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Review: Gatorade Carb Energy Chews it the spot

Posted Sep 30 2012 10:41am

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If you don’t eat, you won’t finish.  Sure, you can get by on a sprint triathlon without really taken in any nutrition, but try that on an Olympic, 70.3 or 140.6 course and you could be asking for trouble.
 
Taking this to heart, EMT labs ran to the farthest reaches of the earth, to the Incan ruins, Amazon Jungle and Florida to find products that might help the everyday age grouper make it to the finish line.

Coincidentally, the tester for this nutritional product lives where Gatorade got their pro football start, in Kansas City, Missouri (http://www.gatorade.com/history/default.aspx).  Now, Gatorade the sports drink is a staple of triathlons and endurance sports around the globe, but they have thrown their hat into the sports chew world with Gatorade Carb Energy Chews.


 
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EMT tore open the box and ran the chews through the gambit.  Here’s what Mad Scientist Falkenrath thinks.
 
You can’t argue with good looks.  Looks can be the difference between landing an interview and not.  It gets your foot in the door and G Chew packaging does exactly that.  They look sharp on the shelf, and admittedly the packaging for the3 review sample was nothing short of professional.  Also, the actual chews appear very appetizing.  It helps to be confronted with nutrition that you want to eat based on looks.
 
IMG-20120920-00310 Looks are all good, but substance gets you the job.  If you come to the interview talking like a blabbering idiot, you won’t get the job.  Function is everything.  Nice packaging may get a triathlete to buy and try the product once, but if it doesn’t perform, good luck on repeat business.  Gatorade chews supply 100 calories in 4 chews.  When looking at other chews on the market, that’s the fewest calories while coming close to other categories such as sodium, potassium and carbs.  You can double the serving to get up there with the other brands.  Serving sizes for the other brands would be comparable to two servings of G Chews.  Just be careful if you suffer GI issues on the course.
 
Does it perform?  On the bike, on the run, in the AM and in the PM the G Chews will sustain a 180 pound athlete working a long Z2 run, short Z4 intervals or hill climbs on the bike.  They may not give you a competitive edge versus the contenders, but you won’t be at a deficit.  The lab’s energy spectrometer was in the shop, so no empirical scientific evidence was derived for this experiment.  It was all ran by perceived rate of exertion and “gut feel”.
 
IMG-20120920-00311 The heat is on.  The one issue to note for those with sensitive stomachs is that G Chews may not be the best option for efforts in extreme heat.  The G Chews are great at dissolving in your mouth, more so than other brands.  That dissolving solves the issue of sticky bits getting stuck in your teeth, but it’s not the most comfortable feeling when it hits the stomach.  It’s more likening to sports gels hitting the stomach.  That could cause stomach discomfort or GI distress for those with picky gullets.
 
Let’s see how you do in a race.  It’s not clear how the G Chews would hold up in a race.  The package would work well for the run, but on the ride bikers could find themselves fumbling to get it open (which is does open easily) or spilling precious nutrition if the package ripped open.  As we all know, riding a bike and opening nutrition at the same time isn’t a heralded triathlete skill.  For those that place their nutrition in a bento bag or other stashing spot already opened, the G Chews will have some issues in heat.  It would probably be a sticky situation.
 
Will it drain my wallet?  Through a few simple Google shopping searches, the single serving package runs about $0.20 higher than the next competitor.  That’s not a large margin, but when you spread that out over a 100 servings, it starts adding up for a season.  You may get a few more chews per pouch here and there over another gummy energy option as well, but maybe 1 more.  The short of it is that the price difference is negligible in the short term.
 
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With the 800 pound gorilla of the Pepsi Corporation funding the Gatorade Empire, you won’t see a shortage of research, facts and marketing for G Chews.  That being said, at least there’s public accountability if their products stink.  Triathletes can rest assured pre-race that if they saddled up with G Chews, they won’t be in uncharted territory.  G Chews provide as much (you may have to double the serving in some cases) nutrition as the other “standard” options for nutrition on the go.  From our experiences, there is no foreseeable drop-off in energy levels using G Chews in strenuous or extended workouts.
 
If the texture and taste work for your needs, then think about using G Chews.  You won’t be shorting yourself on fuel if you find that G Chews hits the spot.
 
*Writer’s note – Gatorade provided a sample of G Chews for this review and in no way influenced the review.

Runfinish Ryan Falkenrath writes the blog  falkeetriathlon.blogspot.com , married father of two young kids, owner of two dogs and trying to balance life, work and multisport. Ryan has participated in multisport events since 2001 from 5k's to Half Ironmans.  Ryan is also the Kansas City Endurance Sports Examiner and you can read more of his triathlon thoughts  HERE  and he collects race reviews at  www.Triathlon-Reviews.blogspot.com .  Contact Ryan at: falkeetriathlon@hotmail.com or follow him on  @TriJayhawkRyan .

Follow on twitter @ everymantri  or view latest videos on YouTube .



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