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Which electrolytes do you use?

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  • Which electrolytes do you use?

    I was wondering which electrolytes people are using at the rides....also, do you give electrolytes on the days leading up to the rides? Does anyone mix their own recipes of home made electrolytes with 'no salt' or 'lite salt'? Do you use stomach buffers with your electrolytes?

    I got into a couple of jams last season and I don't think I am electrolyting properly. I am doing 50's.

    I need help.

  • #2
    Originally posted by DistanceHorse View Post
    I was wondering which electrolytes people are using at the rides....also, do you give electrolytes on the days leading up to the rides? Does anyone mix their own recipes of home made electrolytes with 'no salt' or 'lite salt'? Do you use stomach buffers with your electrolytes?

    I got into a couple of jams last season and I don't think I am electrolyting properly. I am doing 50's.

    I need help.
    I found Perform N Win to be the best e-lyte for my guy. Early on I tried the others - heavy salts, etc. - they were awful. My guy hated them, and they were worse than nothing - his gut sounds diminished during the ride (even with lots of hand feeding carrots and grass and hay) and he still experienced rear end muscle cramps at the end of the day after the ride.

    When PNW was suggested to me by some top riders, I tried it. He LOVED it, and his performance suddenly ramped up to a level that was amazing. Great gut sounds, continued appetite, improved recovery, etc, no more muscle cramps afterwards. One ride I experimented with giving no elytes (trying out what the French claimed as they supposedly give no elytes), and he almost crashed midway through the ride. I started them back up at that point, and he rebounded almost instantly. That sealed the deal for me.

    Been a fan of that stuff ever since.

    No stomach buffers needed. Ever. If you need them, you are giving the wrong elyte.

    ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS give an e-lyte designed for endurance, NOT for flat track racing or casual trail riding. There is a difference in the chemistry, and giving a racing e-lyte (the type you find on the tack store shelves) is the WRONG type for an endurance horse. Racing produces an acidic blood; endurance produces an alkaline blood - you need to have the proper e-lyte designed specifically for the type of riding you are doing. Otherwise, you will seriously compromise your horse's system, and it may cause him to crash and burn.

    Let me clue you - making your own mixture isn't always a good idea. Salt can easily be a detriment to a horse as it can be a help, and unless you are really skilled in blood chemistry, equine system needs under stress, etc - I would strongly suggest you go with a pre-made elyte that is light with the salt and has plenty of sugar to help the minerals absorb quickly. Heavy salts do not absorb quickly, destroy the horse's desire to eat, and are brutally hard on the stomach. You will know that the dosage is too hard on your horse by his attitude when you give him the elytes. If he runs away or tries to refuse the dose, you know he's trying to tell you the stuff is either too strong, too heavy in salts, or just too much for his system to handle. Listen to him! And don't force the issue.

    Always give the absolute minimum until you have charted out exactly what your horse needs for optimum performance.

    Some people advocate giving e-lytes the night before with the idea that it will make the horse drink more, but in reality a horse will pee extra water out very quickly. Leave the system alone to refuel naturally by giving good quality hay and root veggies. Both contain copious amounts of natural vitamins and minerals that the horse's system was designed to intake easily and effectively.

    My suggestion is just give one e-lyte dose prior to mounting up in the morning, one at the end of each hold, and one at the end of the ride after the horse has had the chance to eat and drink (about 2 hours later).
    Last edited by gothedistance; Feb. 11, 2011, 08:22 AM.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by gothedistance View Post
      My suggestion is just give one e-lyte dose prior to mounting up in the morning, one at the end of each hold, and one at the end of the ride after the horse has had the chance to eat and drink (about 2 hours later).
      this is the schedule i have found to work best for the horse i ride as well. we use the lyte now brand.

      also agree that if the horse is acting up when you try to dose them, something isn't right!
      There is no joy equal to that found on the back of a horse.

      Comment


      • #4
        I started using the Dynamite line of e-lytes last year and was VERY VERY happy! Horses like it, it's already liquid, I just pour it in a empty water bottle, carry it with me, and pour it into a syrnge when needed, fast, easy, no more muscle cramps, great performance, happy tummies, etc. Find a Dynamite rep, they have a whole line of fantastic products (I'm not a rep, my farrier is)
        Windwalker Ridge: Gaited horses, lessons, training, sales
        http://windwalkerridge.cloud11.net

        Comment


        • #5
          This chart from Karen Chaton's website may help the OP:
          http://enduranceridestuff.com/blog/electrolytes/

          First, I think, you have to understand that electrolytes are given to REPLACE lost electrolytes, so it makes very little sense to give them before exercise.

          Also, it is very important for the well-being of the horse NOT to keep administering e-lytes when your horse is not drinking well at a ride. You must monitor water intake and sweat output, outside temperature and workload and learn to adjust accordingly. It may be enough to give electrolytes at the end of the ride on a cool day, but you may have to give them every vet check on a hot and humid day.

          One last thought: Electrolytes do not make up for shortcomings in conditioning. So when you say you got into a couple of "jams" last season, are you sure it had to with e-lytes at all? They are by no means a cure-all and if your horse is having metabolic trouble, you better talk to an experienced endurance vet before experimenting with dosage.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by gothedistance View Post
            My suggestion is just give one e-lyte dose prior to mounting up in the morning, one at the end of each hold, and one at the end of the ride after the horse has had the chance to eat and drink (about 2 hours later).
            This is what works for my horse as well. I use Endura-Lyte Electrolytes from Distance Depot. I am very pleased with them and a big jug lasts me an entire ride season. I mix mine with strawberry yogurt and it makes Eli very happy!

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