I’ve been running for three years now and to tell you the truth, I am not a fan of energy gels. I can only remember very few races (RUPM, Condura & Corregidor) where I used energy gels. It’s not that I don’t believe on it, I just felt like, when you know how to listen to your body, everything will be alright. And also, maybe it is because I am not a competitive runner. I slow down and walk when I have to, I don’t try to break my PR every race. I don’t compete with anybody, I just run.
But don’t get me wrong, I know the benefits and importance of energy gels, and as they say “The difference of a good run and a great run is your nutrition intake”. Energy gels are rich carb source, easy to take and digest, just right for us runners who need immediate source of energy before and during a run. That is why when I heard about Unilab’s Active Health Sports Gel, I got curious and started thinking… that maybe, this could be the ‘game changer’ for me, that I should start considering and integrating better nutrition into my training for better performance come race day.
Why am I inclined in trying and using Unilab’s Active Health Sports Gel over other brands?
- It has greater CARB concentration than other brands – endurance athletes need to meet higher carbohydrate requirements, consuming enough carbohydrates pre-and during exercise provides additional muscle fuel source to delay muscle fatigue and prevent low blood glucose concentrations.
- It has more complex carbs (9:1 ratio of complex to simple carbs) – Active Health Sports Gel contains the highest amount of maltodextrin(26g/43g sachet) as compared to leading energy gel brands, which provides endurance athletes more of the longer-sustaining energy fuels. Complex carbohydrate maltodextrinis easy to digest in the stomach and easily absorbed in the intestine as quickly as glucose.
- Syrup consistency – To meet energy requirements during exercise, it’s more beneficial if compact carbohydrates (in the form of fodd–like gels) are easily absorbed in the body. Easy consumption is therefore important, wherein athletes should be able to swallow gels as smoothly as possible.
I decided to make a little experiment to test the effect of the Unilab Active Health Sports Gel in my run performance. At least twice a week, I try to run 5k around Legaspi Village Park in Makati City. 1 loop around the park is about 1.1 kilometers. This is my usual training for a Sunday race.
Last Thursday, I tried running 10 loops around the park with my usual preparation. I had banana & water for a light breakfast. I started around 6am, just enough to finish the run before my 8am work.
The result: 7 loops with a time of 52 minutes. I had to stop at 7th loop because I have to go back to office & prepare for work.
Two days after, which was last Saturday, I ran again. Same target, 10 loops around the park. I also started at 6am in the morning. Same preparation, but this time, I took the Unilab Active Health Sports Gel before the run, and brought another one in my pocket.
The result: 9 loops with a time of 1:06 mins. I think what made the difference was the energy gel in take on my 5th loop. It gave me the additional energy I needed to finish the 10k run.
Here’s what I can say about the product:
- Just right amount of sweetness (berry mix falvor)
- Very easy to swallow because of its syrup consistency
- You can take it even without water
The Active Health Sports Gel will be launched at the Run United Philippine Marathon on Sunday, October 6. Runners will get samples of the product for free! I suggest you try the product on future events, include it in your training and let us know what you think. This is the first locally produced energy gel in the market that’s why I encourage everyone to try and support the product we can call our own.