In regards to Endurolytes, to my understanding, there is some sort of regulation (similar to Canada) that requires that the Australian label to read “maximum 3 tablets” or something similar.
Here in the States we do not have the same restrictions; however, due to space limitations, we list a generic dosage that reads “Take 1-3 capsules per hour during prolonged exercise in hot weather. Extreme conditions may warrant higher amounts.”
Reasons Dosage Varies So Greatly
The truth is that the dose can be anywhere from 1-6 capsules per hour, with a few people (not many, just a few) needing a 7th or 8th capsule an hour. The reason why the dosage varies so much is because so many variables have to be factored in when answering the question, “How much electrolyte support do I need hourly?”
These factors include the athlete’s body size/weight/body mass index, their fitness level, the weather conditions, how well or poorly the athlete is acclimated to those conditions, the terrain, their pace, and their personal physiology (meaning, athletes who have unusually high sweat rates).
Our general recommendations under normal conditions is 1 capsule for every 50-60 lbs of body weight (approximately 23 – 27 kg) on an hourly basis, WITH THE UNDERSTANDING that this dose can and should be altered immediately, if necessary (if you feel a twinge of a cramp coming on), or in deference to the terrain and pace (hillier conditions, as well as a higher pace, oftentimes require more electrolytic mineral support), or in deference to the weather (especially if you’re not very acclimated to it).
Just as an example, I weigh about 90 kg and my typical dose under moderate conditions is 3 capsules an hour. If the pace goes up and/or if I’m doing lots of climbing, and/or if the weather gets hotter, I increase the dose.
If the weather cools way down I find that 1-2 capsules/hour work perfectly well.
And because the increments of each mineral we include in each capsule of Endurolytes is not too high, it allows the athlete to increase the dose without worrying about overdoing it. In other words, if 2 capsules an hour is proving to be insufficient, the amount that’s in 3 capsules won’t be overkill.
Fluid & Calorie Intake Requirements Well Known
Bottom line is that we know, by and large, what the upper limit is for fluid intake and calorie intake for the overwhelming majority of athletes. When it comes to electrolyte replenishment, however, it’s all over the map, mainly because of the earlier-listed variables that come into play.
So start with our general suggested doses with Endurolytes and fine tune them in your training, under a variety of conditions, to find what works best for you.
And remember, you can always increase the dose immediately and on an as-needed basis.
There are two articles that I would encourage you to read, which will help clarify our position on what we believe is the proper way to fuel (fuel meaning calories, fluids, and electrolytes):
- “Less is Best – The right way to fuel“
- “Electrolyte Replenishment – Why It’s So Important and How to Do It Right“
Dr. Bill Misner Reflects Our Position
In the first article, two quotes by Dr. Bill Misner reflect our position perfectly. He states:
“To suggest that fluids, sodium, and fuels-induced glycogen replenishment can happen at the same rate as it is spent during exercise is simply not true.
Endurance exercise beyond 1-2 hours is a deficit spending entity, with proportionate return or replenishment always in arrears. The endurance exercise outcome is to postpone fatigue, not to replace all the fuel, fluids, and electrolytes lost during the event.
It can’t be done, though many of us have tried.”
“The human body has so many survival safeguards by which it regulates living one more minute, that when we try too hard to fulfill all its needs we interfere, doing more harm than good.”
In the second article, we discuss (among other things) why sodium alone isn’t the ideal way to replenish electrolytes.
It is a very informative article and one that I hope you will read thoroughly. One section, however, really hits home in stating:
Proper Electrolyte Replenishment
Proper electrolyte replenishment during endurance exercise requires a gradual, consistent approach that incorporates all of the electrolytes in amounts that do not override normal body mechanisms.
Remember, electrolyte intake needs to be below systemic detection, yet help alleviate systemic depression.
This means that you need to consume enough to support body functions and prevent heat-related issues such as cramping without overwhelming your body; electrolyte intake must slip under the body’s “radar detection system” while still providing optimal support.
Optimizing Specific Body Function
Endurolytes, Endurolytes Fizz, and Endurolytes Powder are full-spectrum electrolyte products designed to fulfill the body’s electrolyte requirements, countering the effects of hyperthermia, optimizing specific bodily functions, and enhancing endurance performance, especially beyond the two-hour mark.
The electrolyte profile of the Endurolytes formula balances cations (positively charged ions) and anions (negatively charged ions) responsibly without emphasizing one electrolyte over others.
This is a key note to remember: When a balance of electrolytes of cations to anions are managed in the energy producing cell, assuming the cell has adequate fuel and fluid, such a cell will produce energy at a higher rate than one overdosed by a single cation mixed with an irrational list of anions.
That’s a darn good reason to avoid going “salt only” or to use products, be they fuels or supplements, that contain high levels of sodium, especially at the expense of too-low amounts of other electrolytic minerals. Additionally, we do not formulate Endurolytes, Endurolytes Fizz, and Endurolytes Powder to reflect the amounts of electrolyte loss in sweat because each person has a unique biological predisposition in terms of minerals lost via perspiration.
Up To 1,000% Difference
Furthermore, the differences in an athlete’s size and fitness, as well as the pace of exercise, and of course the humidity and heat, can mean up to a 1000% difference when one athlete’s sweat rate is compared to another’s. A “one size fits all” formula based merely on sweat rates cannot, and will not, adequately support your specific electrolyte requirements.
In the purest sense, the Endurolytes formula is not so much an electrolyte replacement product, but is better described as an “electrolyte stress support formula.” It helps the body perform better under the demands of exercise, especially in heat, by providing a full complement of minerals in the proper balance without interfering with normal body control systems.
The key to those three paragraphs is the synergistic effect ALL of the electrolytic minerals have on each other. In other words, you do need some sodium but if you overdo you can experience more problems than you resolve because you disrupt your body’s built-in mechanisms that are there to help recirculate and thus conserve its stores of sodium.
Too Many Still Recommend…
Far too many coaches/coaching organizations still recommend that athletes replace calories, fluids, and sodium at or near the rate the body is losing it. As you’ll read in the above-listed articles, the body is simply not equipped to replace “X: out with “X” or “near-X” back in.
Yes, you have to put some calories, fluids, and sodium (and other electrolytes) back into your system but those amounts have to work in cooperation with the finely tuned mechanisms already built into the body. Basically, our creed is if a little is good a lot is not necessarily better… as Dr. Misner stated, “when we try too hard to fulfill all [all of our body’s] needs we interfere, doing more harm than good.”
Additionally, when you have a balance of all the electrolytic minerals, the body responds better than when only one or two minerals (such as sodium and potassium) are supplied. When a balance of minerals is supplied it allows less of each mineral to be needed. Why? Because they all work synergistically. Lastly, and this is my personal observation, I believe that while sodium is indeed an important mineral, I consider calcium and magnesium to be equally if not more important when it comes to optimal muscular function and cramping prevention.
Speaking of cramping, I wrote a short article, “Cramping – What a pain (and how to avoid it)”, which you’ll find in Endurance News #76, beginning on page 20.
Here’s the link for that issue of Endurance News: http://www.hammernutrition.com/downloads/ENews/ENissue76.pdf
I realize that this is a lot of information to digest (no pun intended) but I hope that it will provide you with some useful information. If you have any questions, especially after reviewing the information in the links I’ve provided, please feel free to email me here at Hammer Nutrition.