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In Need of Practical On-Bike Hydration Advice

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In Need of Practical On-Bike Hydration Advice

Old 07-11-22, 03:04 PM
  #26  
BJack312
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One thing that I have done is set a drink reminder on my wahoo, every 20 minutes it will give me a prompt. I've had a bad habit of letting the hydration slip in the past, and the reminder has really helped.

I'm a big guy (a bit over 100kg), and will drink about 500ml every 20 minutes when it gets really warm. I use Tailwind in my bottles, which has a good amount of electrolytes, and will carry a bottle of SIS/Nuun tabs in my bag, just in case.

I think that the biggest thing is to not get behind on your hydration, because it's hard to get caught back up.
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Old 07-11-22, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
I understand. 2 tricks is to locate the bike in the window so you can keep an eye on it, also loop your helmet thru the spokes on the front wheel and thru the downtube, this prevents somebody from rolling away with your bike unless they dis-attach the helmet, which takes time.
I do the same, except that I loop the helmet only through the front wheel. That renders the bike just as unrideable.
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Old 07-13-22, 11:25 AM
  #28  
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Was thinking about getting a camel pack, basically just a backpack with a sealed water pouch built in with a straw that pops out. Figure those work out pretty good in my state where it stays over 100 for about 8 months of the year.
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Old 07-24-22, 04:42 PM
  #29  
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Fellow Houston rider here. I use Skratch in the first bottle and Nuun in the second, and then I carry Nuun in the jersey pockets for all rides now. I normally plan a route that will take me past public places to get water. My favorites so far have been one at TC Jester and Ella and the other is in Memorial Park, though my longest rides are 35 miles right now. I will go through 1 bottle/24 ounces in 10 miles and one thing that has helped a lot has been the reminder on the Garmin to tell me to drink.
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Old 07-25-22, 12:04 PM
  #30  
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it's not just fluids you need to intake. You should be ideally eating 150-250 cals per hour for these rides longer than 2 hours. Fluids is only like 20 of those cals.

Nuun tablets are cheapish and easy to bring along. Also can get used to gas station foods/drinks. A lil more sugary but still work when on 2+ hour rides.

In another empty tube of Nuuns or zip lock, I put a bunch of Gu Roctane electrolyte capsules. These are clinch on super hot days, 2 per hour is my baseline. Start them early into the ride as it does nothing if your already near the point of cramping.
https://guenergy.com/collections/cap...olyte-capsules
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Old 07-25-22, 03:57 PM
  #31  
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Thank you jsigone. I hadn't even considered that,
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Old 07-28-22, 05:39 PM
  #32  
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Everybody is different, and while there are some things that work well for almost everybody (stay hydrated!), beyond the basics we may react differently. I have found that electrolyte supplementation works for me, and my favorite brands are Ultima and Keppi. Keppi is stronger than most, so I don't usually use the full dose - which makes it last longer and more cost effective.
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Old 07-29-22, 05:04 PM
  #33  
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I sweat like the outside of a cold can in Miami after the afternoon storms. Like a politician asked to explain their expense report, I sweat like a swamp cooler in louisianna... i sweat a lot. Which means i lose a lot of electrolytes. I have found two (three) things really help.

1. During and shortly after exercise I like salt stick chewables. (https://www.amazon.com/SaltStick-FAS.../dp/B07288TQWB)
2. If i mess up and fall way behind on electrolytes, but really need to put them back quick, ORS. (https://www.amazon.com/TRIORAL-Rehyd...dp/B00OG8G9U2/) these do not taste great.

Those pretty much handle anything.

and #3, which is kinda not an option for most people... run an IV line and pump a banana bag into yourself.
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Old 08-09-22, 11:44 AM
  #34  
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I've fought severe dehydration my whole life, I find a 50/50 mixture of Gatorade and water in one of my water bottles to be good enough. After ride/intense exercise I found pickle juice to be the best cure for cramps.
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Old 08-15-22, 04:32 PM
  #35  
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There is a lot of mixed research into why some folks cramp and others do not. Most research has found that dehydration is not a direct cause of cramping. It seems that genetic responses to dehydration and low glycogen vary and some will ball up on the side of the road unable to stand and others can go along w/o any trouble. I've been fighting the same issues, 20 years racing, 10 years touring, trying different ways to push back.

