Me. A treadmill. Rocky seas. Seven Miles. That’s the make-up of my Thursday night.
Oh yeah, and ENERGYbits.
Thursday was the night where I tried them out “for realizies”, as the kids say. (I assume)
If you read my first blog post about ENERGYbits, you’ll know that I liked them when I tried them out on a short, mid-week conditioning run. I felt that they boosted my energy and made me feel stronger, enabling me to run longer and faster than I have in a long time, even though I was “tired”.
A short conditioning run wasn’t really the true test I needed, though. I wanted to try ENERGYbits out on one of my Long, Slow Run (LSR) days. And to “keep it real”, as the kids say, (I assume) I decided to use them as my mid-run nutrition. Now, I know 7 miles isn’t that long to some people, but it’s still pretty long to me and at my intended LSR pace, it was going to take me about an hour and a half. So, I set up the ENERGYbits on my treadmill shelf alongside my water and hit “Start”.
Keep in mind, I’m still on a cleanse which means I’m still going caffeine, sugar, alcohol and red meat free. We had added a couple of hikes into the mix this week, along with our P90X weight training, and so I planned to take it easy on my legs for this LSR and looked forward to a problem free-run. My Garmin seemed to be possessed by someone else’s footpod, however. It tracked me at a much faster pace than my treadmill was showing. As much as I’d like to think I was really running sub-10 m/m intervals, I wasn’t. So my first 3.5 miles were confused and frustrated technologically, but consistent physically. I felt distracted and self conscious because my Garmin was beeping like crazy telling me to slow down, and I was sure I was annoying everyone around me. I mean, I was annoying myself.
Like clockwork, at 45 minutes in, I started to flag a little bit. I popped open my little metal container of ENERGYbits. It wasn’t practical to take them a few at a time, so instead, I took them in a couple of big handfuls. The nori flavor was more pronounced taking them in handfuls, but it didn’t bother me.
I haven’t really mentioned this before, but I’ve got a wonky blood sugar level. I wouldn’t call it Hypoglycemia, officially. I’ve never been diagnosed with it and I really don’t know that it’s all THAT serious, but it can get frustrating. Cold sweats, mood swings, slight shaking, serious brain fog (confused, indecisive) and a hollow, empty-feeling body accompanies all that delightful stuff. Like I’m a rag that’s been wrung out. It’s icky. Greg has learned to read the signs, and can hear it in my voice when I’m getting close to HANGRAGE! So I deal with that, or “endless hunger” commonly on the ship. I’ll eat a perfectly good meal, and literally 10 minutes later, I’m starving again. It makes no sense.
I tell you all that, to tell you this: It’s always been an issue for my running, too. I can’t fathom how people go out for a run before breakfast. At all. I panic if I start a run and I’m feeling “hungry around the edges”, because I know what’s coming. I finish runs feeling ‘run-drunk’, just a step beyond the endorphin high, and downright stupid. I’ve made good use of Clif Shots, Honey Stingers and Accelerade, which I truly enjoy, but all that sugar has occasionally sloshed around in my tummy a little unpleasantly on long runs. When Greg ran his Goofy this year, he told of an upset tummy, knowing he had to take more gel or chews, and not wanting to because his stomach was “just not having it”, as the kids say. (I assume) So that’s been knocking around in my head.
I was skeptical about ENERGYbits when I read about them on blogs, their website, or their own promotional materials. I mean, doesn’t everyone always claim to have “the answer”? As if seaweed could have that big an effect on someone.
Well, as it turns out, ENERGYbits is the answer for me. It had “that big” an effect on me.
About 10 minutes after I took the ENERGYbits, I felt my brain come back. Like, “Oh, hello again, focus. Nice to see you!” My posture lifted, my form improved and my legs felt fresh. Again, I was strong and I was ready to just keep running and running. My stomach did not object in the least, and I felt calm and happy. So happy. My treadmill clicked over to 7 miles and I did something crazy. I’d been running my 2/1 run/walk intervals the whole time, but I’d had enough.
I let that treadmill run. I wanted to see how far those ENERGYbits would take me, and so I ran another mile straight without stopping to walk. I had a big grin on my face the whole time, my brain saying “I love to run! I love to run!”
A mile may not be a lot to some people, but I’ve never done that before after a long run (especially not the “I love to run” part).
When I finished up and found Greg in the next room stretching, I told him what I’d done. He was surprised.
“After 7 miles, you did another mile without stopping?”
“Guess those bits work, huh?”
“Gonna buy some?”
We agreed that I’d run visibly stronger the times I’d taken them versus the times I hadn’t. And I felt great post-run, too. Alert, focussed, happy… sassy. Another revelation? I wasn’t starving. I wasn’t exhausted, in fact I didn’t feel like I’d worked all that hard (my legs beg to differ now, of course).
I’m totally sold on ENERGYbits. As a matter of fact, I’ll be ordering a bag and trying them on a daily basis to see if they can help control that wonky blood sugar of mine.
If you think you’d like to try these amazing bits of food, stay tuned! I’ve got an ENERGYbits giveaway coming up and a super fun announcement!
I am an actor/writer/director based in Chicago, IL.