Allan'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.
Allan took on a greater amount of carbohydrate than at Norseman one year prior to this attempt. This mainly came on the bike where he consumed over ~100g/h using primarily PF 90 Gels and PF 30 Chews. Although we’re seeing more athletes tolerate over 90g/h, Allan did experience some stomach discomfort coming out of T2. He mentioned this nausea had been a common occurrence in recent races of this length and intensity. Whilst most people can overcome this discomfort by training their gut further, Allan has undertaken years of gut training and his testing suggests he may actually benefit from decreasing this intake slightly as he may not be burning enough to require this extra fuel.
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.
Given Allan’s losses are High (1,228mg/L), nailing his hydration strategy remains important, even when it’s Mild.Learn more
Unlike other triathlon races, Allan was able to utilise a support crew to aid him throughout Norseman by passing him premixed bottles and soft flasks on the bike and run. Allan used knowledge from his Sweat Test and sweat rate data to adequately replace his sweat losses and avoid hydration-related issues. One unexpected quick increase in temperature at the end of the bike leg caught Allan off guard, but after getting ice, more water, Electrolyte Capsules and coke on board throughout the first half of the run, he felt much better again.
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.
Taking three caffeine tablets just prior to the race, two on the bike and then drinking coke on the run, Allan spread his intake out over the course of the race to keep his body topped up on caffeine throughout with the aim to increase his perceived energy levels. Using this quantity of tablets meant Allan pushed over the recommended levels which studies have shown to have no added benefit.
How Allan hit his numbers
Here's everything that Allan ate and drank on the day...
Allan's weapons of choice
Allan's full stats
There is good confidence in the accuracy of the data reported. An athlete feels that the numbers closely reflect what they consumed despite a couple of estimations which may carry some degree of error. The majority of what was consumed is recorded to a high level of specificity (most volumes are known through the use of bottles brands quantities flavours). The numbers are very plausible and align with previous data recordings (if an athlete has collected data previously).