Danni's headline numbers
Carbohydrate is the main fuel you burn when racing. Failing to fuel properly is a leading cause of underperformance in longer races.
Danni has been working hard on dialling in her nutrition strategy during the 2023 season, and has now got a great pre-race carb loading routine which finishes with some rice and honey for dinner and race-day breakfast. During the race, Danni got the majority of her fuel via energy drink mixes, as these were easier to consume on rough terrain than having to open individual packets of fuel. After a crash in the first quarter of the race, Danni spent longer on the course than expected, which reduced her hourly carb intake. However, she was still happy to average significantly more than she would have consumed during races just one year prior, and will continue to train her gut to push towards 90g per hour in the coming season.
Taking on board an appropriate amount of fluid and sodium is essential to maintaining blood volume and supporting the cardiovascular effort needed to perform on race day.
Whilst the absolute amount of sodium and fluid consumed per hour is important, it’s critical to consider these in relation to each other. This is known as 'relative sodium concentration' and it’s expressed in milligrams per litre (mg/L). How much sodium you’re taking in per litre of fluid is more important than the absolute amount taken in per hour.
Sweat sodium concentration (mg/L) is largely genetically determined and remains relatively stable. Knowing how salty your sweat is enables you to replace a good proportion of your sweat losses, which can range from 200-2,000mg/L.
Whilst Danni’s losses are on the low side, getting her hydration strategy right is still crucial when it’s hot and/or humid as her higher sweat rate in these conditions can result in significant net losses over the duration of a race.Learn more
Despite the acute fluid retention associated with preloading, a combination of the diuretic effect of coffee, race-day nerves and additional plain water meant Danni still needed to offload some fluid before the race started. With a self-proclaimed average sweat rate, Danni’s modest fluid replacement was sufficient on this occasion. Danni knows that when targeting longer, hotter events, in the 2024 season, her electrolyte intake needs to be increased to avoid any negative side effects. An easy change could be to increase the proportion of PF Carb and Electrolyte Drink Mix compared to PF Carb Only Drink Mix, especially during technical races where Electrolyte Capsules may be difficult to take due to the rough terrain.
Beyond the Three Levers of Performance (carb, sodium and fluid), caffeine is one of only a few substances that is proven to improve performance for most endurance athletes as it can help stave off mental and physical fatigue.
Danni’s PF 30 Caffeine Gels provided enough of the ergogenic substance to sit her within the recommended ranges during this event. The additional caffeine which would still have been circulating in her blood from her morning coffees will have pushed this level even further, ensuring she had lower perceived exertion and increased focus during the race.
How Danni hit her numbers
Here's everything that Danni ate and drank on the day...
Danni's weapons of choice
Danni's full stats
There is some confidence in the quantities and brands of products consumed but the data may lack specifics (e.g. volumes specific flavours). A high number of estimations have been made and the room for error is moderate-high. There may also be the possibility that some intake has been grossly over- or under-estimated.