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  1. #1
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    Alternatives to Gatorade that aren't as sweet

    I find that Gatorade irritates my teeth from the sweetness after a few hours of exercise. What are some good alternatives that aren't as sweet?

  2. #2
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    WATER WATER WATER.... or buy the gatorade powder and only make it with half the recommended amount of crystals, a little watered down but not as sweet either.

  3. #3
    The Missing
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    Try hammer nutrition's HEED

    it has half the sugar at least of Gatorade

    mild taste as well nothing too overwhelming

  4. #4
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    Endurolytes from Hammer Nutrition, no sugar.

    Endurolytes - Electrolyte Replacement Supplement | Hammer Nutrition

  5. #5
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    I prefer Cytomax, doesn't taste terrible, and works well.

  6. #6
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    Poweraid zero plus Heed or Perpetum mix or H2O with endurolyte pills.

  7. #7
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    Cliff shot, 91% organic, good sugar (cane sugar) and tast good.

    But water is the thing to drink, unless you ride for hours..

  8. #8
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    I've been hearing things about Pedialyte. Apparently it's got less sugar than Gatorade. I'm thinking of giving it a shot and seeing how it works out.

  9. #9
    is turning a big gear
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    I prefer water and gels/ gu's every 20-30 minutes on long rides.

  10. #10
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    infinit nutrion can make a mix exactly as sweet as you want.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by lapinGTI View Post
    Cliff shot, 91% organic, good sugar (cane sugar) and tast good.

    But water is the thing to drink, unless you ride for hours..

    I started using this when I moved to Tejas from SoCal. Not as sweet as Gatorade but effectively replaces electrolytes. When I did the straight water thing I would have issues riding in the heat for more than two hours and gave the Cliff Shot a try. So far so good, but I usually will drink two bottles of water first and use the Cliff Shot as my last bottle.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by COLINx86 View Post
    I prefer Cytomax, doesn't taste terrible, and works well.
    I've tried just about everything and always go back to Cytomax.
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  13. #13
    holy schfincter..
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    Nuun tablets. no sugar, only electrolytes. I have a large jar of HEED right now but I drink it doluted, a bit sweet for me. FWIW I'm also a big Cytomax fan.

    Honestly, behind powerade, i don't think theres a worse/sweeter drink you could use than Gatorade..

  14. #14
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    I like Cytomax but at about 60% regular strength.
    I like to ride bikes.

  15. #15
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    You must be a early 90's throw back or something! I can't really begin to suffer without the Cyto taste in mouth. Much better than the old Exceed. Ah, the good old taste of Fresh Apple or Fruit Punch in the FL humidity brings back some memories!

  16. #16
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    + 1 for HEED. One of the better tasting sports drinks out there IMO. If i dont like how it tastes while racing, i'm less likely to drink as much as i should. I've found it easy on the stomach, too.

  17. #17
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    Water and a pinch of sea salt. Never had cramps since. Use GU (or equivalent) for your sugar. Advantages: cheap and clean. No more scuzzy bottles.

  18. #18
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    ultima powder. or. pedilyte

  19. #19
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    I'd suggest trying Hammer HEED. It's all natural and is very mild. The orange (think creamsicle) or melon are my favs. I use it on any ride up to about the 3.5 hr mark and hit an occasional gel maybe once an hour.

    Just about anything is better than Gatorade though (gator-gut, anyone?). Once you find a better all-natural alternative you will never go back.

  20. #20
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    Gu Brew for me. The blueberry pomegranate contains a lot more electrolytes than Heed and doesn't use sugar alcohol.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrailNRG View Post
    You must be a early 90's throw back or something! I can't really begin to suffer without the Cyto taste in mouth. Much better than the old Exceed. Ah, the good old taste of Fresh Apple or Fruit Punch in the FL humidity brings back some memories!
    Oh yeah, fresh apple in Miami. That's where it all started In 93.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by estabro View Post
    I prefer water and gels/ gu's every 20-30 minutes on long rides.
    What he said . . .

    Another option is two water bottles, one sports drink, one water, and first drink your sports drink and then follow with water right after. Bit of a pain for a short race, but not so bad on longer endurance events and fine for training ...
    You can also do this with hydration packs using two bladders half full for example....

    Been a diabetic for couple years and just started insulin this summer so been reading a lot on nutrition, blood sugar, plus testing with meter. From what I have learned so far is gels, candy, or any sugary drink (such as pop, juice, sports drink) will keep your blood glucose up.

    Of course what you can tolorate is always a personal thing and even that varies from event to event and day to day

    Good luck,
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by pernfilman View Post
    Try hammer nutrition's HEED

    it has half the sugar at least of Gatorade

    mild taste as well nothing too overwhelming
    +1

  24. #24
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    Water with a squirt of lemon

  25. #25
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    Water and a multi vitamin?
    Cytomax at 1/2 strength (or even 1/4)

  26. #26
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    I recently ran out of GU (sponsor) and picked up some low-cal G2 mix from Haterade. Decent tasting stuff although still close to the too sweet side of the fence.

    I've read a few columns/abstracts/posts about how we may not need nearly as much "electrolyte" replacement as we've been led to believe. Granted, I'm no expert on that stuff (I'm an accountant fwiw) but most of the "studies" or wisdom i've seen in supporting electrolyte replacement comes from the nutrition companies (i.e. Hammer, 1st endurance... ...etc.) . Before I start sounding like a conspiracy theorist, I'll just say that I'm skeptical either way.

  27. #27
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    Beef jerky.

