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Now that my rides are getting longer I'm starting to rethinking my current sport drinks. I'm currently doing half gatorade (G2) and half water mixture. The problem I have is that I do not feel the gatorade is good enough at replenishing my body :mad2:. I'm considering going with a powder that I can bring around with me and need some suggestions. I'd like something that will allow me to go long distances without bonking and something that will replenish my body after a long ride. I'm considering Heed and/or No-Xplode. Anyone have any other good suggestions?
 

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asnpcwiz said:
Now that my rides are getting longer I'm starting to rethinking my current sport drinks. I'm currently doing half gatorade (G2) and half water mixture. The problem I have is that I do not feel the gatorade is good enough at replenishing my body :mad2:. I'm considering going with a powder that I can bring around with me and need some suggestions. I'd like something that will allow me to go long distances without bonking and something that will replenish my body after a long ride. I'm considering Heed and/or No-Xplode. Anyone have any other good suggestions?
Over the last year or so, I've moved away from sport drinks. I now separate my hydration/electrolytes/nutrition, which makes it easier to dial in each. What I found when I was using sport drinks is I was taking in way too many calories during my ride in a effort to stay hydrated. It also made it a PITA to replenish water when coming across the random water fountain while riding.

I just drink water, but I will take salt/electrolyte capsules on any long/hot training sessions - it takes a bit to dial these in. But I drink a lot of water. Not shy here.

I use goo packs for nutrition on long rides (I prefer hammer gel). Nothing for the first hour, then goo packs every 20 minutes or so.

The alternatives are always water, potato chips, and milky way bars, but they're not as cool.
 

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On long rides (2+ hours) I carry two bottles, one with water and one with HEED. The HEED is for calories; I need extra electrolytes for rides of 4+ hours. I also bring gel and bars depending on the ride length. It's easier to get down enough calories if they're in multiple forms.

If you like Hammer gel you can get a flask and a big bottle of gel. That's cheaper than individual packets and doesn't leave empty wrappers to carry (which always seem to leak goo) or put into the landfill. The only problem is that you're stuck with one flavor.

I have not tried No-Xplode but it sounds like it's aimed at bodybuilders not cyclists. There's not many calories in it so you would need to have more calories from other sources. On long rides the problem is getting enough calories, not avoiding them.
 

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ericm979 said:
On long rides the problem is getting enough calories, not avoiding them.
true that, but on hot days, you can take in too many carbs for your body to absorb, causing some stomach upset, if you're not careful, and drink nothing but a high carb sports drink. on really long rides, hopefully you're in a mode where you're metabolizing fat too.
 

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millerinva said:
true that, but on hot days, you can take in too many carbs for your body to absorb, causing some stomach upset, if you're not careful, and drink nothing but a high carb sports drink.
That's why I use two bottles, one with water. So I can adjust my intake as needed.

I've found the "too many carbs on hot days" problem, for me, is actually caused by the lack of salt. One of the symptoms of hyponatremia is your digestive system shuts down. I can tell when my sports drink, which had been tasting just fine all day, suddenly tastes terrible.
 

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Second the Cytomax. The complex sugars are (supposedly) quicker and better absorbed than the sucrose found in gatorade and accelerade. Used it in just one 90min race and it worked, though technically I never bonked in the past on gatorade either.

Banana, peanut butter and honey work well as a a pre-race meal.
 

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Or

Creakyknees said:
water
banana(s)
honey.
Or, water and some other food you like. As others have noted, calorie needs are pretty constant while hydration/electrolyte needs can vary widely with temperature and humidity. On a long ride in cool weather, I might drink a total of 80 oz. In hot and humid weather, closer to double that. I like fig bars and salted mixed nuts. I add table salt and lite salt to the fig bars and the mixed nuts, adding more electrolytes in hot/humid weather. Works for me. Also, research has demonstrated that a mix of carbohydrates (aka real food) absorbs significantly better than a single sugar (aka energy drink/gel).
 

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I like cytomax too and I havent had any problems with it on hot days other than it gets hot. I have a group ride Saturday morning that will be 19+ pace / 75 miles. Take off is at 7:30 and its forecasting temps at 79 F ("feels like" 84), at 9 its supposed to be 84 ("feels like" 90) and by 11 it is supposed to be 92 ("feels like" 102).

I'm taking 2 bottles cyctomax and 1 water. Were making extra stops along the route. I'll post back on how it goes.
 

