Archive for the ‘Run Training’ Category

Electrolyte Capsule Supplements Compared

June 5th, 2013

Electrolytes: they’re what plants crave. Do you? As the weather heats up, getting an extra dose of electrolytes on the run can help prevent dehydration. An electrolyte supplement can also go a long way in helping to prevent some of the dangerous effects of heat exhaustion, including muscle cramping, lightheadedness, and nausea.

A consistent supply of electrolytes during sustained activity keeps your muscular, digestive, nervous, and cardiac systems healthy. In many cases, distance runners will need more electrolytes than a sports drink or gel can provide. That’s where electrolyte supplements come into play. These supplements provide a balanced blend of electrolytes designed for quick uptake in the body.

All of the electrolyte supplements Running Warehouse carries include sodium and potassium. Here are some other benefits of specific supplements:

For Higher Sodium: Succeed Vegetarian S! Caps

Succeed S! Caps have the highest amount of sodium per serving with 341mg in each capsule. That’s over 33% more than SaltStick Caps, the next saltiest supplement.

For Vitamin B6: Hammer Endurolytes Capsules or Powder

Reach for Hammer Endurolytes Capsules or Hammer Endurolytes Powder if you want an electrolyte supplement with Vitamin B6.  B6 is key in protein metabolism as well as the metabolism of carbs and fat. It’s also necessary for the proper functioning of many enzymes in the body, which are crucial to metabolic function.

For Caffeine: SaltStick Caps PLUS

The electrolytes in SaltStick Caps PLUS come with a little extra kick to keep you going. Each capsule contains 30mg of caffeine (a shot of espresso contains about 40-75mg of caffeine), which can help you push farther when you’re out on a training run.

For Vitamin D: SaltStick Caps

Try SaltStick Caps if you want a little extra boost in your Vitamin D intake. These electrolyte capsules include 100 IU of Vitamin D3. Vitamin D is essential for proper cell functioning and is a key player in the development of strong bones.

Alice Run Training , , , , , , , ,

10 Favorite Summer Fruits and Veggies

May 24th, 2013

One of our favorite things about summer (besides all the gloriously long days to run in the sunshine) is hitting up local farmers’ markets for fresh and delicious produce. Fueling your body is key to health and performance, and seasonal summer produce can add an extra dose of vitality to any meal. Reach for varieties that are high in antioxidants to help combat free-radical damage produced during exercise. Here are ten of our favorite summer fruits and vegetables:

1. Avocados

Ahh, the creamy deliciousness that is the avocado – also called the alligator pear by the particularly awesome. Avocados provide plenty of healthy fat and a hefty dose of Vitamin C, Vitamin K and Folate. Just one cup of this berry (yep, berry) has about 25% of your daily needs for Vitamin C, a key antioxidant for immunity. Slice some avocado into your lunchtime sando, or blend some with a little cocoa powder and honey to make a creamy pudding.

2. Blackberries

Delicious raw or baked into delicious treats, blackberries are little antioxidant powerhouses. Just a cup of these beauties (raw) contains about 50% of your daily Vitamin C needs, and eight grams of fiber to help you feel full longer. Toss blackberries into a salad or mix them into your morning quinoa for a sweet spin on a classic meal.

3. Chard

These greens might seem unassuming, but chard has some serious health benefits. One cup (raw) has around 44% of your daily needs for Vitamin A, 18% of your needs for Vitamin C, and 374% of your needs for Vitamin K. All of this nutritional benefit is packed into a whopping seven calories per cup. Yeah, we said seven. Because of its mild flavor, Swiss Chard works well when blended into smoothies for a little extra nutritional boost in the morning or post-workout.

Read more…

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7 Hot Weather Running Safety Tips

May 21st, 2013

Some runners like it hot. And we’ve got to agree, there’s a lot to enjoy when hitting the dirt or the pavement on a nice toasty day. But if it’s really hot outside, it’s important to take a few extra precautions. Take a look at our top tips for running safely in hot temps.

