“Myself and co-creator Nick Hood were attending a series of sportive cycling events around the country and began to notice something of a trend among the riders taking part in what were often extremely tough endurance events,” explains Dan Slight, race kayaker and CEO with endur8 . Many of the cyclists we were seeing had their nutrition plans (instructing them when to take on fuel) hand-written on bits of paper and taped to the handlebars of their bike. Some just had no plans at all. We thought ‘there must be an easier way to do this’ – one that isn’t so ad hoc and uses the existing and emerging science around refuelling and nutrition.”
Their observations sparked a discussion around possible software applications.
Nick, a former semi-pro rugby player, was working for a sports nutrition company at the time and his suggestion of developing a more structured, scientific, approach to refuelling appealed to Dan.
At first Nick and Dan examined how best to convert those paper plans into something more formulated, science-backed and techie – a means of monitoring fuelling during activity with a view to adapting performance. “Pretty much from the off we were thinking of a smartphone app – especially when you’re looking at athletes in sports where performance monitoring apps are the norm already. It was only when we started working with Paul Howard, an entrepreneur with a background in life sciences, did we begin to get a better grasp of the full potential and additional features we could build into endur8. Neither Nick nor I had a strong tech-based background. But we’d identified the need and certainly felt that within technology there lay an answer.”
That answer comes in the form of a unique algorithm endur8 uses to calculate the energy requirements of an endurance athlete over the course of a training session and competition.
Based upon research from the American College of Sports Medicine and nutrition and used and endorsed by sports scientists at British Cycling, it calculates how much energy – based on the widely accepted recommendation of 0.5-1g of carbohydrates per kg of bodyweight – an athlete requires each hour, depending on the intensity of the activity. By entering some basic information and allowing endur8 to make the necessary calculations, that athlete can receive alerts via the app to take on a recommended amount of carbohydrate to top up their energy levels at the right time.
“We have worked hard to get the algorithm and technology to a point where is offers unique benefits to our users, but we also foresee great potential for further enhancements and adaptations across different sports and platforms. We are determined to listen to our community of users and involve them in this exciting development journey for endur8”