|Trace The Mitten|
Besides water what am I going to drink during a ride to keep up my electrolytes and energy? What snacks are good?
What are electrolytes? Healthline.com says, "Electrolytes refer to minerals that include calcium, chloride, magnesium, phosphate, potassium, and sodium."
I bring along a hydrating drink beside the camelbak of water. I selected the powder mix that was sugar free. I liked the convenience of the little packets to add to the water. I cannot complain about its effectiveness because it served me well for years, but now I am rethinking what I will carry during a ride. Water is the go to liquid while pedaling and the electrolyte would be used mainly on a break. I would also have a granola bar with cracker & peanut butter.
This year I started using the sugared drink over the sugar free. I continue hearing about the concerns about artificial sweeteners. I could notice the immediate surge in energy with the sugar drink. It reminded me of the days working in a camp for children with diabetes. We would always carry a small can of orange juice to boost the sugar level quickly when a child developed low blood sugar. I am riding my bike and I think that I will easily burn off the sugar calories. I do know that not all sugars are processed the same by our body.
I also noticed on some of these manufactured drinks use artificial coloring and a closer look at the ingredients told me that this drink may be chemical composed. What could I also use as alternatives?
I read in a tour journal on Crazy Guy on a Bike that a rider would make a can of tomato soup for lunch on the road or drink tomato juice. I went to the cupboard and was surprised to see the label: condensed tomato soup has sodium 480 mg, potassium 610 mg, sugar 12 g and 2 g protein. I was concerned that the ingredients mentioned high fructose corn syrup and this is a concern for me. I looked at the G Series Perform bottle which says "Proven hydration with electrolytes " and the label read: sodium 270 mg, potassium 75 mg, sugars 34 g. I looked at the tomato juice that I drink every morning. A 4 0z serving gives me 341.8 mg of sodium, 218.2 potassium and 3.6 g of sugar.
Reviewing these labels reminded me that there would be other alternatives to replace electrolytes and provide energy. I realize that what works for me may not have the same effectiveness for you. Try different things and see how you respond to them.
I find that even though I do not add salt, I have no trouble exceeding the recommended daily allowance. I am usually below my my daily potassium recommendation and usually below the carb and sugar levels too.
I looked in my cupboard and fridge and checked the data on the following items: apple, apple juice, red seedless grapes, peanuts, trail mix, fruit and grain bar, Clif Bar, and raisins.
I can embrace variety in my snacks and beverages to have during long rides and tours. I am a firm believer in moderation. It is okay to occasionally have this or that.