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  1. #1
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    Energy gel concerns

    As I am now doing longer rides (longest, 4-1/2 hours- 70 miles) I know that I need to re-fuel during the ride. I have in the past used weight gainers when I was trying to put on pounds.

    The ones I've tried were very high in carbohydrates (for obvious reasons). The problem is that I think most of the carbs were from simple sugars and I would end up getting a hypoglycemic feeling from them.

    I would like to try Clif Shots, Hammer Gels etc. but am concerned about the carbs in them.

    I believe that they don't contain the simple sugars but do I have to be concerned about raising my blood glucose level too high with these?

    Has anyone had a problem with them?

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    I use Hammer gels and Heed. I have never had an issue with any of the Hammer products. Everyone is different so YMMV. Here's a link to Hammer: http://www.hammernutrition.com/produ...-energy-drinks

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by redondoaveb View Post
    The problem is that I think most of the carbs were from simple sugars and I would end up getting a hypoglycemic feeling from them.

    I would like to try Clif Shots, Hammer Gels etc. but am concerned about the carbs in them.

    I believe that they don't contain the simple sugars but do I have to be concerned about raising my blood glucose level too high with these?
    If you are talking about using these while riding, they will hong cause hypoglycemic response nor an extreme elevation in blood glucose levels.

    When you start to exercise at moderate intensity, the epinephrine release (that is normal with exercise) causes insulin release to stop. So glucose clearance from the blood is dependent on exercise induced glucose uptake. Thus, you don't get hypoglycemic unless you do not eat and are running low on liver glycogen for hepatic glucose output (HGO).

    Blood glucose during exercise is elevated via HGO and food (carb) intake, but does not get 'extreme'. Even with the 'fastest' sugars (aka a glucose fructose 1:0.8 ratio dosed at 1.8g/min) you will not greatly elevate blood glucose levels assuming you are exercising at a 'good' pace constantly.

    What concerns do you have about the carbs in those spots foods you mentioned?

    Most carbs in sports supplements are basically the same thing. (glucose, sucrose , maltose , maltodextrin , and other fancy sources that are basicly still just sugars once they hit the stomach and small intestine.
    "The lower limit of dietary carbohydrate compatible with life apparently is zero, provided that adequate amounts of protein and fat are consumed."......http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?reco...10490&page=275

    Feel free to PM me nutrition questions. I will answer them if I have time.....

  4. #4
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    Gu or hammer's are the best in my eyes. Hammer is my preference due to being less thick and tasting good to me

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdeeer View Post
    If you are talking about using these while riding, they will hong cause hypoglycemic response nor an extreme elevation in blood glucose levels.

    When you start to exercise at moderate intensity, the epinephrine release (that is normal with exercise) causes insulin release to stop. So glucose clearance from the blood is dependent on exercise induced glucose uptake. Thus, you don't get hypoglycemic unless you do not eat and are running low on liver glycogen for hepatic glucose output (HGO).

    Blood glucose during exercise is elevated via HGO and food (carb) intake, but does not get 'extreme'. Even with the 'fastest' sugars (aka a glucose fructose 1:0.8 ratio dosed at 1.8g/min) you will not greatly elevate blood glucose levels assuming you are exercising at a 'good' pace constantly.

    What concerns do you have about the carbs in those spots foods you mentioned?

    Most carbs in sports supplements are basically the same thing. (glucose, sucrose , maltose , maltodextrin , and other fancy sources that are basicly still just sugars once they hit the stomach and small intestine.
    Very interesting reading. I know when I would get the weak, light headed feeling after "weight gainer" shakes, I would just have to sit and wait for the feeling to go away. Would hate to get far out on a ride and get that feeling.

    Of course, it's not a good feeling to get far out on a ride and bonk either. Last time it happened, I just happened to be by a McDonalds, a couple of cheeseburgers and I was fine

    Has anyone tried Accelerade gel? It has a 4:1 ration of carbs and proteins. Otherwise, I was looking at Hammer Gel as mentioned by you guys also.