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For energy drinks, I use Cytomax.

Basically, one 24oz bottle of Water (with Elete water if it's hot out), one 24oz bottle of Cytomax (1.5 scoops), and if I am doing a 40-50 mile ride I'll take a 21oz bottle of Hammer Perpetuem for calories that are easy to sip (I mix 3.5 scoops with water - 130lbs female).

I also will take a bar (may or may not eat it, more in case I need it), fruit leaters/clif bloks, and sometimes Sport Beans.

I try to eat the real food before and after, and just want small easy to carry food for while I'm actually pedaling.


I've used HEED on shorter rides to keep calories coming in, but usually it is because I'll have an afternoon snack around 3. Ride around 5, and dinner doesn't wind up being until 7 or later. So going 4-5 hours without food with an hour ride in between? I need to be taking something in, so I'll use HEED or Cytomax, etc.

The Cytomax I tend to like for longer rides because I feel like my legs stay more fresh for longer. Not necessary for an hour long road ride, so I kind of like the HEED for that.
 

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I like Heed. Maybe takes a while to get used to the taste.

I've had good luck following Steve Born's basic recommendations:
Fluids: 20-25 ounces hourly
Sodium chloride (salt): 300-600 mg hourly (3-6 Endurolytes)
Calories: 240-280 calories hourly

So for the basic two-hour group ride, two bottles each with 2 1/2 scoops of Heed works. If by morning, I have coffee but skip breakfast. If by evening, I try to eat three to four hours before the ride, nothing but water in the three hours preceding the ride. You might get some hunger pangs, but if you bring the calories on the bike, it works well.

Three hours ride or more I think you want to have something with some protein, in part to stem that hungry feeling. My wife has had good experience with perpetuem.
 

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I've always used Cytomax and been happy with it, but someone gave me a case of Accelerade and I think I like that as well or better. Has a little protein in it unlike Cytomax.
 

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I'll second accelerade (the fruit punch is the only flavor I like). Performance has it usually on sale ($29 for monster container). The endurox R4 (same company) is a good recovery drink (to have right after a ride).
 

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I was a Cytomax snob until I started doing very, very long rides, like brevets. Cytomax is fine. It's basically flavored maltodextrin with a few Magic Ingredients tossed in.

During my brevet days I was having to stay hydrated and energized for very long rides with no support, beyond whatever the local Quick Mart had. I went from being a Cytomax snob to putting almost anything from plain water, to Cytomax mix, diluted OJ, or diluted Coke into my bottles... whatever sounded good to my stomach under the conditions. They all worked. Absent the Cytomax Magic Ingredients, they are all just sugar calories. (Cytomax might argue that maltodextrin is very different from other sugars. Maybe so. To me it's just another step in the corn sugar process chain.)

So I agree with the posts about regulating your water, calories, and electrolytes (salt & potassium) as you need EACH of them. Cytomax mixes water and calories. That's a convenience. You might get 150-200 cals/bottle, but Cytomax is (was?) not a great source of electrolytes. You can get comparable numbers of calories from lots of drink or food sources. Of course, many Gu-type packs are just 100 cals/packet. Hardly worth the effort if you actually need hundreds calories to get you the next 20, 30, or 50 miles. So now I usually eat Real Food (often PB&J on whole grain bread - almost a nutritional match for many energy bars) and drink water, unless someone else is buying the flavored drink mix.
 

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G2 is a low calorie lifestyle drink, and you're diluting it by half again? A 16 ounce bottle of half water and half G2 will have 25 calories. Try using all gatorade, which will have 100 calories in a bottle.

There are a lot of fancy and more expensive options too, but the powdered gatorade you can get at costco is the cheapest way to make a sports drink.
 

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first off, ive heard from a guy that rides who used to run track in college that the fitness instructors told them to not drink gatorade while training, but you can drink it for recovery afterwards.... so i guess i'd suggest stay away from gatorade while on the bike....

anyways, i recently started mixing Cytomax with my water. seems to work good. if you read the description of what it does it also just sounds like it'd help. its not a huge advantage i dont think but it definitly helps with dehydration.

one thing if you mix something like that, make sure you drink a lot of water before the ride. to me it seems like the stuff helps transport fluid to where it needs to go faster, so if you dont have enough water in the first place it might actual dehydrate you. i think thats what happened to me on a recent ride.
 
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