1. Hydrate Pre-Run

If you’re already a little dehydrated when you head out the door for a run, you’re risking severe dehydration and heat exhaustion – especially on a hot day. Many runners will drink at least 16 ounces of fluid (either water or a drink mix) about two hours prior to heading out into blazing temp, and follow it up with another 8-16 ounces 15 minutes before starting their workout.

2. Protect Yourself from UV Rays

Running in the sun’s rays for a short period of time nets you a little Vitamin D, but there can be too much of a good thing. Protect your skin from damaging UV rays with clothing that has UPF protection (like the Asics ARD Singlet or a pair of arm coolers), running sunglasses and a quality sunscreen. Also, seek out as much shade as you can while you’re out.

3. Bring Fluid with You

If you plan to be out for more than 20 or 30 minutes when the weather’s scorching, it’s a good idea to bring hydration. Your hydration needs during your run will depend on how much you sweat and how long you’ll be out running. In hotter temps it’s a good idea to drink about five to eight ounces of water (that’s one or two big thirsty sips) every fifteen minutes or so. Read more…

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Planning Meals Before Race Day

May 20th, 2013

The phrase ‘pre-race fuel’ makes most runners think of one thing: pasta. Delicious bowls of steamy, noodle-y carbohydrate goodness to fuel your muscles through your half or full marathon. Consuming carbs is important in the days leading up to a distance race, but you certainly don’t have to eat pasta every night. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you’re preparing your meals the week of your race.

Eat Carbs

When you eat a very carbohydrate-rich meal, the majority of the carbs are stored as glycogen in your liver for later use. When you’re working out (or pushing through your mileage on race day), your body is able to pull energy from your glycogen stores to keep you going. Glycogen is perhaps the easiest form of stored energy for your body to access.

Try to select carbohydrate options that are low in fiber, because high amounts of fiber can cause digestive problems for many athletes. Prior to a race, opt for white rice instead of brown, and save the whole wheat pasta for a post-race meal. Tired of the same old pasta? Try one of these low-fiber carb options for race week: white rice, bananas, yogurt, peeled white potatoes, white bread or white flour English muffins.

Eat Protein

Make sure that you get plenty of protein pre-race. Protein will allow your muscles to effectively recover after your training sessions so that you’re ready on race day. It’s particularly important to eat a protein-rich meal within an hour following a strength training session, so that your body has fuel to rebuild. Opt for lean sources of protein, like chicken breast. Here are a few of our faves: tilapia, turkey breast, tofu and eggs.

Eat Familiar Foods

The days before a race are not the time to experiment with new and exciting foods. Stick to foods that you know will make you feel great. Some runners feel fantastic the day after a big pasta feed, while it leaves others feeling bloated and sluggish. Play around with your diet (when you’re not prepping for a race) to figure out what foods and meals make you feel and perform the best.

Eat Enough

While you don’t want to gain weight, the days before a race are not the time to try to lose a few pounds. Make sure that you’re getting enough calories so that your body has plenty of fuel. Making sure that you’re getting plenty to eat before your race will help ensure that your body has energy to charge through the finish line. If you feel like you’re having a hard time getting enough calories to compensate for the mileage you’re logging, try snacking on healthy, calorie-dense foods like raw nuts and full fat Greek yogurt throughout the day.

Alice Run Training , , ,

VFuel 30 Day Trial

May 15th, 2013

We’re stoked to welcome a new energy gel brand to our all-star lineup. VFuel Energy Gel (formerly ViFuel Energy Gel) is carefully formulated to help endurance runners avoid the performance-crushing sugar crash and maintain stable energy levels.

The gel uses less sugar than many other gels to help provide stable energy. VFuel also uses significantly less sodium than many other energy gel formulations, so you might want to try an electrolyte supplement with your VFuel.

