DISCLAIMER: Athletes often solicit recommendations for how to best use The Right Stuff®. Given the scope of sports, the level of athletes’ condition, environmental considerations, level of exertion etc., it is difficult to provide specific guidance. However, various athletes have generously offered to share their experience and individualized protocols for you as a directional guide. The Right Stuff is a valuable tool for you to test personally to optimize your own usage protocol. Once dialed in, we’d appreciate hearing from you, so you can share your thoughts with others (firstname.lastname@example.org). Thank you for your understanding and support.
Gerry Voelliger – Cyclocross, Endurance Mountain Biking, Adventure Racing
My dehydration symptoms prior to The Right Stuff included very serious leg cramps. Overall, The Right Stuff is extremely effective, for me! I was first exposed to The Right Stuff at the Leadville Trail 100 in 2010. I have been using it and recommending it to my teammates and anyone who will listen, ever since. I have used them all. Succeed has been the best until The Right Stuff. I much prefer liquid to large pills. I need to consider how to dispense during long events such as LV and 24 hour + adventure races. With The Right Stuff, I have no cramps, no stomach upset, no gagging on pills, minimal peripheral edema in my feet, ankles and no sausage fingers. While I don’t know my specific Sweat Rate, I estimate that I am a medium sweater.
Pre-Race: I pre-load about an hour before my races with one bottle, sometimes mixed with Endurox and Accelerade and I do refrigerate before drinking for better taste and refreshment
During Events: I use The Right Stuff on about an hourly basis, sometimes in combination with Endurox and Accelerade
Seasonality: I haven’t needed it in the winter and in cold weather
Overall: The Right Stuff will revolutionize the treatment of cramping
Uli Bromme – Long Distance Triathlon and Marathon Running
Prior to The Right Stuff, I would get cramps in my feet during the run of an Ironman, that were manageable but annoying. It helps me stay hydrated in long events such as an Ironman, especially in hot conditions and The Right Stuff helps me avoid slowing down due to muscle cramps caused by dehydration. With The Right Stuff, I suffer from less muscle cramps which allows me to have a better ability to stay focused on a hard effort. I have a pretty high sweat rate and I get rather salty.
Training: I do pre-load with one half to a whole vial blended in water in 24oz water bottle, during hot summer months before long rides or long runs. I train 7 days/per week for various durations (1-7 hrs). I use up to 2 vials/bottles per session about 4 out of 7 sessions in summer especially on very hot days, or for long workouts, or for consecutive long, hot training days. I often blend it with Carbo Pro for long rides to get extra energy
Race Day: I pre-load with a bottle with 1/2 vial if it’s going to be a hot race. The Right Stuff is what I drink on bike, I also carry small bottle of it on run.
Seasonality: I use less during winter months since I live in CO and sweat alot less in the snow
Phil Rosenstein – Ultrarunning.
Occasionally, I experience different levels of dehydration severity. I was doing much, much better already when I first started using The Right Stuff. It is very effective, now that I’ve figured out how much and how often I need it. The Right Stuff has prevented any cramping issues and I’ve found that my muscles feel stronger later into the race. Not one muscle cramp since I started using The Right Stuff. I don’t know my sweat rate. Plus it varies, for example depending on if I’m “heat-training” for Badwater. I do have a good feel for what is normal for me though, so I can tell if I’m sweating more or less than usual and then I can adjust my electrolytes and hydration accordingly.
Training: I don’t use it during pre-training. I also don’t use it if the training run is only going to be 3 hours or so. I know I should use it in training if I’m going to use it in racing, but I’m comfortable enough with the product to use it this way and I’m too cheap to “waste it” unless I need it.
Pre-Race: I don’t use it as part of any pre-race routine. I use it only during races and longer than 3 hour training runs. I don’t mix it with anything else and I don’t use any other form of electrolyte (pill or beverage). Just pure water.
During Events: I switch off every other bottle with just pure water (1 bottle with The Right Stuff, then 1 with just water, then 1 with the Right Stuff) during the day and every 3rd or even 4th bottle during the nights depending on temperature. This has led to much better results with literally no issues at all.
Seasonality: I do use less in the winter The cold weather means I’m drinking less and I also have needed fewer electrolytes when it’s cold out.
