Hammer Nutrition Blog

Interview with Kelly Agnew on setting the FKT on the White Rim Trail

April 1, 2014

FKT (Fastest Known Time) attempts have risen to prominence in recent years, with many athletes preparing for them with the same focus as they would a race. Ultra runner Kelly Agnew recently set his sights on running the White Rim Trail, a 100-mile jeep road (with 7 miles of pavement) in the Islands in the Sky district of Canyonlands National Park, near Moab, Utah. On March 8th, 2014 fueled by Hammer Nutrition products Kelly ran the White Rim Trail in 17:47:25, breaking the previous record of 18:43:22 set by Peter Bakwin in 2006.

So what made you decide to try and set the FKT on the White Rim Trail?

I was intrigued by the White Rim Trail because of the distance and location. I love running in Moab and when I found out the trail was almost exactly 100 miles long, I got excited by the possibilities. When I researched the FKT history, I was intimidated by the existing record and knew I would have to have a nearly flawless run if I had any hope of beating it. The fact that it was a challenge also fueled my desire to give it a try.

How did you end up feeling about your result and effort?

I was concerned early on because I felt overly labored and was worried I was going to burn out before finishing. I really wanted to beat the current record but I also wanted to drop the FKT by a significant margin. To be honest, I was pretty stressed out for most of the run. I’m happy with the finish time but I can reflect back and see a lot of opportunities to do better.

 What was the most difficult part of the attempt?

 The monotony. The scenery in Canyonlands is beautiful but it never changes. I could see the same landmarks off in the distance for hours and sometimes I felt like I wasn’t making any progress at all. It was a huge mental challenge.

What fueling or nutrition advice would you offer to someone looking to do a similar FKT attempt?

Bring more than you think you’ll need. I fueled almost exclusively on Hammer gels and managed my electrolytes with Endurolyte Fizz, but I also brought a wide variety of other products in case I started having other cravings during the run. For example, I had my Perpetuem on hand in case I started having issues with the gel. 

What other gear did you need for the attempt?

I planned to meet Jo at frequent intervals, so this allowed me to use a single handheld bottle. I use the Hammer Purist bottles and I slip them into whatever bottle carries I have on hand. I also brought my Osprey Rev 6 hydration pack in case something happened and I needed to run longer without crew support, but that never happened. I was wearing Hammer’s cool-tee running shirt and new moisture-wicking Jackrabbit running hat. 

Anything you’d do differently if you were to take on this FKT again?

I would add another crew member. I put a lot of pressure on my wife during the run because she was committed to staying fully awake during my attempt. There were several dangerous sections of road that she had to navigate all on her own and I know she was getting pretty frazzled at times. If I had known the conditions in advance, I never would have put her through all that.

You and Jo (your wife and crew member) seem to make a great team. What does it take to be a good crew member for ultra races or FKT attempts?

 I say this all the time, but I think my wife is the best crew person in the business and I’m very fortunate to have her. To do that kind of work, a person has to be completely selfless. There aren’t any buckles, trophies or accolades for the crew, so they have to be there and be totally committed to their runner and have the ability to find satisfaction in helping them succeed. Jo and I spend a tremendous amount of time planning for my runs and races. We develop written race plans that are very detailed and we run through every possible race day scenario. She manages the entire event for me and she always knows what needs to be done. She’s a total pro.

Kelly and Jo at the 2014 Coldwater Rumble 100

What advice would you offer to someone planning their first FKT attempt?

Plan well. A lot of these courses are very remote and you’re on your own. Spend a lot of time researching the route. Find run reports, maps and videos on YouTube. Scour every resource and plan for every eventuality. Do this with your entire crew so everyone knows what to expect and keep a focus on safety. A lot of things can go wrong and good preparation can keep everyone safe.

 

Any other attempts in the works?

Definitely. I plan to return to the White Rim Trail this fall and run it in an attempt to set the unsupported record. In this attempt, I won’t be allowed to have a crew at all, which is going to be extremely challenging because there’s no reliable water source anywhere on the route. I’ll have to carry a lot of gear and fuel to complete that run all by myself. I have another FKT attempt that I’m putting together right now, but it needs to be kept under wraps until a few details are confirmed. I’m looking forward to an epic year and these FKT attempts really compliment my racing.

 

 

You can read more about Kelly’s White Rim Trail FKT over on his blog or listen to his interview over at Gear:30′s website.

 

 

ANNOUNCING NEW HAMMER PRODUCTS: CLEAR DAY AND NASOL!

January 31, 2014

From Steve Born:

 

Clear Day – Potent ammunition against allergies 

Clear Day
Allergy sufferers, rejoice! Clear Day is here, and it’s ready to provide fast, effective, long-lasting relief from your worst allergy symptoms. A capsule or two of Clear Day is all it takes, and you’ll no longer have to deal with the unpleasantness of:

• Wheezing with nearly every breath you take

• Rubbing burning, itching, watery eyes

• Constantly blowing your nose

With these bothersome allergy symptoms now out of the way, not only will you be able to train and race more productively, it’ll be much more enjoyable.