#1: do not exceed your lactic threshold for any amount of time on long rides in the heat. Keeping your glycogen stable is key.
#2: do not violate #1. even if your buddies drop you.
#3: The expensive products that are liquid from the store are unnecessary. They contain a small quantity of typical electrolytes + sucrose. Mix Nuun tablets or similar (with elevated potassium, sodium and magnesium) along with table sugar and salt. 1 tsp of sugar is 25 cal, so do some math and figure out how you want to hit at least 40g / 155cal of carbs per hour. mix the salt to a point that you can still drink the mix. I mix one really strong bottle of this and other bottle(s) will be straight water. Also drink your liquids until they are gone. It is worse to skimp and not drink enough than to drink it all and run out at the end of the ride..
#4: consume solid food. Part of your 40g per hour minimum...this can be dates or cookies or clif bars or whatever. it will slow the digestion a little, flatten out the insulin / glycogen hit. you only have so much glycogen you can draw on. If you slow the process down, you'll get more time under the same conditions.
#5: stay cool with water on the clothing and head. evaporative cooling will help your internal temps stay down. you will need to replace water on long rides and this will make it more necessary, so plan for this with stops where you can.

good luck!
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Old 08-16-22, 06:03 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by LethargicRush View Post
Was thinking about getting a camel pack, basically just a backpack with a sealed water pouch built in with a straw that pops out. Figure those work out pretty good in my state where it stays over 100 for about 8 months of the year.
There are some nice no name brand ones on Amazon. I just purchased one with a 3 liter bladder. I learned quickly that 3 liters is too much to carry on a ride. I fill it half way now and carry a water bottle with electrolytes on the really hot days.
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Old 08-17-22, 10:50 AM
  #37  
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>90F minimum of one 20 ounce bottle an hour plain water has worked for me for rides up to 3 hours. Longer rides require more. I drink pickle juice almost daily. I consume added salt since I have found that it doesn't effect my blood pressure.
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Old 08-17-22, 11:41 AM
  #38  
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The sport drink I have been using forever is Vitalyte. Comes as a powder. I add 2 scoops to each water bottle. Stash a bottle or two's worth in my saddle bag if it's hot.

The stuff was formulated by biochemist/Olympic caliber marathoner who failed to qualify for the '68 Mexico City Olympics when he got sick on Gatorade. Decided to use his training to create better. Came up with something I found worked really well when I raced and put on big miles in New England, often in hot humid weather. Almost 50 years later, it still works very well for me. I like that it is clean tasting, goes down really easily, in fact more so than plain water for me. I can down more than half a WB at a time. (Important - I do a lot of my riding on fix gears. In hills, opportunities to drink don't happen often.

The stuff is cheap, $20 for ~40 WBs. Company is a pleasure to deal with and their website good. Low key, no advertising and known mostly by word of mouth so it doesn't appear on store shelves unless employees insist. (REI has it about half the time and that is mostly because people ask or employees insist. Salespeople don't come by.) It went by a bunch of names over the decades but the formulation never changed. (ERG, Gookinade (Carl? Gookin - the founder), Hydrolyte ...) There was a 15 or so year period when it disappeared completely from my sources. Figured they'd gone out of business. Wrong. They simply stopped trying to compete in the sport market with the new and heavily promoted brands and focused on their other mission. That same drink was a Godsend in the third world for those suffering dysentery, cholera and the like. And that need was never going away.
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Old 08-17-22, 12:01 PM
  #39  
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An easy way to carry a third WB - under the DT. A popular trick with tourists and fuel bottles. I've started adding cages there on most of my bikes. All that get ridden distances on hot days. (Never been a fan of stuff on my back. Nor hard to clean containers that don't take kindly to the Vitalyte in my post above. Post hot, hard rides, that important rinse isn't happening. No, it's shower and food.

Best part of under the DT bottles - the weight doesn't cost you because we all know only the weight you see and are aware of matters. Between the DT and the bottle above, you cannot see it. And its weight is so close to the road and the line you rock the bike around when you climb out of the saddle that you cannot feel it. Cannot see it, cannot feel it, it stops existing between your ears and doesn't slow yo down! (Well mid-ride, you swap bottles at a stop and get reminded. But now, that's an empty and light bottle!

