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Giles Heaman's scorecard

IRONMAN Portugal

Saturday 23rd October, 2021

Within recommended ranges

Just outside recommended ranges

Significantly outside recommended ranges

  • 71g

    Carb per hour
  • 285mg

    Sodium per hour
  • 316ml

    Fluid per hour
  • 904mg/L

    Relative sodium concentration
  • 560mg

    Total caffeine
  • How Giles hit those numbers

    1 x Bowl of overnight oats with peanut butter, banana and jam
    1 x Coffee
    1 x Glass of plain water
    2 x Imodium
    1 x Energy gel (23g carb)
    *** Review technique if drinking much at this point!
    1L x PH 1500 (Tablets)
    300ml x Plain water
    -200ml x Additional fluid in mixed drinks
    13 x Energy gel (23g carb)
    750ml x Energy drink mix (44g carb)
    250ml x Energy drink (36g carb)
    110ml x Plain water
    3 x Energy gel (25g carb)
    5 x Energy gel (25g carb)
    1 x Energy gel (23g carb)
    600ml x Energy drink (36g carb)
    150ml x Cola
    150ml x Red Bull

    How Giles' hydration and fueling went...

      • Giles had a successful race at IM Portugal in mid October allowing him to qualify for the World Champs next year! He came 8th in the M45-49 age group with a great performance and a time of 9 hours 51 minutes
      • We have not analysed Giles intake before, but can see from his detailed descriptions he used a well structured hydration and fuelling plan to consume decent carb, sodium and fluid numbers throughout the long course race


      • On average over the race, Giles drank ~316ml/hr (~11oz/hr). This was from two 750ml/26oz bottles on the bike and then picking up water and energy drinks from aid stations throughout. We do not have any information on Giles’ sweat rate and this will have replaced some of his losses, but considering the warm conditions he could have taken more fluid on board to replace a greater proportion of his losses
      • Giles was happy with his hydration strategy (giving it a 9 out of 10) and he did pee a few times on the bike and on the run, which isn’t uncommon for him and would suggest he did not under hydrate
      • In terms of sodium, Giles has not had an Advanced Sweat Test so we do not know his sweat sodium concentration, but he has undertaken an online test which indicated he is likely a salty sweater and recommended PH1500 which he wisely chose to use
      • He consumed around ~285mg/hr sodium, which in relation to the volume of fluid he drank means the relative sodium concentration of his intake was ~904mg/L. It is hard to determine if this will have replaced his losses well without knowing his sweat sodium concentration, but if it is very high as our online sweat test illustrated, then taking on board slightly more sodium may benefit Giles
      • Giles has a history of cramping and suffered some ‘major cramp’ in his left hamstring 1.5 miles into the run during this race which caused him to stop. Testing out slightly higher sodium intake to see if this helps avoid cramp could be something for Giles to try going forward
      • He preloaded with PH 1500 the night before the race to increase his sodium levels, but we would recommend he repeats this in the morning of the race as well to make sure he is starting as optimally hydrated as possible


    Quick Carb Calculator Recommendation


    carb 30 mins before


    carb per hour during
      • In the morning of the race, Giles consumed a carb-rich breakfast made up of overnight oats with peanut butter, jam and banana along with a coffee and some plain water. In addition to this Giles ate an energy gel 30 minutes before the swim. This solid pre-race fuelling will have helped maximise his performance by ensuring adequate energy availability
      • During the race, Giles consumed around 13 energy gels from a bottle with a small amount of water, had some energy drink mix in one of his 750ml/26oz bottles on the bike and on the run he had a range of energy gels. As a result, Giles achieved ~71g/hr on average over the race (including the swim) which broke down into ~74g/hr on the bike and a higher ~86g/hr on the run. Giles hit really good carb numbers to meet our Quick Carb Calculator's recommended range of 60-90g/hr for a race of this length and intensity
      • This step up in carbs is the opposite to the common tapering in consumption we usually see from triathletes and it is impressive to see Giles reach such high carb numbers while running. To reach ~86g/hr on the run, Giles ate a gel every 20 minutes with roughly half of these being caffeine gels and he picking up a range of energy drinks including coke and red bull
      • Giles did however experience some GI issues 16 miles into the run. Although he mentioned this wasn’t uncommon for him, next time he could possibly reduce his large run intake slightly to see if this resolves some issues. But, he had ‘pretty good energy levels throughout apart from those 15 minutes on the run’, rating them 8 out of 10
      • Giles had a coffee before the race, didn’t have any caffeine on bike and then took a large dose of caffeine on the run predominantly from energy gels. His total caffeine dose during the race was ~560mg. We do not know his exact body weight but considering the recommended caffeine dose for performance is between 3 and 6mg per kilogram of bodyweight, this is a higher dose which will have kept his perceived energy levels high on the run. Giles chose to consume most of this dose in the last hours but because caffeine takes around 20-30 minutes to have noticeable effects, he may want to consider using the caffeine gels earlier on including some on the bike


      • After a long season, Giles had a good performance at IM Portugal using a decent hydration and fuelling strategy. He thinks there is still plenty of room for improvement saying ‘my swim wasn’t great and I couldn’t develop the power I would expect on the bike, legs didn’t feel they had anything in them possibly due to a long season or more likely due to getting very cold in the swim’. But, he did achieve a PB on the run and was happy with his hydration and fuelling throughout
      • As a result of the race, he has qualified for the World Champs next year and we are looking forward to seeing him perform well then!

    Key info

    Giles Heaman



    Overall Time
    Swim Time
    Bike Time
    Run Time

    Event information

    Full distance
    IRONMAN Portugal
    Cascais, Portugal
    23rd October, 2021
    Swim Distance
    3.8km / 2.4mi
    Bike Distance
    180.2km / 112.0mi
    Run Distance
    42.2km / 26.2mi
    Total Distance
    226.2km / 140.6mi
    Bike Elevation
    1,450m / 4,757ft
    Run Elevation
    198m / 650ft
    Total Elevation
    1,648m / 5,407ft

    Race conditions

    Weather Conditions
    No Rain
    Min Temp
    19°C / 66°F
    Max Temp
    20°C / 68°F
    Avg Temp
    19°C / 66°F

    Athlete feedback

    Race Satisfaction
    Hydration rating
    Always room for improvement but pretty bang on
    Energy levels
    Energy pretty good throughout apart from the first 15 mins or so on the run
    Toilet stops
    A couple of times in each discipline
    GI comfort
    No problems until around 16 miles into the run
    Twinges but not full-on cramps

    Giles' Thoughts

     I was happy with my nutrition/hydration. Other than the lack of power on the bike and the GI distress on the run I executed the race pretty much to plan.

    Giles' full stats

     Carbohydrate (g)Sodium (mg)Fluid (ml)Caffeine (mg)Relative sodium concentration (mg/L)
    Total intake6982,8113,110560904
    Per hour7128531657
    Bike and Run
    Total intake6752,7913,110560897
    Per hour7932736466
    Total intake3842,2412,10001,067
    Per hour744334060
    Total intake2915501,010560545
    Per hour86163299166

    Data Confidence







    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.

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