An estimated 4 out of 10 endurance athletes suffer from seasonal allergenic reactions, so chances are you’re at risk for having to deal with the undesirable symptoms described earlier. And they’re not only a major discomfort, they negatively affect athletic performance as well. Researchers Komarow and Postolache state, “As a result of the increase in ventilation during exercise, athletes in particular experience significant symptoms of allergy triggered by exposure to aeroallergens. The allergic response causes nasal and conjunctival congestion, tearing, breathing difficulties, pruritus [itching], fatigue, and mood changes, which affect athletic performance.”

The solution is Clear Day. Its unique, all-natural formula of olive leaf extract, quercetin, bromelain, and resveratrol possesses powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiviral, and antihistamine properties. Its wide-ranging actions help prevent airborne allergies from occurring, while also providing fast-acting and effective relief for numerous allergy discomforts. When allergy season arrives, or anytime throughout the year when allergy symptoms occur, take control with Clear Day! 

 

Nasol – Put the power of the pepper to work for you! 

Nasol

Whether it’s due to colds, allergies, or numerous other reasons, nasal congestion affects us all at some point. A stuffy nose not only makes exercising significantly more difficult, it can disrupt your entire day and negatively impact the quality of your sleep. No more! Use Nasol—it’ll clear up your sinuses quickly so you can enjoy breathing more freely.

Additionally, if you’ve ever had a migraine, you know that very few things will stop you in your tracks and ruin your day faster; the pain is that oppressive. Good news! Nasol is also highly effective at alleviating migraine headaches, and you won’t have to wait for slow-acting medications to start working to experience relief . . . Nasol goes to work FAST!

Nasol is the perfect complement to Clear Day, helping to alleviate other unpleasant symptoms caused by allergies. As soon as you feel the first hint of allergy-related problems coming on, take a dose of Clear Day and give each nostril a spray of Nasol. Rapid relief is on the way!

 

 

For more info see the product pages for Clear Day and Nasol on Hammer’s website in our “Well Being” section.

 

 

Supplement Bashing – Enough is Enough!

December 20, 2013

Written by Hammer Nutrition’s Steve Born:

A recent editorial published in the Annals of Internal Medicine has mainstream media in a frenzy once again. When there’s a no-punches-pulled headline of “Enough is Enough: Stop Wasting Money on Vitamin and Mineral Supplements,” and a doctor involved in the editorial is quoted stating, “Most supplements do not prevent chronic disease or death, their use is not justified, and they should be avoided,” you can bet it’s going to garner front page coverage.

But that’s exactly where the problem lies. The blunt anti-vitamin/mineral stance taken in this editorial is based primarily on the analysis of two recent studies, and on the premise “that most supplements do not prevent chronic disease or death.” That’s exactly right, supplements are not meant to do that; they’re not a “cure all” for diseases. Instead, the nutrients in vitamin/mineral supplements help bridge the gap between what our diets supply nutrient-wise and what we should really be obtaining for optimal health.

We believe that this editorial, with its broad-stroke condemnation of vitamins, presents a distinctly one-sided and inaccurate viewpoint, one that doesn’t bother to take into account the established benefits of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. As a result, we consider this editorial to be a disservice to all individuals desiring to make educated decisions in their goal of enjoying optimal health. When you review some of the flaws about the studies involved, we believe you’ll agree that the sensible use of vitamin/mineral supplements is not a waste of money at all.

 What you didn’t hear in the news

There are significant issues in the studies that didn’t get mentioned in any of the news media’s articles. One of the studies involved about 6,000 male doctors 65 years and older and analyzed the effects of vitamin supplementation on cognitive function. At the end of the study, researchers concluded that there was no difference between those who took vitamins and those who took a placebo. Here are the primary problems associated with this study:

1)    The multivitamin used contained extremely low and inadequate amounts of nutrients, such as a mere 60 mg of vitamin C, 50 mg of vitamin E (a poorly absorbed, synthetic vitamin E at that), and 25 mcg of vitamin B12. With such minimal amounts, significant health benefits cannot realistically be expected. Even the researchers took note of that, stating that the “doses of vitamins may be too low.” Still, in spite of the fact that low-potency vitamins were used, after 2.5 years of supplementation, cognitive function was improved as compared to placebo. However, the difference wasn’t statistically significant, which is perhaps why it wasn’t mentioned in any of the news reports.

