by Mary Thorson
Sport Beans by Jelly Belly are back on our shelfs due to popular demand. Do you like jelly beans? Seriously, they taste just like candy, but are formulated to help fuel your body during intense exercise. Clinically proven to maximize sports performance, each bean is loaded with carbs for fuel, electrolytes to help maintain fluid balance and vitamins to optimize energy release and protect cells against oxidative damage. Flavored with real fruit juices and other natural flavors, they come in a convenient resealable bag that you will love. Watch them around your kids because they will disappear!
Why Do You Need Sport Beans?
Well, you might not need sports beans per say but if you are an athlete training for a long distance race, it is time to start experimenting with nutrition. I have had a few conversations recently with runners training for their first marathon, and nutrition was an extremely foreign word for them. Have you head of hitting the wall, bonking, cramping, or just pure exhaustion? While running, or doing any intense activity, your body is burning and draining you of carbohydrates, electrolytes, and vitamins. On average, a runner will burn 100 calories every mile. The longer you are out there, the more important it is for you to replace those things to keep you going the distance you are striving for. You need to do this whether you feel your energy dropping or not-the point is to stop your energy FROM dropping!
The good news is that there are plenty of options out there to keep your body running at your optimal performance level. If you haven’t tried it before, it can be quite overwhelming when you walk through our doors. There are gels, bars, chews, beans, waffles, and powder. Some have caffeine in them or extra amino acids. Our expert staff can help you navigate the shelfs but it will mainly come down to your preference. Chews, gummies, and beans can be easier to swallow and taste more like candy. Gels can be easier to carry. Bars and waffles can be more like solid food. You will have to try a variety of products to find what your body handles the best. Practice with them on your long runs. The rule of thumb is take one gel or package of gummies every hour during exercise. If you find yourself hitting a wall, try taking them every 45 minutes. Every person will be a little different because every athlete absorbs and processes carbohydrates at a different rate.
For example: I like the taste of gummies better but when I am at mile 18 of a marathon, for the life of me I cannot chew or swallow them. It takes me an hour to get down a handful of them. I prefer gels but have to take them with water or I gag. After trying a few different brands, Honey Stinger gels are the ones I can swallow the quickest and they do not upset my stomach as some other brands have. I like the ones with caffeine…well, because caffeine (hook it up through an IV please). During a race, I plan my gel intake with the water stations and have found that every 5-6 miles works for me!
The Take Away
Practice! Practice! Practice! Find what works for you, but take the time to find it! Your story will be different from mine. Come in today so we can get you started on the road to your best race yet.