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Did energy gels really work?

posted over 2 years ago | Report

I would love to run a marathon but I notice the after 20 miles I don't have energy so what do you think about energy gels and which ones are the best?

19 posts

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  • I've used gu's before on runs over an hour and I don't feel as drained at the end. I'd look into those and a lot of people seem to like Clif Shot Bloks as well. You'll probably have to try a few as there are just a massive amount of them out there.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • yes they work

    posted over 2 years ago

  • when you say 'work'- if you mean, that they supply easy to digest calories and some electrolytes- then yes, they work.

    not too many people have energy after 20 miles, even with them. they just help reduce the likelihood of bonking (running out of your limited glycogen stores)

    posted over 2 years ago

  • Think about it this way. If you are able to store enough energy to run 20 miles, then you need to consume enough energy to cover 6 more during the race. In calories, that equals about 600 between gels and energy drinks. I use 300 cals worth of gels or shot blocks and get about 300 more from drinking gatoraide at the aide stations. I actually use GATORADE energy chews. Eat one at mile 6, 12 and 18 plus drink at each station. I also use Gatorade Prime right before the race starts to hydrate and get a few extra calories. Cliff Shot blocks work really well too. I think the gels are nasty, but it is all about personal preference and what doesn't upset your stomach during the run.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • in reply to what Michael said:I've used gu's before on runs over an hour and I don't feel as drained at the end. I'd look into those and a lot of people seem to like Clif Shot Bloks as well. You'll probably have to try a few as there are just a massi... read more

    Thanks Michael

    posted over 2 years ago

  • in reply to what John D. said:Think about it this way. If you are able to store enough energy to run 20 miles, then you need to consume enough energy to cover 6 more during the race. In calories, that equals about 600 between gels and energy drinks. I use 300 cals worth of gel... read more

    Thank you Jhon

    posted over 2 years ago

  • Omg yes!!!! I am a diabetic and I was worried about my sugar actually dropping to low but the gels balanced everything out. I have never ran more than 9miles in my life and that was a struggle. I used the gels ( gu)for the first time at my first half and it was so breezy! My only advise.... Make sure you drink water after you take the gel. Your stomach may kick your butt later if you don't. Oh and as far as flavor I'd stick with the flavor gatorade you drink.

    posted over 2 years ago | edited over 2 years ago

  • Ted
    Ted Sendmail

    I am not convinced one way or the other. If it is cool without sun, I don't need anything other than simple water. If it is hot and/or sunny, I need more hydration and electrolytes, which I think is what the gels/chews provide (more so than calories). The other thing to watch out for with gels and such is that they can be too "rich" for some people and cause GI upset. Definately try different ones out and see how they affect you.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • in reply to what Stephanie O. said:Omg yes!!!! I am a diabetic and I was worried about my sugar actually dropping to low but the gels balanced everything out. I have never ran more than 9miles in my life and that was a struggle. I used the gels ( gu)for the first time at my first... read more

    I saw something recently that I found interesting - that when you consume sugars during exercise, since they are used immediately to fuel the workout, the body doesn't need to release insulin to deal with it.

    When I volunteered @ IMLP last year, there were a few people who had blood sugar checking kits in their special needs bags - and I was amazed that these people were able to do these kinds of events. Not being a diabetic, I just didn't know what sort of things diabetics can do and what they should stay away from.

    Anyway - when I saw that thing recently about insulin and how sugars are used during exercise, it was a 'oh wow that makes a lot of sense!' moment. May not apply to all diabetics, or it may apply to varying degrees - I honestly have no idea.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • Gu's are hard to swallow. Clif Shot Blocks are awesome! Most products like these recommend a serving every 45 to 60 min.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • I am going to go with yes! I use them when I run anything over 6 miles or 1 hour of running. I notice a boost of energy. I've tried the gu before and nearly got sick. It seemed really thick. I prefer power bar energy gel (tangerine or strawberry/banana) :)

    posted over 2 years ago

  • Yes gels work.... absolutly without doubt.

    however whether you can stomach them is another matter... or which brand works for you... thats something that you work out during training.

    btw, ryan is correct during exercise you will have a subdued insulin reaction to sugars, even the rapidly absorbed ones shouldnt create an insulin spike, however its worth monitoring closely untill you have a fueling strategy that works specifically for you.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • I just tried Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews the other day... they're AWESOME. http://shop.honeystinger.com/categories/Organic-Energy-Chews/ - they're really soft and easy to eat and they're all organic.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • yes! but sometimes this will give you diarrhea

    posted over 2 years ago

  • where can you find gatorade energy chews?

    posted over 2 years ago

  • in reply to what Michelle M. said:I just tried Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews the other day... they're AWESOME. http://shop.honeystinger.com/categories/Organic-Energy-Chews/ - they're really soft and easy to eat and they're all organic.

    Do you need to do alot of water with those? I cant see myself drinking a ton of water on a run (even up to 13 miles, I only take a few sips the whole time, more then that and I get a cramp)

    posted over 2 years ago

  • I get them at Kroger. They are probably in most grocery stores right there with all the sports drinks.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • in reply to what Kristy said:where can you find gatorade energy chews?

    I get them at Kroger. They are probably in most grocery stores right there with all the sports drinks.

    posted over 2 years ago

  • I agree.....Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews are the best! You can buy them on-line. I don't feel a need to drink a lot of water with them.....but I do walk to chew it and swallow...don't want to choke. I sometimes just leave one in my mouth and suck on it through the run. They make a difference.

    posted over 2 years ago | edited over 2 years ago

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