Jen Rulon

The last couple of weeks, we chatted about Ironman Triathlon, 70.3 Ironman Triathlon and Olympic distance triathlon nutrition.

We will chat about the 5 W’s, and I will post 2 – 5 tips regarding each kind of nutrition within the triathlon. So let’s chat today about:

“Nutrition in a Sprint Triathlon”  

Who Does a Sprint Triathlon?: If you are in decent shape and stay active at least 5x a week, you can do a sprint triathlon. This is for people who are moving for at least 30 minutes a day.

What is the distance of a Sprint Triathlon?: 400 – 800 swim/12 – 15 mile bike/ 5K run.

When are Sprint Triathlons?:  April to October is when I see them the most.

Where are Sprint Triathlons?: All Over! Check out The American Triathlon Calendar for your state!

Why do a Sprint Triathlon?: They are fun! Not EVERYONE wants to do an Ironman Triathlon. They are a good test for your speed. They are fun! They are short!

Three Nutrition Tips for your Sprint Triathlon:

1. How long will it take you to do a Sprint Triathlon? This plays a HUGE role in if you should take nutrition in your race. If your race is within 30 – 60 minutes,  you will NOT need any type of CHO (carbohydrates) for your race. If your race is within 65 minutes to 2:00 hours, then you will need some type of CHO. For example, EFS Pro from First Endurance, or Hydro from Base Performance. You can also look at Gatorade, Power-Aid, etc.; whatever your body can stomach.

2. When do you take your nutrition for the Sprint Triathlon? It is much easier to take your nutrition on your bike, so I would suggest taking in your nutrition on the bike, before you start your run. If you have to take a gel or a Gu on the run, try to get it in earlier rather than later.

3. Water and Sprint Triathlon. Yes, you need to drink your water BUT you need to drink water based on when you are thirsty. Some athletes will start drinking water WAY ahead of needing it, and this may actually hinder your race. Remember, a lot of it depends on the time that you are out there, the weather, etc. But the BIG reminder: Drink water when you are thirsty. (Check out Timothy Noakes’ interview HERE. Timothy Noakes has written a lot about hyponatremia.)

Another piece of advice regarding nutrition and sprint triathlon: Less is more. If you are able to have a decent dinner and a light snack before you race, you will be just fine! Next week, we will chat about Nutrition and Olympic Distance Triathlon.


AUTHOR: Jen Rulon

I am Jen Rulon, a Coach, Kona Finisher and a Public Speaker. I’ve been coaching triathletes for 18+ years and I received my Masters in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Exercise Science. I train triathletes to reach their potential and coach triathlon coaches to successfully grow their businesses using my own proven methods. My knowledge has been featured in Triathlete Magazine, Runners World, on the TEDx Stage, the Health and Wellness Expo in San Antonio, TX, Men’s Journal Online, and the New York Times. I also practice what I preach — I’m a 15x Ironman Triathlete who participated in the World Championship in Kona, Hawaii on October 14, 2017.

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