I have tried a ton of sports drink mixes, there a ton on the market, and I like a lot of them. The one I continually come back to is Skratch’s exercise drink which they originally called “Secret Drink Mix” because they claimed that they were providing it to Tour de France competitors secretly because they all were supposed to be using the drink mix from there official sponsors. I have no idea if that is true but it is a nice story.
You can buy skratch in a bag like above, or in little single serving sleeves. Skratch advertises being “All Natural” and even note that it is not uncommon to have tiny bits of fruit in the drink because that is how it is made.
How does it taste?
Excellent. It is a little sweet but you can easily cut down the amount you put in to make it less sweet. Different flavors have different sweetness levels, the nice thing about the taste is that if you get orange, it actually tastes like orange, not fake orange.
This isn’t talked about enough. A lot of drink mixes (I am looking at you Cytomax and EFS) clump at the bottom of the bottle making the last couple of swigs gross. Skratch mixes easily in a standard sized sports bottle.
Does it work?
This is not so straight forward because everyone is different. It has 360 mg of sodium and 40 mg of sodium which gives it an electrolyte combination similar to Gatorade Endurance Formula. I am not particularly prone to cramping so I can’t speak to that but the sugar that is in it does give you a nice boost when you drink it.
Does it cause GI issues?
This is a common problem with endurance fueling. From my experience and the experience of people I train with, Skratch seems to be pretty good about GI distress. They advertise that it is superior to other drink mixes, of course we wouldn’t expect they would advertise that they are worse than other mixes. My experience is that people moved from UCANN to Skratch specifically for this reason and they never moved back.
I would give this a shot if you are shopping around. If you live in Colorado almost every cycling shop will carry this product. It can also be found at Whole Foods or, like anything, online. It is a bit more expensive than Gatorade G or Endurance formula, so you should take that into consideration. It has more electrolytes than Powerbar’s Perform mix which is a drink that I will occasionally use. I do not say this is the be all and end all of drink mixes. I recently ordered Gatorade’s Endurance Formula to give that a test and I will compare the two. I will say that of all the products I have tried, I like Skratch just a little more than the rest.