I have photo proof. Taken at the 2014 Cycle Oregon on the 14% grade portion of a two mile hill. Riding my fix gear. I thought the "big one" was a hill later so I didn't stop and flip the wheel to go from my 17 tooth flat ground cog to the 23. Now, I wasn't carrying a WB under the DT but sandals in that red bag so I could get my feet that were killing me out of my shoes at the rest stops. If there ever was a place where excess weight would be the "over-the-edge" killer, that hill was it.



But being out of sight, it didn't slow me down! Made it up without stopping and without anyone passing me. Clear proof that it is a way to carry extra drink ant no cost.

Last edited by 79pmooney; 08-17-22 at 12:05 PM. Reason: typos!
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Old 08-17-22, 12:25 PM
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Galveston County Rider.
Go with Four Bottles.
9,000 average yearly miles.
Gatorade Perform 02
Never Cramped on a ride.
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Old 08-22-22, 08:20 AM
  #41  
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Pay more attention to your body while riding and don't overdo it again
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Old 08-23-22, 06:22 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
An easy way to carry a third WB - under the DT. A popular trick with tourists and fuel bottles. I've started adding cages there on most of my bikes. All that get ridden distances on hot days. (Never been a fan of stuff on my back. Nor hard to clean containers that don't take kindly to the Vitalyte in my post above. Post hot, hard rides, that important rinse isn't happening. No, it's shower and food.

Best part of under the DT bottles - the weight doesn't cost you because we all know only the weight you see and are aware of matters. Between the DT and the bottle above, you cannot see it. And its weight is so close to the road and the line you rock the bike around when you climb out of the saddle that you cannot feel it. Cannot see it, cannot feel it, it stops existing between your ears and doesn't slow yo down! (Well mid-ride, you swap bottles at a stop and get reminded. But now, that's an empty and light bottle!

I have photo proof. Taken at the 2014 Cycle Oregon on the 14% grade portion of a two mile hill. Riding my fix gear. I thought the "big one" was a hill later so I didn't stop and flip the wheel to go from my 17 tooth flat ground cog to the 23. Now, I wasn't carrying a WB under the DT but sandals in that red bag so I could get my feet that were killing me out of my shoes at the rest stops. If there ever was a place where excess weight would be the "over-the-edge" killer, that hill was it.



But being out of sight, it didn't slow me down! Made it up without stopping and without anyone passing me. Clear proof that it is a way to carry extra drink ant no cost.
You carry a chain whip tool? I guess you are prepared for anything.
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Old 08-23-22, 09:28 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by boozergut View Post
You carry a chain whip tool? I guess you are prepared for anything.
Fix gear and 61 yo rider. If I want to change gears I can flip the wheel for a low gear but if I want to ride down in a big gear, I've got to unscrew a cog. (You can just see the 12 tooth cog strapped to the other side of my tool bag.) Tool weighs 22 ounces. My crotch loves it. I get to ride 45 mph descents at 160 RPM, not 225. Big, big difference!

If you love riding fix gear, love riding serious hills and mountains and happen to age, you have to adopt or quit what you love. I had that bike built so I wouldn't have to quit. In fact, it opened up "doors" to mountains I wouldn't have dreamed of riding fixed when I was 25 years younger. (Mt Ashland. Very similar to Mt Diablo, just far higher and longer. I rode Mt Diablo fixed 36 years ago on a 42-17. That descent and the abuse to my crotch is still burned in my memory. I did Mt Ashland on this bike as day 3 of 4 consecutive 5000' days and enjoyed it.
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Old 08-30-22, 01:33 PM
  #44  
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I'm not going to say what will work for anyone else, but I definitely learned my lesson near the end of a metric century ride in hot weather, just 4 miles from home, when I started having really bad leg cramps and couldn't continue. I had been drinking water all along the way, but apparently I had washed most of the electrolytes out of my system. I could tell, too, because my face was crusted with salt left from the sweat evaporating. I learned from that ride to always take some electrolytes with me, either Gatorade powder or some other electrolyte packs I can mix in one of my water bottles. And it's helped a lot. Now, on long rides, I take two water bottles and my hydration pack worn on my back. I'll fill all three with water, and in one of the water bottles I'll put in some Gatorade or electrolyte powder and resupply it as needed. The other water bottle and my hydration pack are just plain ice water. I'll alternate drinks of Gatorade/electolytes and plain water.
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Old 08-30-22, 04:20 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
I understand. 2 tricks is to locate the bike in the window so you can keep an eye on it, also loop your helmet thru the spokes on the front wheel and thru the downtube, this prevents somebody from rolling away with your bike unless they dis-attach the helmet, which takes time.
I used to shift into the top gear to make it hard to ride away with the bike. But I mostly forgot to shift back before getting on the bike. Not good.

