Good fuel for long runs

Because you can't outrun a bad diet!
alexk
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Good fuel for long runs

Postby alexk » Wed Mar 12, 2014 5:11 pm

Thought I'd share my new favourite fuel source for long runs. I found it by chance when I forgot to buy gels. I had a box of President's Choice Fruit and Nuts bars so I cut one in two and took it w/ me. It was great - gave me some good energy and digested well (better than gels, actually). They're a lot like Lara bars (date base) but not as dense. They're also cheaper @ $3.49 for a box of 5. They come in 2 flavours: Apple Cinnamon or Peanut Butter. The flavours seem irrelevant; you taste mainly the dates.

I've used them a few times now w/ success. The most I've eaten in one run is 1.5. For 20 miles (32km), that was plenty. I would normally take 2 to 3 gels. I'm still not sure if I'd use them in a race. I don't like changing the routine and I've always had race success w/ gels.

Enjoy :).

Edit: bought a new box last night and they cost $3.49 for 5 - not quite the deal I thought but cheaper than five gels.
Last edited by alexk on Fri Mar 14, 2014 3:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby Habs4ever » Wed Mar 12, 2014 5:32 pm

I'm glad you found them and they worked.
I started making my own Lara bars and I've taken them for long runs too. I love them. (I took gels today though). I also think that erinmcd said he uses dates too.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby ultraslacker » Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:12 pm

How many calories per bar?


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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby alexk » Thu Mar 13, 2014 6:32 am

ultraslacker wrote:How many calories per bar?


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I don't have the box now but I think about 130/bar w/ 3 or so grams of fat - less than a Lara bar but they are smaller. There' s no added sugar, either.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby ultraslacker » Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:36 am

I'm surprised you are able to do that distance on so few calories!


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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby Spirit Unleashed » Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:47 am

ultraslacker wrote:I'm surprised you are able to do that distance on so few calories!


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especially since we know alex is damn fast.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby jgore » Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:59 am

"Athlete's Cookies"

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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby alexk » Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:09 am

ultraslacker wrote:I'm surprised you are able to do that distance on so few calories!


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I eat a HUGE bowl of steel cut oats before my run (about 400 calories). I usually don't need a lot of fuel on my training runs; my general rule is 1 gel every 10k. But I do take more when I race - 5 to 6 gels for a marathon.

I also drink some eload or Gatorade w/ my water so I get some calories there too.

Spirit: I'm not that fast but thanks for the encouragement :). I have friends (boys & girls) who are a lot faster than me and they train w/ little to no fuel. I would surely bonk if I did that!
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby Jwolf » Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:29 am

I can't really have anything but gels and Gatorade while I run. But when I was doing longer bike rides (and 90 minutes was "long" for me! :) ) I liked taking Clif bars which are also date-based (and made by the same company as Lara Bars). They do have different flavours though and I love anything with chocolate. They are about 200 calories each and not cheap (about $1.50-1.80 each) but I try to stock up when we go to Trader Joe's ($1 US each).
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby ultraslacker » Thu Mar 13, 2014 11:16 am

In the past for ultra training I've always used genisoy protein bars, but I can't seem to find them these days. :/ Should order them online. Or try these ones you're recommending (though I don't normally shop there).

I like solid food for the REALLY long runs and because I'm slow my long trail runs take many hours so I need lots of calories. :lol:
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby Stampie » Thu Mar 13, 2014 6:14 pm

alexk wrote:
ultraslacker wrote:I'm surprised you are able to do that distance on so few calories!


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I eat a HUGE bowl of steel cut oats before my run (about 400 calories). I usually don't need a lot of fuel on my training runs; my general rule is 1 gel every 10k. But I do take more when I race - 5 to 6 gels for a marathon.

I also drink some eload or Gatorade w/ my water so I get some calories there too.

Spirit: I'm not that fast but thanks for the encouragement :). I have friends (boys & girls) who are a lot faster than me and they train w/ little to no fuel. I would surely bonk if I did that!

