With warmer weather, the number of bikers, runners, swimmers, and tennis players increase, and, as a result, so do post workout injuries and fatigue. According to Dr. Sally Parsonage, Head of Nutrition at the Athletic & Personal Development program in Bradenton, Florida, look no further than hydration: "What you drink is key to how well you perform," says Parsonage. Many aren't drinking enough before, during, and after exercising, and now many are only replacing lost fluids with water. This is a pendulum swing from the recent past, when people were chugging sports drinks after climbing a flight of stairs.What beverage you should drink depends on how hard you work out.
"So many adults think that carbs are bad and as a result have stopped drinking Gatorade and the like," says Parsonage, "but then after a vigorous workout they wonder why they start to really drag or get muscle cramps." Indeed, after two hours your blood sugar levels fall, your salt losses in sweat become significant, and you fatigue quickly and lose concentration. If you're just drinking water, you are diluting your body fluids and not replacing your electrolyte balance, something sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade help to counteract. Parsonage believes that for most moderate workouts or recreational sports activities, water is fine for the first hour, but after that, G2 is an ideal drink as it only contains 2% carbohydrate so is lower in calories than regular Gatorade.
What do you drink before, during, and after a workout?