Muir Energy Gels: Slow Burning vs Fast Burning
Gear Review, Running

Muir Energy Gels: Slow Burning vs Fast Burning

Muir Energy Gels and Nutrition are fairly new to the running world and endurance nutrition world. They are unique in that they use exclusively real food and mineral-rich ingredients.  This also means Muir Energy Gels are easy to metabolize and easy on the stomach, so hopefully there are minimal to no GI issues.

Muir Energy Gels: Slow Burning vs Fast Burning

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Benefits of apricot power
Gear Review, Running

The Benefits of Apricots

One of my favorite fruits is apricots. From snacking on dried apricots to eating them raw, I’ve been enjoying them for years. It wasn’t until recently I learned more about Apricots and how many health benefits they truly have. Apricots resemble a peach but tastes more like plum. There is a single pit and they are often slightly crunchy. Dried apricots are fruity and slightly gummy.

Benefits of apricot power

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Naked nutrition collagen
Food, Gear Review

Naked Nutrition Collagen

Naked Nutrition Collagen

Recently, I’ve been experimenting with different types of collagen.  I’ve written a dozen posts about the uses and benefits of collagen, but it’s been a few months.

Naked nutrition collagen

What is Collagen?

Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body.  It’s a major component of connective tissues in muscles, ligaments, tendons, and skin.  Consuming collagen will provide benefits, whether you are an athlete or not.

For runners, collagen can help bone and joint health, plus it can aid in workout recovery.

For nonrunners, collagen also helps skin and healthy hair and nails. I notice the difference of both my hair and skin when I consume collagen.

Naked nutrition collagen
My cay appreciates Naked nutrition collagen too 😉

Why Take a Collagen Supplement?

It’s hard to get hydrolyzed collagen from food sources. You can do it by drinking bone broth every day, but taking a collagen supplement like Naked Collagen is going to make it easier to get the appropriate amount. Like whey protein powder, Naked Nutrition Collagen can help rebuild muscles post-workout.

So What is Naked Nutrition?

As the brand suggests, Naked Nutrition doesn’t contain any extra “stuff.” It’s flavorless and tasteless and so far the most tasteless collagen I’ve found to date. Naked Nutrition Collagen is highly soluble and tasteless.

The Naked Nutrition Collagen only has 35 calories per serving because it contains no extra filler. Just hydrolyzed collagen.  Personally, I’ve been using it in coffee, tea, or hot cocoa.  During the warmer months, I’ll probably add it so cold drinks and smoothies. You can add Naked Nutrition Collagen Peptide Powder in almost anything because you don’t taste it.

Naked nutrition collagen

So What Does Naked Nutrition Collagen Contain (or not contain)?

  • One Ingredient: Collagen Peptides
  • Collagen Contains 9 out of 18 Essential Amino Acids
  • Hydrolyzed Collagen Comes From Pasture-Raised and Grass-Fed Bovine Hides
  • No Artificial Sweeteners, Flavors, or Colors
  • 9 Grams of Protein and 0.6 Grams of BCAA’s Per Serving**
  • GMO-Free, Dairy Free, Soy Free, and Gluten-Free
  • Growth Hormone Free, no rBGH or rBs

Naked nutrition collagen

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. 

Questions for you:

Have you tried Naked Nutrition Collagen?

Do you take a Collagen Peptide Supplement? 

 

What makes Maurten Energy Gel and Drink Mixes Different?
Gear Review, Running

What Makes Maurten Energy Gel and Drink Mixes Different?

Maurten Energy Gel and Maurten Drink Mix Review

One of the most common fueling questions I get is: “What makes Maurten Energy Gel and Maurten Drink Mix Different”? Is it better? Why do so many professional runners use it?  While my preferred gel is Maurten, I have had success with most gels.

One thing to keep in mind is every person is different. What works or some doesn’t work for everyone. Nutrition and fueling is a personal part of running and most of it is done with trial and error.  I’ve written about fueling before in the newsletter, but like shoes, there are many different types of fuels for many different types of people and stomachs. 🙂

What makes Maurten Energy Gel and Drink Mixes Different?

So Back to Maurten:

Previous research showed the human body could absorb up to 60 grams of carbohydrates per hour. Now, research shows that we can use up to 80 grams.  Having too much sugar is what leads to stomach issues.

Unlike many fuels on the market, Maurten has no added flavor. It’s slightly sweetened but you won’t taste chocolate, cherry, or watermelon. Maurten Energy also uses natural ingredients so no extra color or preservatives.  I have noticed the Maurten with caffeine tastes like just caffeine. (It does have a taste, almost alkaline, bitter, and slightly soapy).

So What Makes Maurten Energy Gels (Gel 100) Different?

To understand what makes a Maurten Energy Gel different, we must understand traditional gels and energy sources.

Traditional “gels” are usually water and carbohydrates mixed together to make a thick syrup (and “goo”). To make them “gel-like,” there are preservatives, and to get a flavor, they add artificially flavors and preservatives.

Maurten Energy gel

The Maurten Gel 100 uses hydrogel.

What is a “hydrogel”?

A hydrogel is a biopolymer matrix and made with a blend of fructose and glucose.  The hydrogel technology is a biopolymer, which means it’s water-based with small pores. The hydrogel acts like a sponge. This biopolymer matrix allows the body to absorb and keep 100 grams of carbohydrates per hour (i.e., The Maurten Gel 100).

