A few people recommended I try just straight Maltodextrin powder for fueling since I can't seem to choke down any sweet gel's later in the race and once it hits that point I'm screwed. I end up not eating enough. So, last weekend I went on a few three+ hour runs and gave it a try. I used Carbo-pro (cheap 14$ for 3lbs!) and put 800cals in 70oz of water for one run with a nuun tab for flavor. WOW. Fuck a bunch of gel bullshit. This is SO much easier and SO much better on the stomach. Also, you don't have to worry about it since it's pretty tasteless and you usually have no problem hydrating. The next day I did a run with 2 handhelds. 300 cals in each handheld with a nuun tablet. Again....awesome. I'm completely changing to liquid fueling mixed with some 'real food' at aid stations from now on. down with the gels. The guy that recommended it said it's the old school way and pretty big with the elite ironman athletes...he came in 6th at leadville 100 (12th at Kona) and just did this for fueling the whole time.
Give it a try before hand, obviously to see if you like it...he does it just straight malto+water, but most people add some gatorade mix or NUUN to it. It doesn't taste like much just plain though...I just like the nuun added.
Good advice Rob. For those of us who can't get malodextrin (mixed with diesel) at the gas station...
I used Heed Sustained Energy for the 50mile (I know - years ago) it is the flavorless version of Perpetuem. A bit more long chain stuff but I'll leave that to Tom (our resident chemist). Seemed to work pretty good for me and much easier to tolerate than GU...
I fit 600 calories EASY into two water bottles and that will take care of your nutrition and hydration at the same time. which is just fine for a training run for 3-4hours. if you take a 2liter water pack I'm guessing you can do 1000 cals in there easy, so no worries there either.
Just having an empty bottle with powder in it at drop bag is an option. or yeah, baggies. I can't imagine if you make a PURE maltodextrin+water mix the night before or in the morning it will spoil. I think if you use something like heed or perpetuem with soy and stuff in it...then yeah spoilage.
Just an update. I've been doing this since the week after MoMa without issue. I went out on sunday for a 15 miler and put 350cals in each 20oz handheld which then fit 16-17oz of water in them as well. Worked out great. Only downfall is if it drips anywhere, it gets a little sticky.
If I had only listened to you're recommendation of Ucan months ago! I've been having some (rather serious) blood sugar issues lately (Doc calls it reactive hypoglycemia) where with any sort of Gu, malto+water, etc...my blood sugar goes from normal to 135ish (which is fine) but then plummets to the 40's about hour 3.5 of my run causing a really bad superbonk/pass-out. With this information I sought out some advice from a endurance athlete nutritionist (Ben Greenfield) and they recommended (among changing my day to day diet COMPLETELY) trying something like Ucan for race nutrition.
Can I ask what your hydration/nutrition plan is on runs over 3-4 hours?
Great to hear you are getting at the root of this issue.
I had some similar issues some time ago. What fixed it was even better (lower glycemic) nutrition overall, low glycemic fuel before/during runs and training mostly aerobically.
My pre long run nutrition is:
- Some combination of UCAN Cran-Raz flavor (no sucralose!) and Vega Pre-Workout Energizer. Usually half/half, sometimes just one or the other. The Vega has a little yerba mate kick to it along with the fuel/other stuff.
- A electrolyte mix called Solstic from Nature's Sunshine.
- All mixed up together in water. I can drink this and 15-30 minutes later be out the door. They suggest about 60 minutes before but it does not bother me at all.
- 4-6 oz. ASEA (see below).
My during run nutrition:
- Another dose of the above mix every 20 miles.
- During long events … more ASEA throughout.
- Gels only if *absolutely* necessary, depending on the run/event goal. Hammer Gels only which seem to be lower glycemic in my body. But once I have a gel, usually within 5-10 miles of the finish, I have to make sure I stick with them to the finish. Every 4-5 miles or so.
The other key is teaching the body to burn fat (in the presence of glycogen) and not just glycogen. The body will burn mostly glycogen above an aerobic pace (ie. fight or flight). It will also have a hard time burning fat when there is insulin in the blood (from the high glycemic gels/etc). The super-bonk is likely you burning through all of your glycogen; with no fuel left to the brain. If you burn through all your glycogen, you can't get access to fat fuel.
This Wednesday 9PM EDT … there is a call with some top ASEA athletes. Hear their testimonials of how ASEA is an indispensable part of their success. You’ll also get to hear their take on the new Metabolites research I mentioned in my post.
