Are electrolyte ect worth it?

Danm89

Member
Hi all.

Got back into cycling not too long back and loving it. Im currently doing rides of around 3hours a few times per week and was wandering if i would benefit from some nutrition suplement?

From looking around it seems there is 2 ways to go with this. Either electrolyte tablets along side energy gel. Or the powdered variety that contains carbs and electrolytes. But are either options really worth it, and which would benefit me more? Up untill now ive not really changed my diet.
 

adscrim

Veteran
Location
Perth
I wouldn't worry too much about gels and sports drinks. Take real food instead and save your money. I particularly like rice krispie squares (caramel flavour are a favoutire) and drink something you like the taste of (fruit squash etc - I just drink water). Flap jacks, fig rolls, sandwiches - they all work absolutely fine. I only venture into gel territory when I know a ride's going to be full on from start to finish and eating becomes difficult.
 

Dogtrousers

Kilometre nibbler
Food/energy wise, probably not. The general consensus is that real food is tastier, just as effective - if not more so and probably cheaper.

Hydration wise, it's a slightly different question. High5 electrolyte tablets are very convenient. But it's also possible to keep your salt intake up by less futuristic (and cheaper) means like crisps and peanuts, or rehydration salts from the chemists. I do take this quite seriously in summer as I can get nasty post cycling headaches if I don't.

There's a whole thread about it here. https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/the-importance-of-electrolyte-in-the-body.251935/

Personally I find high5 tabs convenient and use them ... when I remember and I haven't run out that is. I also use sports energy drink powder. This is partly because I have a friend who sells the stuff and I like to support her business, even if it is a bit of a pricey solution. Also it's a consistent and palatable taste. Once on the road I tend to refill my bottle at little shops with all kinds of random stuff - especially in the winter months.

As for food I'm a fan of pork pies and peanut butter and marmite sandwiches. I normally have a gel or two down in the dusty recesses of my rack bag. Just in case.
 

Cycleops

Guru
Location
Accra, Ghana
Total waste of money and calling them "energy" gels is misleading. Eat real food like banana and fruits. If you've got a blender you can make all sorts of smoothies. ORS might be useful in hot weather.
 

Spiderweb

Not So Special One
Location
North Yorkshire
Real food is best but you must hydrate whilst riding for longer periods especially when your sweating.
Water is ok but you really need to replace salts that you are sweating out. As above High5 hydration tablets are great, Pink Grapefruit is my favourite flavour!
 

Slick

Veteran
Definitely not for me anyway. I took a few tablets in my water bottle a few times until I ended up with a very upset stomach which is the last thing you need on any ride. Just water for me now but every now and again @raleighnut has the best idea. :thumbsup:
 

tom73

Über Member
Location
Yorkshire
Real food is best but you must hydrate whilst riding for longer periods especially when your sweating.
Water is ok but you really need to replace salts that you are sweating out. As above High5 hydration tablets are great, Pink Grapefruit is my favourite flavour!
Pink Grapefruit :thumbsup:
 

iateyoubutler

Senior Member
I used to add a teaspoon of salt to my drinks when I went on club/long/hot rides, made no difference, I still got cramp, still overheated etc etc. Only difference I used to see were the added salt marks on my clothes & helmet
 
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