I'm a sweaty, sweaty., sweaty runner - specific advice for hydration?

I sweat like crazy when doing any exercise, apart from the usual hydration approach for running halfs or marathons, should I be taking on extra salt or other additional products due to a lot of sweating?

ie should I take additional salt on top of the usual hyrdation / sports drinks?

Any specific sports drinks / gels suit a sweaty betty better than others? Or should I just be adding salt to normal sports drinks?





  • Are you cramping up at all ? If not Id not worry.

    I sweat like a pig in a sauna in a jumper and I very rarely have problems.

    You can try nuun tabs when it's hot but for 95% of the time water should be fine.
  • I actually think sweating like crazy can aid your performance .......you are probably quite effective at keeping your body temp down which is the key thing ..........I am also a sweatmyster .....I literally drip with it but only during heavy exercise ........so I see it as an asset ......... 

  • OK thanks, cramps have not been as issue yet - but I want to ensure I'm minimising the chances here.

    I'll take a look at Nuun tabs too.

    Thanks for the responses.

  • Rattler,

    I am in the same camp as you, and sweat a lot during my workouts.

    I would recommend energy gels which contain additional sodium as it does make a difference if you are a heavy sweater and lose a lot of salt during running.  As cougie mentioned - you probably will only need this when running in heat.


  • There is actually a very good article in Athletics Weekly this week regarding dehydration/rehydration and the one above that kills - well worth a read.

  • I sweat (sorry, glow) too when running and use Zero tablets in water.  I want some flavour rather than just water and they give you the electrolytes you loose through sweating.

    They're far more economical than using standard sports drinks and don't deliver glucose / calories that you probably won't need if running up to 2 hours.

  • Thanks for the responses, much appreciated. Tim

  • I'd recomend buying this book, or at least reading an overview of it below esp. the bits in bold.


  • I'm a sweatyish runner too and I find it helps, I generally drink to thirst (only need a drink HM+) and I know that if the amount of sweat decreases (for same effort) then I haven't been drinking enough. I only occasionally use salts/electrolytes (on ultras) but the body is actually very good at regulating these things so I let it get on with it, just make sure I have enough food and water. As Grendel says only over hydration kills

  • I always look like i've had a bucket of water thrown over me when i stop running!
    I drink to thirst too, and i find it better to run slightly under hydrated.

    If you need a rehydration drink you can make your own to the following recipe (scale down as required)

    Half (1/2) level teaspoon of Salt
    Six (6) level teaspoons of Sugar
    One (1) Litre of clean drinking or boiled water and then cooled

  • cougie wrote (see)
    Are you cramping up at all ? If not Id not worry.
    I sweat like a pig in a sauna in a jumper and I very rarely have problems.
    You can try nuun tabs when it's hot but for 95% of the time water should be fine.

    I totally agree with this. I'm the sweatiest exerciser I know and I've never yet suffered from cramps or any other 'salt depletion' type symptoms. I went through a short phase of using Zero tabs when I started running ultras just because everyone I spoke to about it said I'd need them on longer runs, but after a couple of races where I couldn't stomach them and I was pouring out my Zero juice and refilling my bottles with plain water, I just ditched them. I do use gels in races though, which usually have salt in them...

    I read something a while ago about your body finding its own 'salt equilibrium' through sweating, and that if you're a salty sweater - face and clothes crusted with it - that it's because you eat too much salt and have too much of it in you and your body's just trying to get rid of it.

    Wondered if this might have something to do with some folk apparently functioning much better with salt tabs and some folk really not getting on with them. Cause I hardly eat any salt at all. I don't use salt in cooking, I actually don't even have salt in the house, and I actively avoid salty packaged foods. So I wonder if that's why I don't get on with salt tabs, and maybe people who normally have a lot of salt in their diets are the ones who get most benefit from them because their body is used to functioning in an over-salted state...

    I don't know either way, like I say, I just wondered...

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