DIY drink mix Malto, Fructose, Sodium citrate

Hello, I have read the other threads on diy drink mix, however, I felt this warranted a thread.
I want to make my own drink mix with maltodextrin (tapioca), Fructose, and Sodium citrate.
I am looking to confirm the ratios of each I should mix.
I am aware that beta fuel, maurten, mix in a ratio of 2:1 malto:fructose (i.e. glucose:fructose) and this is recommended for sessions 3 hours and longer I believe.
With my season over and most or all of my rides until spring at this point will be no longer than 2 hours, mostly 90 minutes, I am wondering if I should mix in a different ratio of 2:1?
For sodium I find a need a higher concentration to help with cramping. Do I assume that if I want 1g of sodium do I measure in 1g of sodium citrate?
Thanks for any feedback and suggestions you have.

1g of sodium citrate is substantially less than 1g of sodium. Citrate is a fairly heavy molecule compared to the sodium. It looks like you’ll need between 4 and 5 times the weight of sodium desired as sodium-citrate.

I think obsessing over glucose/fructose ratios in base/short workouts is a waste of effort. The ratios become important when you’re trying to maximize absorption per hour, and that’s not really something that should be a problem in your off-phase. Ie, if you’re not shooting for 90-120g/hr, just use table sugar – much cheaper.


+1 on table sugar.

I mix 40 grams of plain table sugar with 40 grams of any random fruit juice powder mix from the supermarket. Gives me 80g of carbs per bottle. It has been working for me since may.

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@vanbc the assumption of @gcarver on the sodium-citrate is correct. I use 4.5g of sodium-citrate for each gram of sodium, I would like in my drink mix.
I mix my drinkmix with the 2:1 ratio for 80g/liter and 1g of sodium.
This works very well for me, just did a 10.5 hour MTB ride without fueling issues or cramps (added 3 Sweat Tablets from Precision Hydration during the ride).

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Thank you very much @CarstenErkel and @gcarver.
I went and bought some fructose (already had the maltodextrin from a previous DIY mix with Gatorade powder) and then ran out of time for any longer rides. I think I also temporarily forgot that my DIY maltodextrin:fructose (i.e. glucose:fructose 2:1) mixture should only really be used for rides of 3 hours or longer. As such, I can put all this stuff away until the Spring as between now and then I don’t think I will ride longer than 2 hours on the trainer in a sitting.
I will probably just use some cheap mix, gatorade maybe, for flavour and carbs at mix at 20g per bottle if going over 1 hour (60-90 minutes).
As for Sodium Nitrate, that is very good to know, I never knew you needed that much to get 1g of Na. I was way under mixing what I thought I was getting but I think it still helped for my leg cramps on longer rides, so maybe I don’t need as much salt as I thought I did. I was only adding about 1 gram of sodium nitrate per bottle, to which I was using Skratch for carbs, which may have been giving me also about 1 gram per bottle I think. So instead of getting 2 grams of Na per bottle I was maybe only getting 1.25 grams. Something to experiment more with next year but good to know it is about 4.5 grams of sodium nitrate to get 1 gram of Na.
Thanks very much.

I wouldn’t know, why you want to use something different as drink mix, while riding intervalls indoors for 60-90 minutes than outdoors for longer durations. I use the same inside and outside. I may ride endurance fasted with water only, but all sweetspot and above I use mix, indoors I often reduce the strength of the mixture so, that it may be 60g/liter or 40g/liter. Based on my pre-mixing, I will shortchange myself on sodium on these indoor rides, which I compensate with food throughout the day. But on longer rides, where the constant supply of energy is neccessary I dry to take at least 100g of carbs per hour (70 - 80g from drink mix and 30 - 40 from solid foods or gels).

I’m sure it’s just a typo, but just in case… careful with sodium nitrate (curing salt aka pink salt [not to be confused with Himalayan pink salt… ])

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I agree. It would seem reasonable to train my body to accept the 80-90g of drink mix and the best way to do it would be repeatedly - with all but easy efforts.

1000ml water
1 lemon
1tbs honey
1/4 tea spoon salt

Mıxi it, freeze it, enjoy it.

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@CarstenErkel, it is my understanding (only from some reading in this forum), that the malto:fructose 2:1 formula is really only better for rides 2-3 hours or more. I believe the carbs/sugars in this formula are digested a bit slower than straight glucose and this is partially why this is better for the longer rides. For rides less than 2-3 hours your body can typically tolerate a straight glucose formula fine and it may also get into the system faster.
I also understand for rides 2-3 hours or less you should be able to get away with 60 ish grams of carbs or less but then as you go to 2-3 hours or more you can try to up to around 90 grams per hour (with the additional 30 grams coming from fructose possible and not just 30 more grams of straight glucose).
For rides of 60 minutes or less I also understand you should be able to get through them with no additional carbs regardless of intensity. Of course, mileage may vary with this and taking in carbs is not really a bad thing especially if that helps you nail the workout.
I have been just taking on water or water with a nuun for 60 minutes rides, however, I am going to start adding about 20 grams of Gatorade I think for sweetspot and above rides of 60 minutes to see if RPE is any lower.
If I have anything wrong here please let me know as this is all just my understanding so far I am by no means an expert or tried a lot of different things. I am just hoping to have a good idea what works for most people and go with that. I am not racing and I am well beyond my best years but do still hope to improve a bit going into my 3rd year of endurance sports.

thank you @gcarver, yes, meant to say sodium citrate! :+1:

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