Fuel Your Workout with These Top Energy Drinks

Top Energy Drinks

Energy supplements are more popular than ever because more men are substituting endurance sports like trail runs, marathons, and triathlons for gym time. But what precisely are they, how do they function, and should you include them in your exercise routine?

For all the information you need, as well as the top energy drinks, gels, and chews available, all of which have been thoroughly tested by the MH Lab, scroll on.

How Can I Quickly Boost My Energy?

Grab an energy drink, gel, chew, or bar if you need a boost of energy to get through a lengthy, difficult workout.

Why they are essential is explained by David Wiener, a training and nutrition specialist at the fitness app Freeletics: "The body's preferred fuel source during exercise is carbohydrates, which are stored as glycogen in the muscles. When carbohydrate reserves are exhausted after 90 minutes, the body switches to using its fat reserves as a source of energy.

Although burning fat might seem like a good thing, Wiener claims that fat stores don't release energy at the same rate. When you run out of carbohydrates, you're likely to hit a wall and perform poorly.

Easy-to-digest carbohydrates are used to make the best energy drinks, gels, and chews. They are made to quickly get into your system and get you going so you can finish your endurance activity feeling endorphin-boosted.

Which Supplements Give You The Most Energy?

For quick absorption, a simple sugar, frequently a combination of maltodextrin and fructose, makes up the majority of the ingredients in energy products. To help replenish the minerals lost through sweat, many also include electrolytes (such as sodium and potassium), and some also have caffeine.

Caffeine shouldn't be consumed by everyone, advises Wiener. If you're participating in a challenging race or event, you don't want to find that it causes you to become dehydrated more quickly or to need to use the restroom more frequently. You should also calculate caffeine daily limit on a regular basis.

Energy Drinks, Gels, Or Chews?

Which should you try, then? Once more, it comes down to personal preference, but as a general rule:

Energy drinks: Perfect for topping off your carbs and hydrating your body while on the go during the summer. However, carrying a bottle on a lengthy course can be cumbersome.

Energy gels: The best energy gels are small enough to fit in your pocket and are a favorite among runners. They can be a little messy, but with practice, they become simpler to use.

Energy chews: These bad boys, which frequently resemble gummy candies, can feel kinder and more satiating to consume for people with sensitive stomachs. However, chewing can be challenging and disrupt your rhythm if you're working out vigorously.

Drinking enough water will help your body properly process chews and gels while ensuring that you stay hydrated.

How To Use Energy Supplements

According to Wiener, 1g of carbohydrates per kilo of body weight should be consumed every 60 minutes. Aim for 80g of carbohydrates per hour of exercise if you weigh 80 kg.

According to Wiener, there is a limit to how many carbohydrates your body can absorb, so he advises against consuming more than two gels or drinks in an hour. "They'd just end up filling your stomach, and you wouldn't reap any benefits.

Try a few and see how they sit with you because there are so many energy products available. "Once you find something you like, I'd advise using it consistently for your training. This will make it easier for your body to adjust to its use and reduce the possibility of digestive problems at crucial times.

How We Test

The MH Lab recruited a panel of over 200 fitness enthusiasts to test a variety of well-known energy drinks, gels, and chews for a month as part of our 2022 Men's Health Sports Nutrition Awards.

Our devoted testers provided feedback on everything from flavor and texture to usability, nutrition, and, most importantly, the effect on athletic performance.

Our panel's overwhelming favorites were the high-carb heroes bearing the Sports Nutrition Awards badge shown below.

This all-natural gel, which is well-liked by runners around the world like Mo Farah and Kenenisa Bekele, will help you cross the finish line.

Its unique formulation uses just six ingredients—necessary water, sugars, and minerals—and no extraneous chemicals. The ratio of fructose to glucose is also optimized for effective absorption.

Maurten Gel 100 

The testers who didn't have a sweet tooth liked the product's relatively neutral flavor and its texture, which was thick enough to prevent a mid-race mess but instantly dissolvable on the tongue.

