Everything’s bigger in Texas, or so they say. According to Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller, the claim certainly applies to the state’s summer weather. Growing up and training in the Texas heat—”tough, hot, humid days”—gave Miller an appreciation for staying hydrated. But despite his best efforts, the NFL’s 2011 2nd overall draft pick discovered during his testing at the Gatorade Sports Science Institute that no matter how much water he was drinking, his body was still dehydrated.
“It’s more than drinking water, you have to get those electrolytes in and keep them in your body,” says Miller. “Keeping hydrated with how hard I’m working means drinking more than usual. But electrolytes are one of the biggest things.”
Since changing his hydration plan, Miller has become passionate about educating high school athletes on how to “Beat the Heat” with Gatorade. For the second year in a row, Miller has teamed up with Gatorade to help athletes avoid this all-too-common nutrition mistake.
“[Beat The Heat] is a great program to teach kids to be safe,” says Miller, “You need to be educated to be focused on your fluid intake.”
This is the program’s seventh year of raising awareness among athletes, parents and coaches about the importance of consuming the right fuel before, during and after athletic activity to help reduce the risk of heat-related illnesses. All program information is based on research conducted at GSSI. Gatorade scientists found that “70 percent of high school football players could show up for practice inadequately hydrated.” Further, their studies reveal that “electrolyte consumption via food or beverages can help athletes stay hydrated for longer. Dehydration or poor hydration increases the risk for heat illness.”
Miller says, “Gatorade One, Two and Three are a big part of what keeps me going. Gatorade Two is my favorite. I like the fruit punch; it’s a must for my workouts. Gatorade is great for providing an easy way to stay hydrated.”
On the field and off, this NFL great loves his Gatorade. Check out this ESPN clip of Miller to watch how he’d crush you in a Gatorade chugging contest.
For more on Gatorade’s Heat Safety, check out their online kit. It includes educational resources from GSSI (also available for free download at nfl.com/trainingcamp). For more information on heat illness prevention, visit nflhealthsafety.com.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons