Two weeks ago I was out watching the Boulder Ironman racers out on the run course. It was very hot, but regardless of heat, too many athletes looked like they were doing a death march along the Boulder Creek Path. I am sure that everyone toed the start line fully confident and with the appropriate miles banked. However, a huge mistake athletes make (including myself earlier this year) is improperly replacing electrolytes. The primary minerals lost during exercise are sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, and magnesium. Sodium, potassium, and chloride are key to the conduction of electrical impulses, and are involved in transportation of nutrients into cells and wastes out of cells. Soluble calcium in body fluid is also necessary for neuromuscular conduction, muscular contraction, inter- and intracellular messaging, and plays a key regulatory role in glycogen metabolism. Magnesium is important for proper transmission of nerve impulses, muscular contraction, and energy production.
|Avg Mineral Loss in Exercise||Extracellular (mmol/L)||Sweat (mmol/L)||Intracellular (mmol/L)|
Table from Maughan and Shirreffs, 1998. Fluid and electrolyte loss and replacement in exercise. In Oxford textbook of sports medicine, 2nd Edition. Edited by Harris, Williams, Stanish, and Micheli. New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 97-113
Below is a comparison of EFS compared to other popular fluid replacement drinks.
A new trend in sports nutrition are low calorie hydration drinks. Many athletes have inquired about how EFS compares to low calories hydration drinks such as Skratch Labs or Osmo. If you want a low calorie option then simply use a ½ scoop of EFS in 12oz of water. In the comparison below you can clearly see that Osmo and Skratch are simply very expensive ‘hydration’ drinks that ultimately still offer up LESS than a 1/2 serving of EFS.
First Endurance recently compared EFS to popular low calorie drinks OSMO and Skratch