Monday, June 14, 2010

Salty Blood?

Or lack there of. I actually really like my dietitian ever since we got past the "Ultrarunning is normal" argument :) Or something like that. I like going in and talking about race nutrition, because it is helping me a lot. However, I am astounded at learning how much sodium my body requires especially when it is hot. I did about 1500mg in the hottest part of the day at Squaw Peak, and still managed to gain 9 lbs of water weight. Elena is telling me this is because I am still hyponatremic, and with the symptoms post race I was having she is right. They were much better than previous races, but I am looking having to increase my intake to 2000mg per hour in hot weather, and replace 2000-5000mg of sodium within an hour of the race, plus continue taking scaps at high amounts for 3 days post race, so that my body is not stressed out by lack of fluid. She is also requesting that I get an electrolyte panel after an event that I feel wiped out at. I am going in to see Dr. Joy in two weeks, I am learning a lot that I never knew about sports and nutrition, and that it really does impact performance!

Last year at Bear and Katcina Mosa, not only did I not intake enough water (probably half of my hourly needs because I believed misinformation that the body only can absorb 24oz per hour) I also was probably getting 1/4-1/3 of my hourly sodium needs. This almost landed me in the ER 3-4 hours after Bear, when I woke up so hyponatremic that I was panicky, dizzy, nauseated, disoriented, and delusional. My husband having me gulp down over 32 oz of Gatorade in one sitting is what helped.

I am learning a lot of vital information that can mean the difference between a good race, a finish, and a DNF, or even a medical emergency. It has been well worth investing into good nutritional counseling with someone who really knows what they are talking about!


  1. That is very interesting. I’m always battling with the right amounts of intake…never enough. I seem to be a slow learner with this as well. I’ve had more than enough bad experiences, but still make mistakes.

  2. And thank you for passing that info along to us. I would love to invest in a sports nutritionist someday. Right now I am just doing easy races and am very slow, so probably am doing OK. I think. ;-) I read every blog you post and so appreciate you sharing your experiences and expertise. You are awesome!