|My signed jersey!|
I saved the Bits until I was actually running on a more regular basis. I'm ramping up for a 10K, after basically hibernating all winter. Today, was a 5 mile run. The weather was perfect and I had a really good 4 miler last weekend (there may have been some dancing to Footloose at mile 3.5), so I figured I was back in the groove enough to try the Bits.
Normally, when I run first thing in the morning, I'll have about 12 oz of skim milk, maybe a piece of toast if I'm really hungry, before I get dressed, then head out the door. This morning, I skipped the toast, and had the Bits about 5 minutes before heading out the door. 30 bits is a surprisingly big handful! I think if I was more awake I would have taken a picture! I had to divvy them up into 4 gulps and unfortunately, one lingered a bit and started dissolving in my mouth. "Green" is a very accurate description of the taste. It's not unpleasant, it's a strong nori taste.
What was I expecting from the Energy Bits? Not much more than the extra calories I took in. Yeah, there's B vitamins which are supposed to be energizing (I've never had an energy drink in my life, I prefer caffeine!) but how much would it really work? I was expecting to have more energy later in the run due to the extra protein from the Energy Bits, but that was really about it.
So I went for my run. I started off in a bad mood, between a slight headache, allergies and contacts not sitting right, so I wasn't expecting much. I actually felt bad for testing the Bits on a Bad Day. But, within 5 minutes of running, my brain felt clear. I felt awake, even though I was still in my bad mood. I was already in my rhythm, even though my pace was slower than last week (did I mention the red wine last night too?). Was it my best run ever? Not even close. But what really impressed me was that it was a much better run than I expected. I didn't run out of steam from not having enough fuel. But I didn't feel like I had too much food in me either. I had a light but satiated feeling in my stomach, I wasn't hungry, but didn't feel like I ate too much; it was actually rather nice. Add to this that I'm writing this almost 6 hours after my run. Typically, I'm ready for a nap at this point, but today, I'm feeling pretty good! Overall, I think the Energy Bits actually did what they said they'd do. I'm truly impressed.
There's only really two downsides that I see to Energy Bits. The first is how to take them during a run. I normally take 1 Honey Stinger (about 15 calories) every 2 miles on actual long runs. I can't take in too much at any one time, it bugs my stomach. I could see the Energy Bits going down easily and not bothering my belly, but trying to corral 15-30 bits while running; I see that being a bit challenging. The other downside is the initial cost. I'm not talking cost per use, here, because it's about on par with Honey Stingers (especially if you can get a discount code). It's just the idea of paying ~$100 up front for a significant supply as opposed to $2-3 to grab a single serving bag.
Overall, I liked the Energy Bits. I could see taking them before a run or when the mid afternoon doldrums hit. I was impressed that I got half of my iron requirement in just 4 gulps, and maybe even taking them daily as a nutritional supplement would be beneficial for me.