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Training tips for the Phuket Triathlon – fuel for your body

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET: Completing a successful triathlon is not just about swimming, biking and running.

You need to fuel your body with the right energy sources and ensure you are properly hydrated.

Use the days before the race to load up on fuel.

Carbohydrates deliver the most energy. Make a shift in your diet toward this kind of food. Good sources of carbohydrate include pasta, potatoes, rice, fruit and sports drinks. To store the carbohydrates as glycogen in your body you need to drink a lot of water too. One gram of carbohydrates binds 2.7 grams water.

Be mentally prepared to add a kilo or more to your normal weight. You will need it during your race. Do not drink water by itself as it may flush out your electrolytes. It’s important to deliver the water to your body cells. If you drink too much water you will feel bloated and you may experience edema unnecessarily. That’s why its a good idea to add sports drinks, mineral tablets or table salt to your diet.

On race day, follow the same principles.

Consume a mix of energy sources, electrolyte drinks and a reasonable amount of water. Water intake should not exceed 50 per cent of your fluid intake. You can always bet on high temperatures in Phuket, so you’ll need to drink around 1-1.5 liters of fluids per hour under race conditions.

Solid food is essential for longer races too. Consume bananas, energy bars or gels on the race course, but do not overload. I recommend about 300 to 400 calories per hour.

My personal advice to you is to also consume a small amount of fat and protein on race day. This helps to stabilize your blood sugar.

The Laguna Phuket Triathlon and 70.3 Ironman are well organized races. They have plenty of aid stations on the bike and run course with everything you will need on race day. It’s like an all-you-can-eat buffet!

Jürgen Zack, Director of Triathlon Training at Thanyapura Sports and Leisure Club, will offers training tips and advice for Phuket Gazette readers who intend to participate in these most demanding of events.

— Jurgen Zack


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