Ok, so first things first – what is Active Root?
Well, according to their website;
“Active Root is a sports drink company committed to delivering innovative natural sports drinks to athletes of all levels.
We use natural root ginger to help keep athlete’s stomachs settled and balanced during exercise. Our goal is to provide a product that helps make a genuine difference to your athletic performance while only using natural ingredients.”
So why am I trialing and reviewing it? Well, in November I will be taking on what is arguably my biggest and longest Miles for Wishes challenge to date, as I cycle from John O’Groats to Land’s End (commonly referred to as JOGLE) in 9 days, solo and unsupported.
It goes without saying that for any endurance sports, that what you put in your body can make the difference between being your best and being on the floor. Getting the right balance of fluids and electrolytes is a fundamental part of performance, as being properly hydrated aids digestion, nutrient absorption, optimal brain power and so on.
So, getting my fueling strategy right, ahead of the JOGLE challenge, is an absolute must for me. For some context as to why I’ve picked Active Root – So far I’ve been using a couple of different products before, during and after training and events with mixed results. Products which contain high levels of protein don’t agree with my body when taken consistently, as an IBS sufferer I find a lot of products can cause aggravated symptoms – bloating and an upset stomach being chief among them. Over this year of challenges I’ve taken a lot of time to change my diet habits and increase the amount of natural, non-processed foods I’m eating – so it stands to reason that I should look for natural energy drink as well.
I’ve used the Sample Sachet Box, which as the name suggests, provides 6 x 35g pre-packaged sachets of the Active Root mix which should be mixed with 500ml – 70ml of water. 6 samples and therefore a 6 days trial, which gives me a good appreciation for how my body would cope (to a degree) with the product on as part of my 9 day JOGLE Challenge.
The Sachet Box is £7.49 and a great way to test a new product such as this
The most notable thing about Active Root is the much more granular appearance, this because it’s made from unbleached cane sugar. Because of this it does require a more vigorous and prolonged shake than most of the other powdered products on the market. Is this a problem? No, I imagine that most people, like me, would drink this from a sports bottle and as such the extra time to dissolve the product wouldn’t pose an issue at all. For JOGLE or any cycling this wouldn’t be a problem, as cyclists are probably more likely to ride with it and therefore not be drinking it instantly.
So, product mixed – how does it taste? Well if you like ginger then you’ll love Active Root. It’s got a very natural, not overly sweet flavour- you get the nice heat of ginger without it being overbearing. All this creates a refreshing, zingy taste without the usual fakeness associated with other ‘flavoured’ sports drinks. I mixed the product with 500ml of water initially and for me that was ideal – Active Root suggest diluting in up to 700ml of water – so this would purely depend on the size of your bottle or the strength of flavour desired.
Cycling or running – Active Root is designed to naturally support all your sporting endeavours
I drank the product during my training rides and after running predominantly, as I would with any of the other products used. I felt no ill effects from using Active Root – on a ride on Tuesday, I was suffering a little bit due to stress and caffeine from a day at work. The ride definitely had a positive effect, calming my stomach and reducing the bloated, gassy feeling – I was using Active Root again so this may well have had a positive effect. I’d need to continue for longer to get proper view as to the benefits of reducing the stomach issues such as bloating etc but it certainly drinks better than anything else I’ve been using and I really like the taste – so a really big tick.
What is Active Root?
The natural, raw cane sugar has two noteworthy points – its natural, chemical free and is a lower GI index carb. This means it’s a slower burn fuel compared to other carbs such as maltodextrin, glucose and fructose. What this means is the carbs burn slower and therefore help to sustain you for longer and help avoid sugar highs and crashes. That said, sugar is still a simple Carbohydrate, so there is a question mark over long distance fuelling and as such it is likely I am going to need to compliment the use of Active Root with another high carbohydrate drink.
In the serving your getting 200mg of dried ginger – one of the main selling points of this drink is that the ginger helps to alleviate symptoms of gastrointestinal stress and nausea. Alongside this 230mg of Sea Salt, which aids hydration and helps to balance all of those essential electrolytes our bodies need to function.
Taste – 5 out of 5 – Natural, zingy and refreshing, active root has the taste of ginger beer with all the added bonuses of a sports drink.
Price – 4 out of 5 – Active Root hits the mark on price, its not the cheapest on the market but as my quick calculations show its on the money;
- Active Root 1.4kg – delivers 40 x 35g servings equates to around 50p per serving
- High 5 Zero (40 tablets) – 35p per serving (However, High 5 recommend 1 to 2 tablets per 750ml serving – so the price per serving varies dependent on how much you use.)
- Science in Sport Go Electrolyte 1.6kg – provides 40 x 40g servings is equivalent to £65p per serving
So to wrap up what is my verdict on Active Root? This is, in my opinion, an all round great product and provides everything you need for performing at your best. So, I’m converted and will be stocking up ahead of the JOGLE Challenge in just a few short weeks.