“It’s our workplace, on the water. I dedicated six years of training for a shot at 189 seconds of racing,” Rhodes said. “When you are giving up that much of your life for something, you want to do everything you can to perform at your best. That means putting the right fuel in your body,” he added.
With a normal morning of training consisting of around two hours of intensive paddling, Rhodes said he would lose anywhere between one to four litres of fluid and electrolytes. “That’s a similar amount that an industrial athlete will lose performing manual labour in a hot working environment. If you measured how tired you were after a shift or at the end of a swing compared with the beginning, you’d be amazed at the results. It’s exhausting and physically demanding work. If you don’t adequately replace fluids and electrolytes, you’ll soon find out how that affects your performance and recovery. You’ll struggle to back up that afternoon or the next day,” he said, adding that diet and alcohol consumption are also a critical part of the picture.
It is this experience and perspective that inspired Rhodes along with fellow founders and champion athletic competitors Tim Bird, Brad Rodgers and Owen Hughes (also an Olympian) to help develop Thorzt’s Industrial Athlete Education Program.
The program aims to educate teams about hydration so that it naturally becomes inherent in the workplace culture. Offered globally, the Thorzt team will:
• Alert workers to the dangers of under hydrating
• Audit current hydration practices in the workplace
• Identify hydration challenges unique to each workplace
• Present practical methods of integrating programmed drinking into the daily routine