When you’ll be exercising in the heat for more than three or fours hours, you should pay attention to your sodium intake. You might be losing 400 to 1,500 milligrams of sodium per hour (depending on how much you sweat and the sodium-content of your sweat). If you are, let's say, biking for 5 to 8 hours, these losses can take a toll.
Although most sweaty athletes believe sports drinks are an exceptional source of sodium, sports drinks are actually low in sodium compared to many to many other foods.
Here are some portable snack ideas that can better boost your sodium intake. These salty suggestions will likely be a welcome flavor-change if you have been downing sweet gels, sports candies and sugary sports drinks for several hours.
Few of these options offer stellar nutrition, so limit them to during endurance events when your goal is to survive (as opposed to optimize your health!
Salty sports snacks that you can easily carry in a bike shirt pocket or backpack:
1 oz (5 crackers)
Pretzel Nibblers, Snyder’s
1 oz (16)
Clif Mojo Sweet & Salty Trail Mix Bar
1 oz (14 crackers)
Hard Pretzel, Snyder’s
1 (1 oz)
Pretzel-Thin Twists, Snyder’s
1 oz (11 twists)
Small (5.5 oz) can
Red Oval Stoned What Thins
1 oz (4 crackers)
Pretzel sticks, Bachman
Beef jerky, Jack Link’s
Boiled potato + ¼ tsp salt
Pretzel Rod, Rold Gold
1 rod (1 oz)
Lunchable, Cracker Stacker Ham + American
Chicken Bouillon cube, Herb-Ox
Information from food labels, May 2011
For additional information on replacing sweat losses; Nancy Clark's Sports Nutrition Guidebook