Background: Gatorade G2® (G2) and Red Bull® (RB) are two common sport and energy drinks athletes consume. The difference between the two beverages on performance is not known.
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to compare G2 to RB on a maximal cycle ergometer (bike) test.
Methods: Thirty healthy college students were randomly divided into three comparative groups that engaged in an Åstrand maximal cycle ergometer test twice, with one week of rest in between test sessions. Participants in each group consumed a designated beverage and then engaged in the cycle ergometer test 30 minutes later. Group 1 consumed G2 during week one and RB during week two. Group 2 consumed RB during week one and G2 during week two. Group 3 consumed water during both weeks. Data from this group were used as a control to measure test-retest variability. Electrocardiogram measurements and Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE) were recorded at baseline and after each stage of the exercise test. Cycle time to exhaustion and blood lactate were recorded at the conclusion of the exercise test. A between-within analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to analyze electrocardiogram and RPE data. A one-way ANOVA was utilized to analyze blood lactate and cycle time to exhaustion.
Results: No statistically significant differences were noted between RB and G2. However, participants in the G2 group were able to cycle 17 seconds longer to exhaustion and reported less abdominal discomfort.
Conclusions: Preliminarily, this research suggests that consumption of RB or G2 prior to sustained aerobic exercise result in similar performance.
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