Thursday, February 9, 2012

Fueled by Vega Sport

Today I knocked out 10 miles fueled by the all-natural, plant based nutrition from Vega Sport
Vega Sport is a brand that makes plant-based sports performance foods.  They are gluten-free, as well as dairy and soy free, and full of good for you nutrients.
The 10 miles weren't fun, but the fuel was tasty!

I let myself have a leisurely morning before heading out for my run. I did this because I am trusting.  I trust weatherman.  When they claim the high will be 74, then I blindly believe them.  Curses.  Does this look like 74?
Ok - well in the sun it felt hotter.  Way hotter.

Before my run I had a Acai Berry pre-workout energizer.  I mixed it with water and drank it 20 minutes before I ran.  I have been experimenting with different pre-run fuels.  Vega Sports' has sprouted brown rice syrup for instant energy and organic palm nectar for slow, steady energy.  
The taste was decent and I did feel energy at the beginning of my run. I liked that it was in a powder form and easy to transport and mix anywhere.
Enter the run.  Enter the sun.

I started out with my run-walk-run strategy immediately. 
I run 4 minutes and walk one from the beginning.  This keeps me from hitting the "wall", allows my legs to stretch, and helps me focus. 
My typical route isn't too shady, but when temperatures are low that's okay. It's February...I thought I was okay.  Today...what do you think?  Hot, hot, hot!  
There is about a 1.5 mile stretch of shade, so I utilized it.  I typically run out and back routes.  I like these, because once I'm halfway done and turned around I feel energized and confident.  Today's shade finding dance was mentally tough.
Jeff Galloway recommends slowing your pace by one minute for every 5 degrees over 65.  I made a mental note to slow my pace, find my shade, and carry on.

Here's a look at Jeff's tips for heat:
Adjusting Race Pace for Heat: Estimated temperature at finish - Slower than goal pace - 8 min mile becomes...
55-60 degrees - 1% - 8:05
60-65 degrees - 3% - 8:15
65-70 degrees - 5% - 8:25
70-75 degrees - 7% - 8:35
75-80 degrees - 12% - 8:58
80-85 degrees - 20% - 9:35
Above 85 degrees - Forget it... run for fun
* Note: This chart is based upon my own experience in the heat and talking to other runners. It has no scientific verification.

At mile 4.5 there was a water jug and I reached for my Vega Sport Endurance Gel.  
To be honest, I was nervous.  I usually don't like gels.  I was working in the heat and I wanted my jelly beans. 
Wow!  I was surprised.  I had the orange zest gel and it was great!  It tasted like a sweet date and the consistency was just right. What I liked about this gel was this is does not contain high fructose corn syrup.  It also has coconut oil, which gives your body instant, non-carbohydrate energy.  I am already a coconut oil fan so this was a plus!
My only drawback was that the gel is more of a "one stop shot". I like to have my beans at miles 5-7 in groups and that's harder to do with a gel.  I did, however stuff it in my sports bra to enjoy again at mile 7.5.  That, however, could've gotten messy. Lucky for me it classy gal!
My run slowly plodded along.  I got in the ten miles and my pace was a little over 10 minutes per mile.  It's slower than I would've liked, but I got the miles on my legs and that's what matters.
My overall thoughts on the run: Vega Sports' products are good.  The sun is bad.  
Did I mention my new shoes are higher in the back than my old ones? I learned this around mile 6 when my heels blistered and bled.  That, my friends, is why we do our training runs in the same gear we plan to do our race in.  Better to learn now than on race day.
I wanted to show you a picture, because for some reason bleeding heels make me feel like a more hard-core runner.  But my rational brain won so there is no blood on the blog.  Sorry Twilight fans!

I have more Vega products to share with you in time as well as the story behind the brand.
Out of these 2 products, I would 100% buy and use the gel again.  You can order them online or use their store locator tool.  They are about $2 per gel.
Disclaimer: I was given these products by Brendan Brazier the creator of Vega Sport and an Iron Man triathlete, however these opinions are all my own.

What fuels your runs?

Love and Live Well Now,
Carissa & Kyle


  1. LOVE vega sport! just did my review this week too!

  2. nice review! i'm getting some to review too and i can't wait!

  3. I've never tried Vega, that sounds great! I don't run as far as you (my longest is a 10k) but I try to incorporate a healthy fat, a carb and a protein into each meal which helps me fuel my runs!

  4. I am new to Vega myself but totally digging it so far! As for the heat, I wouldn't mind a bit of warmth. Wanna send some up to Ohio? ;)

  5. I love Vega! I used their sports optimizer powder during my long runs all the time. And I use their vanilla protein post workout too. I love their new chocolate coconut bars. I have tried their gels yet since I am not running long distances at the moment but my friend who hates gels tried one and loved it!

  6. I've never tried Vega, but it sounds like it will be a good fueling option. For my long runs, I love the Honey Stingers energy chews. I think they're the only chews that aren't sticky and gross, so I can take them mid-run without water!

  7. gah, i can't believe how hot it is there! ughhh, i would go crazy without cool winter weather.

    i have never tried vega products before - i didn't even know they had gels!

  8. GREAT JOB! I have been saving my VEGA gels for long runs which I haven't had in a while! Good to know they fueled you throughout your 10!


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