you are spending 10 hours plus on the road you are going to need more
than just coke and water to keep your body going. The ideal
source of energy is solid food, but since you are hardly likely to be
eating full meals during your run, your next best bet is to use squeezies!
or energy replacement gel
is simply a sachet containing carbohydrates,
and vitamin C.
They provide sustained energy, the vitamin
C acts as an anti-oxidant
and helps combat heat fatigue, and the electrolytes assist
in rehydration. Don advises you take one squeezy every hour
of the race. I take a squeezy
every 8km which pretty much works out to one an hour.
is a whole range of
energy replacement gels on the market ranging from about
R5 a sachet to about R30 a sachet. There are also a range of
concentrated energy powders which need to be pre-mixed and taken on
route. When the question was put to the late Dr Lindsay Weight as
to which energy gel was best to use, she maintained she always went
with the cheapest one! That they all did pretty much the same
Here are a couple of pointers
- If you have never used squeezies before, I
suggest you try them out on your training runs or shorter distance
races. It may take some time for you to get used to the taste
- Don’t wait until it’s too
late! Take squeezies
sooner than later in a race. Squeezies don’t help
if you have already ‘blown’ so to speak. Squeezies should be
used as on-going ‘maintenance’.
- Squeezies tend to
‘thicken’ in cold weather. I always take out a squeezy about a kay
before I need to take it. I then hold it in my hand so as to
warm it up. I also ‘warm’ a water sachet by holding it in my
other hand as I run. When it is time to take the squeezy, both the squeezy and the
water are warm and thus easier to take and swallow.
the time you are nearing the end at Comrades, I guarantee that no
matter which type of squeezie you are taking, you will be about ready
to gag when you try to swallow! Fun and games!
Finally, if after lots of
practice you find you really can’t stomach taking a squeezy, I suggest
you practice eating solid food before and during your training
runs. On Comrades
day there is lots of solid food available from spectators along the
Key words: squeezy,
squeezies, energy replacement gel, carbohydrates, electrolytes,
anti-oxidants, vitamin C
links: Official Comrades Marathon