I've been on a quest to find natural ways to fuel on the run for, well, years now. Will says I'm weird, but I just cannot stand the thought of swallowing a chemically manufactured gel or potion with a string of ingredients as long as my forearm, most of which I can't even pronounce. Not for me, thanks.
And by "natural ways" I don't mean going all hippie and carrying a plastic bag full of date balls with me during long runs or races - I'm simply looking for something that is conveniently packaged, but still good for my health. A tall order, it seems: Natural, convenient fuelling options are about as common as..., well, they're not very common.
|I did dress up as a hippie for our rag procession in 1996 (that's me in the middle)... But I didn't carry any date balls then either.|
I've only done one full marathon to date, and its fuelling stations were right up my alley. I seriously wanted to burst out in song when I saw what was on offer at the Paris Marathon in 2011: Raisins and cut oranges! (There were some other stuff too, of course, but these two really stood out to me.) I carried my own fuel too, but munched on oranges and raisins in between and never hit the wall. It was perfect.
|Compliments of raisins and cut oranges.|
Fuelling requirements are, of course, less intense for half marathons (my favourite racing distance), but I do find that I need a little something (other than water) at 10, 15 and 20 kilometres to just give me some oomph. Sadly, carrying around raisins or oranges (or date balls) for a run or race just isn't convenient, so I've stuck to Vitrace tablets in the past. Something even more natural would be nice, though - any recommendations?
I was lucky enough to win a whole box of Ener-B sachets online last week, and must say that I'm really excited to try them out during my half marathon training and potentially on race day too. Ener-B has only one ingredient: 100% raw honey. This is exactly what I've been looking for as far as natural, convenient fuelling goes, but I definitely have my doubts about ingesting something as (sickly) sweet as honey during a run (I don't have a sweet tooth at all)... I'm curious to see what it does in terms of performance, though, so I'm going to give it a try. I'll let you know how it goes!
Honey on the run: Yay or nay? Do you prefer natural fuels? Any natural fuel recommendations?