Though I use and sample a variety of health-related products as a running blog owner, I can be a creature of habit. While I love trying new things, it can be easy to fall into old patterns of habit when it comes to ongoing usage. One new-ish company we have been sampling items from is Gnarly (we tried their Fuel2o last year) and I may now be a real convert to their line of sports nutrition. This go around, we sampled their electrolyte powder and vegan protein travel sticks.
Gnarly’s powder-based sport drink called Hydrate electrolyte mix comes in two different sizes – a 40 serving bag that I have found useful during garage weightlifting sessions, and a 5-pack of single serving travel sticks that are great for running. There are three flavor options – Orange Pineapple, Raspberry, and Ruby Red Grapefruit, each of which is loaded with B Vitamins and electrolytes.
I had tried the Grapefruit flavor in the past (which I love) and tested the Orange Pineapple flavor this go around. Much like the grapefruit, I really enjoyed it a lot! I’m not keen on super strong flavors or sugary sweetness mid-run, and for me, the balance here hit the spot perfectly. The powder was easy to mix, easy to drink, and a simple swish of a water bottle or handheld mixed things up perfectly.
My stomach tends to be on the sensitive side, so trying anything new is always a risk and not something I would attempt before heading out for 10 miles in Forest Park. But I had no issues and no concerns with this one. It settled in my stomach well and seemed to provide sufficient energy and hydration for my workouts. I love that the ingredients list is pretty short and simple, and includes a lot of B vitamins as well as electrolytes – and only 4 grams of added sugar in a serving is a big plus!
I am only a recent convert to protein powder due to the fact I hadn’t found a powder that doesn’t taste – well – artificial. Gnarly Vegan Protein really blew me out of the water. I am not vegan, but over the past few years I have really found myself transitioning more towards vegetarianism (or, more realistically, pescatarianism) and have found that vegan supplements and nutrition products, probably unsurprisingly, sit better with me.
We tried out Gnarly’s vanilla travel sticks and have found them to be be perfect for my daily routine – a one-serving protein shake in the morning to stay fueled. The vanilla flavor is really tasty as a standalone, but not overpowering so that you can add some other items in (some frozen fruit perhaps) to add a fun twist. I have had one of these early in the morning and been powered through a long run without issue.
The protein blend in Gnarly is made from pea protein isolate, chia seed protein and cranberry seed protein. There is a little bit of added sugar as this is designed to be a meal replacement product, and the taste is downright great. To me, having a completely sugar-free protein option is great, but if it tastes terrible (i.e. chalky) then it’s probably not even worth the trouble. I mean, who wants to stomach what they can’t stand?! Honestly the combo of function and taste really have me a Gnarly convert now.
Gnarly’s logo may have a “rock-on” hand, but these products get two thumbs up from me.
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Thank you to Gnarly for providing us with samples. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.