2)    The standards in terms of adherence were far too relaxed. Study subjects who took the multivitamin just three-quarters of the time were deemed to have properly adhered to the study protocol. Think about that . . . even if they only took the multivitamin 3 out of 4 weeks—missing a full 7 days monthly— that was acceptable in terms of being adherent. How can any reliable conclusions about supplement efficacy, or lack thereof, be formed when a portion of the study subjects are only using the product a portion of the time?

Additionally, instead of requiring participants to provide specific documentation with any frequency, returning any unused product so that its contents can be counted to see how much was actually taken, or other more reliable methods to accurately measure compliance, the participants were simply asked to recall from memory how frequently they used the multivitamin supplement. Compared to the aforementioned methods, a recollection-based-only approach in acquiring data is a less reliable way to truly quantify study participants’ adherence to a study protocol.

A second study involved over 1,700 subjects with an average age of 65 who had suffered a heart attack. The objective was to “assess whether oral multivitamins reduce cardiovascular events and are safe.” Study participants were given either a multivitamin or a placebo, and were monitored for nearly 4.5 years for “cardiovascular events” such as a recurrent heart attack or stroke. At the completion of this time period it was concluded that, “High-dose oral multivitamins and multiminerals did not statistically significantly reduce cardiovascular events in patients after MI [Myocardial Infarction] who received standard medications. However, this conclusion is tempered by the nonadherence rate.”

Take special notice of that last sentence because it brings to light a serious flaw in the study–a whopping 46% of the study subjects did not adhere to the vitamin supplementation regimen! How can any logical and definitive conclusions be made when nearly half of the study subjects don’t follow the protocol? Yet it is the very conclusions of this study that are partially responsible for the blanket statement that, “Most supplements do not prevent chronic disease or death, their use is not justified, and they should be avoided.”

Additionally, there were more diabetics in the multivitamin group than in the group receiving the placebo. Considering that diabetes is one of the major risk factors for cardiovascular disease, it’s logical to assume that those who had a higher rate of diabetes at baseline would be at a higher risk of experiencing a “cardiovascular event.” When the playing field isn’t level, so to speak, it can bias the results, which it may very well have done in this particular study.

Lastly, take note of the study conclusions: “High-dose oral multivitamins and multiminerals did not statistically significantly reduce cardiovascular events…” The reason this is true is because a 25% reduction in cardiovascular risk was required to conclude that multivitamins provide effective cardiovascular benefits. As one nutritional scientist remarked, “… the investigators constructed the study so as to ignore anything short of miraculous cardiovascular risk reduction, so the conclusion drawn questions multivitamin benefits.”

 Summary

We do not believe that optimal health comes solely from a bottle of vitamins; it takes a multi-faceted approach to maximize one’s health. Regular exercise, the best possible diet, stress management, and other factors need to be employed as well. And while we adamantly do not believe that taking a handful of supplements ever takes the place of the consumption of the highest quality diet possible, we remain convinced that supplementation is a necessity for three primary reasons:

 

  1. A growing body of research shows that food alone does not supply all of the micronutrients we need to prevent deficiency, let alone achieve optimal health.[1, 2] 
  2. Even if we could obtain all the nutrients we need from our diet, most people do not consume a healthy diet, eating highly processed foods instead 
  3. Numerous studies have shown that the soil crops are now grown in has become depleted in nutrients, resulting in less nutritious produce. Additionally, much of what we eat comes from foods grown far away, picked when unripe, and then sent packing. Nutritional content is thus further depleted. 
  4. A USDA report [3] shows that a sizeable portion of the American population has inadequate intakes of numerous vitamins and minerals. This report is over a decade old, so it’s logical to suggest that an even greater percentage of Americans may not be getting sufficient amounts of nutrients from their diet.

 

[1] www.hammernutrition.com/downloads/diet_deficiencies.pdf

[2] www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17101959?dopt=AbstractPlus

[3] www.ars.usda.gov/SP2UserFiles/Place/12355000/pdf/0102/usualintaketables2001-02.pdf

 

Alarmist headlines and stories that demonize the use of supplements isn’t anything new. However, we do not believe that this recent editorial, with its overly generalized and blunt stance to “stop wasting money on vitamin and mineral supplements,” provides anywhere near sufficient evidence to merit such a recommendation. Now that you have both sides of the story, we think you’ll agree.

The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) provides more alternate points of view on this particular topic at crnusa.org/AIMresponses13.html. We highly recommend reading their statements and watching the short videos.

The Rut: A True Montana Mountain Run

December 8, 2013

Run The Rut 50K: Big Sky, Montana from eli weiner on Vimeo.

Registration for 2014 is now open.

