Top Tips to Choose the Best Energy Drinks for Cyclists
If you go in a bike shop for buying your first bike, you will see plenty of energy products too there along with different types and brands of bikes. You may wonder why so many of them are promoted to bikers. Here are some facts about these energy products.
Energy products for cyclists are typically a combination of water, sugars (carbohydrates) and salts (electrolytes). The research over last 30 years have clearly shown that consuming water and carbs while cycling does improve performance by maintaining a good proportion of blood sugar and keeping dehydration at bay. Some of them may also consist of other nutrients like protein or caffeine; but these are more advanced drinks and have a role to play in particular situations.
So, how to choose the best energy drinks for cyclists that can give you all what your body needs and can ensure you get the best out of your ride? Here are some tips.
For Short Rides
While cycling for short durations, your main concern about nutrition should be hydration. This means that you should equip yourself with nothing else than water when you cycle for less than an hour. Here water is definitely the best drink to hydrate your body without the addition of any unnecessary sugars, vitamins, fats and even carbohydrates, which just won’t get used in such a short duration to help you on your ride.
Carbohydrates for Medium-length Rides
While using your best energy drink for cyclists is largely promoted for longer rides, it is also great for medium-length rides. While some think that the body’s requirements for carbs are not big on medium-length rides, consuming carbohydrates during any length of exercise has desirable effects on the central nervous system. While carbs are a basic source of fuel (and not needed necessarily for medium-length rides), many bikers feel that consuming energy drinks containing them is good for mental boost.
Electrolytes for Longer Rides
A rule of thumb while drinking on a longer ride (90 minutes or more) is to drink energy-based drinks since they are high in carbohydrates. Carbs are the best source of energy when you plan to ride for a longer duration; so, energy drinks provide a perfect mix of carbohydrates from sources like fructose and sucrose to ascertain maximum output from your body.
Another key ingredient of energy drinks which is essential to keep your body hydrated during longer rides is electrolytes. They are also useful for:
- Regulating muscle and nerve function
- Maintaining blood pressure
- Balancing blood pH levels
- Rebuilding worn tissue
Electrolyte drinks that consist of 6% to 8% carbohydrates are called isotonic drinks and they have the same proportion of dissolved sugars and salts as that of body fluids, so, they provide better overall hydration. Isotonic drinks are a better option to energy drinks if you are planning to ride in hot conditions as they are designed to go that extra mile for hydration purposes.
Consider these tips and choose the best energy drink for your ride, so that you can make the most of your bike ride.