Run Oregon Test Kitchen: Gnarly Fuel₂O Endurance Nutrition

It’s gotten hot and it’s not going to get any less so in the next few months. If you’re an active person, you’re not only going to need water, you’re going to need something with electrolytes in it to replace all that you are sweating out. There are about 101 types of electrolyte powders out there and it’s getting harder and harder to figure out which one is right for you. Gnarly Sports Nutrition gets that, and they’ve offered you better choice than many of the others.

Gnarly has just released a new product, a powder-based sport drink called Fuel₂O that comes in three flavor options. What’s great about this product is that it’s meant to replace all those other energy gels and blocks, which I personally have a really hard time choking down when I’m out doing a race or huffing up a trail. Fuel₂O is a high-calorie, electrolyte-rich powder that you can throw into your water bottle on a “long run” or “big workout” day and it will replace (or supplement, depending on your preference) those other options. It’s also easy to digest which is honestly half of my trouble when I go for a long run.

Fuel₂O contains HMB, also known as Hydroxymethylbutyrate, which is a natural substance that our body produces when it breaks down leucine. Leucine is a very important building block of protein, and research shows that providing supplemental HMB during intense exercise can help prevent muscles from breaking down as well as help muscles recover and repair.

Of the three flavor options, (Cherry Cola, Limeade, and Tropical,) I tested the Tropical flavor. Though the rule for me, as with many runners, is nothing new on race day, I opted not to listen to my coach voice this round and decided to take some of the Fuel₂O  along to the Foot Traffic Flat Half Marathon. Luckily, the gamble paid off and I did not suffer for this choice. The taste was mild and it did not distress my stomach. It did not taste powerful or overly sugary, and no one needs all that in the middle of a run. Only natural sweeteners and coloring are used in Gnarly products, and they are all non-GMO, gluten-free, soy-free, NSF for Sport Certified.

I love that Fuel₂O is so easy.. No mess of sticky blocks or gels in frustrating packaging on a hot day, extra room in my pockets for keys and emergency toilet paper, and the ease of shaking it up in a bottle of water before a run. Water is what I need the most in the first place, so this just encourages that to happen.

You can buy a box of 10 sticks (which contain 2 servings per stick) for $28.95, or single sticks for $3.00 apiece. You also have the option of buying a bag of 25 servings for $34.95. You can pre-mix them with water, or mix out on the road on the go. You’ll get 100 calories per every 12 ounces and there’s a delivery of 250mg of sodium per serving as well as Calcium, Choride, Magnesium, and Potassium. You’ll also get some Vitamin D3 which maximizes the efficacy of the HMB and there’s 30mg of caffeine per serving from Green Tea Extract in the Cherry Cola flavor.

There are lots of nutrition and hydration aids out on the market today. Give Gnarly a try!!


Products & Price:

Specs (from website):

Gnarly Nutrition’s Fuel2O is the all-in-one, vegan-friendly solution for long days on the trails, in the mountains, at the gym or the crag.

  • Created with fueling, replenishment and recovery in mind.
  • Calories come from the easy-to-digest carbohydrates sucrose and dextrose, providing quick energy without causing an upset stomach.
  • One serving of Gnarly Fuel2O contains 100 calories per 12 ounces, which can be the perfect hourly caloric intake for shorter training sessions, while longer efforts may require two servings per hour, or 200 calories per 24 ounces.
  • Replaces the electrolytes lost when sweating, supplying 250mg of sodium per serving, as well as the electrolytes chloride, potassium, magnesium and calcium.
  • Helps you recover by delivering HMB, a metabolite of the branched chain amino acid leucine, which helps to minimize muscle protein breakdown resulting in a faster turnaround between hard training sessions and races.




We don’t mess with GMOs because we don’t want GMOs messin’ with you. It’s easiest for both us to just leave them out of the picture.

There’s not enough evidence to determine the full impact of GMOs on humans and the environment, therefore Gnarly Nutrition chooses to source ingredients that are GMO-free.


Our products taste better than they need to. And we are committed to using natural ingredients, including natural sweeteners, so the taste is healthy.

Our naturally occurring low calorie sweeteners, like stevia and monk fruit extract, provide amazing taste and enable you to regulate the carbohydrate intake that fits best with your lifestyle.


Our Whey protein products are sourced from New Zealand grass-fed cows.

Cows on conventional farms are given antibiotics to combat disease. Overuse of these antibiotics can lead to antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria. By sourcing our whey from grass-fed New Zealand cows, Gnarly is able to provide a clean, antibiotic-free product. These animals are not treated with synthetic hormones like rBGH and rBST, which are given to conventionally raised (i.e. grain fed) dairy cows to increase milk production.

Thank you to GNARLY SPORTS NUTRITION for providing us with a sample pack. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.

About Author

I'm the owner of Healthy Girl Fitness and I'm a personal trainer, certified AFAA group exercise instructor, and an RRCA certified running coach in SW Portland. I am also the mother of two young boys and am on the board at my youngest son's school. I led a relatively inactive life throughout my 20's until I discovered the world of fitness and running. I ran my first marathon in 2006 and haven't looked back since.

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