Myth: You need to drink Powerade or a sports drink to stay hydrated when you are exercising

  • Powerade or sports drinks are completely unnecessary if you are exercising for less than 90 minutes. They are not just unnecessary, but they will hinder your progress if you are trying to lose weight or improve your body composition. They are full of additional energy/sugars. If you are trying to lose weight, you need to decrease the amount of energy you are consuming, not increase it.
  • However, there is evidence that sports drinks can improve physiological or sports performance in sports/events over 90 minutes long. This is evidence for performance. If you are exercising for longer than 90 minutes and not competing, sports drinks still may not be necessary.

Health and Fitness Testing NZ Tips:

  • If you are not competing in an event longer than 90-minutes, drink water to stay hydrated before, during, and after exercising.
  • If you are competing in sports longer than 60-90 minutes, please consult with a qualified dietitian or nutritionist to decide the best hydration plan for you.

Written by: Peter Halstead                                               

MPhty, PGDipSportMed, BSpEx

Health and Fitness Testing NZ