The Rut 50k and 12k in Big Sky, Montana is an epic mountain run put on by race directors Mike Foote and Mike Wolfe and presented by The Runners Edge. Hammer Nutrition has been happy to support many Runners Edge events over the years and are especially excited for the inclusion of The Rut to their lineup. All four aid stations were stocked with Hammer Nutrition products and Hammer’s new Peanut Butter Gel even premiered at the event. The Rut is looking to come back bigger and better in 2014 and was recently selected as the Skyrunner World Series Ultra Final and is also part of the U.S. Skyrunning Series. If you’re an ultra runner who lives for technical terrain and The Rut isn’t on your radar for 2014 you have no idea what you’re missing.

The below report is a composite of write-ups contributed by Race Director Mike Foote, Montana Trail Crew’s race preview, and race reports from 4th place Jeremy Wolf and 7th place Jeff Rome. Photos were taken by Hammer’s Myke Hermsmeyer.

The Rut Mtn. Runs 50K and 12K, held in Big Sky, MT on September 14th, challenged runners with technical terrain, a strong dose of altitude, and a generous helping of challenging weather in it’s inaugural year. This, however, did not stop the close to 400 event participants from enjoying a day of pushing their limits in a serious mountain environment.  At 6:30 a.m., as runners milled about the start line in the Big Sky Resort base area, a steady rain fell and the dim light revealed a low hanging cloud layer enshrouding the upper reaches of Lone Peak and the 50K course.

Packet pickup in the Big Sky Resort facilities.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Mike Foote holds the pre-race meeting inside before racers brave the rainy start.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Paying homage to the races namesake (which highlights the prolific population of elk in rut during the fall season) the sounding of an elk bugle from an invisible Mike Wolfe decked out in camo signaled the race was on.

Mike Wolfe and Luke Nelson before the race.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Racers lining up at the base of Big Sky Mountain Resort.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

And they’re off!
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

“We worked hard, when designing this course, to make it as challenging and dynamic as possible,” shared race director Mike Foote.  “We integrated steep singletrack climbs, rocky ridgeline descents, off trail travel through a talus field, as well as a fair amount of runnable smooth trail to give the racers a breather before the next challenging section.”

Watch the race directors preview The Rut course.

“Skyrunner’s ethos,” Wolfe explains, “is to design the purest mountain running races on aesthetic terrain, extremely technical, with loads of vertical relief. . . . That’s the type of terrain that most appeals to us as runners – adventure in the mountains.” 


The Rut 50K by the Numbers:

Distance: 31 Miles / 50K
Elevation Gain: 10,000 ft / 3,040 Meters
Elevation Loss: 10,000 ft / 3,040 Meters
60% Single Track
30% Dirt Road
10% Off Trail

“The first climb was nice single track through the forest up to the 4k point. At the top of the climb, there is a sharp right turn off the service road which I missed.  Fortunately a few guys behind me shouted to let me know I missed the turn.  After the race, I learned that winner Paul Hamilton had missed this turn as well and had added a few extra minutes to his day.”-Jeremy Wolf

Racers nearing the top of the first climb.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

“Back onto some great single track, it was a long gradual downhill through Moonlight Basin for the next 10k.  This was a really enjoyable section of the course to run.  Hopping over puddles while taking in smells of a damp forest brought a smile to my face.  I was able to take my mind off of racing and just enjoy the beauty of my environment while gliding down the mountain.”  -Jeremy Wolf

Photos from the Moonlight Basin aid station and other locations on the course can be found on The Rut’s Facebook page.

“Nine miles into the race, for a hopeful minute, I thought I had gotten off course.  Surely, I would come across someone soon who would tell me I’m running the wrong way.  Surely, I would act upset but be secretly thankful that I now had reason to drop out.  But sure enough, that damn yellow flag showed up and let me know I was still on course.  I kept thinking to myself that it wouldn’t be too bad to get lost, or to get hurt, or to have terrible stomach issues, because then I would have a good reason not to keep running this ridiculous course.” -Jeff Rome

Jeff Rome does a good job hiding he’s in the pain cave.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

“The beauty of the last 1.5k climb up to the Tram Dock is that it is the only out and back section on the course. The out and back section allows you to see all the runners ahead of you as they come back down the road from the Tram Dock.” -Jeremy Wolf

The tram out-and-back from above.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Racers approaching the tram aid station.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Jesse Langner leaving the tram aid station with Lone Peak looming.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Spectators cheer on from the tram aid station.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

The toughest section of the course comes between miles 17.5 and 22, where you might want a free hand to clamber with.  The ascent, at 2,000 feet of climb in less than a mile and half, averages out at a 27% grade. -Jeff Rome

Start of the ridge line climb up Lone Peak.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Starting the grind up to Lone Peak.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

“Lone Mountain is essentially a giant pile of loose rock.  Under those rocks are more loose rocks, and more loose rocks lurking beneath those.  It’s like a giant pile of sand, where each grain is dinner plate sized and weighs 20 pounds.   Nothing can convince you that the world is a solid place and not falling apart beneath your feet.  There is no trail to follow, only flags (unless the mountain goats eat them).  -Jeff Rome

