IM 70.3 World Championships
Anne-Sophie'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.
Anne-Sophie implemented an excellent fueling strategy at the World Champs in Finland, where she finished as the top ranked female amateur overall . Her intake was made up of two carb-rich 500ml bottles containing ~75g of carb each, alongside two PF 30 Gels and a PF 30 Caffeine Gel on the bike, which meant she averaged more than 100g of carb per hour. She then took on a PF 90 Gel during the run to hit just under 90g/h, an impressive quantity which equates to almost 2 grams per kilogram / 0.9 gram per pound of bodyweight! We’re seeing more triathletes consuming over 90g/h but, as in Anne-Sophie’s case, this takes plenty of practice and gut training to tolerate these carb-rich bottles on race day.
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.
On the surface and from her subjective thoughts, Anne-Sophie both drank a suitable volume of fluid given Finland's mild conditions on the day, and front-loaded with a higher sodium intake on the bike to keep up with her sweat losses. Going forwards, Anne-Sophie may benefit from carrying out some sweat rate data collection to give her an indication of the volume she should be aiming to consume to avoid too big a deficit, especially in hotter races. Furthermore, having a Sweat Test will paint a clearer picture of the relative sodium concentration she needs to take on board to keep up with her sweat sodium losses.
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.
On top of her usual pre-race coffee, by taking a PF 30 Caffeine Gel on the bike and drinking caffeinated energy drinks on the run, Anne-Sophie reached the lower end of the recommended caffeine guidelines. As an individual who doesn’t have the highest caffeine tolerance, she did well to reach the recommended dosage and spread her intake across the day to keep her blood caffeine levels up and take advantage of its performance enhancing effects.
How Anne-Sophie hit her numbers
Here's everything that Anne-Sophie ate and drank on the day...
Anne-Sophie's weapons of choice
Anne-Sophie's full stats
There is an adequate level of accuracy in the data collected and the numbers reported. The athlete manages to recall what they ate and drank including most specifics (brands flavours quantities plausible estimations of volumes). However there are estimations made within the data which affect the overall confidence level in the data reported.