DIY Healthy Sports Drink

Water Most Times. Gatorade Never.

DIY Healthy Sports Drink


Most of my clients drink water during our sessions. I have one client who starts her day with a half-cranberry-half-water with a scoop of fibre supplement. Another client always has a jug of water and a half cup of black coffee for sipping. Me? Personally, I’m a water gal. Cold. And lots of it. Sometimes, in Belly Bootcamp classes, a tired mommy lacking that “zip” we all used to have before night feedings and temper tantrums will bring in a sports drink. If I see a mommy chugging back a Gatorade, class after class, I have to step in.

Do you drink sports drinks? If you do, do you realize that they contain about 50 calories per cup? A 32-ounce sports drink contains approximately 200 calories and almost 80 grams of sugar! You might as well eat a chocolate bar. These “ades” were originally designed for use in endurance sports and by endurance athletes who are exercising several hours straight and require sugar, sodium and fluid replenished in the most efficient manner.
Really, Gatorade's best use is in shower format. We can all agree on that. 
OK, so they were designed for athletes, but who do the beverage companies actually market their “sports drinks” to?
  • Kids
  • Mommies
  • Hungover people
  • Weekend warriors
  • Gym-goers

...none of which usually qualify as “endurance athletes.”

Coca-Cola defends the high-sugar, high-sodium content of its sports drink, Powerade, as follows:"Sports drinks are designed for people who are exercising or working and need to replace electrolytes and energy. The only circumstances under which we can envision in which a person would consume an entire 32 ounce. bottle of POWERade is during or after strenuous exercise.”
In other words, you’re supposed to buy the giant bottle of Powerade and drink only a quarter of it, then save the rest for the next time you need to “replace electrolytes and energy.”
Yeah, right.
My advice? Skip the sports drinks unless you’re training for a marathon. And if you are training for a marathon, consider making your own sports drink with natural ingredients and minimal sugar and sodium. Here’s a quick recipe to make your own sports drink when you’re planning a long (i.e., more than 60 minutes) workout:
  • 1 bottle water
  • 3 tbsp. sugar
  • 2 pinches salt
  • Lemon to taste
Shake to combine. Chill and drink during and after longer workouts.
If you aren't training for long periods of time but need something refreshing on the go, consider adding some fresh fruit to a bottle of cold water. Or experiment with herbs such as basil and mint, or cucumber.
Be sure to read labels. Don’t fall for marketing tricks or convince yourself that a spinning class is an “endurance event.”  It’s a workout. Drink water most times. Or pay the price on your waistline.
Are you running the RBC Run For The Kids with us this September? If you're running longer than 5K, this sports drink recipe is perfect for you! See you there... and sign up to join the YMC team

3 No-Equipment Moves For Toned Hips and Thighs

who doesn't want firmer, more shapely thighs?

3 No-Equipment Moves For Toned Hips and Thighs

Ouch! My legs hurt today! It's not every day that my own Belly Bootcamp classes hit me so hard I'm actually sore for a day or two...but it happens sometimes when I've crafted a particularly effective combination of exercises to target a specific part of the body.

In this case: quadriceps (the muscles of the front of your thigh) and adductors (the muscles of your inner thigh).

Is there a woman out there who doesn't want firmer, more shapely thighs? Especially that jiggly bit, right at the top—the biological purpose of that fat deposit is right up there with black holes as far as mysteries go.

And even if short-shorts don't motivate you, strong thighs & hips help build a strong core and keep your knees well supported to prevent knee injuries and pain

If you are running or running-walking the RBC Run For The Kids this September with Erica and me, these moves will help you build endurance for running and keep your knees happy when you pound the pavement.

Best part? No equipment required! Add them to the end of your runs, or do them every other day before dinner. Yes, you will have to put down that glass of dinner-prep red... 

Want to feel the burn?  Warm up first with 2-5 minutes of stairs, jogging on the spot. jumping jacks or other cardio.  Next, try one set of each exercise, in order.  Rest 1 minute, then repeat.  Rest again, then repeat for one third and final set.  Finally, stretch or follow with more cardio if you have time.

Here are the 3 killer leg-toners straight from Belly Bootcamp:

Pivot Lunge: begin with feet together.  Pivot and step to the left (turning 90 degrees) into lunge position; lower until left thigh is parallel with floor, then press back to starting position (turning back 90 degrees)  Repeat on right.  Continue alternating sides for 20-30 reps.

In And Out Jump Squat: begin with feet hip-width apart. Squat until thighs are roughly parallel with floor, then jump up explosively and land with feet wide, lowering immediately into another squat.  Be sure to land softly to minimize the impact on your joints and place your heels down after landing.  Next, from wide squat, jump again to land with feet narrow to complete 1 rep.  Continue jumping out and in for a total of 8-12 reps (16-24 total jumps).

Wall Sit: stand with back against wall, feet hip-width apart and roughly a foot from the wall.  Lower yourself until thighs are parallel with floor.  Extend arms out to side and keep abdominal muscles drawn in so back does not arch excessively.  Hold 1 minute (or as long as possible if 1 minute is too long).

Enjoy!  And prepare to curse your stairs tomorrow morning.


Masochist? Get more leg exercises to tone butt & thighs!

A little public service message here: There are risks with any kind of exercise. If you are unsure, I always recommend you ask questions first, shoot later. You can shoot me an email at dara[at]bellybootcampdot]ca if you have a question about this or any other exercise.