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Review: GU Espresso Love Energy Gel

I have been experimenting with different sports gels lately. My latest venture into the world of gooey non-food energy supplements was Espresso Love by GU and it felt like I was going back to the source, since I think of GU as the originator of these energy packets. I ate (or rather gummed and swallowed) this caffeinated GU 15 minutes prior to an early morning swim. If I eat before swimming, I tend to get a cramp, but feel I need some kind of fuel. Since I am a morning coffee drinker, the espresso flavor seemed a perfect fit.

To see how the GU tasted and the nutritional information,

.

I actually liked the way the Espresso GU tasted because it reminded me of Coffee Nips candy. If you like the taste of coffee, you'll also like this GU. Once in the pool, I felt awake and ready to swim. I had a good 50-minute workout and didn't feel draggy at the end.

Serving size 32 grams (one packet)
Calories 100
Fat 0 g
Sodium 50 mg
Carb 25 g
Potassium 40 mg
Sugar 5 g
Protein 0 g
Vitamin C 130 %
Vitamin E 100%
Caffeine 40 mg
Ingredients: MALTODEXTRIN (GLUCOSE POLYMERS), FILTERED WATER, FRUCTOSE, GU AMINO ACID BLEND (LEUCINE, VALINE, ISOLEUCINE, HISTIDINE), POTASSIUM AND SODIUM CITRATE, GU ANTIOXIDANT BLEND (NATURAL VITAMIN E AND VITAMIN C), NATURAL COFFEE FLAVOR, CITRIC ACID, SEA SALT, GU HERBAL BLEND [CHAMOMILE, COLA NUT (HAS CAFFEINE), GINGER], CALCIUM CARBONATE, SODIUM BENZOATE, POTASSIUM SORBATE, PECTIN

My only complaint about this GU was that I had to go online to find out how much caffeine it contained. The packaging only reads "2X caffeine." Many of their flavors contain 20 milligrams of caffeine, so the Espresso Love contains two times that. I thought, "Why not just conveniently list the amount of caffeine in the nutritional info?"

Do you use energy gels? If so tell me your favorite flavor, so I can expand my taste horizons.

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Join The Conversation
Food Food 6 years
I tried the Clif Shot in Strawberry today and literally threw it away immediately...it was the worst tasting thing I'd ever had. Can anyone advise whether any of the other gels are worth buying?
Fitness Fitness 6 years
Kim, I found the Power Bar's chocolate sports gel to be an awful lot like brownie batter. So if you like licking the spoon when you make chocolate cake or brownies you might be able to handle the texture.
Kimpossible Kimpossible 6 years
I've never tried these, the idea of gel does not sound good to me at all (I'm very sensitive to textures) but it's worth a try I'm sure.
runningesq runningesq 6 years
from the website: Roctane comes from years of testing scientifically-proven formulas with thousands of elite athletes training for and competing in the most physically-demanding sports in the world. Roctane’s advanced formula amplifies GU’s original Energy Gel recipe and adds new ingredients to boost your chances of success. Now it’s your turn to fill your tank with premium Roctane and compete like a pro. I find that it does give me 'extra' energy but not sure if it's a placebo effect or actually makes a difference. try it on your next run and see if helps you :)
chloe-bella chloe-bella 6 years
Runningesq - I just bought one of the ROCTANE GUs but haven't tried it yet. Could you tell a difference between it and regular Gu? They guy I asked at the running store didn't have many details, but I figured it would be worth it to try once . . .
runningesq runningesq 6 years
I get so annoyed when people tsk tsk at what I eat while I train "oh why not eat a raw food bar or something more 'clean'?" For running I like GU, and I like, like chloebella, the lemon lime and strawberry banana. Chocolate outrage is good, esp. in the winter when it gets frozen and tastes like chocolate. Triberry and vanilla are pretty good too. Have you all tried the ROCTANE GUs? those are good but pretty $$. For riding (where I can handle more solid foods) I also like: payday bars, luna moons, sport beans.
michlny michlny 6 years
It's unfortunate that it contains Sodium Benzoate. Even Diet Coke has stopped using that chemical.
chloe-bella chloe-bella 6 years
@ rivrchild - People who run marathons or do triathlons are probably the biggest consumers of gels. Eating whole foods while running upsets most peoples' stomachs. Also, most people wouldn't want to take the time to sit and eat during a race/training run even if they could b/c they're on the clock. I personally could not make it through training runs of over 10 miles without at least one energy gel! They contain a ton of salt (to make up for sweat lost and prevent water intoxication) and sugar (quick carbs) so they're totally not a meal substitute by any means but are designed specifically for strenuous activity. I like the Gu lemon lime flavor and strawberry banana is good too. On a different note, I tried Jelly Belly Sport Beans before my long run last weekend and they worked good as well.
rivrchild rivrchild 6 years
I've never heard of consuming energy gel before now. This sounds totally gross. Why not just eat something natural?
Passion4Fashion Passion4Fashion 6 years
I am a fan of their chocolate flavor!
iheartkerning iheartkerning 6 years
this is my favorite gel to use when bike riding!
nia0nia nia0nia 6 years
this seems awful!
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