Monday, July 2, 2012

A Tip for Conducting Warm Weather Training and Operations

About a fifteen years ago I read an article in Police Magazine about conducting training and/or operations in extreme hot weather which has served me well ever since.  It pertained to hydration and keeping your troops hydrated throughout the mission.

While water is an excellent source of hydration we tend to lose essential salts and minerals when we perspire and expel waste fluids.  I hope I don't have to explain that last part?  We need to replace those elements if we want to keep our body up and running in extreme hot weather.

Gatoraide and similar sports drinks are an excellent source of hydration and for the salts and minerals our bodies need, but we can expel most of those before our body can absorb them.  A great way to ensure that your body absorbs these salts and minerals is to cut your Gatoraide with water by 50%. 

Back in the day when I did Surface Operations with the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary on Lake Michigan, I used to take a half-gallon container and pour a quart of Gatoraide and a quart of water into it and refrigerate it overnight.  That mixture kept me going on the boat even when temperatures were extremely high and there was barely any wind blowing across on the lake.  A stifling situation to say the least.

Next time you're going to attend or conduct hot weather training give this hydration tip a try.  You may find yourself performing better, especially at the end of the day.