Indy 500 drivers undergoing unique sweat tests to come up with hydration plan

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – We know a lot of training and skill goes into getting IndyCar drivers to hit their peak performance. Even how much they sweat and what kind of sweat they have plays a huge part in how they handle heat and hydration on race day.

St. Vincent Sports Performance is giving some drivers sweat analysis to help them come up with a race day hydration plan.

“We’re really going to analyze the concentration of your sweat. What electrolytes are you losing? How much are you losing? A lot of times water even a generic sports drink is a lot of times not adequate for athletes,” sports dietitian Lindsay Langford said.

“Little electrodes are placed on the skin to produce sweat for me. You don’t even have to work out for me today,” she added.

IndyCar drivers Graham Rahal and Josef Newgarden had the test done to see what they should drink leading up to race day and the day of.

“I feel like the difference is not only about performance, but about mental cognition. They’re driving around that track at high speed of 200 plus miles per hour and just reaction time for them. Mental clarity. Focus. All of that really takes brain function and power that hydration is so key towards,” Langford said.

For IndyCar drivers, water isn’t necessarily the hydration cure. If you lose a lot of electrolytes while sweating you can get really dizzy, lightheaded, fatigued and you can pass out if you’re only drinking water.

This information could be helpful to you too if you’re an athlete or like working out.

“I think of our firefighters, I think of military. I think of construction workers out there in the sun all day they could benefit from knowing oh I need to stay hydrated with more than just water,” Langford said.

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