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PREPD Hydration: Your Secret Weapon To Improve Performance & Recovery

by Sportitude
26 Jul 2022

As a runner or athlete your hydration strategy is a fundamental aspect in your performance and recovery. What you put into your body counts – with water being essential to aid in the transportation of oxygen and nutrients to your hard-working muscles, to prevent overheating through temperature regulation, to improve power output, support your muscle mobility, reduce your risk of muscle cramps, eliminate waste and maintain concentration.

In short, water is critical to every organ and muscle in your body. 

Even a small drop in hydration can have dramatic consequences to your performance. For athletes, particularly those training at a competitive level or in endurance sports, it isn’t always as simple as drinking more water to compensate for fluid lost in sweat. The challenge comes from the fact that the amount of water that can be absorbed by your gut is limited. This is where scientific advancements in sports hydration can dramatically boost your performance potential.

Sportitude puts the spotlight on Australian born PREPD Hydration – a revolutionary formula developed by Flinders University (Adelaide) in collaboration with Yale University (USA) with a mission to “make water work harder”.

PREPD Hydration has been tested on real-world athletes competing in sports including running, triathlon, AFL, soccer, basketball, netball and cycling with proven hydration benefits to boost your energy and endurance.

The Origins Of PREPD Hydration

PREPD is more than a sports drink – it’s a hydration enhancer.

Interestingly, the origins of PREPD aren’t in sports nutrition. Its roots stem from the research of Flinders University and Yale University that were collaboratively searching for a medical solution to treat extreme dehydration in developing countries – a symptom of the potentially life-threatening diseases cholera and rotavirus.

Prior to this research, there wasn’t any oral rehydration solution (ORS) recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO) that was able to increase the fluid absorption of the large intestine, only the small intestine.

The identification of a unique resistant starch (RS) was revolutionary – unlocking the potential of the large intestine to absorb up to 5L of fluid each day– essentially making water more effective at hydrating the body.

The pioneers behind this research have stayed on track of their original aspirations to discover effective solutions to treat severe dehydration in third-world countries. This research spanning over two decades has also been applied to sports nutrition, with this unique resistant starch highlighted as a game-changer for athletes – and giving life to PREPD.

The Science Behind PREPD Hydration

Resistant starch (RS) is a type of carbohydrate (your body’s predominant energy source) that’s naturally found in potatoes, green bananas, legumes, oats, rice and other day-to-day foods in small amounts. The term resistant starch refers to the fact that the starch is ‘digestion-resistant’ or impervious to absorption by the small intestine (similarly to fibre), allowing it to travel to the large intestine where its health benefits can be unlocked.

What's unique about the resistant starch in PREPD Hydration is the extent it's able to maximise fluid absorption in the large intestine. 

90% of water and nutrient absorption takes place in the small intestine, with the other 10% occurring in the stomach and large intestine. Being lower down in the digestive tract, the large intestine (also called large bowel) is responsible for absorbing water and salts from ‘leftover' matter that wasn’t extracted in the earlier stages of digestion, as well as to eliminate waste. 

The patented unique resistant starch in PREPD has a prebiotic effect - functioning as ‘food’ to supply nutrients to and support the healthy growth of good bacteria (probiotics) in the gut. Short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) are produced from the resistant starch as it’s broken down by your ‘friendly’ gut flora. When in the right balance and combination, short-chain fatty acids boost fluid absorption of the large intestine – translating to increased hydration for athletes so you can train longer, harder and recover faster.

The PREPD research team have identified the unique resistant starch that’s most effective in amplifying fluid absorption and have used it to create a hydrating formula to make it easily accessible to athletes. As a bonus beyond purely hydration and gut health, studies suggest that resistant starch also has a role in supporting immune system function, the production of vitamins and reduction of toxins.

Keep in mind that approximately only 50% - 80% of the fluids you consume during physical activity are absorbed by your body – meaning rehydrating drop for drop to combat sweat isn’t realistic. This potentially puts you at a fluid deficit as water is lost through perspiration.

PREPD is revolutionising the way you hydrate - allowing you to get more out of the water you drink. Considering that your body can’t store water to draw upon as needed, including PREPD in your hydration plan has numerous benefits in priming your body for activity, replacing fluid lost in sweat and speeding up recovery. 

How To Include PREPD In Your Hydration Strategy

PREPD is a 2-part formula designed to elevate athletic performance and support your endurance. PREPD Hydration products also can improve your cognitive function and sleep quality, keeping in mind that sleep is the stage your body is most ‘active’ in performing muscle repair.

For best results in warding off dehydration-related fatigue, include both the PREPD Prime Pre-Workout Hydration Enhancing Sports Drink and PREPD Recover Post-Workout Hydration Enhancing Sports Drink as part of your hydration strategy.

Whereas carb-loading ensures an athlete’s energy stores are full prior to an event, utilising PREPD is essentially ‘hydration-loading’ – with PREPD Prime increasing your body’s capacity to absorb water in the lead up to and during training and racing.

