Nutrition is an important aspect of a race whether it’s a run or a multisport event. Your body needs to replenish lost fluids, salt and electrolytes. e-Gel brings in more energy and electrolytes than the regular gel which gives you more energy to finish strong.
One of the few important things I learned when I started running is the nutrition part of it. It’s not an exact science as everybody has a different body chemistry when it comes to gels. When it comes to races, taking energy gel is as important as proper hydration and electrolytes drink. The thing is your body not only loses water when you perspire, you also lose some nutrients like Potassium, Sodium, Carbohydrates and electrolytes that is critical in nerve and muscle function. I am not a nutrition expert but I do know how it feels when your body has been deprived of key nutrients when you go for the longer runs or rides. You’re low on energy and extremely exhausted, which makes running or cycling a struggle.
That’s where energy gels come in. You need to replenish your energy level and restore the balance in the nutrients in your system so you can still perform at a high level. Think of your body as an engine and energy gels are your fuel. Our body needs nutrients to function and gels is the fastest way to send out the needed nutrients. I’ve tried several gels and I’m glad that I was able to progress to the fun runs to half and full marathons and even duathlons with the help of gels. I also use gels to balance out my system during the runs as I avoid over eating the day before the race. I don’t want to feel heavy on race day so I would rely on gels to fill in the needed nutrients during the race.
I’ve also tried different ways of taking them like having one every 45 minutes. I’ve also tried spreading out my gel consumption within an hour to distribute the energy in my run. I think for this one, it would depend on your energy consumption in the race. Experiment on what works for you. Lately, I was able to try e-Gel, which is an electrolyte energy gel. The added plus is having electrolytes in the gel so even if you take it with water, you’ll get your regular dose of electrolytes.
The first thing I liked about e-Gel is it’s flavor since I prefer the fruity kind of sweetness rather than the chocolatey variety. They have unique flavors such as Vanilla Strawberry Slam, Cherry Bomb, Tropical Blast and Mountain Rush. Aside from the taste, all their flavors are free from caffeine. Some like their gel with caffeine but I prefer mine without it. Why? Caffeine raises the heart rate and I like to keep my heart rate as relaxed as it can be when I workout. The first time I tried e-Gel was during Takbo.PH and I started the run on such a low level that the energy gel really helped my finish the half marathon distance as I had my gel intakes on the 7th and 13th kilometer. The Vanilla Strawberry Slam was also a really tasty flavor.
The next time I had e-Gel was at the Pinoyfitness Sub 1 Challenge in Baguio. Since I was in the fun wave, I just took the first half of the race to feel the hilly Baguio terrain. I took my Cherry Bomb e-Gel before the 5K u-turn. The Gel powered my second half of the race as it enabled me to blitz through the descents and remain consistent on the climbs en route to a negative split for the run. The Cherry flavor was indeed a BOMB.
I still have two flavors to try but you can’t go wrong when it comes to Mountain Rush and Tropical Blast. Another big plus for e-Gel is having more Calories and Electrolytes than other gels so you’ll have more energy to load each time you take your gel. Here’s some reminder on taking energy gels.
- Don’t try something new on race day. Practice your gel intakes and check which gel flavor would suit you when you train.
- Take your gel with water. It would flush in the gel faster in your system while flushing it with electrolytes drink may upset the tummy.
- It takes about 15 minutes for the effect of gel to kick in so make sure to take it before you’re low on energy.