Life, Workouts, Fueltip, Sports Drinks: What to look for

Okay, so I apologize once more as I realize these posts are few and far apart. I hope you will accept my sincere apology and did not think that I disappeared. So much for my attempt at consistent posting. However, with a new job (at Sports Club/LA ) and 2 nutrition courses, things have been a little hectic.

I’ve started a class in sports nutrition and exercise..well..2 classes to be exact, as I am pursuing my certificate in sports nutrition. There is something so rewarding about learning and it is something I will continue to pursue throughout my adult life. I’ve had the enjoyment of learning about before, during, after post-workout nutrition, protein for athletes, VO2max assessments, and the basic principles of optimizing exercise through programming and nutrition. Not to mention loads of homework, a new cross fit strength training program, and of course managing the bills in between.

You get the point.

Despite my type-A personality and go-getter spirit, I lately have felt the endless need to nap and remain disorganized, all while attempting not to become depressed over losing my twice a day workout routine. A one hour retreat to cross fit will have to do in the meantime. I must admit, I miss the days of ample clean laundry, late night dinners, social hour, and feeling refreshed. But, such is life.

Back to the point of this blog, which is to share with you what I am learning in my classes. Which, currently our topic of discussion revolves around sports drinks. So here goes everything (well most everything) you need to know:

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As an athlete, one of the most important things to consider is hydration. Maintaining adequate hydration is key to optimal performance. Even a slight amount of dehydration can affect how well your workout goes. The Position of the American Dietetic Association and the American College of Sports Medicine, states that after exercise, athletes should consume adequate fluids to replace sweat losses during exercise. Approximately 16 to 24 oz (450 to 675 mL) fluid for every pound (0.5 kg) of body weight lost during exercise.

Not an athlete but still working out? A sports drink may still be something to consider if you are sweating heavily or working out for longer than 90 minutes.

Sports drinks contain electrolytes, such as sodium and potassium. When working out heavily, your body loses electrolytes through sweat. These electrolytes are essential for proper functioning of cells throughout the body, and therefore they need to be replaced! Drinks with carbohydrates are beneficial because research shows that it can delay fatigue and allows for post-workout muscle glycogen synthesis. Furthermore,  sport drinks with a variety of sources of carbohydrate may enhance fluid absorption and rehydrate better (glucose, sucrose,  fructose, ect), over water alone. Image

So, you might ask “What should I look for?”

Look for a drink that provides 4-8% carbohydrate solution or roughly 15-20 grams of carbohydrate per 8 ounces.

Some good choices:

Gatorade Thirst Quencher

(Roughly 8oz)

Calories: 50

Sodium: 110 mg

Potassium: 30mg

Carbohydrates: 14 grams

Protein: 0g

Fuel for Fire: (more of a baby food texture but drinkable)

Calories: 130

Carbohydrate 15-20 depending upon flavor

Sugar: 12 grams

Protein: 0

Sodium: 10mg

Zico Coconut Water Natural:

Calories: 60

Carbohydrates: 15

Protein: 0

Sodium: 54g

Potassium: 690 mg

Gatorade Endurance 

(8fl oz)

Calories: 50

Carbohydrates: 14grams

Sodium: 200mg

Potassium: 90mg

All of these drinks can be consumed during your workout to help fuel you through and keep you performing at your best. If consumed post-workout, it might be beneficial to consume with a source of protein.

Resource: Dunford., M., Sports Nutrition: A Practice Manual for Professionals, Fifth Edition, The American Dietetic Association, (Chicago), 2012.

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