The hydrogel in the Maurten Gel 100, enables a smooth transportation of carbohydrates through the stomach to the intestine. This means if you often get an upset stomach, the Maurten Gel 100s are a bit smoother on the stomach.

Plus, the hydrogel allows you to use gel and also has an electrolyte liquid. Doing so, with most traditional gels, results in an upset stomach or cramps. (I’ve used with on-course electrolyte aid and never had an issue).

What about the Maurten Drink Mix?

The Maurten Drink Mixes come in 2 varieties:

  • The Drink Mix 160
  • The Drink Mix 320

Each of the drink mixes is mixed with 500 ml of water.  When combined with water, the Maurten Sports Drink instantly converts to hydrogel in the acidity of the stomach. The hydrogel then enables a smooth transportation of the drink through the stomach to the intestine. The intestine is where the water, salt, and carbohydrates are absorbed.

To make it easy, the Maurten Drink mixes refer to how many calories each contain. The Maurten Drink Mix 160 has the standard amount of carbohydrates we thought the body was able to absorb. The Drink Mix 320 contains twice the energy and nearly 14% of carbohydrates. That is nearly twice the amount of carbohydrates we thought the body could once absorb.

To get the most amount of carbohydrates, you want to take the Maurten Drink Mix 320.

Maurten Energy gel

So Why Use the Maurten Drink Mix vs. Maurten Gel:

First, gels are easier to carry. Most of us don’t have the luxury of elite bottles at races. We must bring our own fuel. Gels allow you to consume energy without running with bottles.

What makes Maurten Energy Gel and Drink Mixes Different?

Is Maurten Energy Gel or Drink Mix Right for Me?

The only way to know is to try yourself. Reading product reviews (yes, even here won’t tell you until you try).

If you’ve tried Maurten Energy Gels or Drink Mixes, let me know!

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport.

Questions for you:

Do you like Maurten Energy Gel? Which is your favorite?

 

 

running books
Gear Review, Running

Running Books

This post is long overdue as many people have requested me to write are running books I’m reading or have read.  There are hundreds of running books out there and no one can ever read them all.

running books

Of course, we have to start with “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougall.  Born to Run is the running book every runner has asked another runner if they have read. It’s a great book and I highly recommend starting there. Plus Christopher McDougall has a new book coming out soon called: Running with Sherman: The Donkey with the Heart of a Hero.

Right now, I’m currently reading North: Finding My Way While Running the Appalachian Trail by Scott Jurek. As an avid hiker and someone who enjoys hiking the Appalachian Trail, this has been on my running book “to do list” for a while.

Whether you are just beginning your running journey, long-distance ultra runner, professional runner, training for the Boston Marathon, or looking for a training book to stay injury-free, there are plenty of running books out there.

Here a few Running Books I’ve Read and Enjoyed:

There are obviously many more running books and I appreciate any suggestions.

Broken Open: Mountains, Demons, Treadmills And a Search for Nirvana by David Clark

C is for Chafing by Mark Remy

Finding Ultra by Rich Roll

Inside a Marathon by Scott Fable

Let Your Mind Run: A Memoir of Thinking My Way to Victory by Deena Kastor

Life Is a Marathon: A Memoir of Love and Endurance by Matt Fitzgerald

Marathon Man: My 26.2-Mile Journey from Unknown Grad Student to the Top of the Running World

My Life on the Run by Bart Yasso

My Year of Running Dangerously by Tom Foreman

North: Finding My Way While Running the Appalachian Trail by Scott Jurek

Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World by David Epstein

Running: A Love Story: 10 Years, 5 Marathons, and 1 Life-Changing Sport by Jen Miller (Jen is local to South Jersey!)

Run the Mile You’re In: Finding God in Every Step by Ryan Hall

Run to Overcome by Meb Keflezighi

Running with the Buffaloes: A Season Inside With Mark Wetmore, Adam Goucher, And The University Of Colorado Men’s Cross Country Team by Chris Lear

The Passion Paradox: A Guide to Going All In, Finding Success, and Discovering the Benefits of an Unbalanced Life by Brad Stulburg

The Runners Rule Book by Mark Remy

Running Books that are Related to Training and Training Plans:

80/20 Running: Run Stronger and Race Faster By Training Slower by Matt Fitzgerald (I *personally* think one of the best running books I’ve read).

Brain Training for Runners: A Revolutionary New Training System to Improve Endurance, Speed, Health and Results by Matt Fitzgerald

How Bad Do You Want It?: Mastering the Psychology of Mind over Muscle by Matt Fitzgerald

Run Faster: How to be your own best coach by Matt Fitzgerald

Train Like a Mother: How to get across any finish line – and not lose your family, job or sanity by Sarah Bowen Shea and Dimity McDowell

Running Books Related to Nutrition:

The Athlete’s Fix: A Program for Finding Your Best Foods for Performance and Health by Pip Taylor

Run Fast. East Slow. by Shalane Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky

The Runner’s World Vegetarian Cookbook by Heather Mayer Irvine


If reading running books isn’t your thing, many are also available on audible and in audiobook format. In a previous post, I rounded up several running podcasts I enjoy listening too as well.

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. 

Question for you: What are some of your favorite running books?