Ok… file this under the “better late than never” category!!! Several months ago I was contacted by the Community Manager over at ENERGYbits and offered a sample of ENERGYbits and RECOVERYbits to try out. The product was completely new to me and I was definitely intrigued! The never-ending quest for the best training and race nutrition plan can be overwhelming. I was excited to be able to try out something that is a natural and organic product.
So…. What are ENERGYbits, anyway? I had the same question myself… so I headed to their website for a little research. ENERGYbits are made from 100% pure Spirulina algae. They are a plant-based, high protein, low calorie form of energy. Interesting, right? So how does it work? Spirulina works to naturally release nitric oxide in the body. Nitric oxide causes vasodilation (opening of blood vessels), leading to increased blood flow to muscles during exercise. This helps bring nutrients and oxygen where they are needed. In a super-simplified nutshell. It is also super rich in vitamins, antioxidants, and other goodness. Without any added “stuff”. Click here for more info. Again – this is an incredibly simplified and very brief synopsis about how it works. There is a whole lot more information on the ENERGYbits website…. check it out!
ENERGYbits are just that… little, green bits. Like little tablets of algae. You can chew them – but I do NOT recommend that form of consumption. They are GREEN. And taste a lot like…. Green. Just swallow ’em.
I tried them out first for a couple of moderate (5-7 mile) runs during my training lead up to the Stonecat Trail Marathon. I didn’t want to do anything too crazy with something new in my belly. The recommended serving is 30 tabs. Yes, it is a bit of a lot to swallow before heading out the door, but they went down pretty easy. I found that I had a nice, steady energy level, despite not eating much during the day before my runs. No GI upset. I didn’t use any other supplemental fuel or electrolytes, since these were short runs and I wouldn’t typically anyway.
My initial experiences were very positive, so I decided to give them a go as pre-race fuel for Stonecat. Ballsy decision, I know… using something relatively new before a BIG event. Overall, I was happy with the choice. I felt great early on, with very steady energy. I had a little GI upset throughout the race, which is not unusual for me so I can’t blame the ‘bits.
So – overall, I had a positive experience with theses, and plan to incorporate them into some of my longer training runs and races, probably more as a pre-event fuel.
- Natural energy source with no weird additives
- Steady state of energy with no major highs and lows
- Fun name 🙂
The only major con I can really see is the “delivery” system of the fuel. For me, having to swallow 30 tabs prior to exercise was a little unwieldy, but ok. I have a hard time swallowing tabs during exercise (choking down one electrolyte tab while walking during an ultramarathon without gagging or getting it stuck is a major success in my book), so another way to get them down would be MUCH easier for use during activity, especially during a harder effort. A better way to “pack” them to carry enough to get through a multiple hour event is also a challenge. A baggie or something would work; the tin is a bit big, but could be stashed in a hydration pack.
A HUGE thank you to ENERGYbits for giving me this sample to try out. The opinions in this review, as always, are entirely my own. If you are looking for a great way to boost your energy and supplement your athletic fueling, head on over to www.energybits.com to check them out and order some for yourself!