The gel was developed by endurance runners from Colorado, so we know they’re well-versed in endurance trail running, but we wanted to take the gel for a test ride ourselves. We had two of our own endurance trail runners, Erik and Tera, use VFuel exclusively for an entire month. Here’s what they had to say:

RW: What did an average training week look like for you when you were testing VFuel?

Erik (E): I was running about 55-60 miles a week with a lot of five to eight mile runs, two longer runs of 12-18 miles, and one up-tempo run.

Tera (T): I was running about 70 miles a week on average around the buildup to a 50-mile race. I didn’t do any speed work, just long runs building mileage.

RW: How’d you like the taste of VFuel?

T: I found it to be very palatable during a run. It has a very plain flavor, not highly sweet. It has a bit of a bitter aftertaste if I’m taking it before a run, but I didn’t even notice it on the run.

E: Compared to the Clif Vanilla and Clif Cherry Chocolate that I typically use, VFuel had a little edge to it on the aftertaste. It doesn’t have that same sweetness, and it tastes very clean.

RW: How did the gel settle in your stomach?

Read more…

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Energy Chew Comparison Test

May 10th, 2013

The right energy chew can make your run training even more enjoyable and effective. But it’s pretty tough to know what flavors and brands you’ll like best if you just look at our website. That’s where the whole idea of an energy chew comparison test came from.

We had almost 20 staffers test our top-selling flavors in each energy chew we carry to see how they rank when it comes to aspects including firmness, sweetness, saltiness and flavor enjoyment. You can shop all energy chews here, and check out our findings below.


Our tasters found that many of the chews sampled were quite firm, with Jelly Belly Sport Beans and Extreme Sport Beans offering the firmest texture and Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews offering the most squishy texture.


In addition to being softies, the Honey Stinger Organic chews are also the sweetest tasting of the energy chews we tested. GU Chomps were the least sweet tasting. Interestingly, our testers found the Extreme Sport Beans less sweet than regular Sport Beans. This isn’t because of the addition of caffeine – the Extreme Sport Beans Assorted flavor has a slightly more mellow mix (Pomegranate, Cherry and Watermelon) compared to the regular Assorted flavor (Berry, Fruit Punch, Lemon/Lime and Orange).


Our testers found that none of the energy chews sampled had an overwhelmingly salty flavor, but Jelly Belly Sport Beans were ranked as tasting the saltiest. Honey Stinger and Clif Shot Bloks tied as the least salty of the bunch, but if you happen to be a salt fanatic in search of electrolytes, keep an eye out for the Clif Shot Bloks Margarita Flavor, which has 210mg of sodium per serving compared to 70mg in their other flavors.

Enjoyment of Flavor

This is where it really gets personal, and our results were quite scattered in this category. Turns out, our testers are a very opinionated bunch, and their opinions about which flavor is most enjoyable were all over the map. So it looks like we’ve utterly failed in our quest to guide our readers toward the perfect flavor sensation.

However, many testers commented that overall, the flavors were what they expected based on the flavor names. So if you tend to like strawberry or lemon, for example, there’s a good chance you’ll enjoy these flavors of energy chews. If you want to experiment with flavors, the variety packs from Jelly Belly and Clif might be the way to go before diving in to get a 12, 18 or 24 pack of any single flavor.

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Should You Add Sprinting to Your Training?

May 7th, 2013

Most distance runners throw a little speedwork into their weekly grind every now and then to break up the long miles and boost their heart rate. Typical speed workouts include mile repeats, steady state tempos, fartleks, ladders, in n’ outs, or just a quicker pace run of the usual course.

But if you really want to improve your technique, not to mention your race times, it may be time to rethink your list of workouts and learn to run like a sprinter.

Benefits of Sprinting

Intense, short-repetition running puts stresses on the body to produce energy anaerobically. This way, when your aerobic ability has been tapped, you can dig deep and convert lactate into speed and keep pushing when others are hitting a wall.