Target has a cheap, lightweight coil lock. Mine weighs 115 grams. I carry it via the strap that supports my saddle bag, so it's hanging below the bag. Secure and out of the way.
It's great for those quick runs into the convenience store. It's just to keep someone from grabbing the bike on the spur of the moment. And I do like to have the bike where I can see it through the front windows.

$9 Target coil lock
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Old 08-30-22, 04:24 PM
  #46  
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Some of the rider reports here are about how they used to have cramps, but don't anymore. Is it the drink mix, or just better fitness after riding for years? We need a double blind study!
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Old 09-02-22, 06:05 PM
  #47  
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My doubly-blind anecdotal non-scientific real world testing indicates that I am much more likely to cramp and feel like crap after long rides when I don't use electrolytes. Ultima works well for me. I find that most electrolyte mixes contain either 1. too high a ratio of salt 2. not enough potassium 3. little or no magnesium or 4. some combination of 1-3.

I have found the best results personally when the potassium to salt (sodium) ratio is at least 2-3 to 1, and magnesium of at least 45 mg per serving. Again, everyone is different, so it may pay to experiment as well as research the subject at CREDIBLE sources. You can find hundreds or thousands of electrolyte "answers" on the internet, but it's doubtful that more than 25% to 30% really know what they're talking about. Manufacturers, sellers and 'associates' are the least credible sources, except for the true whackos - of which there are more than a few!

Originally Posted by rm -rf View Post
Some of the rider reports here are about how they used to have cramps, but don't anymore. Is it the drink mix, or just better fitness after riding for years? We need a double blind study!
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Old 09-02-22, 09:51 PM
  #48  
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I used to get bad leg cramps during or after club rides, 20-40 miles in length.

Then I started doing randonneuring, rides of 120 miles or longer. The first time I cramped 40 miles into a 400km (260 mile) ride, I thought I was going to DNF but didn't have a ride back to the start so I carried on albeit slower. 10 miles later I was just fine, cruising at normal speed. No pickle juice, bananas, electrolyte tables, biting my lower lip, etc. Shocked me, to be honest. I finished just fine.

My strategy now is, if a muscle starts feeling crampy, I change my posture or pedal stroke a bit, back off a bit, and carry on. I seem particularly susceptible to inner thigh cramping on climby routes. For those I pull my knees closer together, and that seems to help. If it goes into a full-on cramp, I say "shut the **** up, I'm not doing a damn thing for you" and carry on, with whatever weird body position reduces the pain. That seems to do the trick, and after it's gone I might be good for another 100 miles. True story.

I have no explanation, but I don't really care.
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Old 09-02-22, 09:55 PM
  #49  
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Those evening or middle of the night calf or quad cramps are brutal. I get out of bed and stretch them out.

A google search of cramping, with a fair amount of editing out the crap, will uncover medical articles that say, essentially, the cause of cramping is unknown. Weird.
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Old 09-02-22, 10:25 PM
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Sometimes the leg cramps may not be related to hydration. Also it is almost impossible to determine what electrolytes you are in need of. Extreme leg cramping could also be from loss of Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium and of course Plain Salt. Ya just don't know which ones. So be careful with those electrolyte replacement drinks or tabs. 50:50 Orange juice with water can still give you about 6 MilEquivalents of Potassium, and some orange juices are also fortified with Calcium. In my opinion that is much better then Gatoraid.

Also don't forget Hylands Leg Cramp formula. Greater then 30% of the general population will get relief from Cinchona Bark (Found in Hylands) which can supply Quinine. Quinine helps with Ca+, K+ and Mg+ transport at the cellular level in your muscles. But do remember that people on cardiac medications should check with their Doctor before its use.

I am a lucky one of those 30%. When I get a Charlie Horse I immediately chew two of the caplets and get relief within 5 minuets.
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