    Seriously, back in the late 80's, there was a guy (Chris Petty) who rode the Spenco 500 on nothing but water, beef jerky, and canned beanie-weenies.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Walt Disney's Frozen Head View Post
    I
    I've read a few columns/abstracts/posts about how we may not need nearly as much "electrolyte" replacement as we've been led to believe. Granted, I'm no expert on that stuff (I'm an accountant fwiw) but most of the "studies" or wisdom i've seen in supporting electrolyte replacement comes from the nutrition companies (i.e. Hammer, 1st endurance... ...etc.) . Before I start sounding like a conspiracy theorist, I'll just say that I'm skeptical either way.
    I correlate electrolytes with cramping. I don't typically cramp; however on long endurance races, I've found consistently if my electrolytes are low, I start to cramp. I increase electrolytes and cramps go away. I found that out when my instructions were unclear and I thought I was getting electrolytes but was cramping; asked for an increase and found I was getting none. (single blind test?)

    I think there is solid evidence (i.e. real studies as opposed to my anecdotal version) supporting the use and amount of electrolytes.
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  29. #29
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    I used to use just water in the bike bottle for 1 hour rides in Tejas but over 100 degrees and I was bonking a little. I started running a 50/50 of powerade zero and water and its worked great for me. One bottle on a 45 minute to 1 hour ride works well. Thats what I'll race with this weekend for my first race, it'll only be about 8.5 miles.
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  30. #30
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    Pure coconut water. Natures sports drink !

    Spotlight: New sports drink - coconut water

  31. #31
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    Heed and Sierra Nevada recovery drink. Perfect combo!

  32. #32
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    These days I use a few things depending on the ride: water, Hammer Nutrition HEED drink mix (Creamsicle or Lemon-Lime), 1st Endurance Liquid Shot gels (Vanilla is the most common flavour it seems), Hammer Nutrition Endurolyte capsules (for electrolyte replacement).

    I don't know that the Endurolytes even help; I mostly just use those for the placebo effect if I'm going out on a long ride (4+ hours) and am concerned about crapping up out in the middle of nowhere.

  33. #33
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    Water + dash salt + dash sugar
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  34. #34
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    I use Cytomax and I cramp way less now too!
    Angie
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  35. #35
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    Ironman PERFORM

    I really like the power bar mix. The nice thing about powders are you can control the mix. I usually use 2 scoops to a 24oz bottle when pushing it. Makes it not too sugary or salty for me. Performance seems to put it on sale once or twice a year for $10.

    Test Heed (perpetuem?) out before you commit to it if possible. The last two years it has been given away at an endurance event I usually do. The one with protein in it can do nasty things to some people. A sag worker warned me so I avoided it and have seen more than one person suffer in ways that are not cool when you are trying to ride.

  36. #36
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    Started peddling back in HS w/my buddy Eric in 1987 after we got bored racing BMX and rode out of WPB, but we didn't get our hands on the fresh apple goodness until 91'. In fact I think that we broke out our first can down at the good ole Rosewood series in your neck of the woods. Ah good times racing back then!

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlliKat View Post
    I correlate electrolytes with cramping. I don't typically cramp; however on long endurance races, I've found consistently if my electrolytes are low, I start to cramp. I increase electrolytes and cramps go away. I found that out when my instructions were unclear and I thought I was getting electrolytes but was cramping; asked for an increase and found I was getting none. (single blind test?)

    I think there is solid evidence (i.e. real studies as opposed to my anecdotal version) supporting the use and amount of electrolytes.
    I correlate cramping with performing at an intensity your body isn't used to.

    I'm yet to see any solid evidence which suggests electrolyte deficiency causes cramp (and explains why the cramp is localised to the stressed muscles when the electrolyte deficiency is throughout the entire body...)

    But, whatever works, right? If Endurolytes, Nuun, etc seems to do the business, great!

  38. #38
    I like to ride my bike.
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    Nuun tablets are fantastic. No sugar and they add carbonation (not really though, they mimic the feeling) which sorta cleans out your mouth (ya know?). So many flavors and sooo tasty. Not gross in any way. Waaay better than Heed. You wouldn't sip Heed outside of a biking event, because it is not something you crave, Nuun is something I just add to water at home, at races, on rides, whenever.
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  39. #39
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    Nunn and Camelbak Elixir tabs.

    Or MiO water flavoring.

    Or, Powerade.

    Or, Gatorade/Powerade at half strength (which is how I do it.

  40. #40
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    Accelerade!!!

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by sofarider1 View Post
    pure coconut water. Natures sports drink !

    spotlight: New sports drink - coconut water
    +1!!!!

  42. #42
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    well, i find that Vitamin water is fairly good, but a quick snack and at cheap is...


    going to traders joe, get a 19cent bannana, then get Traders Joes un-pasterized Orange Juice w/ Pulp. I feel this combo is KILLER, and revitalizes you a lot better than gatorade.

  43. #43
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    Homebrew sports drink:
    Dextrose and maltdextrin
    Salt mix; sea salt, losalt substitute, Ca/Mg powder
    BCAA powder
    Caffeine
    grape Koolaide to taste

    Not too sweet and making from scratch allows me to tailor to my needs, for example, on hot days I up the salt some, for racing change ratio of sugars.

  44. #44
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    Pedialyte
    Nobody cares...........

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by sofarider1 View Post
    Pure coconut water. Natures sports drink !
    Yep!

  46. #46
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    I just mix some water in with the gatorade.

  47. #47
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    Nuuns for electrolyte replacement. Does the job without sugar and doesn't funk up a backpack bladder.

    HammerGels for the big bolus of carbs and CliffShots for the smaller snacks.

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