Join Me For Another 10 Weeks! This is the first week of ten weeks starting October 22, 2012

Hi folks! I'm at it again. I'm going for another 20 pound loss in ten weeks. I've recently had another baby, a little girl, she is now five months old and I'm ready to drop some weight.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Day 6 of Week 5 How I Use Energy Gels

Weight today: same
Total Lost: 9 pounds in 33 days
3/4 cup of oatmeal: 225
2 tsp of sugar: 30
1/3 cup of skim milk: 30
2 energy gels:200
2 3/4 oz banana:68
vanilla protein shake: 110
total: 378
running total: 663
1 jumbo egg:90
1 jumbo egg white:17
1 lefse:30
1/4 cup of fat free cottage cheese:40
3 oz of sliced strawberries:27
1/2 tsp of sugar:7
1/2 slice of garlic bread: 90
1 tbl of powder creamer for coffee:30
with sweet-n-low:0
running total: 994
1 1/2 cup of dish:230
1 slice of Italian bread: 60
1/2 tsp of Smart Balance light butter:7
1 tbl of powder coffee creamer: 30
with sweet-n-low:0
total: 297
running total: 1293
popcorn with butter: 100 (est.)
3/4 cup of Blue Bunny Premium Light Bunny Tracks: 200
total: 300
running total: 1593
Today's Challenge: Hydration, staying focused on my diet so that I can drop that 10th pound by Monday morning.
Planned fitness: 7 mile run (part of mileage build-up for training for a half-marathon in late September)
Also abdominals, (didn't get them in yesterday)
Note on picture: I'll be bringing these energy gels with me today on my seven mile run. They come in different flavors and contain 100 calories, 25 grams of carbs, 50 mg of sodium, and 40 mg of potassium. The espresso love flavor also has 2x caffeine as well. I really think these things make a difference in my hydration for me on longer runs.
Added note: I will be doing a post later on energy gels.
How I Use Energy Gels

I didn't even know what energy gels were until about three years ago.

I've been a runner since high school, but I never ran far enough to feel the need for additional energy or hydration. Then, about three years ago I started training for a half-marathon and discovered energy gels.

The purpose of an energy gel is to help you replenish your body with potassium, sodium and calories that are lost during extended periods of exercise. So, when a person goes for a run that extends past four or five miles, I believe their body begins to lose water and sodium which are the things that keep a person hydrated.

Exercising while being dehydrated is kind of like trying to drive your car around without any oil. Your vehicle literally needs oil to operate or else things begin to malfunction and break down. Same thing with your body, if you don't have enough water or lose electrolytes during the course of extended exercise, your body will begin to malfunction.

The first thing you might notice is that you're thirsty. If it gets to that point, you are already dehydrated and will need to try to put in at least several ounces of water. Studies have shown that thirst is a delayed sign of dehydration. So, by the time you feel it, you're already behind on your hydration. But, once you get to that point, you may begin to feel may feel harder and harder for you to perform your physical exercises. This is especially true if it's hot, muggy and sunny outside.

When I started to run more than five miles, I went out and bought this hip pack that could carry two 20-oz bottles of fluid, along with a few pockets to put other stuff. I felt like a camel wearing that gear, but it was reassuring to know that I could run anywhere and always have access to the water I carried and or the energy gels in my pouch.

I mean let's get real here, if I'm going to run more than five miles at time, I want it to feel the best it can possibly feel. I'm not going to allow myself to get dehydrated when I know being hydrated will make me feel and perform noticeably better. Water and energy gels do that.

Also, when I'm restricting calories, having an energy gel is actually something I look forward to. There's all different flavors you can get, strawberry banana, chocolate, espresso love and vanilla. What's even more fun is that some of these energy gels contain caffeine. The one in the above photo is labeled for 2x, while they also have some that are 2xx caffeine. So, long runs for me can be fun. I get to eat a tasty gel, and will schedule taking my caffeinated energy gel towards the end of the run, when I may be starting to tire. that cheating? Although, after just reading their website, the caffeine isn't meant to be used as a caffeine rush. The caffeine level is equal to about 20 mg of caffeine or 1/5 a cup of coffee. So, 2x perhaps means it's 40 milligrams of caffeine.

Although, I think if you take enough energy gels you might feel the caffeine effects. I know that last year when I ran this half-marathon, I took three or four caffeinated energy gels during the run, and I was feeling pretty wired about half way in and afterward. Ha, Ha.

But basically when you take an energy gel, you want to have water on hand to help wash it down. And, then, I don't have an hard and fast rules on how many and at what time during my work-outs that I take them. For my seven mile run today, I took one at 2 1/2 miles into the run and then again at the five mile mark.

I don't waste energy gels on after my run, because I will make a protein shake for just after exercising. The energy gels I use cost about $1.25 a gel. See, now you know why I can't afford a decent scale. So, that's why I only use them on my long Saturday run and try to space them out so that I derive the greatest benefits from them. I'm actually thinking about calling the company of the energy gels I use to see if I can order them direct to get them cheaper.

Here's the contact information for the energy gels I use.
Sports Street Marketing
Berkeley, CA 94710


  1. THE Gu! My mom is a marathon walker. Yup, one of those speedy walking ladies. She eats or drinks (whichever it is) too! She says they really help her as well. I didn't even know they make a kind with caffeine too.

    I read your article about the scale and agree with you about leaving it up to the imagination. I can't afford anything better right now, so I'll just keep estimating.

  2. humm. i've been trying to decide if i want to go the energy goo route myself. i wanted to do two hours of cardio at the gym today (i had the day off, and there was something i wanted to watch on tv) but after hour one, it was clear i was gassed. i even had to take a nap when i got home. i was trying to decide if i'd be better off taking something so i could keep going - or if it would be counter productive since i'm trying to lose weight. but this post makes me think i want to try them.

    also, re caffine, caffine is like my magic exercise secret. i think they've done studies to show that it helps your work out. (i just hope it doesn't tax my heart.) for some reason, caffine + cardio makes my head feel like its going to explode. but caffine + lifting is awesome! i usually stop at starbucks for an expresso shot on my way to the gym to lift.

  3. i loooove gu products! have you tried their chomps? they are excellent!! i have a hard time not-eating them as a snack :)

    i don't know if it's really the gu's or just my brain, but i feel like i am less-sore after a long run when i use the gels. have you noticed anything like that? just curious.

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