Monster Energy Drinks

Monster Energy Drink are performance-enhancing beverage that is designed to give you an energy boost when you need them most. They contain a blend of ingredients that work together to provide caffeine, vitamins, and other nutrients that can help improve your mental and physical performance.

The ingredients in Monster Energy drinks vary depending on the type of drink you choose, but some common ingredients include caffeine, taurine, B vitamins, and sugar. Some types of Monster Energy drinks are also sugar-free and contain artificial sweeteners instead.

Veloforte Soft Energy Chew

The 42g of quick-acting carbs in these packs of juicy gummy candies can be rationed out for manageable energy top-ups.

They are made with coconut water, lemon juice, beetroot sugar, and Himalayan salt for electrolytes. Our tasters enjoyed the lemon flavor and the fact that one 50g pack of chews contains 75mg of guarana extract, which is equal to one large espresso.

Grenade Energy Drink 

Look at this buzzing energy drink if you need only a strong Celsius caffeine boost. It propels 155mg of natural caffeine (the equivalent of a double espresso) your way, along with BCAAs to prevent fatigue, electrolytes to prevent sweat loss, and B vitamins to speed up recovery, all of which are powered by coffee beans, guarana, and green tea extracts. Phew.

Our tasters raved about the flavor, which they compared to a fruity fruit salad chew or a tropical coconut cocktail. Their only gripe was the texture - they would have preferred something less fizzy to down mid-session.

When you're struggling in the gym rather than during a strenuous run or bike ride, reach for a can because it won't increase your carb intake like the gels and chews listed here.

SiS Beta Fuel Energy Chew Bar 

SiS's energy chew bar is a good option if you prefer solids to gels. With a whopping 46g of carbs per 60g bar, the highest volume in our round-up, it will give any endurance activity a powerful boost of energy.

It has a 1:0.8 blend of maltodextrin and glucose, similar to the brand's energy gel below, so your body can process more carbohydrates more quickly. One satisfied tester attested, "I felt a boost very quickly after eating it.

Although the melt-in-your-mouth texture and zingy lemon flavor were enjoyed by all, opening the wrapper while moving proved to be challenging. It's still worth a try if you have trouble digesting gels, and it also comes in orange.

OTE Sports Blackcurrant Energy Gel 

Sports nutritionists and athletes created OTE's nutritional supplements. With a respectable 20.5g of carbohydrates per 56g serving and a healthy serving of electrolytes (sodium, potassium, and magnesium) to keep you hydrated and boost your session, it offers energy gels.

The natural blackcurrant flavor was compared by our tasters to Ribena, and they said the loose gel-like texture made it simple to chug while engaging in vigorous exercise.

Additionally, it received high praise for its dual-delivery packaging, which is straightforward to open and has two distinct tear points for savoring or gulping. Try the flavors of orange, apple, lemon, and lime as well.

SiS Beta Fuel Gel

For fans of endurance, this gel is for you. You only need to tuck a few sachets into your pocket or running belt to experience the energy-boosting benefits because it contains 40g of carbohydrates per 60 ml serving.

This supplement has a maltodextrin-to-glucose ratio of 1:0.8 rather than the typical 2:1 found in most supplements. SiS claims that by doing this, your stomach won't be upset and your body can absorb more carbohydrates per hour.

Sure enough, there was a noticeable improvement in performance, and there were no reported digestive issues. They liked the tangy berry flavor and the smooth texture (orange and strawberry, and lime are also available).

Nocco Carbonated Caffeine Drink

Nocco is best characterized as a carbonated caffeine beverage; boy, it tastes good. Sadly, the Caribbean flavor lacks the rum and the copious amounts of sugar that make a pia colada (it contains a big fat 0g of the sweet stuff). Instead, anticipate 180 mg of caffeine, 3000 mg of BCAAs, and 50% of your recommended daily intake of vitamins B6 and B12 to start your workout.

The fizzy consistency, according to our testers once more, made it challenging to gulp on the go. One of them said, "I'd rather drink this pre-workout to push myself harder during training. There is also a caffeine-free version available, along with a variety of interesting flavors, for those who want to avoid the jitters caused by caffeine.

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