In addition, sprinting can teach you to run faster while remaining relaxed. If you are more relaxed, you will be running more economically. Speed sessions are also a great time to work on technique. When moving at race pace, or faster, you recruit the exact muscle fibers you need for economical running.

What to Expect

Since the anaerobic system is being taxed during sprints, you won’t get the classic burning lung exhaustion more common in longer aerobic workouts. Instead, your lungs might feel great but your body feels like it is failing you. The point is to move fast without your form falling apart.

It’s really important to take the time for a full recovery in between reps. This can vary from runner to runner, but a good rule is you should feel you could perform the next interval as well as the previous one. Always be aware of the rest you take. Taking too much time off can cause the body to cool down and you don’t want to enter the rep with cold muscles.

Summing Up

Adding a speed workout once a week can break the monotony of intense mileage training, improve running economy, better your form, and give you the speed to kick down your opponents on race day.

In the coming weeks, we’ll post some suggested drills and workouts on incorporating sprints into your routine from Joe Rubio, coach extraordinaire and co-owner here at Running Warehouse.

Matt Run Training , ,

Understanding Supination

April 30th, 2013

When you shop for running shoes, it’s common to hear about pronation support, but what if you’re a supinator? Since less than 5% of runners supinate, the topic is frequently neglected. If you’ve been feeling like the redheaded stepchild when you shop for running shoes, we’re here to help. Here are the basics on what supination is, how it affects your running and how it should impact your running shoe choice.

What Is Supination?

Supination, sometimes called underpronation, means that when you run your foot remains planted on the lateral side (the outside edge) for the duration of time while the shoe is on the ground. In the typical heel-to-toe foot strike transition, the foot supinates prior to ground contact, pronates (rolls inward) after ground contact to absorb much of the impact, and supinates again at toe-off.

Runners with very high, inflexible arches frequently supinate. To determine if you pronate, take a look at the bottom of a pair of running shoes after you’ve put a few hundred miles on them. If the midfoot of the shoe is worn primarily on the outside edge, then you might be a supinator. We can also help you complete an online gait analysis to determine whether or not you supinate. Read more…

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Pre-Race Fuel Recipe from Oiselle

April 19th, 2013

The search for the perfect pre-race fuel never ends for a competitive runner. The starting point is easy, sure. You know you want carbs, and plenty of ‘em. But in what form, and with what accompaniments?

Many of the runners here at the RW offices have enjoyed their share of pre-race pasta feeds, but sometimes the plain old pasta thing gets a little stale. That’s why we were tempted to try the tasty Spaghetti Bolognese recipe that we found over on the Oiselle blog. Carrots in pasta? Count us in. The dish looks… scrumptious.

Take this recipe for a spin and tell us how it turns out for you!

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5 Tips to Fit Run Training into Your Schedule

March 18th, 2013

The alarm goes off like a starting gun in the morning, and the rest of the day looks something like this: Wake kids up. Shower. Wake kids up – again. Breakfast. Schlepping to school. Work. Kids to music/sports practice. Grocery shopping. Pick kids up from practice. Home. Homework. Dinner. Kids ready for bed. Wash dishes. Clean kitchen. Glass of wine (seriously). So how do you fit a consistent running program into a schedule that busy? We’ll show you!

1. Workout Early

If you workout in the a.m., you’ll be far more likely to actually run because nothing else will have time to get in the way of your training session. So when your alarm goes off, pretend it actually is the starting gun. Grab a quick bite to eat (like a small banana with a smear of peanut butter, or half a bagel with a little cream cheese) if you feel like you need it, and then lace up and head out the door. Bonus? You’ll already be humming with that post-run glow before most people have even opened their eyes for the day.

2. Include Your Family

If you have children, try running with your kids. It will help you fit your workout in, model a healthy lifestyle and give you an opportunity for some quality family time. Running with little ones can be a great way to bond, and there’s a way to share running with children of all ages. If you don’t have kids, try running with roommates or your significant other. Combining workout time with quality time with loved ones can help you make the most of a busy schedule.

Read more…

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