Energy Chews for Runners - 101
Monday, 5 October 2015 | Admin
Energy Chews haven't been around that long in the health and fitness world, but they have already made a big impact, particularly amongst runners. A convenient way to load up on carbohydrates, they are a great option for those people who may struggle with energy gels. With so many on the market, though (and still relatively little known about them) it is hard to choose which is right for you. Sometimes, it can even be hard deciphering what exactly they do and how they can benefit your workout and training.
What Are Energy Chews?
While sports drinks are useful in topping up energy levels, they are not always convenient to take on a long run. Energy gels are another option, but many people struggle to handle either the texture or the consequences of taking them (in the form of an upset stomach). Energy chews are easier on the stomach and come in a more familiar form, plus they can be genuinely tasty snacks in their own right.
Why Do You Need Energy Chews?
Your body utilises two main forms of fuel when you're running in order to feed the muscles - fats and carbohydrates. Fat, though, is only broken down slowly, and is an ineffective source of fuel unless you are going comparatively slowly and are not reaching the aerobic threshold. Therefore, when racing or training hard, carbohydrate is the primary fuel your body relies upon.
The issue with carbohydrate is that the body can only store a limited amount in the muscles as glycogen, even when you load up before your run. Typically if you're running at a marathon pace then you can store around two hours worth of glycogen in the muscles, less if you're going at a faster pace. Therefore, if you're running for any great length of time you will need to top up your energy levels if you want to keep performing at the same level. Energy chews can replenish these depleted stores of glycogen and help you keep going for longer, so you can keep the dreaded 'wall' at bay.
When Should You Take Them?
Like everything, energy chews have to be taken in moderation. As they are mostly made up of sugars they shouldn't be taken excessively as your body will struggle to digest it, potentially leading to discomfort. The natural honey in some products allows them to be digested slower than refined sugars though. They can be taken just before a race or training, or during, and the form they come in allows you to take as many as you feel like as and when required.
There are a wide range of products on the market, making it hard to know which to choose. Honey Stinger, a US company specialising in organic, honey-related products, is one of the leading brands available. Their chews are unique in the fact that they are the first energy chew to be made from 100% organic tapioca syrup and honey. Smaller and softer than other chews on the market, Honey Stinger chews don't have the annoying side effect of sticking to your teeth, and as an added bonus they taste great!
These products utilise the natural properties of honey as an energy source, and have the benefit of containing certified organic ingredients. If you're health-conscious and concerned with what you're putting into your mouth then Honey Stinger is the logical choice for your energy needs.
Think Sport is proud to stock the Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews, get them now!