Category Archives: Nutrition

Happy 2nd Birthday Stridebox!

CAM06258I was only a subscriber to Stridebox for a short time in their inaugural year, but they continue to impress and go the extra mile.  For the 2nd year in a row, I got a Happy Birthday box from them.  No, not my birthday… their birthday!  I wrote about their birthday box last year and one of the boxes I got in their inaugural year.

Stridebox was at the forefront of the monthly subscriber revolution.  At least in my eyes, now there are a lot of them from snack food to men’s clothing.  I originally signed up in early 2013 and enjoyed getting boxes for almost a year.  The boxes contained a variety of sample nutritional products and as time went on more actual products that were just starting out.  And it seems more Stridebox branded products as well.

CAM06256 The Stridebox box is a great size for organizing and having around the house. Every box also comes with nice tissue paper wrapping, although not usually gold! And the handwritten (really?) cards are a nice touch!  This year’s birthday box had less nutrition and more products!

From the top, clockwise:

  • Bandana thing
  • Shoe mileage counter
  • Stride lights that flash when they shake (so with every footstep of your shoe)
  • Nuun Energy tablets
  • Stickers
  • Stridebox training log (nicely done, but who uses paper and pencil?)
  • PR Bar

It is probably safe to say that this box is worth $15.  The question is more about is it $15 worth of stuff I would have bought on a monthly basis?  When I was running consistently and training for longer races I easily used all the nutrition products and some of  the other random ones.  Now that my mileage is way down I don’t go through nutrition products at the same rate.

I would still recommend signing up for Stridebox.  If you haven’t why not?

What’s in Your Stridebox?

I’ve been getting the Stridebox for a few months and finally decided to video tape as I open the box… For $15 a  month it isn’t too bad of a deal to try out some new products – mostly nutrition related.

Nothing so far has been life changing 🙂

More Products Being Recalled

General Mills announced additional snack bar items are being recalled.

The recall applies to Cascadian Farm Peanut Butter Chip Chewy Granola Bars, Cascadian Farm Sweet & Salty Mixed Nut Chewy Granola Bars and Cascadian Farm Sweet & Salty Peanut Pretzel Chewy Granola Bars.

Source Mpls/St Paul Business Journal

The specific products in this recall include:

Cascadian Farm Peanut Butter Chip Chewy Granola Bars

Individual Bar UPC 0 21908-40802 6 (Not Sold Individually)
Carton (6 Bars) UPC 0 21908-14631 7

cascadian farm mixed nut thumb

Cascadian Farm Sweet & Salty Mixed Nuts Chewy Granola Bars

Individual Bar UPC 0 21908 50442 1 (Not Sold Individually)
Carton (5 bars) UPC 0 21908 40774 6

cascadian farm peanut pretzel thumb

Cascadian Farm Sweet & Salty Peanut Pretzel Chewy Granola Bars

Individual Bar UPC 0 21908-50443 8 (Not Sold Individually)
Carton (5 bars) UPC 0 21908 40775 3

I have continued to update my list of Energy Bars being recalled with new items.

[tags] Salmonella, General Mills, Cascadian [/tags]

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Re-Thinking Post-Run Nutrition

Image provided by stock.xchng.

After a work-out most runners tend to eat a lot (maybe even overeat) to try to replenish a variety of nutrients including: sugar, carbohydrates, protein, electrolytes, and regular old fluids. New research reported in the NY Times seems to indicate for most of us – that it is overkill.

The Researchers

Dr. Mark Tarnopolsky, a muscle physiology researcher at McMaster University in Canada and a physician and a 45-year-old trail runner and adventure racer.

Stuart Phillips, a 41-year-old associate professor of kinesiology at McMaster who played rugby for Canada’s national team and now plays it for fun. He also runs, lifts weights and studies nutrition and performance.

Dr. Michael Rennie, a 61-year-old who was a competitive swimmer and also used to play water polo and rugby and is a physiologist at the University of Nottingham in England who studies muscle metabolism.

Asker Jeukendrup, a 38-year-old 14-time Ironman-distance finisher is an exercise physiologist and nutritionist at the University of Birmingham in England.

Their Refueling Strategy

They just drink water, and eat real food. Dr. Tarnopolsky drinks fruit juice; Dr. Phillips eats fruit. And neither one feels a need to ingest a special combination of protein and carbohydrates within a short window of time, a few hours after exercising.

Their Thoughts

There are grains of truth to the nutrition advice, they and other experts say. But, as so often happens in sports, those grains of truth have been expanded into dictums and have formed the basis for an entire industry in “recovery” products.

The idea that what you eat and when you eat it will make a big difference in your performance and recovery “is wishful thinking,” said Dr. Rennie, a 61-year-old who was a competitive swimmer and also used to play water polo and rugby.

Image provided by stock.xchng.

The Technical Facts

During exercise, muscles stop the biochemical reactions used to maintain themselves such as replacing and resynthesizing the proteins needed for day to day activities. It’s not that exercise is damaging your muscles; it’s that they halt the maintenance process until exercise is over.

To do this maintenance, muscles must make protein, and to do so they need to absorb amino acids, the constituent parts of proteins, from the blood. Just after exercise, perhaps for a period no longer than a couple of hours, the protein-building processes of muscle cells are especially receptive to amino acids. That means that if you consume protein, your muscles will use it to quickly replenish proteins that were not made during exercise.

