< Back to case studies

Sam Wade's scorecard

Challenge Salou

Sunday 3rd April, 2022

Within recommended ranges

Just outside recommended ranges

Significantly outside recommended ranges

  • 51g

    Carb per hour
  • 430mg

    Sodium per hour
  • 389ml

    Fluid per hour
  • 1,104mg/L

    Relative sodium concentration
  • 0mg

    Total caffeine
  • How Sam hit those numbers

    500ml x PH 1500 (Tablet)
    1 x Bowl of porridge with banana and honey
    250ml x Apple juice
    250ml x Plain water
    1 x PF 30 Gel
    250ml x PH 1500 (Tablets)
    1L x PF Carb & Electrolyte Drink Mix
    1.16 x Energy chew packet (48g carb)
    1 x PF 30 Gel
    100ml x Plain water

    How Sam's hydration and fueling went...

      • Sam began his 2022 campaign with a solid performance at Challenge Salou, finishing 9th in what was a stacked field of pro athletes. The race format changed from a traditional middle distance triathlon to a duathlon (4km run, 85km cycle and a 21km run) due to very cold temperatures (3℃/37°F) and high winds that created dangerous sea conditions.
      • Although Sam initially felt this format change would hinder his performance, he ended up enjoying a solid race and hit some decent numbers in his fueling and hydration strategy along the way
      • The temperature was cold heading out onto the bike leg and Sam said he never really adjusted to the conditions, whilst he mentioned that he didn’t feel like he was really sweating throughout
      • Nonetheless, Sam felt he fueled and hydrated well, and headed out onto the 21km run feeling strong, eventually recording a solid half marathon time of 1 hour, 13 minutes 20 seconds


      • In addition to his carb-rich breakfast, Sam had a small glass of water, apple juice and he preloaded with PH 1500 to optimise his blood plasma volume and start the race well hydrated
      • For Sam’s hydration strategy, he had three 500ml/16oz bottles on the bike, two filled with PF 30 Drink Mix and one with a PH 1500 tablet
      • Sam finished two and a half of these bottles, consuming ~1.35L/45oz of fluid (641ml/21oz per hour) on the bike. This contained a total of ~1,491mg of sodium, which meant that the relative sodium concentration of what he consumed was ~1,193mg/L
      • Conditions in Salou were particularly cold, and Sam felt he was barely sweating at all, which meant his net fluid losses were less than previously anticipated, therefore Sam could be less aggressive in replacing fluids and electrolytes
      • On the run, Sam planned to drink to thirst, and took tiny sips of plain water from aid stations, consuming ~100ml/3oz in total. This brought his average fluid intake for the whole race to ~389ml/13oz per hour
      • Considering the cold weather on race day and Sam’s perception that he was hardly sweating at all on the bike, this was probably an adequate consumption, and Sam rated his hydration at 9/10. He said the only thing he would have changed was perhaps to finish his remaining ~250ml/8oz of PH 1500 on the bike


    Quick Carb Calculator Recommendation


    carb 30 mins before


    carb per hour during
      • Sam had his usual race-morning breakfast of a small bowl of porridge with banana and honey to top off his liver glycogen stores in order to begin the race optimally fuelled
      • In the 30 minutes leading up to the race, Sam had a PF 30 Energy Gel to ensure he enjoyed a hit of carbohydrate that would reach his bloodstream quickly, which would spare his stored glycogen for later in the race when he really needed it
      • Due to the high intensity nature of the first, shorter run, Sam didn’t take on any fuel or drinks during this discipline
      • Onto the bike and Sam nailed his fueling plan by finishing two 500ml/16oz bottles of PF 30 Drink Mix and eating seven energy chews. His total intake for the bike was ~117 grams of carbohydrate (~60g/hr), which is at the lower end, but just within the recommended range (60-90g/hr) from our Quick Carb Calculator
      • Sam set off onto the 21km run with two PF 30 Energy Gel, but felt his “stomach was at a good level” and only ended up eating small amounts of one of the gels throughout the run
      • Although Sam didn’t describe any feelings of discomfort, he said he “had to check himself” a couple of times during the half marathon and decided during these points that he wasn’t going to eat anymore and risk later gut issues
      • This meant Sam hit ~25g per hour on the run, and averaged ~51g for the whole race. This is lower than the recommended carb intake of 60-90g/hr for an event of this length and intensity, and perhaps Sam may see some additional performance gains from upping his carb intake
      • Sam’s training leading into the race had been solid, but he felt his endurance capabilities in the final stages of the run were a little below where he’d have liked. He felt his lack of long run conditioning was the cause of a slight drop in pace on the final lap


      • Post-race, Sam said he “felt fantastic” on the bike, and finished it up with a strong run to bag a top-ten finish in what was a strong field
      • Sam felt that his recovery from his first race of the season was relatively poor (5/10) and he mentioned that it took a lot more out of him physically than anticipated. There’s anecdotal evidence to suggest that high carb intake during the latter stages of a race may lead to quicker recovery from events, as muscle glycogen stores are less depleted, thus helping the athlete to return to pre-performance levels more quickly. Perhaps this is something Sam may consider in future races, especially when he has a few races back-to-back
      • Overall, Sam felt he had a really good performance in Salou and it’s given him great confidence going into the rest of the season, where hopefully he is able to show off his hard winter of swim training too

    Key info

    Sam Wade



    Overall Time
    Bike Time
    Run Time

    Event information

    Middle distance
    Challenge Salou
    Salou, Spain
    3rd April, 2022
    Bike Distance
    85.0km / 52.8mi
    Run Distance
    21.0km / 13.0mi
    Total Distance
    110.0km / 68.4mi

    Race conditions

    Weather Conditions
    No Rain
    Min Temp
    2°C / 36°F
    Max Temp
    5°C / 41°F
    Avg Temp
    3°C / 37°F

    Athlete feedback

    Race Satisfaction
    Hydration rating
    Energy levels
    I only had one of two PF30 gels as I felt good enough
    Toilet stops
    GI comfort
    Felt stomach was at a good level going onto the run
    No cramping

    Sam's Thoughts

     My run conditioning wasn't where it was supposed to be, but I felt fantastic on the bike

    Sam's full stats

     Carbohydrate (g)Sodium (mg)Fluid (ml)Caffeine (mg)Relative sodium concentration (mg/L)
    Total intake1771,4911,35001,104
    Per hour514303890
    Bike and Run
    Total intake1471,4911,35001,104
    Per hour464714260
    Total intake1171,4911,25001,193
    Per hour607656410
    Total intake30010000
    Per hour250820

    Data Confidence







    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).

    Sam's recent case studies

    see all

    Related case studies

    Nail your next event with a FREE Fuel & Hydration Plan
    Get started