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Least Expensive Source for Blocks, GU and Electrolytes?

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Least Expensive Source for Blocks, GU and Electrolytes?

Old 06-11-19, 03:49 PM
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TimothyH
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Least Expensive Source for Blocks, GU and Electrolytes?

Not everyone chooses to use these products. I understand and respect that. My hope is that those who don't can respect those who do and use another thread for debate.

I'm specifically interested in Gu Vanilla Bean gel single serve, Cliff blocks (no caffiene) and Endurolytes.

I used to purchase at the local Performance Bike when on sale but that is no longer an option.

Any sources cheaper than what Amazon or what Google comes up with?


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Old 06-11-19, 04:10 PM
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Every now and then tubes of Nuun go on sale at Whole Foods for $4.50; prime members get another 10% off of that. I spent about $600 on Nuun the last time that happened, and posted a PSA in the road forum. I'll post another thread about it and PM you if you like, but I think I have a couple years supply now so I won't be paying close attention.

A lot of people mix table salt into their water to good effect. I'll give it a try eventually, if I can make it work it's obviously going to be much more affordable.
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Old 06-11-19, 04:48 PM
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Thanks Forrest. Yeah, I have four 8-packs of Nuun and I'm good.

Looking for gu, blocks and endurolytes. I like to vary and need to order some soon.


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Old 06-12-19, 05:06 PM
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Academy Sports usually has the Vanilla Bean singles for less than $1, though it's been awhile since I checked. Recently I've been using the Clif Shot singles from Walmart but they only have Mocha and Strawberry. Totally anecdotal/ subjective but I feel like I get a noticeable boost (legs) that I didn't get with the GUs. I'm happy enough to be deluded, if that's the case.
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Old 06-13-19, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Academy Sports usually has the Vanilla Bean singles for less than $1, though it's been awhile since I checked. Recently I've been using the Clif Shot singles from Walmart but they only have Mocha and Strawberry. Totally anecdotal/ subjective but I feel like I get a noticeable boost (legs) that I didn't get with the GUs. I'm happy enough to be deluded, if that's the case.
Thanks for suggesting Academy. There is one near me. I'll check.

Some of these products have a surprising amount of caffeine. Vanilla Gu has 20 mg but I prefer none in drink or in blocks.


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Old 06-13-19, 07:40 AM
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Though it's not the specific product you asked for, Clif ShotBlocks are nearly 100% Glucose. In an effort to help with your "fuel" needs, might I suggest a potentially viable substitute:

Plain ol' clover honey is also glucose, but also importantly is fructose. The reason this is important is eachone is taken into the body by a different uptake channel. Where you are biologically limited to 60 grams of per hour by one channel alone, with honey you can uptake 90 grams.

The results are nearly instant as far as these things go (my experience) since your body doesn't have a 45 minute delay to break whatever sugar you just ate into useable fructose & glucose. All sugars eventually get converted to glucose.

Honey is much cheaper & more effective for fuel needs than high margin commercial products marketed to cyclists.

I use almost exclusivly honey 3 oz dissolved into a 16oz bottle, 4 oz into a 24 oz bottle, or 6oz into a 32oz bottle...and of course the proper portion NUUN tab for each...On occassion I mix in Gatorade powder for flavor, but that's just me.

FWIW: I also like Gu, et al. because it can easliy be transported, has durable packaging, and is handy as an "emergency" kind of way. I think if you are seeing the same price everywhere you look, you may be up against arbitrary price controls set by the manufacturer. Hence my above suggestion.

Good luck on you quest!

Last edited by base2; 06-13-19 at 08:12 AM.
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Old 06-13-19, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by base2 View Post
Though it's not the specific product you asked for, Clif ShotBlocks are nearly 100% Glucose. In an effort to help with your "fuel" needs, might I suggest a potentially viable substitute:

Plain ol' clover honey is also glucose, but also importantly is fructose. The reason this is important is eachone is taken into the body by a different uptake channel. Where you are biologically limited to 60 grams of per hour by one channel alone, with honey you can uptake 90 grams.

The results are nearly instant as far as these things go (my experience) since your body doesn't have a 45 minute delay to break whatever sugar you just ate into useable fructose & glucose. All sugars eventually get converted to glucose.

Honey is much cheaper & more effective for fuel needs than high margin commercial products marketed to cyclists.

I use almost exclusivly honey 3 oz dissolved into a 16oz bottle, 4 oz into a 24 oz bottle, or 6oz into a 32oz bottle...and of course the proper portion NUUN tab for each...On occassion I mix in Gatorade powder for flavor, but that's just me.

FWIW: I also like Gu, et al. because it can easliy be transported, has durable packaging, and is handy as an "emergency" kind of way. I think if you are seeing the same price everywhere you look, you may be up against arbitrary price controls set by the manufacturer. Hence my above suggestion.

Good luck on you quest!
While it is true you can utilize parallel pathways to take up to 90g sugars, honey being ~50:50 glucose:fructose would not be a great choice alone. If you take 90g of honey/hour then you will only get ~45g of glucose when max absorption of the faster pathway is ~60g, and if you were to try to maximize that(120g) then you'll exceed your fructose absorption capabilities and risk gastric distress. Also plain table sugar(sucrose which is 50:50 g:f) is way cheaper than honey and also easy to carry if you wanted
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Old 06-14-19, 09:24 AM
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While I wouldn't usually suggest REI (aka "MSRP World") as a low-cost source, watch for their sales. Start with 10% off 10 or more "performance foods," get it up to $100 when they're having $20 off $100 order, add free shipping at that order level, and finish off with 7-10% dividend. 35-40% off and you're getting down to a reasonable price.
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Old 06-14-19, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb View Post
While I wouldn't usually suggest REI (aka "MSRP World") as a low-cost source, watch for their sales. Start with 10% off 10 or more "performance foods," get it up to $100 when they're having $20 off $100 order, add free shipping at that order level, and finish off with 7-10% dividend. 35-40% off and you're getting down to a reasonable price.
Now that's smart, right there.
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