Hydration and Stomach Cramps

Hydration and Stomach Cramps

Post by John A. Hadd » Sat, 10 May 1997 04:00:00


I am a relative newcomer to triathlon (Wildflower was my third tri,
and first Olympic distance), so I'm hoping that someone out there
might have some insights for me!

During training, I usually don't drink a tremendous amount of water.
But at Wildflower, people told me that you really need to drink a lot
to keep yourself well-hydrated on such a hot course.  So, I tried to
get a cup of water or Gatorade at just about every aid station on the
bike.  But by the end of the bike, I had a stomach cramp, which
continued through the first half of the run.  (It disappeared as I
stopped drinking and tried to breathe more deeply.)

I am fairly certain that the stomach cramp was due to the large amounts
of fluid I consumed (that's one reason why I tend not to drink much
until after the workout is over) so I assumed that I had overshot the
mark in terms of keeping myself hydrated.  But one of my teammates
pointed out that one way to gauge how well-hydrated you are is how
soon you need to urinate after the race.  Despite the large volumes of
fluids consumed both during and after the race, I didn't need to visit
the portapotty for over four hours after I finished, which probably
indicates that I was dehydrated.

Has anyone out there had similar problems?  Any suggestions for
staying hydrated while avoiding stomach cramps?

Thanks to all of the volunteers at Wildflower who made it the great
race it was!

John Haddon

 
 
 

Hydration and Stomach Cramps

Post by Theo M Karal » Sat, 10 May 1997 04:00:00



Quote:
>I am a relative newcomer to triathlon (Wildflower was my third tri,
>and first Olympic distance), so I'm hoping that someone out there
>might have some insights for me!
>During training, I usually don't drink a tremendous amount of water.
>But at Wildflower, people told me that you really need to drink a lot
>to keep yourself well-hydrated on such a hot course.  So, I tried to
>get a cup of water or Gatorade at just about every aid station on the
>bike.  But by the end of the bike, I had a stomach cramp, which
>continued through the first half of the run.  (It disappeared as I
>stopped drinking and tried to breathe more deeply.)
>I am fairly certain that the stomach cramp was due to the large
amounts
>of fluid I consumed (that's one reason why I tend not to drink much
>until after the workout is over) so I assumed that I had overshot the
>mark in terms of keeping myself hydrated.  But one of my teammates
>pointed out that one way to gauge how well-hydrated you are is how
>soon you need to urinate after the race.  Despite the large volumes of
>fluids consumed both during and after the race, I didn't need to visit
>the portapotty for over four hours after I finished, which probably
>indicates that I was dehydrated.
>Has anyone out there had similar problems?  Any suggestions for
>staying hydrated while avoiding stomach cramps?
>Thanks to all of the volunteers at Wildflower who made it the great
race it was!
>John Haddon


  what did you eat??????????????
thetribe
bradenton,florida

 
 
 

Hydration and Stomach Cramps

Post by LeePubli » Sun, 11 May 1997 04:00:00

You write:

<snip>

<<During training, I usually don't drink a tremendous amount of water.
But at Wildflower, people told me that you really need to drink a lot
to keep yourself well-hydrated on such a hot course.  So, I tried to
get a cup of water or Gatorade at just about every aid station on the
bike.  But by the end of the bike, I had a stomach cramp, which
continued through the first half of the run.  (It disappeared as I
stopped drinking and tried to breathe more deeply.)>>

In my experience, its as much what you drink as how much you drink that
can cause--or alleviate--problems.  I find that too much Gatorade gives me
a cramp.  When I just drink water, and perhaps only a little Gatorade or
Gatorade watered down, and get my nutrition from bars or gels, then I
don't seem to come up with a bad stomach when racing.

Did you train drinking as much Gatorade as you consumed racing?

--Tri Hard (a.k.a. Lee Crumbaugh)

 
 
 

Hydration and Stomach Cramps

Post by Jeff Pearso » Sun, 11 May 1997 04:00:00



Quote:
> During training, I usually don't drink a tremendous amount of water.
> But at Wildflower, people told me that you really need to drink a lot
> to keep yourself well-hydrated on such a hot course.  

