How To Avoid Dehydration — Plus a delicious hydrating Fruit Salad Snack recipe

When riding we lose salt and water through sweat. When losing water, the viscosity of our blood goes up, which leads to an increased core temperature, higher heart rate and a decrease in power output. In short, dehydration leads to premature fatigue and reduced performance. To avoid muscle cramps, dizziness or a decrease in concentration when racing or training, we need to hydrate our bodies before, during and after exercise.

Through summer and winter, optimum hydration levels are key for staying sharp and strong on the bike. Pic: @garyperkin


Hydrate with food. Include fruits and vegetables which contain a high percentage of water in your everyday diet. Examples are cucumber, strawberries, oranges, lettuce, gooseberries, and zucchini.

Use electrolyte replacement drinks. These products can be used during rigorous training sessions. If you’re riding in heat or when you sweat a significant amount, consider sipping on an electrolyte replacement drink. These drinks usually contain sodium, potassium, magnesium, chloride and calcium which helps your body to function optimally.

Drink sufficient quantities of water. Remember to drink enough water during the day even when you are not training. An important thing to remember is to not only rely on thirst to tell you when or how much fluid you need and that proper hydration starts off the bike. While everyone has a different opinion about exactly how much to drink, try to keep it around 2 litres of pure water (excluding what you drink during training) a day and adjust it according to your own needs.


When the days are short and cold, we tend to reach for hot drinks like tea and coffee, instead of clean water. By using fruits and vegetables we can make up for the loss in fluid during the day. This quick and easy recipe is perfect for a midday snack during winter.


  • 1 Kiwi – sliced
  • ½ Cup Grapes
  • ½ Cup of Cucumber without peel – sliced
  • 10 Gooseberries
  • 1 Teaspoon of Honey
  • 1 Teaspoon Mint Leaves – finely chopped

INSTRUCTIONS: Add all the ingredients in a salad bowl, drizzle with honey and garnish with mint. Bon Appétit!


  • Energy: 515 kJ  
  • Protein: 1,94 g   
  • Carbohydrate: 28,65 g

Contributed by cyclist and dietician: Nicola van der Walt @nicola_vdw

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