Gatorade as a Workout Supplement
Gatorade is one of the most well-known brands in the athletic world, and for good reason. Power-packed with carbohydrates, electrolytes and other hydrating and energizing components, Gatorade helps you stay alert and physically motivated throughout every workout. It’s the go-to beverage for athletes, marathoners, hikers, and any number of people who live active lifestyles.
But what is it that makes Gatorade such an effective addition to our workout routines?
First and foremost, there’s the obvious answer: Electrolytes. When we exercise, it’s vital that we keep ourselves hydrated since we’re not only burning through our body’s resources, we’re sweating out the water and electrolytes our body needs. Electrolytes, including sodium and potassium, help the body retain water, improve brain function, and increase muscular endurance when being ingested by an athlete during exercise.
That being said, Gatorade should only really be regularly used by those working up a decent sweat, burning a lot of calories, or sick enough to need serious electrolyte replacement. Otherwise, the high amount of sugar and carbohydrates in sports drinks can be unhealthy if you're just sitting on the couch. When athletes drink Gatorade, they’re usually burning through their body’s resources at a rapid rate, which makes the high amount of sugar and sodium both necessary and helpful for endurance performance. Like gatorade says, "You have to sweat it to get it!"
The Gatorade Endurance line has taken the basic principles of electrolyte beverages and amplified it. You can choose from their endurance drink mix formula, chews, or endurance Gatorlytes to provide you with a combination of quick absorbing energy and electrolytes that will keep you both fueled and hydrated for long events. A staple at aid stations for more than 300 races nationwide, the Gatorade Endurance products are helping athletes perform their best. This line is perfect for Ironman competitions, ultra athletes, and those athletes racing in other longer endurance races.
Gatorade Endurance Energy Chews
These Gatorade Endurance Energy Chews are tasty, gummy chews that provide fast absorbing carbohydrates for quick energy when you need it most. Offered in Fruit Punch or Orange flavor, these chews have a gummy texture that is easy to eat during exercise. These are a favorite among runners and cyclists because the packaging is compact, light weight and easy to carry during exercise for quick access to energy. Each package of four chews has 120 calories, 31 grams of carbohydrates, 110 mg of sodium, and 55 mg of potassium.
How to Use It
These chews are the most effective at providing quick acting energy when consumed before or during prolonged workouts or races. With about 30 grams of carbs per serving, it is recommend to have one to two packages every hour in addition to the Gatorade Endurance Drink Mix.
Gatorade Endurance Drink Mix
The Gatorade Endurance Drink Mix is a cramp-fighting formula that can be added to right into your water bottle. This product is essentially a re-vamp of the previous formula, and is a much finer powder than it was before, making for more satisfying results and less of a grainy texture. They also doubled the sodium and potassium, and removed artificial flavors so you get more of what you need, and less of what you don't. Each serving (about one scoop per 10oz or half of a pack) contains 310mg of sodium, 23g of carbohydrates, 14g of sugar, and 90 calories total. The available flavors are:
How to Use It
This drink mix is meant to be used during more intense workout days, especially when you're out there sweating for a couple of hours, or if it's hot and humid. This product is too high in sugar and sodium to be used for light training days or days where you'll be sitting on the couch, so it's best to save for your harder training days or events. Aim for one bottle every 60-90 minutes during activity to stay fueled and hydrated.
Gatorade Endurance Gatorlytes
Gatorade Endurance Gatorlytes is a powder meant to be added to your favorite sports drinks, and it’s specifically meant to target cramping. This can be a game-changer for marathoners and serious athletes, increasing the length of time they’re able to remain active and minimizing the risk of mid-event injury. Musculoskeletal cramping is one of the most common performance reducing ailments among athletes, so anything that can be done to lower your likelihood of experiencing one (especially right before or during a big event like a sports game or a marathon) should be looked into.
IMPORTANT NOTE: This product is only meant to be used by someone about to do a long, intense workout or someone who is a heavy or salty sweater. Each pouch has 780mg of sodium and 400mg of potassium along with chloride, magnesium, and calcium. This is way too much sodium for someone who is either sedentary or only intending to exercise for less than an hour or at a leisurely pace. Ingesting this much sodium can be harmful when you’re not working up a serious sweat. It’s also recommended that you test this product out before the day of a marathon or big game so you know ahead of time how it’s going to affect your workout.
How to Use It
This product is definitely not meant to be added to plain water, as it has a strong salty taste to it. However, it goes very well with other sports drinks (especially Gatorade, of course), which is the best way to get the maximum benefits from both sources anyway. Mix one package into the hydration beverage of your choice and start drinking it once you’ve begun to work up a sweat.
The Bottom Line
Gatorade is a fantastic beverage for athletes of all kinds. The electrolyte and carbohydrate heavy drinks are often more than enough to fuel someone through to the end of their workout, marathon, or game. However, for those times when you’re pushing yourself even farther, you might need a bit more of a boost, and the Gatorade Endurance line is here to save the day (and your race)! Whether it’s avoiding cramps or needing to find a reserve of energy to cross the finish line, Gatorade Endurance can give you exactly what you need.