“The success is always the result of an intense preparation and a proper nutrition” – Vlad Dascalu, member of Dinamo BikeXpert Racing Team
You are ready to follow a tight training program so as to have an amazing carefree race at CARPATHIAN MTB EPIC! During the preparation phase, you have to pay attention and evaluate your daily energy and nutrient requirements in order to guarantee an optimum athletic performance and health. These exact requirements vary extensively from athlete to athlete, of course. Even in the case of same individual, there could be great differences, depending on the conditioning, intensity of the race and atmospheric conditions.
The preparation for the two different races, the 4-day EPIC and the 1-day Challenge, will require not only a different physical conditioning but also a more detailed nutritional plan. However the same general recommendations apply! You should consider two major points in the preparation phase: hydration status and glycogen stores.
Hydration, a key element
One easy way of controlling hydration status is by the color of the urine. Yeah, sounds awkward but… actually it’s not! If you will make a regular training with a pro and under a doctor’s supervision you will know this is a key factor to monitor. By having a transparent “like water”… urine, you can be assured that you are well hydrated. On the other hand, if your urine has a yellow or brownish color, it`s a clear indicator that you must re-hydrate and do it fast.
The hydration should be a priority day by day and during your training weeks. Also, be careful to have a good hydration level especially in the hours or days before the race! Do not treat this matter easily! If you try to re-hydrate in the last hour it will result in hyperurinemia, which basically means that you will urinate frequently… This is something that will most definitely diminish your performance! Therefore, you must drink water frequently until 1 hour prior to the beginning of the race.
Glycogen stores, keep them under control!
The other major point in the preparation phase refers to the glycogen stores. It is imperative for virtually every sport to have well replenished muscle and liver glycogen stores. This characteristic becomes even more important in sports of greater duration, like cycling! That’s because during intense endurance exercises about 95% of the glycogen comes from carbohydrates. That being said, if you maximize the stored carbohydrates in the days preceding the race you can increase the time to fatigue and performance considerably. To do this, one should consume about 70% of total calories from carbohydrates, preferably complex carbohydrates, like rice, potatoes, sweet potatoes and other starchy vegetables and cereals about one week before the race. So, make a plan on paper and follow it carefully!
Managing smartly hydration and glycogen stores is practically half of the battle to ensure a proper nutrition for the race. The other half will be to optimize the pre-race and intra-race nutrition.
Stay tuned to find more about the recommendations of GoldNutrition specialists!