Be aware that PREPD products are not a substitute for water. They should be used to complement rather than to replace a personalised hydration and nutrition plan that includes drinking plenty of water, consuming sports / electrolyte drinks (if necessary) and wholesome sports nutrition.

Sportitude’s 8 Essential Hydration Tips About Water, Sports Drinks & Sweat and the Sweat Rate Test can provide guidance on how to build a personalised hydration strategy. PREPD is your ‘secret weapon’ for taking that strategy to the next level.

Step 1: PREPD Prime For Performance

PREPD Prime elevates the capacity of your digestive system to absorb fluids from water and other sports drinks, keeping you hydrated for longer. Ideally PREPD Prime should be ingested 10 – 18 hours prior to training or competition (and no less than 6 hours).

For a morning start to your training, race day or sports match, drink PREPD Prime with dinner the night prior, as an after dinner treat (with loads of benefits) or before bed.

Step 2: PREPD Recover For Post-Workout Recovery

Even after your training is done and dusted, your body continues to work hard to repair muscle – essentially building them back stronger – and gradually returns to a pre-workout state by stepping into ‘recovery mode'.

PREPD Recover supports the rapid rehydration and replenishment of electrolytes lost in sweat to speed up your recovery. The PREPD Recover range also has a focus on supporting muscle repair, containing Branched-Chain Amino Acid (BCAA) and Whey Protein Isolate. Being low in sugar (hypotonic), it's ideal for athletes that are conscious about their sugar intake.

Ideally PREPD Recover should be ingested immediately after training or competition to boost rehydration in the 24 hours following physical activity.

PREPD’s Performance & Recovery Benefits

PREPD Hydration products help kick-start your athletic performance in a well-hydrated state and allow you to absorb fluids from water and sports drinks more readily during physical activity and recovery. This has numerous benefits including:

  • Boosting your energy, power output and concentration
  • Heightening your capacity to perform consistently over an extended period of time (e.g. marathon, triathlon)
  • Minimising your risk of muscle cramps and dehydration-related fatigue
  • Lowering your thirst during physical activity
  • Lowering your weight reduction from fluids lost in sweat
  • Speeding up recovery post-workout
  • Reducing the risk of post-exercise headaches

PREPD is also free of the nasty side effects of some sports drinks, like digestive upset from constipation and bloating. Being HASTA certified, it contains no prohibited substances and athletes can use it confidently at an elite level.

PREPD Hydration: Enjoy On-The-Go

We’ve been through the performance and recovery benefits of PREPD Hydration… but we know for athletes to truly enjoy a hydration enhancer, convenience and flavour make a difference.

PREPD Ready-To Drink Bottles

PREPD Prime Pre-Workout Hydration Enhancing Sports Drink and PREPD Recover Post-Workout Hydration Enhancing Sports Drink are ready-to-drink and are available in 350ml bottles – so you can grab-and-go.

A favourite for fruit-lovers, they come in Mango & Passionfruit or Strawberry & Kiwi flavours with a thick consistency like a fresh smoothie and include real fruit puree as an ingredient. Keep them in the fridge for a refreshing flavour hit.

Both flavours are gluten free and lactose free. The Mango & Passionfruit flavour is also vegan-friendly.

PREPD Powder Sachets

PREPD Prime Hydration Enhancing Powder and PREPD Recover Hydration Enhancing Powder are available in your choice of delicious chocolate and vanilla flavours like your favourite desserts. With the dry powder in an easily portable sachet, you can throw PREPD into your gym bag or travel bag and prepare it as needed.

Simply mix 1 sachet with 300ml of chilled water or your choice of milk and enjoy.

The PREPD Prime and PREPD Recover sachet are gluten free (though they contain milk and soy and therefore may not be suitable for certain diets). 

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Izzi Batt-Doyle, South Australian long-distance runner, Olympian and co-founder of Adelaide’s RunAsOne running club is a PREPD ambassador. She uses PREPD (specifically the 2-part PREPD Prime and PREPD Recovery combo in the Mango & Passionfruit flavour) as a vital part of her self-care and recovery plan as an elite level athlete. We proudly look forward to watching her compete in the Women’s 10,000m in the Birmingham Commonwealth Games on the 3rd of August.

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There’s really no competition when putting PREPD Hydration side by side with stand-alone sports drinks, but we understand that athletes may hesitate to adjust their tried and tested hydration plan.

As we touched on previously, PREPD is designed to complement the water and/or sports drinks you consume in your hydration plan, rather than to replace them. This means if you already have your hydration strategy virtually spot-on, it won’t need a complete overhaul to make PREPD a worthy addition to how you hydrate.

Trying PREPD doesn’t take any more commitment or expense than giving PREPD Prime and PREPD Recovery sachets a go and feeling the improved energy and hydration firsthand. If you exercise for any more than an hour at a time, it's a valuable and powerful addition to your hydration strategy.

An active lifestyle involving everything from marathon training and surviving your next triathlon to trail running has its challenges in managing and balancing your hydration needs – so both PREPD Prime and PREPD Recover can be consumed independently as desired, although we recommended teaming them up for the best results in supporting your performance and recovery.

Happy hydrating!