I'm in a similar boat as well Alex, I have a huge bowl of steel cut oats before a long run or race and generally take 4-5 gels for a marathon and 2 gels for a long run with a package of honey stinger chews (cherry cola is my fav). I usually only carry water on my fuel belt for my long runs and I rely on water stations w/ electrolyte drinks on the race course.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby NewFinnLoper » Mon Mar 17, 2014 2:48 pm

If I am doing an extended period of time (cycling, running, adventure racing) I will often take baked potatoes...I find they sit in my stomach better than gels do because they aren't sweet.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby Tikey » Mon Mar 24, 2014 11:22 pm

My new long run favorite is dried Mango!! For the first time in years I have had no GI problems,which would be dreadfully painful for the whole rest of the day after a long run. Noticed with my marathon training group most people are carrying "real food" verse gels.I am quite surprised by the fuel break potlucks ! :D
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby ultraslacker » Tue Mar 25, 2014 6:33 pm

I was actually at stupidstore the other day so I looked for these but didn't see them.


Then at save-on there were some lara bars on sale. I haven't tried them before so I grabbed a couple to try them out. I can't find genisoy bars anywhere anymore... but as my runs get longer I tend to need solid food.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby Habs4ever » Tue Mar 25, 2014 8:18 pm

ultraslacker wrote:I was actually at stupidstore the other day so I looked for these but didn't see them.


Then at save-on there were some lara bars on sale. I haven't tried them before so I grabbed a couple to try them out. I can't find genisoy bars anywhere anymore... but as my runs get longer I tend to need solid food.

What kind did you buy?
I just finished making some homemade ones.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby ultraslacker » Wed Mar 26, 2014 12:18 am

um... I forget. I think one was macadamia chocolate and one was peanut? I'd have to look but that would require getting out of bed. lol will report back another day.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby Avis » Wed Mar 26, 2014 7:46 pm

ultraslacker wrote:um... I forget. I think one was macadamia chocolate and one was peanut? I'd have to look but that would require getting out of bed. lol will report back another day.

:lol:

I couldn't find those fruit bars at our Loblaws-related stores, either.

I'm looking forward to my runs finally getting long enough to require me to have a snack during my run. I actually get hunger pangs even on some of my current runs if I haven't eaten for a couple of hours. I suspect my tummy will be pretty tough, but we shall see.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby ultraslacker » Wed Mar 26, 2014 11:00 pm

ooops they aren't even Lara bars that I bought--they are Luna bars!

I have "nutz over chocolate" and "white chocolate macadamia".

I won't be needing them this week because it's a cut-back week but next long run I'll try them out and report back.

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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby QuickChick » Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:30 pm

Thanks Allie! Those sound like a great easy option for long runs. Not messy either. I'll grab some to try. I'm also interested in trying those no bake energy bites that keep popping up on my FB feed.



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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby Sandra » Sun Apr 06, 2014 6:20 pm

Tikey wrote:My new long run favorite is dried Mango!! For the first time in years I have had no GI problems,which would be dreadfully painful for the whole rest of the day after a long run. Noticed with my marathon training group most people are carrying "real food" verse gels.I am quite surprised by the fuel break potlucks ! :D

I found (find) gels and such gave me GI problems. Switching to "real" food to fuel my long runs (when I was doing longer distances as while back....) made me feel so much better.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby alexk » Sun Apr 13, 2014 8:36 pm

The bars aren't easy to find. In my store, they're w/ the granola bars and lunch snack foods but up high - easy to miss. I think they may be taking them off the market. They are now priced at $1.99 (not on sale) and the ones I bought yesterday were a bit stale...not a fun discovery midway through a long run!

I think I'll make a batch of Habs homemade bars for my next long run :).
We train more joyfully and productively when we focus on the now, rather than on our future race day performance. It's a long road from here to there with many miles to go. We need to run each one. Accept where you are today and simply be thankful for the work you've accomplished. KA

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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby ultraslacker » Sun Apr 13, 2014 8:55 pm

for what it's worth, the luna bars are pretty good and they go down well (unlike clif bars).

eta: also, I picked up some of these: http://www.sunrype.ca/viewproduct.php?line=26

and had one during my long run yesterday in place of a gel... a little sticky but otherwise a good choice, since for the calories it was more filling.
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Re: Good fuel for long runs

Postby alexk » Tue Apr 15, 2014 3:49 am

Thanks, US. I've never tried the Luna bars - will have to get some. I've had the Sunripe fruit bars and really like them.
We train more joyfully and productively when we focus on the now, rather than on our future race day performance. It's a long road from here to there with many miles to go. We need to run each one. Accept where you are today and simply be thankful for the work you've accomplished. KA


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