Gatorade’s Fast Twitch Energy Drink got me wondering if the brand has researched how much liquid it takes to hamper athletic pee-formance, I mean, performance. Because I was curious if it’s why they come in 12-ounce bottles instead of the 16.9-ounce ones the most recent ready-to-drink Gatorade products come in. With 200 milligrams of caffeine per bottle, it seems like that would be best used by athletes before and during competing or practicing, and having too much liquid during those moments might become an issue. Or maybe I’m just overthinking it. Instead, it’s just Gatorade playing a game of shrinkflation.
If you’ve chugged the Gatorade rainbow, the energy drink is available in six familiar flavors — Orange, Strawberry Lemonade, Glacier Freeze, Strawberry Watermelon, Cool Blue, and Tropical Mango. The variety pack I bought from Amazon came with the first three. No matter what flavor, they all have zero sugar (thanks, sucralose!), 100 percent of your daily B6 and B12 vitamins, and have only five calories per bottle.
Of those three flavors in the variety pack, the one that stood out to me is the blueberry-flavored Glacier Freeze, but I’m a bit biased because I think the flavor has always been one of the best tasting Gatorade varieties. It’s one of the two I’d repurchase. The other flavor is Strawberry Lemonade, but I must admit that, while the beverage has a slight sourness, my taste buds have had difficulty pinpointing the lemon. So think of it more like Sour Strawberry than Strawberry Lemonade.
As for orange, the first thing I have to say about it is that orange you glad there are other flavors besides it. It’s so tangy. Oh wait, I’m sorry. I meant to type Tang-y, as in Tang, the classic orange drink mix. It’s tolerable but not my favorite of the three. If I were a 1960s astronaut orbiting the Earth, I might’ve thought it was the bee’s knees.
All three feel more syrupy than regular Gatorade and other Gatorade lines I’ve tried. It’s not off-putting; it’s just different. Also, while sucralose was used to help make these zero sugar, I didn’t notice an artificial sweetener aftertaste. Of course, your taste buds may vary.
Fast Twitch isn’t the first Gatorade with caffeine, but it’s the first with an amount that goes well into the triple digits. It also isn’t the only non-carbonated sports drink with caffeine — Monster’s Hydro (150-160 milligrams per 20-ounce bottle) and Bodyarmor’s Edge (140 milligrams per 28.3-ounce bottle) come to mind. While I haven’t had Bodyarmor’s offering, I prefer the taste of Hydro over the Fast Twitch varieties, but I think that’s the sugar in Hydro talking. (Bodyarmor’s Edge also has sugar.)
Gatorade is known as the Thirst Quencher, and the 12 ounces of liquid will probably quench my thirst. But that size does make me hesitant about them, especially when there are similar products out there that come in bigger bottles.
Purchased Price: $24.07
Size: 12-pack/12 fl oz bottles
Purchased at: Amazon
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Glacier Freeze), 6 out of 10 (Strawberry Lemonade), and 5 out of 10 (Orange)
Nutrition Facts: (1 bottle) 5 calories, 0 grams of fat, 160 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein, and 200 milligrams of caffeine.