, and a few extra layers.

Fortunately for me, my brother lives in Florida and has already qualified for Kona this year, so I'm going to go stay with him to do a mini training camp about a month out from Texas. Since I can only go for a week, I'll be doing my indoor Kona sessions once every 3 days leading up to that trip. And then to maintain heat adaption, you only need to do those 1 hour heat sessions once every 5 days, so that's what I'll do leading up until Texas.

So now I have a plan, and just in time since IM Texas is right around the corner! I've always worked really hard at this sport but I've never put this much energy into the science of it. I'm a 5 foot tall, 120lb. meathead and I've always preferred to just muscle my way through things. It took a near death experience at IM Los Cabos to knock some sense into me, but now I have all of this information at my fingertips PLUS my work ethic, so I'm excited to see what I can do next month!

1 comment:

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