Photography By Winnie Au.
Ah, caffeine. There’s not much we’d be able to do without you (including waking up and, you know, working past 2 p.m.) Now, the latest GU energy gel flavor wants to keep the good stuff pumping through your body at all times — even during your workout.
The just-released addition to the GU family is buzz-worthy in more ways than one. The brand's press release notes that the new Caramel Macchiato flavor has 40 mg of caffeine — twice the amount typically found in GU's formulas. But, we don’t yet see caffeine noted on the site’s ingredient list. Being the extreme coffee-lovers we are, we reached out for clarification and were assured that there is indeed 40 mg. of the stimulant in Caramel Macchiato — the same amount found in the brand's Jet Blackberry and Espresso Love flavors. (For your reference, a cup of coffee contains roughly 95 mg.)
Avid exercisers typically use these formulated gels to keep energy levels from dropping during longer bouts of training. During exercise, your body uses fat and carbohydrates as fuel for your muscles, and these gels and chomps are designed to provide you with a quick, portable hit of carbohydrates, electrolytes, and calories — replenishing your depleted energy stores. (A "chomp" or "blok," depending on the brand, is the same concept as a gel, just presented as a chewy gummy.) The jury’s still out on when to use these energy boosts, since best practices are dependent on your body’s specific rate of absorption and the intensity of your workout, as well as your training level and stomach sensitivity. Caffeine, specifically, has a long, interesting history with exercise; it seems to improve endurance performance and, contrary to popular thought, it does not dehydrate you.
Early this year, Caramel Macchiato GU was pitted against flavors such as Salted Watermelon and Apple Cinnamon in a contest to be named the "official course flavor" at Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series events. Salted Watermelon won, but it looks like the coffee lover's flavor is still making it to shelves. (The brand also released a new raspberry chomp for those of you who prefer a more straightforward fuel flavor.)