We did an informal survey on the SnoWest website recently, asking what type of drink you carry when you go riding.
More than 1,000 people responded and the drink of choice was water, by more than double any other drink. Water came in with 44 percent of the votes, followed by (unfortunately) beer at almost 21 percent. To all of you who chose that, are the no drinking and riding messages getting through to you? Anyway, carbo drinks (like Gatorade) were next at nearly 20 percent, followed by other (7 percent) and then energy drinks (like Red Bull) at 7 percent.
Looking back, we should have added soda pop to the question because a lot of snowmobilers take soda with them when they go riding. Soda isn't the best choice, however, as this drink offers no nutritional value and can actually dehydrate instead of hydrate your body. The carbonation alone cuts your wind and that's not something you want when riding in the mountains. And, some experts say, the caffeine is dehydrating.
We just came across another drink, in the energy drink category, which snowmobilers might want to take a look at. Q Blast Thirst Quencher isn't actually new to snowmobilers, as the World Snowmobile Association has named Q Blast as the official drink for the racing association.
That aside, Q Blast has just one gram of sugar, low salt, has 50 calories in a 16.9 ounce bottle and no caffeine. We haven't tried the drink yet, but it sounds like a good way to stay hydrated while riding. The way Q Blasters keep the hydration factor high is by including complex carbohydrates for sustained energy, cutting out the caffeine and herbal supplements while adding essential electrolytes.
You can find Q Blast at Wal Mart, Flying J Travel Plazas and Walgreens. Or you can go to www.qblast.net to find out more.
Two important points: Definitely take something to drink when you go riding and second, take something to drink that will benefit you. Remember the numbers we quoted in the January 2003 issue of SnoWest