Jeremy Wolf chasing down Alan Adams on the ridge.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Katy-Robin Garton with Sprout Films in good spirits on the ridge up Lone Peak.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Jamie Swartz in the hurt locker.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Without a proper trail runners followed a string of Runners Edge flags up the mountain.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

The lower section of the ridge climb.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

I was able to tell my distance from other runners not by sight, but by occasional sounds of rocks sliding and tumbling.  There was not running in this section so much as hurriedly trying-not-to-eat-it-and-sliding-shuffling-tumbling my way down the mountain.” -Jeff Rome

Emily Linton scrambles up loose rock above Big Sky Resort.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

The Cycling House’s Anya Wechsler showing off her running chops.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Dan Pierce getting steep!
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Aaron “Shake n’ Bake” Little scrambling.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Kaitlin Macdonald from Bozeman on the ridge.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Babak Rastgoufard, John Fiore and Matt Pagel grouped up on the ridge.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Casey Weinman nearing the top.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Topping out on Lone Peak racers were enshrouded by clouds, limiting visibility to about a few dozen yards at times.

Doug Brinkerhoff entering the clouds.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Spectators waiting for racers at the top of Lone Peak.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Jeremy Wolf topping out on Lone Peak. Hiking poles helped many racers through this stretch.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

 

Lone Peak aid station.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Alan Adams heads off into the clouds.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Matt Shryock was first to reach the top, followed closely by Paul Hamilton and Luke Nelson.

Matt Shryock in the lead topping out on Lone Peak with Paul Hamilton in tow.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Luke Nelson emerging from the mist in 3rd place.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

“After this, you’re out of the alpine for the rest of the race, and the trails and roads have more secure footing.  The steepest part, however, is just ahead.  It’s funny how all the most difficult parts are in the second half of the race.  One would think it’s a bit sadistic.” -Jeff Rome

“This section of the course provided some of the steepest single track trail of the race. And to make it worse, it was muddy, and I saw numerous slide marks from the runners ahead of me.” -Jeremy Wolf

“From the final aid station on Andesite, it’s downhill, mostly.  There’s a series of very gradual switchbacks, meandering back and forth towards the finish at the Big Sky base.” -Jeff Rome

Emily Kipp on the final descent to the finish.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Alan Adams nears the finish at the base of Big Sky Resort.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Cody Stekly nearing the finish with Lone Peak looming behind him.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

After going off course for a short time following the first climb of the day, overall men’s winner Paul Hamilton, of Fort Collins, CO, re-established his lead and controlled the race all the way to the finish in 5 hrs. and 8 min.  Matt Shryock of Missoula, MT, finished in second, with Luke Nelson of Pocatello, ID, cruising into a strong third place. On the women’s side, Erin Phelps of Flagstaff, AZ, won with a time of 6 hrs. and 43 min. holding off second place Kaitlin Macdonald, of Bozeman, MT. Jessica Jakes of Missoula, MT, rounded out the women’s top 3.

2013 The Rut Results:

50K Overall Results

12K Overall Results

Female winner Erin Phelps crossing the finish line.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Racers were welcomed at the finish line with music, cheering crowds and a hot meal catered by Big Sky Resort.  It was a party atmosphere as the runners stuck around and rang their finishers’ award cowbells for those coming in behind them.

Racers approaching the finish line.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

“For the first time, I actually felt challenged on a course—I genuinely felt proud for each person who crossed the finish line because I know everyone there had to really try to finish.  No other race has done that to me, because no other has been so tough, or so nuts.” -Jeff Rome

Jeff Rome being congratulated by RD Mike Foote at the finish.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Lamar and Lance Lewis crossing the finish line.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Racers were greeted at the finish with a custom “The Rut” cowbell.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

Upon finishing the grueling race, Rut 50K’ers echoed this sentiment of race organizers as a “true mountain running experience.”  5 miles of steep and technical alpine ridge line heading up to and down from the 11,166 ft. summit of Lone Peak will give any runner a sense of achievement and adventure. “Usually in races, when I am concerned about going off course, I am not worried about falling off the course!” said one elated 50K finisher.

Sarah Downey at the 12k finish.
Photo provided by Sarah Downey

Winners were rewarded for their hard effort with a little gas money to get back to their home states, a sweet t-shirt showing off a bugling elk, and some legit bragging rights!

The Grand Prize.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

2013 The Rut men’s podium.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

2013 The Rut women’s podium.
Photo: Myke Hermsmeyer

With an eye toward the future, the race directors not only envision The Rut expanding, but becoming a premier U.S. event in the Sky Running Federation World Series of Mountain Running. Talks are underway to develop a Skyrunner-style 3-day festival of mountain running featuring a Vertical Kilometer (a 3,000 foot ascent race in less than 5K to the summit of Lone Mountain) which, along with the marquee 50k, would draw a top international field. Although we can expect the event to grow, the Montana faithful can be assured that the Mikes will keep the event true to its Montana roots: big, beautiful, and rugged. -Montana Trail Crew

Registration for 2014 opens on January 5th, 2014 at 8 AM (MST).

