Etixx is a sports nutrition brand that was launched in Belgium six years, and its products are now becoming available in the UK. The company states that its product range is split into five major categories that focus on different stages of training: health, strength, endurance, performance and recovery.
Rather than looking at all of the products in one go I’ve been using different ones at different times and my introduction to Etixx was through its performance range, which is made up of Triple Action Energy Gel, Triple Action Energy Gel + Caffeine, Energy Load powder, and Energy Bars.
I should point out that my thoughts on the effectiveness of any of the Etixx line of products are purely down to seat of the pants testing – using them while out riding. I simply don’t have the resources to gather scientific results, though if anyone does have access to a lab do get in touch.
My first Etixx powered ride was with the Energy Load powder. A single sachet of Energy Load is just the right size to mix up in a 500ml water bottle and it dissolves completely too, so that’s a good start. A personal bugbear is energy powder that doesn’t dissolve fully – that last gritty mouthful is never a pleasant experience.
Described as red fruit flavour, the taste, once mixed with water, is actually very pleasant. All too often sports drinks just taste too sweet. It should be no surprise really as sugars are often used as an energy source, but not so much with Etixx. The Energy Load has sweet flavour but not overly so, a bit like a single spoon of sugar in a cup of tea.
Alongside the carbohydrates in the Energy Load, Etixx mixes vitamins B1, B2 and B3, the effect of these is said to support energy production, and there’s also folate to ‘contribute to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue’.
As I said, without scientific testing, I can only report my gut feeling while riding. While there was no radical change, I did feel fresher mid-way round one of my regular routes. This makes me think that there could be value in using Etixx’s Energy Load. I shall be trying it again on longer rides to see if I can combat the usual dip towards the end of those too.
Next to be eaten out on a ride was a chocolate flavour Energy Bar. Over the years, I have tried all manner of energy bars and always seem to go back to Power Bars; I like the range of flavours and the consistency, and it’s against them that I measure all other options. Taste wise, while not as chocolatey as a Power Bar, the Etixx does at least have a chocolate taste, which is more than can be said for some bars. Where it falls down, in my opinion, is the texture. I know that all energy bars need a drink to wash them down, but the dryish texture of the Etixx Energy Bar had me reaching for the water bottle straight away. It’s not the worst I’ve ever eaten, but you do need plenty of liquids to wash it down.
Once I’d consumed the Energy Bar, it was a familiar story to the Energy Load, passing landmarks where I usually start to feel tiredness settling in there was still plenty of life in my legs. It could be that I’m suggestible, but I’d prefer to think that I’m getting the benefit of the carb content that makes up 3/4 of each bar.
One final point of note with the Energy Bar is that the list of ingredients would suggest that they are suitable for vegans, which is a nice touch.
You’ll no doubt not be surprised to hear that when I went riding with a couple of sachets of Etixx Energy Gel I got a familiar boost while riding once I’d swallowed their contents. On the ride in question I started already feeling tired and sluggish, and the caffeine kick from the gel certainly had made a difference.
I’m not really a fan of gels though I can understand why people like them as they’re easy to consume, but I find the viscous consistency unpleasant and that statement applies to Etixx. Although Etixx say you don’t need a drink with the Gel, I find it certainly helped to wash it down. The taste was okay if a little overly sweet, but the aftertaste was definitely bitter. Still, as I said if you can get past that, the gel does just what it says on the packet.
Will I continue using Etixx’s range of performance products? Well yes and no. Okay, I know that sounds like I’m sitting on the fence, but I really liked the Energy Load powder. Yes, it felt like I had more energy as a result of consuming the energy bars and gels, but a general dislike of gels means I have no time for them and as for the bars I’ll buy some to have as an alternative when I fancy a change from Power Bars.
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