Slower response times, poor coordination, lack of focus, concentration and problem solving skills. Not helpful during a grueling Off-Road race in the heat. Even mild dehydration can have immediate cognitive decline. Here are some tips to keep you sharp during your race:
Start Now. Don't wait until race day to drink up. Start extra hydration at least one week before the race. Everyone needs different amounts of water but a good way to gauge that you are getting enough is that your first pee of the morning is pale yellow - almost clear. Yellow or darker and strong smelling means you you may be dehydrated.
Limit caffeine and alcohol. These drinks will contribute to dehydration.
Replace electrolytes - Water alone is not enough to keep you hydrated when you are sweating. The more you sweat without replacing electrolytes, the faster you will get dehydrated.
Don't over hydrate. Drinking too much water can wash away electrolytes and minerals crucial for keeping your body operating efficiently. Take small, frequent sips and add an electrolyte mix to your water. For the ultimate race hydration solution, check out the FluidLogic system. It alerts you to take a small, dosed squirt of water into your mouth at a press of a button at timed increments. If a Fluid Logic system isn't in the budget, our DIY Hydration kit and Camelbak Unbottle will help keep hydration at your lips for small frequent sips of water rather than chugging 20 oz at each pit.