To learn more about The Rut you can visit their website or like their facebook page.

Photos in this blog were provided by Hammer’s Myke Hermsmeyer, who can be followed on Facebook or Instagram. Additional photos from the race from Vo von Sehlen can be found on The Rut’s Facebook page.

Text was provided by Mike FooteMontana Trail Crew, Jeremy Wolf, and Jeff Rome.

David Steele Aims for the Alpine

November 8, 2013

Paint The Town White: David Steele Season Edit from Jahrig Media on Vimeo.

Who knows how long I’ll paint houses to pay my student loans. How many more trips to new skylines will fit on the odometer. What the changing climate will do to the snow that starts high, fills in the runs from the summit down. And just like the nonsense that will always be there, the freedom and identity found on pair of skis remains steadfast. From Denali to Nelson to the hill I grew up skiing in Montana, there’s certainty. Buzz in the parking lot. Stoke on the skin track. Joy as I’ve ever known it, free as every flake that falls.

Don’t let David Steele’s beard, park tricks and aerial acrobatics fool you. While a prolific park skier (a lot of his recent ski expedition to Denali was paid for by winning rail jams) in recent years David has shifted his focus away from riding lifts to earning his lines by ski touring and mountaineering. A glutton for physically demanding challenges and Type 2 Fun Glacier National Park serves as a perfect playground for David to explore and test his physical limits.

While the physical demands of an alpanist are different than the typical Hammer endurance athlete proper nutrition is no less important. Prolonged exposure to the elements and the need to perform at your peak in a hostile environment with small margins for error means your fueling and rations have to be dialed in. There are no aid stations or medics in the alpine, so carefully planning before a trip and close monitoring of your rations and caloric intake throughout a climb are crucial for success. 

We’ve  found Hammer products shoved into the far reaches of his freezer as he experiments to see what products works best in sub zero temperatures (Perpetuem Solids hold up in a range of conditions, and fruit flavored Hammer Gels tend to hold their viscosity better than other flavors). Fizz and glacier water are a staple in the backcountry, and Premium Insurance Caps are valuable on longer expeditions where well rounded diet is difficult to maintain.

David has some big plans and big mountains on his agenda this winter and we’re excited to see what he’ll be able to accomplish.


To follow David’s trips and adventures this winter follow his blog “Skinning With Bear Spray” or follow him on Instagram or Facebook.

Special thanks to Bobby Jehrig for the great edit.

Zandy Mangold visits Diana Nyad’s 48 hour “Swim for Relief”

October 17, 2013

035H1924_ZM (3)

This past September Diana Nyad finally accomplished a goal that has taken her 5 attempts over 35 years achieve; to swim the 110 miles between Cuba and Florida. Hammer Nutrition has been supporting Diana Nyad and her trainer Bonnie Stoll with our products for her last three attempts (notably Sustained Energy, Endurolyte Powder, Hammer Gels and our whey protein). After her momentous feat Diana turned her focus to a 48 hour swim in downtown New York to raise funds for AmeriCares efforts to support Hurricane Sandy victims. Hammer athlete and photographer Zandy Mangold was able to attend the event and let us know about his experience.

From Zandy Mangold:

Diana Nyad was 24 hours into her 48 hour swim by the time I arrived at the temporary, two lane pool floating above Herald Square in New York City. It was one of the first chill days of fall and my first thought was how could Diana’s body deal with the extended exposure to the cold temperature, let alone stay awake and active for the time period.

035H1895_ZM (3)

Spectators cheer on Diana in downtown New York City as she swims with an Air Force service member. Photo: Zandy Mangold

I briefly met with members of her dedicated and determined crew who seemed as tough and as motivated by the woman they were supporting. Bonnie Stoll, Diana’s trainer, was in charge of the crew and dealt a combination of tenderness and tough love to Diana depending what the situation called for. I was inspired to see two people working purely as one unit, focused on an epic goal.

035H2215_ZM

Diana’s diligent crew on deck, pictured at night. Photo: Zandy Mangold

4M8W0720_ZM (2)

Photo: Zandy Mangold

The athlete was fueled by the crew – literally, as Bonnie spoon fed Diana reaching from the deck to her open mouth like a mother bird to it’s chicks – and the crew drew energy from Diana’s efforts.

035H2148_ZM

One of Bonnie’s go to fuels for Diana to settle her stomach includes a special blend of Hammer’s Sustained Energy, whey protein, Endurolyte Powder. Photo: Zandy Mangold

035H2195_ZM

Bonnie checking in on Diana. Photo: Zandy Mangold

The mood was intense and then, suddenly, Richard Simmons voice shot across the pool through the sound system. Decked out in a robe, speedos and flowered swim cap, Richard, had shown up to swim a lap with Diana.