But muscles don’t need much protein, researchers say. Twenty grams is as much as a 176-pound man’s muscles can take. Women, who are smaller and have smaller muscles even compared to their body sizes, need less.

Dr. Rennie said that 10 to 15 grams of protein is probably adequate for any adult. And you don’t need a special drink or energy bar to get it. One egg has 6 grams of protein. Two ounces of chicken has more than 12 grams.

Muscles also need to replenish glycogen, their fuel supply, after a long exercise session — two hours of running, for example. For that they need carbohydrates. Muscle cells are especially efficient in absorbing carbohydrates from the blood just after exercise.

Once again, muscles don’t need much; about one gram of carbohydrate per kilogram of body weight is plenty, Dr. Tarnopolsky said. He weighs 70 kilograms, or 154 pounds, which means he would need 70 grams of carbohydrates, or say, 27 ounces of fruit juice, he said.

The Conclusions

Jeukendrup said the fastest glycogen replacement takes place in the four hours after exercise. Even so, most athletes need not worry.

“Most athletes will have at least 24 hours to recover,” Dr. Jeukendrup said. “We really are talking about a group of extremely elite sports people who train twice a day.” For them, he said, it can be necessary to rapidly replenish muscle glycogen.

As for the special four-to-one ratio of carbohydrates to protein, that, too, is not well established, researchers said. The idea was that you need both carbohydrates and protein consumed together because carbohydrates not only help muscles restore their glycogen but they also elicit the release of insulin. Insulin, the theory goes, helps muscles absorb amino acids.

My Thoughts

Who am I to argue with these guys? I’ve always thought moderation is key to anything that we do. It is important to eat a healthy meal after a workout. I do find that sometimes eating protein (eggs) after a workout I feel a lot better than just eating cereal. I also think that even though most of us aren’t doing two-a-days we still tap into a lot of energy reserves throughout the day for our daily routine. For instance I’ve been bike commuting so I’ll ride 4 miles within two hours of running. I need to make sure I replenish my body in between and after both workouts.

Their point is well taken and I think most of us would agree that the best way to do this is through natural methods. I’d prefer a large glass of orange juice any day over a bottle of Gatorade.

Your Thoughts?

Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

Other’s Thoughts

Here are a couple highlights from readers’ comments on the NYTimes site:

  • Lowfat chocolate milk. — Charles, London
  • I never train hungry, and like to eat a balanced protein, carb, non-saturated fat meal @45 minutes before any heavy workout. After the w/o-skim milk, a lot of whey protein, at least 3 tablespoons of sugar, and a nap. During the workout I drink water or unsweetened tea. — George, Tucson
  • Before a workout, i hard boiled egg white, 1/2 banana, some nuts and aa date, few ounces of oj and I am good good good to go. Waiting for me in the car every day after my workout at the Y is a hardboiled eggwhite, sourdough rye with peanut butter and jam, 1/2 banana and, coffee, and maybe a date and some nuts. Takes the ‘edge’ off, prevents the sugar treats, like the accelerater pedal is still on.Two hours or so later maybe some steel cut oatmeal with yogurt, nuts, raisons.Somehow it all works, I think its the protein hit in segments. Whatever, at 63 I am in better shape than I was at 43.— rob, seattle

[tags] Nutrition, Protein, Running Nutrition [/tags]

I Love My Clementine

I eat about 2-3 Clementine when they are in season, which also happens to be the winter-time! Perfect for quick bursts of Vitamin C to help improve my immune system. I’m amazed by the number of people who haven’t heard of this easy-to-peel, delicious orange-like fruit.

Technical Information

Clementine’s contain about 35 percent of Daily Value (DV) for vitamin C and a wealth of folate, a heart-healthy B vitamin. The best Clementine’s feel a little heavy for their size and should feel firm under the peel. W.N. Smith, from the wiseGEEK, says:

Clementines (an edible citrus fruit) are a good source of vitamin C, potassium, thiamin, and niacin. They also contain fiber and are a good natural energy boost. Clementines have almost no fat, and an average clementine has only about 35 calories.

Vitamin C

To much Vitamin C can turn your urine a dark yellow and may also cause indigestion and diarrhea in extreme cases. The US recommends 90mg per day of Vitamin C. Wikipedia says: In humans, vitamin C is a highly effective antioxidant, acting to lessen , a substrate for ascorbate peroxidase, as well as an enzyme cofactor for the biosynthesis of many important biochemicals. Whatever that means! Research does show that Vitamin C does have some impact on the common cold and and heart disease. I remember that the basketball team at Taylor were all required to take Vitamin C tablets during the season to keep them healthy.

A Clementine might not be a winter cure-all, but it sure helps! I usually eat one right after my run and then at least one more during the day!

Yesterday’s Workout

We went to the gym again today.  Christy forgot to pack tennis shoes put we both had packed swimsuits (She picked me up from work), so we swam.  I forgot my goggles, but that seemed less important than tennis shoes!  I swam 800 yards and tread water for awhile.  The longest continuous swim was 200, with lengths alternating between freestyle and backstroke.  My legs have been hurting a little and frankly, I’m a little tired of running on the uneven sidewalks.  Starting next week I’ll have easy access to the Midtown Greenway which is much nicer!

[tags] Nutrition, Health, Winter, Clementine, Vitamin C [/tags]