This one’s for you Harpo!
Food and nutrition are always hot topics and the focus of many emails I receive. My eating habits tend to vary a bit from winter to summer, and depend greatly on the activity I’m partaking in. Most of the time though, I tend to mix and match “real food” with supplements…eating the “real food” during breaks or transitions, and inhaling the supplements while on the go.
As one can tell, I’m way into ProBars and I consider them “real food” because they are in fact…made out of all organic, whole foods. They pack a punch as far as calories go, most over 350, and with the addition of the recent new flavors, the variety keeps things interesting. As for now, my favorites are Whole Berry Blast, Maple Walnut and Cocoa Pistachio. A couple other flavors are right there and the number 2 and 3 spots tend to rotate, but the Wild Berry remains my number one pick. As with most energy bars, ProBars are a little easier to eat when warm.
I have some friends that like to take sandwiches into the mountains, but for me, all that bread can be hard to swallow. Cutting to the chase, jerky or salami, and a wad of cheese tend to do the job for me. Alternate bites and you’ve got you’re sandwich without all the dryness that makes swallowing difficult…especially if you’re not really hungry. Often, when I’m getting ready to boot up a couloir or go for another lap on Wimpys, these “real foods” are followed by a RedBull, for the extra kick to the top.
On the go, my favorite energy gels are GU and Hammer Gel, with the limey and berry flavors being my picks. I tend to like the berry flavors over the chocolate/vanilla ones because I feel they tend to have a bit more twang or zing to them…getting you fired up a little. And of course, it’s all about the maltodextrin with energy gels, IMHO, as opposed to those made with corn syrup.
Though I used to enjoy the newer, chewy style of products like Clif Shot Bloks, I’ve kind of gotten away from them because chewing and breathing out of your mouth can be difficult and take time. When I’m on the go, I want to suck down calories and keep going, not suck wind while chewing on something. I (along with my dentist) also don’t like the way they stick to my teeth and often I’m have to stick my finger in my mouth to remove them. I also like to keep snack sized Snickers handy in a waist belt pocket, because sometimes you just can’t beat a good old fashioned candy bar.
Water of course is huge, and most of the time I carry 100oz, except when doing a short lap on Teton Pass. I tend to have a hard time drinking, so I usually make a dilute solution of some sort of electrolyte drink. Right now I really like the CamelBak Elixir product and only use one tablet for the whole 100oz. It’s not really about the electrolytes, but more about just giving the water some flavor which will hopefully make me drink more. A bit of Gatorade substitutes in nicely.
Anyway, that’s the stuff I typically like to eat during longer ski trips. As always, your comments are welcome and we all want to know what others are into. Ciao for now!
OK I am NOT an elite athlete by any means and have rather luddist tendancies, but this stuff must cost you a small fortune!
Personally I tend to get by with salami, cheese, dried fruit and muslie bars. Perhaps the odd banana on short trips, though admittedly they don’t suvive long in the pack! As a rule of thumb I don’t tend to eat stuff that my grandparents wouldn’t recongise as food (this rule does not apply at 2AM after a few beers however).
I tend to prefer Hammer Gel over GU- for some reason the Hammer products sit better in my stomach than GU.
I’m still at the point where I enjoy having a sandwich or something more substantial for a lunch…having somewhat of a “meal” while I’m out for the day really helps me sustain my energy level to the end of the day.
And Steve- aside from a good meal when you return home after a day of skiing, do you use anything else for recovery (Hammer Recoverite, etc.)?
If I’m training for something specific…where I’m really dropping the hammer day in and day out, I will use a recovery cocktail…no real favorties though. Mostly during summer months…training for a trail running race or something…when it’s hot.
Luckily, Probar sponsors me, so I get hooked up with them regularly, Working at the shop allows me to get wholesale costs on pretty much any gel, bar, drink on the market. One of the benefits.
Anything food that has the words gummi and worm in the name is my go to.
My trail snacks are very similar to yours. Substitute ProBars for whatever bar I happen to have at the time (Clif, Powerbar Harvest, etc.), and it’s exactly the same, down to the Snickers. In fact, I have climbing/skiing partners bumming bites of my Snickers off me all the time because they want something sweet and just good-tasting. 🙂
“And of course, it’s all about the maltodextrin with energy gels, IMHO, as opposed to those made with corn syrup.”
Maltodextrin is made from corn too. (But I agree, it’s probably better then sucking down HFCS.)