Would it be an exaggeration to say that I’m obsessed with finding new products to make my running better, faster, stronger, FUNNER? I think not. New things are always interesting, and even though I’ve been plugging away at my running for about 2 years (and blogging for one) I am still in ‘sponge-state’. I want to learn as much as I can and not take anything for granted.
And so I try things. I set aside what doesn’t work for me in favor for what does – Polar Heart Rate Monitor is out, Pear Heart Rate Monitor is in, lululemon headband goes bye-bye, BondiBand is lovingly cradling my crown, Nike+ App poofs into techno-oblivion and ZombiesRun! haunts my run to fun-town while Garmin does the grunt work.
And this interest extends to nutrition. Now, I’m no doctor or nutritionist, but I have a body and an opinion. I’ve done my lap of the nutrition goos, gels, gummies and beans out there. I’ve definitely got my favorites, but I still endure the challenge that most runners face – icky-tum. Not, “poop-your-pants” icky, but still… distracting. Ickiness aside, though, My pace is slow enough to know that I need to down several little packets of something during the course of a half marathon or a marathon.
Naturally, I was delighted to be approached recently by ENERGYbits after a fun #runchat session, and asked if I’d like to try a sample of their product. Free food? I’m in!
I was interested, because I’d dabbled with taking spirulina long, long ago when I was trying to figure out a way to manage my protein needs as a vegetarian/hypoglycaemic I’m no longer a vegetarian, but I’m still always trying to stay ahead of my blood sugar, and I’ve always been curious about ‘how’ to use algae in my diet. I have a basic knowledge – that it’s got good, fast absorbing nutrients, and that it’s a staple of other culture’s diets. But my knowledge ends there.
ENERGYbits® algae tabs are your answer for raw energy and health. All naturally too. With just one calorie per tab, ENERGYbits® will stop your cravings, slay your hunger and give you a steady stream of energy all day or night. They may even make you want to leap over tall buildings in a single bound, but we think that’s best left to the guys in the red capes and blue tights. Remarkably, our ENERGYbits® have just one ingredient, spirulina algae which is a super hero in the world of super foods. Spirulina’s nutritional pedigree is so impressive that The World Bank, NASA and Olympic athletes have all declared spirulina to be the most nutritious food in the entire world. Why? Well for starters, it effortlessly and naturally boosts your energy like an energy drink, energy bar or coffee but without the downside of chemicals, caffeine, calories or sugar and gram per gram, there is no denser source of nutrition than spirulina algae. Research done by NASA showed that that 1 kg of spirulina had the nutritional equivalent of 1000 kg of fruits and vegetables. That’s a lot of groceries! But if an endorsement by NASA isn’t enough to convince you of the health benefits you’ll get from our ENERGYbits® and spirulina, consider that many International Health Organizations including the United Nations have hailed spirulina as one of the “Greatest Superfoods on Earth.” Don’t worry if you haven’t heard about this super food yet. You will. It may be virtually unknown in America but for the last 50 years, millions worldwide have taken it to improve their energy. Now it’s your turn.
Cute, sturdy packaging. A little aluminum container which can be refilled (go, environment!) from the bag they usually come in. By my estimation, it easily holds about two standard ‘doses’, or 60 ‘bits’. You could probably jam in more if you were staring down the barrel of a marathon. The container is small enough to easily fit in the pocket of a SparkleSkirt, many running belts, a SPI belt, what have you. (Ooh – what do you have? Is it good? Should I try it?)
The information sheets enclosed with the sample recommends that you take at least 30 bits 10 – 15 minutes before your workout, which sounds like a lot, right?
It’s not so bad. They’re about the size of a tic-tac, according to their website. I’d say a bit smaller than a typical aspirin. What might be off-putting for some is the unmistakeable smell of seaweed. I had an instant sense-memory of feeding our fish as a kid. Lucky for me, I always wondered what those fluffy flakes tasted like.
I will also say, I’m a giant sissy when it comes to stinky pills. I admit this shameful behavior in this blog post and so naturally I wondered how I’d handle 30 of these babies.
Easily, apparently. I didn’t notice any unusual taste when I took them first 2, then 3, then 4, then 5 at a time. Bingo. Easy. The closest thing I had to an aftertaste was a slight nori flavor. Which I like. Good to go. (They’re also chewable, but apparently taste pretty ‘green’ according to the information pages. Well, now I’m curious… What does “Green” taste like?)
Now bear in mind, that I am 4 days into a cleanse. That means 4 days of no caffeine and no sugar (and no fun). There has been nothing stimulating ingested by this gal. (Did I say, “no fun”?).
Also bear in mind that I did P90X Legs and Back for the first time in over a month the day before yesterday, and my glutes have not even come close to forgiving me.
And while you’re bearing those two thoughts in mind, (Spoiler alert) let me also tell you that the last time I ran for 30 minutes straight, without stopping, was June 18th, fresh on the heels completing P90X and at a time when I felt my strongest and my runs since then have been… sporadic.
Got the picture?
Well, picture this.
About five minutes after swallowing all those
pills bits of food, I felt perked up. Considering I’d had 6 hours sleep, and spent the day on foot, dashing around Seattle up and down hills running errands, “perked up” was a significant win. Was it in my head? Maybe. Don’t care. Felt good.
Off to the treadmill!
I did a light warmup, then turned on my Garmin and just let it run. I figured I’d do an easy pace and just keep going until I needed to walk, or until 30 minutes ran out. I just assumed my tired legs would slow me down, or stop me at some point. My goal was to get a mile before walking.
Ok, to twenty minutes without walking.
Ok, to thirty minutes, and let’s speed up!
I did it! 30 minutes! On tired legs! And only about 15 seconds per mile off the pace when I was conditioned. I’ll take it! Tummy? Great! After a run, I’m always tempted to crawl right into bed for a nap. Not today!
Oh. Now I’m even more interested. ENERGYbits, what’s-say you and I take a 7 mile run this week?
TO BE CONTINUED
I am an actor/writer/director based in Chicago, IL.