4M8W0679_ZM (2)

Richard Simmons making his grand entrance. Looks like Diana’s crew was caught off guard. Photo: Zandy Mangold

Then the two fitness moguls shared a rather emotional lap, reminiscing, and talking about the importance of raising funds and fitness in general. The mutual affection was clear and touching for all to see.

035H2009_ZM (3)

Photo: Zandy Mangold

4M8W0697_ZM (2)

Diana, Richard and triathlete Laurel Wassner sharing a laugh. Photo: Zandy Mangold

I returned after dark to find Diana and the crew pushing harder than ever to get through the night and the cold. It is hard to describe the powerful emotions I felt not as a fellow endurance athlete being able to relate to her struggle, but also as a survivor of Hurricane Sandy. Witnessing Diana’s efforts for a good cause has left me with inspiration in spades.

035H2248_ZM (2)

Photo: Zandy Mangold

4M8W0745_ZM

Diana swimming below the Empire State Building

To learn more about Diana’s “Swim for Relief” and to donate please visit their website. You can also learn more about Diana over on her website or you can follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

Zandy Mangold is a Hammer Nutrition sponsored ultra runner and photographer based in New York City. To see some of his work you can visit his website or follow him on Twitter.

4M8W0816_ZM

Zandy Mangold

Marian University Cycling: The 2012- 2013 Overall Team Omnium Champions

August 7, 2013

By Coach Nate Keck

Photo: Dean Warren Photography
http://deanwarrenphotography.com/

Marian University is one of the top ranked collegiate cycling teams in the country, and to maintain that ranking, the rest of the coaching staff and I do our best to be sure that each athlete, regardless of their level of experience, has access to high-quality training, adequate rest and recovery, top-notch equipment, and the best fuels and supplements we can get our hands on. In the spring of 2013 we teamed up with Hammer Nutrition as sponsor in preparation for Nationals to help make proper fueling and recovery a reality.

The collegiate cycling season starts in August and culminates in early May, with five seasons and national championships in between: track, mountain bike, cyclocross, BMX, and road. With a team of 40 athletes, some racing three, four, or even all disciplines, there is always some activity on the team’s schedule. Teams compete for individual podiums, but the goal is the title of Overall Team Omnium Champion (a culminating award factoring in all five disciplines of cycling across the whole year).

We came to the 2013 USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championships in Ogden, UT, with 15 athletes, prepared to compete at the highest collegiate level across three days, each racer with their own individual fueling strategy and plan. Each athlete had spent three to four months in conference races, experimenting with fueling strategies to figure out exactly what worked best for them. For many, this included the use of Hammer Bars and Hammer Gel during the longer road race day, and Hammer Gel for the shorter crits and team time trial efforts. Everyone used HEED or Perpetuem during races, as well as Recoverite afterward.

The first day of racing was team time trials, which Marian has traditionally been very strong in. Marian had a men’s and women’s team in the TTT, and both won national titles—a great way to start a long weekend of racing.

Photo: Dean Warren Photography
http://deanwarrenphotography.com/

After victories in the TTT, we knew we would have targets on our backs. The crit men’s and women’s races were both highly contested with 130+ starters in the men’s and 70+ starters in the women’s, but Marian athletes were extremely aggressive all day. We captured 1st and 2nd places in both events, with Colton Barrett winning the men’s race and Adam Leibovitz in second, and Coryn Rivera winning the women’s race with Kaitie Antonneau right behind her.

A grueling road race ended the three-day event. Kaitie took top honors and Coryn placed 2nd out of nearly 80 starters. Adam took 2nd place (out of 165 riders) for the second day in a row, sealing up his individual omnium win. When all was said and done, Hammer Nutritionsponsored Marian University Cycling had secured the title of Overall Team Omnium Champions!

 

Learn more about the Marian University Cycling program over on their website and facebook page.

 

 

Hammer Nutrition Missoula XC

June 19, 2013

The Missoula XC racecourse is being designed and constructed specifically for this event, and will reflect the contemporary World Cup course template. Steep, technical climbs and descents will alternate between single track, double track, and infrequent dirt road sections. Frequent and sudden rhythm changes will challenge racers, but several sequences of fast and fun sections will be included as well. The course features over 850 feet (275 m) of relief per lap; while it is not at extremely high altitude, multiple long, steep climbs per lap will test racers’ fitness limits.

-Race Director, Ben Horan

PROPER FUELING – PRE-WORKOUT & RACE SUGGESTIONS

June 18, 2013

BY STEVE BORN

Steve Born, Hammer Nutrition's Fueling Expert

Steve Born

Steve’s decade-plus of involvement in the sports nutrition industry, as well as nearly 15 years of independent research in nutritional fueling and supplementation, has given him unmatched familiarity with the myriad product choices available to athletes.

