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What hydration drink mix should I train and race with?

Have you ever asked yourself, "what hydration mix should I use for this workout"?

With every brand offering something to rival another, where do we begin?

First, here is a shortcut.

I checked out my pantry, and this is what I'm using at home right now and why.

Here is the complete guide. Pick your workout type/duration and then the recommended hydration choices.

Short Workouts

under 1 hour & low to moderate Intensity

This is where you want something that tastes good and has electrolytes, but you don't need the extra sugar of the other drink options. My go-to in this category are the following:

Short Workouts

under 1 hour & moderate to high intensity

Here you want a bit more sugar in your hydration. It will also increase the flavor, so you are inclined to drink more often. The sugar isn't so much for energy but to accelerate the absorption of electrolytes, so you rehydrate faster.

Longer Workouts

over 1 hour – without going high carb

You'll want to kick up the sugar for your workouts over one hour. As mentioned above, this will help you absorb electrolytes faster and provide more sugar/energy without getting into the high-carb category.

Longer Workouts

over 1 hour – high carb options

If you want to optimize your performance, you will want to increase your hourly intake of carbs to 80 to 100g per hour. You can do this through gels, chews, bars, and hydration. Hydration is often the easiest way when you are going hard and/or it's tough to open and swallow a gel or chew.

Recovery Hydration & Daily Hydration

This is often your best opportunity to rehydrate from a challenging workout and stay hydrated during your workday. The key here is low sugar. You don't want the extra calories – anything below 8g of sugar is good.

🚨 Emergency Rehdyration 🚨

If you destroyed yourself in the heat, heavy sweating indoors, have altitude sickness, or are desperate to rehydrate after a long flight or night of hard partying, here are the options for you:

Pre-Workout Hydration?

I would consider pre-workout more of a functional beverage. Sure, you are trying to prehydrate, but you are typically looking for a quick boost of energy and mental acuity. Here are your top choices:


Avatar Matt Johnson

Matt Johnson / Friday, March 17, 2023