    Do you think I should try them on a short ride to make sure they don't cause me problems?

    Thanks again for all the input.

  6. #6
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    what i do:
    heed and gel on rides less than two hours.
    perpetuem and gel on rides longer than two hours.
    your glycogen stores are depleted after two hours and your body needs food to fuel. perpetuem, accelerade, etc have carbs and protein that your body will use.
    just my $.02.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bcaronongan View Post
    .
    your glycogen stores are depleted after two hours and your body needs food to fuel. perpetuem, accelerade, etc have carbs and protein that your body will use.
    just my $.02.
    Not totally true. After about 1.5 hours of exercise above tempo pace, your liver glycogen is getting to the debranching point (not fully depleted), meaning that hepatic glucose output can not keep up with glucose removal in the working muscle. So you start to get a drop in blood glucose levels. That only (really) occurs when you start fasted and do not eat durring exercise, or get way behind on carbohydrate intake late in exercise. Exercise starts to become harder (mentally) and then actually physically when muscle glycogen is low (not gone), and liver glycogen has allowed blood glucose levels to drop to 3.5ish mmol.

    And on 4:1 carb to protein. The data shows that it is not better than all carbs from a performance standpoint. However, the protein may help with satiety during exercise and other stomach/GI issues. Everyone is different regarding what they can use during exercise based on their preference and GI.
    "The lower limit of dietary carbohydrate compatible with life apparently is zero, provided that adequate amounts of protein and fat are consumed."......http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?reco...10490&page=275

    Feel free to PM me nutrition questions. I will answer them if I have time.....

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    I think the main issue is comparing gels to a weight gainer doesn't correlate directly as they are quite different in composition from what I understand.

    With that said, I prefer Hammer gels as they use natural flavors (taste good too) and I drink Accellerade for the 4:1 carbrotein which seems to keep me from bonking while I am riding. Only issue with Accellerade for me is that it makes me burp alot and makes my brother in law gassy with the worst farts ever. But I believe it will vary per person.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by paul323 View Post
    try www.generationucan.com it balances your glycerin levels for up to 3 hrs. Mix it in your bottle and drink 30 min before a long workout. Tastes kind of chalky but definitely works, I haven't had to use gels while using this.
    I just ordered some of the pom-blu and lemonade pouches from generationucan. Looks like what I might be looking for. I'll probably try Hammer gels and Accelerade also, can pick them up locally.

    Want to thank everyone for their input, I feel a lot more comfortable about trying these now.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by paul323 View Post
    try www.generationucan.com it balances your glycerin levels for up to 3 hrs. Mix it in your bottle and drink 30 min before a long workout. Tastes kind of chalky but definitely works, I haven't had to use gels while using this.
    What does glycerin have to do with exericse metabolism (of any real meaning)?

    That product looks like it funded the research that was discussed in the waxy maize thread. Read that thread about sugar vs. resistanct starch digestion, etc.

    The product is basically a resistant starch, which has less of a glycemic response in part due to reduced glycemic load. Sure, you get less insulin response, but you are putting in less available carbohydrates. I am not sure why that is important during an exercise bout. Or atleast better than what is already out there. Also, it is claimed to burn more fat during the workout. Again, not sure that is a benefit to high intensity exercise becuase those intensites require glycolysis (glucose). Burning more fat DURING a workout does not lead to fat loss overall alone. Energy balance over time is the driving factor. I have not seen a study that says that there is any benfit to burning more fat durring a workout than outside the workout.

    They have not shown that this supplement improves performance. There is however a chance that this type of carb (resistant starch) + a simple sugar could improve performance.

    Things that it will likely do well is reduce initial gastric distress which can be associated with simple sugars.

    But it tends to taste really bad, and they have to add all sorts of stuff to cover up the taste to get the dose in.
    ,
    "The lower limit of dietary carbohydrate compatible with life apparently is zero, provided that adequate amounts of protein and fat are consumed."......http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?reco...10490&page=275

    Feel free to PM me nutrition questions. I will answer them if I have time.....

