Gu, anyone?

Everywhere you look, literature revolving around the subject of supplements can be found. Sports literature, whether it be online, in magazines, or the ancient paperback books, has a plethora of information on what to consume during a long workout. A friend of mine introduced me to energy gels a couple months ago. These gels contain the same amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee, and are easily digested by the body. From my research, depending on the brand, they usually contain about 100-140 calories, electrolytes such as sodium and potassium (which are quickly depleted from the body if you sweat a lot like yours truly),  and contain 8-10% carbs, which is needed by the muscles to function. I’m saving you from my nursing/scientific explanation of what exactly the carbs do.

The gel packets are small, easy to carry in a pocket, and come in different flavors. All the major brands which produce energy bars, such as PowerBar, Cliffbar,etc., now have energy gels. I must admit after trying my first Gu on our run, I did feel a bit of a jolt of energy, but I felt as if I was trying to swallow strawberry cream frosting.

I am not a frosting person.

It is vital, however, to replace what you lose on a long run. Some runners find when their sodium levels (basically, salt) drop, they have more muscle cramping. If you are similar to me and don’t have the palate for uber-sweet frosting like food, perhaps fill up one of your water bottles with an electrolyte containing fluid. I won’t go into sports drinks, because hydration is a whole other post in itself. Although, I tend to only drink water on my runs, again, because I dislike sweet things.

Nowadays, to go with the gel, there are also sports energy jelly beans which are easy to carry on a run and pop in your mouth. I believe Jelly Belly makes a sports jelly bean. Go ahead, take a guess as to whether or not I like jelly beans.

The main point here is, if you are exercising more than 60minuntes (depending on what source you read), your body needs some sort of replenishment, and there are plenty of options out there you can try.

As for me, I’m still trying to figure out what to snack on.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Ramblings of a Twenty Something Year Old | A Rendezvous with Sneakers
  2. Trackback: Training’s a Blast! (Really!) | A Rendezvous with Sneakers

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