I hate to admit this but for the past few years my hydration has pretty much involved only water. I should’ve know better but when push came to shove I just went with plain water pre, during, and post exercise. And then maybe a Mexican Coke was snuck in there a time or two. I’ll blame it on trying to simplify.
Moms need simple. The other stuff I’ve used in the past just seemed complicated… and it made my tummy hurt.
Hammer, GU, Clif – These are the hydration drinks I had used in the past. I felt like I needed a degree in exercise science to use Hammer. What do they have like 1000 products? GU and Clif always tasted good at first but the amount of sweet left me with some GI issues.
Elete – A few years ago I found an electrolyte that was clear and didn’t taste like anything. But…I don’t think I ever got the dose right. Was I suppose to fill half the cap or the 1/4 of the cap? Was it ten drops or twenty? Not rocket science but I can’t remember these things. Second, because it didn’t taste like anything, I felt I was being ripped off. I know that’s not true but it tasted just.like.water. I decided I needed some sugar to open the wallet for another product.
When I started training again this Spring the water was just not cutting it. Ride for four hours on water and your head will let you know. There is nothing worse than coming back from a ride to greet the demands of being a mom with a throbbing headache.
So I decided to finally give Skratch Labs Exercise Hydration Mix a try.
Why is a hydration mix important?
From Skratch…”When we sweat we lose water, sodium and other electrolytes. Sodium is critical to the proper function of every cell in our body. When our body’s sodium levels get too low, something called hyponatremia can occur. This leads to a host of problems like headaches, a drop in performance, muscle spasms, nausea, seizures and, in extreme cases, even death. One of the easiest ways to drop our sodium levels (bad) is to drink plain water when we are sweating heavily during exercise. Why? Water dilutes the blood because sodium is already being lost through sweat and performance will drop off significantly.”
How is it working for me?
Basic answer is great. I try to evaluate products in my life around 3 basic areas.
Is it simple? Yes. I have the single serving packs which are a no brainer. Open and dump in a water bottle. I also have the 1 pound bag which comes with a scoop. If I have a small bottle I use 1 scoop. A large 32 oz bottle gets 2 scoops. Skratch Labs is also a 1 product show. I don’t have to worry about getting sucked into buying the combo pack protein after-ride drink or the sport vitamins or the gels.
Does it make me happy? Yes a drink mix can make me happy. I’m happy because it’s nice to get a drink and have a pleasant taste. Not too sweet but not chalk either. Sweet makes me happy for one or two drinks but then my taste buds and stomach revolt. Because of the subtle flavor in Skratch Labs your taste buds won’t tire and your stomach won’t hurt.
Does it make my life better? Since I started using Skratch Labs Hydration Mix I have not had any headaches and my performance has increased. I’m not a lab rat in a control group so I can’t say for sure that Skratch Labs is the sole reason for my lack of headaches or increased performance. Actually, I know the increased performance is mostly based on getting my butt in the saddle for 15 hours a week. But I do feel it’s helped and is worth the price. $20 may seem like a lot to spend but it’s the equivalent of 20 16 oz sports drinks.
Skratch Labs has a well designed and informative website for more information. I’ve had a hard time finding the products in bike shops but I’m sure that is bound to change. In the meantime you can buy on-line.