In some of my previous blog posts, I've shared with you that I have PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome). I don't talk about it a lot but it's really not a secret. It's just not fun to blog about. In the past, I have whined and complained about how hard it is to be a distance runner with insulin resistance thanks to PCOS. Runners like carbs, right? Well not if you are insulin resistant. Carbs actually have the opposite effect. Too many carbs and my blood sugar will spike and then crash and burn! Not fun during a marathon. Not fun at all!
I've also complained about my struggle with my weight and how marathon training had actually lead to some weight gain. I know I'm not the only one who has struggled with maintaining weight while marathon training thanks to being rungry and all. But still, PCOS makes running more difficult, and here's why:
1: Due to carb sensitivity, we store carbs as fat which makes it VERY difficult to lose weight
2. Carbs spike my insulin levels which make me nauseated (Also not fun at mile 22 of a marathon)
3. After a spike in my insulin, since I don't regulate my insulin well on my own, I crash and I crash hard!
4. When you are crashing from low blood sugar you crave sugar. So after a long run when you are rungry, you want all the bad things like muffins, cookies, ice cream, and the list goes on and on. Seriously, ask any lady with PCOS if she craves sugar like a crack fiend and she will tell you the answer is, YES!!
5. The usual energy gels or chomps that most people take are made up of mostly carbs/sugar. Those don't work for me for the reasons listed above.
BUT! What I haven't shared with you yet is that last fall I finally found my race day nutrition of choice and it works perfect for me! I was first introduced to ENERGYbits
via Twitter but didn't give them much thought until they showed up in one of my StrideBox
shipments. I received a single serving of these strange little tablets in a small black baggy. I opened them up and chewed one up to see how it tasted. Worst! Idea! Ever!
It's perfectly fine to chew them because they are real food, they just taste very green. I highly recommend that you please read the directions. If I had read the directions it says to swallow them with water. Lesson learned. What are they and how do you take ENERGYbits?
I take a single serving of bits before all my longs runs. I swallow (DON'T CHEW!!) 30 bits about 15 minutes prior the start of my run. ENERGYbits are made from 100% organically grown, Non GMO spirulina algae and have 40 nutrients. Each tablet is only 1 calorie but has a high protein content (64%) in each tablet. Do they work?
For me, yes! Last fall when I finished my juice fast I needed race day nutrition that wasn't loaded with carbs and sugars. I remembered trying my sample of ENERGYbits and wanted to give them another shot. I bought an entire bag (1000 tablets) in August and started using them right away. I was very impressed that even though I was eating a low carb diet, I didn't crash on my long runs like I always did in the past. I just felt like I could keep going and better yet, I could keep going at the pace that I started out instead of slowing down or hitting the wall.
I also noticed that when I was done running I wasn't starving or craving sugar! It was such a nice change for me! Also I didn't get that blood sugar spike and then crash because they are mostly protein which is what I need.
Since I started taking ENERGYbits I was able to PR in every distance I ran
over the last 9 months. I PR'd twice in the Half Marathon, PR'd twice in the 15K, PR'd once in the 5K, and PR'd once in the 10K.
The Hubbo has even taken them before a few races as well and managed to take several minutes off his half marathon PR for his first sub 2 hour half!
Since last fall, I've purchased 2 full bags of 1000 bits. Since I only use them for my long runs, races, or when I haven't been able to eat much before a run, they have lasted me a long time. Some people take them for every run, you can do that too or just the long ones. Where do I Buy ENERGYbits?
You can buy them online here
. Since you get 1000 tabs and you only take 30 at a time, you are really buying your nutrition in bulk. They will ship them right to your door and then you just pop them in the refrigerator for safe keeping.
To save 30% on your order you can use my discount code: RGR30Are they hard on your stomach?
Not for me. Because they are made from a super food, spirulina algae, and not sugar, carbs, gluten, chemicals, or caffeine, I haven't had any tummy issues using them. Disclaimer - I was given a sample of ENERGYbits to try out as part of my ambassadorship with BibRave, but I've already been loyal customer since the Fall of 2013. They didn't ask that I write a review nor was I compensated in any way. ENERGYbits is sponsoring #Bibchat tonight on Twitter. Join in at 8:00pm CST for a fun chat about race nutrition and some lucky giveaway winners!