GU recently introduced the Roctane Electrolyte Capsules. While similar to traditional electrolytes in many ways, the Roctane caps have ginger root,which is reported to assist with symptoms of nausea. If you’re not familiar with Roctane, this is the ultra endurance product line from GU and includes energy gels, drinks, and these caplets. Compared to traditional GU products, the Roctane line is designed to assist you in longer events, 4+ hours, and deliver the nutrition you need when you’re truly exerting yourself.
I have used the Roctane Electrolyte Capsules for over a month during my training workouts. As the heat, and heat index, climbs here in Beaufort, I am always careful to keep an eye on my nutrition and hydration needs. While it never gets really cold around here, the heat and humidity can really take a toll on your body. Even my early morning run workouts are now in 85+ degree weather with oppressive humidity, so the additional electrolytes are a nice thing to have.
I have not used these capsules in a single workout longer than 4 hours, but have used them in numerous swim/bike, swim/run, and swim/bike/run bricks totaling more than 4 hours. I have used them with plain water, with energy drinks, on a full and empty stomach, and at different times during the day. For longer workouts, I have consumed up to two capsules per hour. When I have a shorter workout, I may start with only one per hour and adjust as necessary.
In all cases, I have never experienced any issues with stomach discomfort, no matter how hot and humid the weather, and without regard to the amount of food I have consumed. I find that the most useful aspect of the capsules is not replacing lost electrolytes, but allowing me to consume plain water and not throw off the balance of hydration and electrolytes. I generally do not have GI issues, no matter the weather and duration of a race, but I think that consuming plain water is a large part of that, so I know electrolyte supplements are helpful for me.
I did notice that the ginger root had a stomach calming effect for me, especially when taken on a full, or partially full, stomach. As I mentioned, I normally do not have GI issues during training or racing, but have experienced some when running after a meal. The Roctane capsules mitigated this effect, though they did not completely eliminate the discomfort after a large meal and a long workout.
I have used all manner of electrolyte replacements, including standard salt tabs, Hammer Endurolytes, and other name brands. The GU Roctane Electrolyte Capsules perform as well, if not better, than other brands I have tried. The addition of ginger root is just a bonus; not as important to me, but certainly welcome for many athletes that experience GI issues during extreme exertion.
If you commonly use an electrolyte replacement, then you should give these Roctane capsules a try. If you do not traditionally use a supplement, but experience some sort of GI issues, you may be interested in the calming effect of the ginger root, and the additional sodium is just a bonus. Retailing for just $19.99 for 125 capsules, and a bit cheaper on Amazon, they’re reasonably priced and certainly worth a try.