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by redondoaveb View Post
    do I have to be concerned about raising my blood glucose level too high with these?
    Thanks
    In the middle of a long ride? I wouldn't have thought so, but every body is a little different.

    Quote Originally Posted by paul323
    try www.generationucan.com it balances your glycerin levels for up to 3 hrs.
    Seems like a fadish way to get complex carbs. Why not just go for some portable whole foods, like dried sweet potatoes, dried fruits, rusks, wholemeal crackers, trail mix, etc?

  12. #12
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    heed and gel on rides less than two hours.
    Perpetuem and gel on rides longer than two hours.
    ...+1

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by bcaronongan View Post
    heed and gel on rides less than two hours.
    perpetuem and gel on rides longer than two hours.
    Yep, but now I've moved to Perpetuem Solids. Wow, what a great product! Especially with summer coming up, they'll be far better than warm liquid Perpetuem.

    If you get them, be sure you understand how to use the product. You can't just chow down on them.

  14. #14
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    Reply from Levi at Hammer Nutrition

    The symptoms you're describing are probably a result of a blood sugar crash from using simple sugar based gel products as you suggest and possibly a bit of a protein deficit. As you suggest, simple sugars are not an ideal ingredient to use in an energy fuel because they produce a "flash and crash" affect in your energy levels and are also bad for your oral and general health. The beauty of Hammer Nutrition products is that we don't add simple sugars but use complex carbohydrates that give you quick but long lasting energy. So Hammer Gel would be superior to the other sports gels on the market containing simple sugars. When exercise lasts longer than 2 hours your body starts using a small amount of protein in the energy production process and will digest muscle tissue to obtain the protein if it can't get it from an external source. It's important to use a product like Perpetuem or Sustained Energy if your workouts consistently take you beyond 2-2.5 hours to give you long lasting energy and protect muscle tissue so recovery times are shorter and you can get the maximal performance gains from your training. The Essentials to Getting Started With Hammer Nutrition article explains the importance of proper hydration, electrolyte replenishment, caloric intake (including the need for protein on endurance events), and recovery and explains why simple sugars should be avoided during exercise (and in the diet). Our products are backed by a 30day satisfaction guarantee so you can feel good about trying them. I know you're going to love our Hammer Gel and if you try the Sustained Energy or Perpetuem, I'm confident they'll perform really well too!

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    Quote Originally Posted by pmt View Post
    Yep, but now I've moved to Perpetuem Solids. Wow, what a great product! Especially with summer coming up, they'll be far better than warm liquid Perpetuem.

    If you get them, be sure you understand how to use the product. You can't just chow down on them.
    Those are some of the worst things that I have ever had while riding. I almost puked and couldn't get the chalk like feel out of my teeth the whole time.

    Put the powder in with water and ice in a Camelbak Podium Chill water bottle and you will be just fine.

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    Bogus

    Quote Originally Posted by redondoaveb View Post
    The symptoms you're describing are probably a result of a blood sugar crash from using simple sugar based gel products as you suggest and possibly a bit of a protein deficit. As you suggest, simple sugars are not an ideal ingredient to use in an energy fuel because they produce a "flash and crash" affect in your energy levels and are also bad for your oral and general health. The beauty of Hammer Nutrition products is that we don't add simple sugars but use complex carbohydrates that give you quick but long lasting energy.
    Unless I missed the memo, Hammer uses maltodextrin (like just about everybody else) and it has the same glycemic index as glucose. IOW, the same blood sugar spike. I agree that simple sugars are worse on your teeth, but from a blood sugar standpoint, they behave the same as the maltodextrin used in essentially every gel.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by RUFUSPHOTO View Post
    Those are some of the worst things that I have ever had while riding. I almost puked and couldn't get the chalk like feel out of my teeth the whole time.
    My guess is that you were using them wrong. You really have to just break them a little bit and then suck on the pieces; never use when under heavy load.

