A short prelude to today’s post:
Weird sighting of the day: Remember that Adam Sandler classic, Big Daddy, particularly the scene where Sandler lets the kid he’s kidnapped wear whatever he wants to school, and the kid then dresses all crazy-like?
Tonight I spotted a three-man peloton containing (presumably) a father and two sons. Now, you might be saying something to yourself along the lines of “Awww…”, but there’s a catch. The trailing child, probably aged about nine, was riding a BMX bike and a child-sized aero helmet. Just as Sandler’s character learned that you can’t let your kid wear any type of mish-mash outfit, you also should make every attempt to check your child’s tri-geekdom. Please, for the sake of the children.
Secondly, a huge, huge congratulations to everyone who ran (and drank at) the Oldsmar Tap House 5k last weekend. If you survived the race without completely overheating, then you are well on your way to becoming the next champion of the Badwater 135. The heat melted shoes’ soles just as quickly as it melted most runners’ hopes for a decent race. Thankfully, plenty of cold beer, pizza, and bratwursts (hot, not cold) awaited post-race to help us drown our sorrows. Hopefully, this isn’t a portent of things to come; otherwise it’s going to be a long, sweltering summer (especially for those morons who are training fior a summer or fall Ironman or marathon).
As many of us learned at the Tap House 5k, proper hydration is key to finishing a race without a trip to the medical tent or, even worse, to the hospital. Most of us have learned the hard way how quickly dehydration can dash our hopes for the glory of a PR, an age-group podium, or at least just crossing the finish line without deliriously imagining that we’re starring in the Broadway production of Wicked (or was that just me?).
Just as more people are participating in more races and more equipment options are made available to athletes, more hydration and nutrition products are hitting the market, each touting themselves as the magic bullet to get us to Kona, Boston, or the Super Bowl (except for Gatorade, which will just make you cooler, like Derek Jeter). These new products are all made with new, Kryptonite-like advanced ingredients in new super-secret formulas, and usually wrapped in bright and enticing packaging. Water is no longer good enough to fuel you to victory; you must have the new Energizo, with amino acids, electrolytes, protein, caffeine, ginseng, maybe just a hint of HGH, and then of course it has to taste like ambrosia. Of course, most sports drinks taste like anything but ambrosia, and the drinks that do soothe the taste buds do so because they’re loaded with sugar or sweeteners.
So what is an endurance sport athlete to do with so many options and the knowledge that most drinks are just snake oil? The answer – make your own!
Infinit Nutrition, a company out of Cincinnati (the endurance sport Mecca of the Ohio River valley), offers athletes the opportunity to create their own customized sports drinks to their specific needs. Here’s how it works:
- Go to the Infinit web site: http://www.infinitnutrition.us/
- Check out the super-cool informative videos and About Us page
- Take the Quick Start Interview, which will ask you a whole bunch of really personal questions about yourself and your workout habits.
- Once you’ve answered the questions, a formuls will be auutomatcially created for you. You can adjust the formula using sliders for Taste, Calories, Protein and other variables.
- Name your formula.
- Buy your formula.
- Wait impatiently for the delivery truck to show up.
- Mix the formula with water in your favorite IM-branded water bottles.
- Drink up!
Now for the review…
I’ve been using Infinit for the last couple of months, and can tell you that this product is for real. Of course, it’s only the start of summer, and my rides haven’t really been that long, but a couple bottles of Infinit each ride has kept me well-hydrated and I haven’t really needed to eat at all during the workouts. I’m still on my first order and I’m pretty satisfied with the results. No bonks (yet) and it tastes pretty good, even at the end of a three-hour ride, when all I’m dreaming of is Mountain Dew, chocolate milk, and a Luther Burger.
As your formula can contain your desired amount of carbohydrate blend and calories, you won’t need to bring gels, bars, or snacks along with you. Most race-day nutritional advice suggests that you should try to get as many calories in liquid form as possible as digestion is easier and GI issues less likely. As anyone who’s been doubled-over or forced to race to the nearest porta-potty instead of the finish line can attest, poor nutrition can not only slow you down but can be potentially pretty embarrassing as well. With Infinit, you can create a formula that will help you get to the finish line faster and healthier.
A couple of drawbacks – (1) it’s a little pricey at $40 for a 25 serving pouch. They do offer discounts pretty regularly, so cheaper prices can be had if you’re willing to wait. (2) If you’re lazy like me, then you have to order a lot at once in advance so that you don’t run out anytime soon. (3) Because the mix contains protein, you can’t leave a bottle-ful out for a few days (trust me)—yeccchhh!
A few other comments: (1) Infinit is well-known for their customer service. I made my initial order during a limited-time 2 for 1 online sale which completely crashed their servers due to such high demand. The people at Infinit did their best to alleviate customers’ frustrations by extending the sale and then honoring everyone’s orders. They also have a on-site support team who can answer your questions over the phone. (2) They mail your order in an environmentally-friendly pouch instead of a plastic jug, which is nice if you’re a hippie. (3) If you’re really too lazy to concoct a formula for yourself, they also offer a number of pre-mixed options specific to triathletes, swimmers, and cyclists.
If nutrition has been one of your limiters (it’s one of my top five, along with swimming, cycling, transitions, and outfit selection), then Infinit is an option that you should definitely look into. Besides the proven results, it’s a lot easier than having to stop at 7-Eleven for Gatorade and a PowerBar when you’re running late for the Saturday morning hammerfest.