What To Eat or Drink For A Sprint Triathlon

Triathlon is a discipline that combines sustained physical exertion with swimming, cycling and, lastly, running. During your triathlon, the environment, your speed and the intensity of your effort will vary, really putting your body to the test. The quality of your energy reserves plays a key role in completing the race. Your preparation must be both physical and nutritional.
Decathlon Malaysia
May 12, 2021


The objective of this preparation period is to ensure that your energy and water reserves are

fully replenished before you start your triathlon.

- D-3: increase your carbohydrate intake by taking Maltodextrin (1 to 2 cans

a day). Increase your water intake. Reduce your consumption of raw vegetables, especially

if you have delicate intestines.

- The day before: your evening meal should contain easily digestible carbohydrates that

are low in fibre. E.g.: a soup of seasonal vegetables, chicken breast, pasta

(serve with 1 soup spoon of oil and a little turmeric. Turmeric works an excellent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory thanks to its main pigment: curcumin. In other words, this spice can be really useful for athletes.), stewed fruit.

- 3 hours before: your breakfast must replenish your energy reserves after the night's fast and

re-establish the right hydration balance. You should choose easily digestible foods. E.g.: Water or fruit

juice, energy cake or energy cream, stewed fruit.

- Standby rations: the aim of this period is to keep blood sugar at an optimal level and keep

hydrated while avoiding postprandial hypoglycaemia. The pre-race drink

is ideal for this period.


During your triathlon, the objective is to prevent dehydration and the total

exhaustion of energy reserves. The most important nutrients during your race are

water, carbohydrates and sodium.

- Transition 1: consume a short-distance energy gel to recover from the

swimming and get off to a flying start on the bike.

- Cycling: your priority should be hydration. Start drinking as soon as possible. ISO is the

ideal drink since it provides a good dose of liquid and carbohydrates, as well as a

decent quantity of sodium.

- Transition 2: drink a bottle of water to keep hydrated and you will also be able to

rinse out your mouth before the run.

- Running: make sure you don't miss any water stations, so you can stay

fully hydrated. This will help you maintain your running pace. Also

take a short-distance energy gel which you can take if you start to feel tired.


You have completed your triathlon and you should feel proud. However, don't forget to recover if

you want to start training quickly again, because your body will certainly be

tired. It is important for recovery to start as soon as the effort is over.

- 500ml of recovery drink together with 1 after-sport protein bar

It is important for triathletes to identify the quantities and nature of the foodstuffs they need to consume during races. The strategy you adopt must be well-established and all the products you use must be tested during training sessions to prevent any digestion difficulties during the race.