Wow. Someone else with the same experience! I don't think that I can solve
your problem, but I have some more interesting information.
Wildflower was my first "real" tri in around 6 years. I don't count that
tri-for-fun I did last year.

Quote:
>So, I tried to get a cup of water or Gatorade at just about every aid
station on the
> bike.  But by the end of the bike, I had a stomach cramp, which
> continued through the first half of the run.  (It disappeared as I
> stopped drinking and tried to breathe more deeply.)

I did the same thing. Drink, drink, drink. I took out around 60oz. of
Cytomax on the bike, and when that was gone, took another water bottle or
two. Went medium *** the bike, mostly just had fun riding. But by mile
1 in the run, severe abdominal pain. I walked off and on for another 7
miles or so. I took only 1 cup of water on the run. It just hurt too bad.
If someone had offered me .25 for my IMC Canada app, it would have been
gone! by mile 9 or so, things freed up a lot and I cruised to the finish.

Quote:
> I am fairly certain that the stomach cramp was due to the large amounts
> of fluid I consumed (that's one reason why I tend not to drink much
> until after the workout is over) so I assumed that I had overshot the
> mark in terms of keeping myself hydrated.  But one of my teammates
> pointed out that one way to gauge how well-hydrated you are is how
> soon you need to urinate after the race.  Despite the large volumes of
> fluids consumed both during and after the race, I didn't need to visit
> the portapotty for over four hours after I finished, which probably
> indicates that I was dehydrated.

Everyone has told me that I was dehydrated also. But it sure did feel like
a full belly to me! They said that your stomach stops processing if you get
dry, maybe the reason for the cramps. I know that everyone is different,
but how do you know? I didn't even feel hot *at all* on the bike. And I do
not sweat excessively. Also how do you account for running a half on 1 cup
of water and feeling really good at the end?

Quote:
> Has anyone out there had similar problems?  Any suggestions for
> staying hydrated while avoiding stomach cramps?

Did your stomach (abdomen) hurt in the days after the race?
 
 
 

Hydration and Stomach Cramps

Post by John A. Hadd » Mon, 12 May 1997 04:00:00

Thanks to those of you who have gotten back to me about this.

Quote:
>  what did you eat??????????????

I had some cereal and a sandwich a couple of hours before the race.
But that is comparable to what I eat immediately before a training run
or ride, so it seems unlikely that that was the problem.

Quote:
> Did your stomach (abdomen) hurt in the days after the race?

No.  In fact, even by the end of the run, the cramp had disappeared.

Quote:
> Did you train drinking as much Gatorade as you consumed racing?

No.  I never drink sports drink while training, actually.  It sounds
like this might be the problem.  One email reply I received told me to
"race as you train".  I guess that my body wasn't used to the large
amounts of water and Gatorade I was putting into it, and therefore had
a problem with it.  

So, it sounds like I need to drink more fluids in training, and either
include sports drink in my training, or avoid it during the race.

Thanks again!

John Haddon

 
 
 

Hydration and Stomach Cramps

Post by Stephen Hoar » Wed, 14 May 1997 04:00:00

John, consuming "mass quantities" takes practice just like all your other
events. I drank about 5 bottles on the ride and 2 cups of gatorade at
every stop on the run and felt great, but I practice with a full gut.
After a while your body gets use to this and you will also live by the
motto I sing "Gatorade is Life".

Good luck

Steve

 
 
 

Hydration and Stomach Cramps

Post by Iron Pe » Thu, 15 May 1997 04:00:00

John,

This was a problem until I've solved it diluting liquids. The term here is
gastric emptying. What happens is that if you consume too "thick" a liquid
like an energy drink or something, your stomach will not be able to absorb
the fluids. I had a problem when I was drinking Gatorade exclusively
during the race. After knocking my head on this matter for a year or so, I
found that diluting the Gatorade with water does the trick! For me, it's 1
part Gatorade to 3 parts water. Of course, you can be different, so try
experimenting the ratios of your favorite sports drink and see what
happens.

Iron Pete