Here at SKORA, our motto is Run Real.
We also believe in being real to our customers and followers as well as being real in our shoe design.
At the same time, we also believe in eating real.
Below is a how to guide on Real Food Supplementation
In early 2012 there was a study done at Appalachian State University in North Carolina seeking to determine if bananas could be an adequate substitute to a carbohydrate beverage during a 75km cycling time trial. The researchers noted that even though the banana and beverage have different carbohydrate profiles, the “cycling performance and metabolic outcomes were similar”.
Lets look at some runners. Prior to a 10km self-paced treadmill time trial at the Texas Christian University at Fort Worth, athletes consumed, among various test solutions, bananas with water. They also found “no differences in the metabolic responses during exercise between the different CHO types, nor did the type of CHO influence running performance.”
A third study compared the use of sun-dried raisins to sport jelly beans. Among the 10 cyclists in the 10k time trial, the researchers found no significant differences between time, power, resting blood glucose, or perceived exertion. It was concluded that sun-dried raisins “are a natural, pleasant, cost-effective CHO alternative to commercial Sport Jelly Beans that can be used during moderate- to high-intensity endurance exercise.”
If you're not quite ready to go bananas, there are a number of brands who produce wonderful whole food based products that are preservative free, lacking of artificial sweeteners, and not something made only in laboratories by people in white coats.
Athletes generally prefer a light meal before strenuous activity. Bearded Brother Bars are a delicious 300 calories of organic vegan goodness. We'd recommend the Bodacious Blueberry Vanilla, it is primarily carbohydrate from organic raw fruit, with some fat and a bit of protein.
Now while on the run, Island Boost is an awesome choice for those looking to use a product that has no artificial sweeteners or preservatives. Island Boost uses straight glucose and fructose as sources of calories, the electrolytes come from coconut water, and it has flavors of oranges, passion fruit, strawberry, pomegranate, and blueberry. The beauty of Island Boost is that its consistency is fluid, not gel. This allows the user to take it without having to wash down a bunch of sticky gel.
Now moving on to after the workout. The above EPIC Bar is a 100% grass fed protein raised with sustainability and animal welfare in mind, from Austin Texas.
Chocolate milk has been gaining popularity in the last few years as a recovery drink. A study published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism found that the beverage is an effective recovery aid. Chocolate milk is also inexpensive compared to many recovery drinks, as well as containing an ideal ratio of carbohydrates to protein to replenish glycogen, repair muscles, and replace fluid loss. As with the bananas, raisins, chocolate milk, and all the items mentioned in this article, it also packs a slew of nutrients and antioxidants not found in your conventional sports supplement.
There are other options available for more natural sources of “supplementation” than the whey protein being separated from the sugar in the above photo.
Chia Seeds, like chocolate milk, have increased in popularity as of late. They gelatinize and thicken when mixed with water, making their use in shakes quite easy. These seeds contain a complete amino acid profile, multiple vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and flavonoids.
Spirullina and Chlorella are another option for a natural and extra ordinary nutrient source. Spanish explorers noted that the Aztec would collect algae in nets, form it into patties, and allow them to air dry. Energy and Recovery Bits are very similar, being hydroponically grown in freshwater tanks, air dried, and pressed into small tablets. These tablets are also a complete protein source and of course contain many other vitamins and nutrients. If you're taking a daily vitamin, these would be a great real food alternative. Use the code RUNREAL at checkout to receive 30% off an order at either of the algae websites!
Danger, Danger Will Robinson!
Along with the benefits of consuming whole food sources of nutrients, there is also the danger of unregulation in the sports supplement field. In 2001, the International Olympic Committee determined that 14% of the 634 over-the-counter supplements they tested contained substances that were not on the label at levels but could lead to a positive test of a banned substance.
Unfortunately, such positive tests do happen as well. Elite swimmer Kicker Vencill tested positive for three steroid precursors in 2003. The following year, he won a lawsuit against the supplement manufacturer after claiming the multivitamins he took caused him to test positive.
There is also a safety issue. Recently the world's largest dairy exporter has issued a recall that involved 38 metric tons of whey, because it possibly contained a bacteria that could cause botulism. 3Fuel is a great option for a protein powder, as its protein is grass fed sourced and fat is from coconut milk. Use code 3FHUNT from Run ATX for a 10% discount!
Have you used any of the "whole food supplements" above or any others? You are welcome to share your thoughts and experiences below!"