MILAN - One activity that fine summer weather inspires is going for bike rides and, whether you are professional or amateur, you should be aware of the importance of correct nutrition and hydration. Water is the most important nutritional element for cyclists, as it constitutes a cyclist's natural fuel.
The advantages of correct hydration
There can be so many problems if you don't make sure that you are properly hydrated when you are out on your bike. Poor hydration can lead to reduced blood volume, which can impair your body's ability to maintain the optimal internal temperature and the right quantity of oxygen for your muscles to pump when they're working. Experts advise drinking at least 2-3 litres of water a day and an extra 150 ml for every 15 minutes of perspiration. To replace the salts lost through perspiration, it is important to drink water rich in sodium, which also prevents muscle cramps, especially during the hot weather that will soon be here.
Food is fuel
As regards food, particular attention should be paid to macronutrients (proteins, fats and carbohydrates) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals), both important for cycling. Food is the main source of these nutrients which, in sufficient quantities, promote an optimal state of health overall and the maintenance, repair and growth of muscles.