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Everything You Need To Know About Energy Gels

  • By Jeff Gaudette
  • Published Aug. 22, 2013
  • Updated Aug. 22, 2013 at 11:38 AM UTC

How they work, as well as why, when and how to use them.

It wasn’t long ago that runners relied solely on water, sports drinks, and maybe some flat cola as their primary carbohydrate supplement during longer races such as half marathons and marathons. Luckily, our understanding of sports nutrition (specifically how glycogen is used during the marathon) has improved to the point that we now have a plethora of products to choose from, each designed to speed glycogen to our working muscles.

The problem these days is not in finding a glycogen delivery product, but rather in sorting through the myriad of possible choices and then developing a strategic nutrition strategy to ensure optimal fueling on race day.

More from Competitor.com: Race Fueling Made Simple

In this article we outline how energy gels and other carbohydrate supplements work and help you understand when–and how often–you should be taking them to ensure maximum performance and optimal fueling on race day.

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Jeff Gaudette

Jeff Gaudette

Jeff has been running for 13 years, at all levels of the sport. He was a two time Division-I All-American in Cross Country while at Brown University and competed professionally for 4 years after college for the Hansons-Brooks Distance Project. Jeff's writing has been featured in Running Times magazine, Endurance Magazine, as well as numerous local magazine fitness columns.

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