    I was skeptical at first, but found that when used correctly, it's a great product.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    Unless I missed the memo, Hammer uses maltodextrin (like just about everybody else) and it has the same glycemic index as glucose. IOW, the same blood sugar spike. I agree that simple sugars are worse on your teeth, but from a blood sugar standpoint, they behave the same as the maltodextrin used in essentially every gel.
    According to their website the do use maltodextrin. They claim that the Hammer Gel is an 18 on the Dextrose Equivalent Scale and sucrose is a 100 on the Dextrose Equivalent Scale. Whatever the hell that means

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    Quote Originally Posted by pmt View Post
    My guess is that you were using them wrong. You really have to just break them a little bit and then suck on the pieces; never use when under heavy load.
    So, no using them during long races? (Think 6 and 12 hour mtb races)

  20. #20
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    Perpetuem Solids

    Quote Originally Posted by DesnaePhoto View Post
    So, no using them during long races? (Think 6 and 12 hour mtb races)
    No; you won't be under continuous red zone for six to twelve hours. I mean don't use them when hammering up a climb, or chasing a group etc.

    I just finished another RUSA 200k ride three hours ago and was happy to have them; it's hot! Used them just last Sunday as well on a 200k.

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    Scales

    Quote Originally Posted by redondoaveb View Post
    According to their website the do use maltodextrin. They claim that the Hammer Gel is an 18 on the Dextrose Equivalent Scale and sucrose is a 100 on the Dextrose Equivalent Scale. Whatever the hell that means
    Well, I suppose you could Google "Dextrose Equivalent Scale" and actually learn what it is. "It is left to the reader . . . "

    That notwithstanding, glycemic index is the standard method for determining how fast a food raises your blood sugar. Glucose has a glycemic index of 100 and is the reference "fast" sugar. Glucose is what your brain runs on. Maltodextrin has a glycemic index of 100. I smell a marketing trick to get you to think that those Hammer gels are somehow "special" when in fact they are just sugar that isn't as sweet on your tongue and doesn't leave your teeth wearing little green sweaters at the end of a long ride.

  22. #22
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    The current world of gels, H2O soluble additives, and the like is too big and confusing these days. For decades, I just drank water and ate medjool dates, mission figs and other dried fruit on a ride. I used to measure the intensity of a hill climb by how many figs it took to get over the top. Now I am experimenting with 'endurance, electrolyte and recovery' products and can't say they are much better. As I age (60) I am more aware of my limitations and care more for my condition. I still want to ride long, and not hurt from trying too hard, or simply acting like I'm younger.
    Santa Barbara, CA -- My Photo Site -- My Business Site

  23. #23
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    Well, got my Ucan samples today, I'll give them a try on my next long ride and let everyone know how they work for me. Still looking at Hammer gel and perpetuem, probably try them too.

    I think Kerry talked about eating figs on another post, might try them too. My problem with solid foods on a long ride is that I really don't have an appetite while riding, have to force food down which usually means I would rather stop and eat. That's fine sometimes, other times I just want to keep riding. That's why I looking at the other products.

    Again, I want to thank everyone for their input, nice to hear what works for other people.

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    Fig bars

    Quote Originally Posted by redondoaveb View Post
    My problem with solid foods on a long ride is that I really don't have an appetite while riding, have to force food down which usually means I would rather stop and eat.
    There's no need to stop - just carry the fig bars in a Zip-Lock bag in a jersey pocket. If you get hungry on a ride, you're in trouble - it's the same as if you get thirsty. You need to figure out what your calorie intake schedule is and then just eat on schedule. A couple of fig bars can be easily chewed in less than a minute - there's 110 calories right there.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    There's no need to stop - just carry the fig bars in a Zip-Lock bag in a jersey pocket. If you get hungry on a ride, you're in trouble - it's the same as if you get thirsty. You need to figure out what your calorie intake schedule is and then just eat on schedule. A couple of fig bars can be easily chewed in less than a minute - there's 110 calories right there.
    Are you talking about home made fig bars, already packaged or fig newtons? They seem like they would be the perfect riding food.

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