ASEA Athletes Conference Call
Wednesday, June 27 at 7:00 pm MDT/9:00 pm EDT
Dial in: 641.715.3842
Access code: 4727726
I have developed an opinion of ASEA based on the very limited and in-complete information given on the website.
I’d like to listen to this webinar but the timings make it impossible for me.
I have an open mind but enquiring mind. I don’t accept things blindly and am very happy to be proved wrong.
As you are obviously a proponent of ASEA I will give you my reasoning for thinking ASEA is a load of bullshit.
I have two problems with ASEA. What it is and what it does/does not do. Please comment:
What it is The label says sodium chloride and water.
The marketing bumf says it is “redox signalling molecules” – whatever on Gods Earth they are??
To try to find out more I looked at the patents referred to on the website.
The key patents refer to process and apparatus for electrolysing salt water and then the use of these products as microbicides.
Essentially Salt Water is electrolysed to produce “Chlorine Species” and “Ozone”
This sounds very similar to the old commercial method of producing household bleach:
According to the patents the resulting water contains: 50-100mg/L Ozone and 5-30ppm “Chlorine Species” including Chlorine, Hypochlorous Acid and Sodium HypoChlorite.
Household bleach usually contains 3-6% sodium hypochlorite.
I put it to you that ASEA is a simply dilute household Bleach.
The levels are so low that they do not need to be listed on the ingredients.
Of course ASEA would not want to list Sodium Hypochlorite on the ingredients label. The marketing department would struggle convincing the general population that drinking dilute bleach was good for performance enhancement.
What it Does Anecdotal evidence has no value so lets stick to the scientific facts.
There is one White Paper given about the performance enhancing effect of ASEA amongst athletes.
By definition, a White Paper is document used as a sales & marketing. They are not good peer reviewed science and are rarely independent.
The ASEA white paper was published in June 2010 ie. Over two years ago.
It tested the effects of ASEA on 18 athletes which is frankly not even close to being enough to be valid.
The conclusion of the very same white paper states:
“The results of this pilot test indicate that there is a strong case for athletic performance enhancement and further investigation is warranted”
This is a perfectly sound conclusion.
Unfortunately in the two years since I can see no further publication. The very strong performance enhancing marketing claims made on the website seem to be entirely based on this very preliminary and un-scientific study.
There will without doubt have been more testing of this “miracle” water. As nothing has been published it is a fair assumption that all further tests resulted in no performance enhancement.
Therefore ASEA rely on the old flawed White Paper as the basis of their claim support.To me that is at best misleading & likely unethical or worse.
To Conclude: I put it to you that ASEA is very expensive dilute household bleach and has no performance enhancement credibility at all.
I repeat that my opinion is based on the limited and incomplete information given on the website.
I may be completely wrong and hope you will try to convince me.
Also, here is good read on Ucan http://tlbflowllc.com/2012/05/15/superstarch-review-by-tyler-brown/ (and the links under it). From my experience in the past few weeks, it has helped stabilize my hypoglycemia, and there is pretty good common sense and research supporting it (as well as I met with the dietician for the US olympic triathlon team who recommended it) however, I'm not at all convinced that it's more than flavored cornstarch....so as it is also very expensive. I'll be poking around with just cornstarch/flavoring.
The only ingredient in the 'unflavored' packet, is...'modified cornstarch' but, it's pretty unclear on how it's 'modified.' My guess is 'shit, it's just corn starch, how do we charge 2$ an ounce for it?! - I know..call it 'modified'
some facts to back some Ucan stuff up: http://tlbflowllc.com/2012/05/23/superstarch-review-conclusion/
UCAN is just corn starch but it has been modified - boiled in water or "cooked" to partially break it down so it can be digested. You can't digest unmodified / un-cooked cornstarch.
It is very expensive but as with all consumer products it's price is dictated by the perceived consumer value and not by production cost. The perceived consumer value of athletic supplements is of course dictated by their perceived performance enhancement - which is usually exaggerated.
I have no problem with UCAN although I would unlikely buy it. It is simply cooked cornstarch but at least this is clear. You need carbs when you run long. Starch is a good source of energy and corn is a good source of starch - without the issues associated with wheat etc.
Whether you want to pay for the convenience of UCAN is your decision. Personally I prefer a good baked potato which will be pretty much identical.
There is no such clarity with ASEA.
Even the the website FAQ asks. "What is ASEA" and gives a bullshit answer about redox molecules.
The site never tells you the truth about it being a dilute solution of sodium hypochlorite. Aka - household bleach.
That's why I am vocal in my abhorrence of this product and awaiting defense from it's proponent, which I am sure will come from corporate.