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what is the best way to measure how much electrolytes my body needs? i'd guess i sweat in the 99 percentile range and am just getting into longer (2.5+hour rides); so I would like to be pretty scientific about how much to hydrate (and how to dose electrolyte drinks/tablets) ... at least at first before I find the +/- optimum the hard way...
are there any cheap but reliable/helpful urine tests for this?
thanks!

M.
 

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I would guess most sports drink manufacturers run some sort of testing when developing their products. If there was a university with a big sports science department nearby you may be able to get into some sort of study - maybe you could get some valuable info from that.

I don't know of any consumer test kits. There are probably labs that will perform urine analysis for free, similar to the labs that you can send your tap water to for detailed mineral/salt analysis. Did you try searching around on google? Most of those labs turn results around quick but you'd have the expense of shipping the samples to them.
 

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I don't know about scientifically doing this, but a good starting point is you should drink between 20-28oz of liquid an hour, whether that's a mix of water and sport/electrolyte drink is up to you. I'd personally make sure if I was going for a 2.5 hour ride to have at least 70oz of water and at least 1 bottle of sport drink and then maybe a banana and granola or some such bar - better to have too much than not enough. As you get fitter you will not sweat as much in most cases and you need for intake will lessen. Good luck and have fun.
 

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Re:

Dehydration also results in a lower blood volume which causes the heart to work harder to pump the same amount of oxygen around the body. Some people don't like the taste of plain water. The lemon gives it a nice zest as well as adding an element of detoxification to the mix; you can't go wrong there.
 
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