Overall: I’ve found there are more than a few ultrarunners who have extreme difficulty taking electrolyte pills. They gag, throw up and just can’t get them down. I’ve given them The Right Stuff and it’s worked for them. I was surprised by how many people I’ve met like this. They’re basically forced to use Gatorade (awful) or something like Heed (good for a few hours before fouling up your stomach).
Two of my “students” are just so forgetful that they can never remember to take the electrolyte pills. They like The Right Stuff because it is just easier for them to remember – if they are filling up their water bottle, it is time for another vial of The Right Stuff. No need to remember how many pills to take and when was the last time they took some etc…
Mandy McLane – Triathlete (Half Ironman)
Training: I typically mix one vial of The Right Stuff in a 24oz bottle with water. I also add a vial in to my Camelbak, which contains water and nutrition (calories) for the entire ride. I typically use The Right Stuff for my training sessions that are 90 minutes or longer.
Pre-Race: I drink a water bottle with one vial of The Right Stuff before bed (sodium loading). I also do the same thing first thing in the morning for breakfast and pre-race warm up.
During Events: For the bike portion of race, I mix one vial in my Camelbak with water and calories (nutrition). I also carry a second vial with me on the bike during half Ironmans, just in case. For the run, I add half a vial to a flask with water and a mashed up banana. I usually carry two flasks made the same way for my run during a half Ironman.
Other: I will also put 1/4 vial of The Right Stuff in a bottle with water when I’m feeling dehydrated and drink it throughout the day.
Nathan Winkelmann, Team iMOAT Adventure Racing Team (mountain bike racing( ‘open’ category), also and training for an Ironman
I don’t regularly suffer from dehydration symptoms, but my performance does drop when not taking anything. Using the Right Stuff (especially during a HOT Texas races, or a long race) really keeps my legs fresher and I can do more. If you drink it straight out of the bottle, [which the company does not recommend] it’s like a shot of whiskey; whiskey for your muscles (not necessarily a bad thing). The Right Stuff keeps cramps at bay. Staying hydrated isn’t about drinking more, its about drinking quality fluids. The Right Stuff is quality. I can go harder, longer, without my body having to shut down. Its like I’m Popeye and The Right Stuff is my spinach. I’m a heavy-very heavy sweater. I often have white salt stains over me. I look like I just came out of a swimming pool when doing training rides/runs.
Training: I normally have one bicycle bottle is my normal mix. I try to drink cold water with it. I just drink 1 vial-during races, I drink more and that’s how I tell the difference. I try to save my vials for the bigger show – hard races, hot races, long races and long hot training,. I normally won’t cramp during a 1-2 hour race, unless its a brutal course, or super hot. I want to try it with Sunny D!
Pre-Race: I preload with a bottle, while doing warm-up or getting things ready for a long race. Typically an hour before, while getting tires pumped up, transition area set up, checking on the maps, etc.
During Events: I use it in plain water by itself (unless I have to have food for the distance of the race) I normally use it in one bottle, and drink pure water in the other. Depends on the race, but if I drink 2 bottles there is no way in the world I’ll cramp.
Other: I race in hotter weather later in the year, and whenever there are longer races, I fuel then too. The Right Stuff is simple. My performance is better, and I can focus on going as hard as I need to win the race. I get to push my body to its absolute limit.
Scott Fliegelman, Triathlete, bike racing (road, cyclocross, mtn. biking), coach
I suffered from very significant dehydration symptoms; in particular cramps and light headedness before I started using The Right Stuff. Overall, The Right Stuff has been very effective for me! I’ll need another few months of use before committing to the fact that it works “extremely” well for me.
The most noticeable benefit appears to be no more cramps, but also I don’t seem to experience a major drop in energy level as I have in the past, which often came along with hyperventilation, dizziness, etc. Also, it looks like I am able to stay at a healthy weight easier (daily and during a race), whereas I used to drop considerable fluid weight that contributed to the above listed issues.
I have a very heavy Sweat Rate (50- 60 oz. per hour)!
Pre Training: I pre-load before training within one hour of my sessions, drinking one 16 oz bottle of straight water mixed with one vial of The Right Stuff. Sometimes I will refrigerate the blend before drinking it.
Training: I train 5-6 days per week for about 1-3 hours. During those sessions, I will drink 1-2 bottles per hour depending on heat. I use it every session, whenever possible (when I have a supply of vials). Since starting with The Right Stuff, I use it exclusively for my hydration needs and I only mix it with plain water. While I have mixed it with Carbo Pro in the past, these days I prefer to separate my carb needs or refrain completely if my sessions are less than 90 minutes.
Pre-Race: As with my training, I pre-load with a bottle of The Right Stuff about an hour before each race. I do not pre-load the night before. And again, I drink a bottle of The Right Stuff blended only with water.
During Events: I use The Right Stuff, periodically as needed, during my races. As mentioned before, I have mixed with Carbo Pro in the past, but these days I prefer to separate the timing of when I take in my carbs and when I consume The Right Stuff.
Seasonality: I find I need to use The Right Stuff less frequently during cooler weather; and I only need to preload during CX (cyclocross) season [Editor’s note: races are “full out, hard effort” but typically last for less than one hour]
Overall: I am still getting to know my very best protocols for before and during assorted endurance sports and will share more as I learn more!
Shawn Heidgen, Cycling, running, hiking
I do LOVE The Right Stuff!! I have turned many friends onto it and all have been super impressed with the product. We had 2 teams using it at the 24hrs of Erock this past weekend and they were 1st and 2nd in their divisions.
I used to suffer from dehydration pretty bad symptoms at times prior to using The Right Stuff including really bad cramping or stomach issues from sugary drinks plus headaches and fatigue. It is good for performance and prevention. It is the only drink mix we use now. It fights fatigue, allows me to ride longer with less fluid, enhances performance, keeps the cramps away and increases endurance!
Overall, The Right Stuff is just a great product that works and tastes good. I have had many friends try it and have not had one negative response.
I don’t know my specific Sweat Rate but I’d say I am a medium to heavy sweater.
Pre Training: I pre-load with The Right Stuff before training, usually about 2 hours prior with 1 vial in 1 large cycling water bottle (16-20 ounces) when I know it is going to be very hot, very strenuous or competitive. I always mix with straight water only!
Training: I train 4-5 days per week for anywhere from 1-5 hours. During training I preload or drink 1-2 bottles during the ride. I typically will use The Right Stuff 1-2 times a week when I want the extra boost. While I always mix it with water, occasionally I change things up and use powdered Gatorade for hydration if it’s just a cruise ride. I mix up my hydration among water, when training hard I use The Right Stuff and Gatorade because I like to vary it a little for taste.
Pre-Race: I preload with a bottle about 2 hours before and use more during the race as needed.
During Events: I drink The Right Stuff periodically depending on effort/race and always drink the bottle by itself. Then, I alternate with water or powdered Gatorade for taste.
Seasonality I use it more in the heat, when training harder, longer.
Other: LOVE IT!
Marilyn McDonald, Professional Triathlete/Coach, Cyclist, Pro Equestrian Show Jumping
Some of my career highlights include: Ironman Malaysia Champion, 2nd at IM France; 3rd IM Western Australia; 16 IM races with 11 top 10 finishes.
I am a heavy sweater and used to suffer from cramping due to dehydration. Overall, I find The Right Stuff to be extremely effective for me. It is easy to use and provides enough of what I need over long races with no hassle. I can put it in my bottles and not have to worry about trying to get enough salt tables in throughout the race. I really like how easy it is to use while providing enough of what I need; and no more cramps!
Training: I’m a heavy sweeter who is usually covered in salt, post training sessions. I like to use it after a long hard training day in the evening to rehydrate before my next days training. Rather than just drink water throughout the evening before my next day’s training, I like to add a vial of The Right Stuff to my 1 liter bottle that I’ll drink throughout the evening.
During Events: I put one vial in every 750ml bottle on my bike, two bottles total on my bike. On the run, I put one in each gel flask I carry. I end up having four total throughout an ironman race.
In a Half-Ironman race, I have it just on my bike, (two total, one in each bottle).
I mix The Right Stuff with water and the gel I use for fuel. In each bottle on my bike (total of 2) I have one vial of The Right Stuff mixed with water and 4-5gels in a 750ml bottle. I carry two bottles mixed like this.
Other: No more cramps!