Updated 06/2011

Over the past eleven + years, many of the athletes I’ve worked with have been reluctant to adopt these plans, until they actually try them. Then they’re convinced by their improved performance, and they never go back to the conventional advice. The recommendations in this article may seem counter-intuitive, but physiologically speaking, they make perfect sense. Adopt and use them consistently in your training and watch your performance soar!


How many times have you had a bite (or more) from an energy bar, taken a swig (or more) from an energy drink, or eaten a meal just an hour or two before starting a lengthy workout or taking your position at the starting line of a long distance race? Big mistake! Eating this soon before prolonged exercise is actually counterproductive and will hurt your performance. In the sometimes confusing world of sports supplementation and fueling, pre-exercise food/fuel consumption generates arguably the greatest confusion, and many athletes have paid a hefty performance price for their misinformation. But really, there’s no insider secret regarding what to do for a pre-workout/race meal, just some effective strategies and guidelines. You need to know what to eat, how much, and most importantly, when. You also need to know a bit about glycogen storage, depletion, and resupply, and how to use that knowledge at the practical level. This article supplies all of the information you need, and I’ve also included some suggested meals, equally appropriate for workouts as well as competition.

The goal of pre-exercise calorie consumption

Assuming that your workout or race starts in the morning, the purpose of your pre-race meal is to top off liver glycogen stores, which your body has expended during your night of sleep. Muscle glycogen, the first fuel recruited when exercise commences, remains intact overnight. If you had a proper recovery meal after your last workout, you’ll have a full load of muscle glycogen on board, which constitutes about 80% of your total glycogen stores. If you didn’t re-supply with complex carbs and protein after your last workout, there’s nothing you can do about it now; in fact, you’ll only hurt yourself by trying. To repeat: during sleep, your liver-stored glycogen maintains proper blood glucose level; you expend nary a calorie of your muscle glycogen. You might wake up feeling hungry, and I’ll discuss that issue later, but you’ll have a full supply of muscle-stored glycogen, your body’s first used and main energy source. Your stomach might be saying, “I’m hungry,” but your muscles are saying, “Hey, we’re good to go!”

With only your liver-stored glycogen to top off, you want a light pre-race nutrition meal. Sports nutrition expert Bill Misner, Ph.D., advises that a pre-workout/race meal should be “an easily digested, high complex carbohydrate meal of between 200-400 calories with a minimum of fiber, simple sugar, and fat.” That’s hardly what most folks would call a meal, but in terms of pre-exercise fueling, it’s meal enough. According to Dr. Misner, fat slows digestion and has no positive influence on fuels metabolized during an event. He further states that a meal high in fiber may “create the call for an unscheduled and undesirable bathroom break in the middle or near the end of the event.”

Complex carbohydrates & protein

One study found that athletes who drank a meal consisting of both carbohydrates and a small amount of protein had better performances than when they consumed only an all-carbohydrate sports drink.

If you do feel the need for solid food instead of a liquid fuel meal, choose high starch foods such as skinless potatoes, bananas, rice, pasta, plain bagels, low fat active culture yogurt, tapioca, and low fiber hot cereals.

The key – Allow three hours or more!

Equally as important as what you eat is when you eat your pre-exercise meal. Authorities such as Dr. Misner, Dr. Michael Colgan, and Dr. David Costill all agree that the pre-race meal should be eaten 3-4 hours prior to the event. Dr. Misner suggests the athlete “leave three hours minimum to digest foods eaten at breakfast. After breakfast, drink 10-12 ounces of fluid each hour up to 30 minutes prior to the start (24-30 ounces total fluid intake).” Note: other acceptable pre-race fluid intake suggestions can be found in the article Hydration – What You Need To Know.

Three hours allows enough time for your body to fully process the meal. Colgan says it’s the digestion time necessary to avoid intestinal distress. Costill’s landmark study [Costill DL. Carbohydrates for exercise. Dietary demand for optimal performance. Int J Sports 1988;9:1-18] shows that complex carbohydrates taken 3-4 hours prior to exercise raise blood glucose and improve performance. But it’s Misner’s argument that has proved most compelling to me.

Dr. Misner’s rationale – It’s all in the timing

If you consume high glycemic carbohydrates such as simple sugars (or even the preferred complex carbohydrates such as starches and maltodextrins) within three hours of exercise, you can expect the following, with possible negative effects on performance:

    1. Rapidly elevated blood sugar causes excess insulin release, leading to hypoglycemia, an abnormally low level of glucose in the blood.

 

    1. High insulin levels inhibit lipid mobilization during aerobic exercise, which means reduced fats-to-fuels conversion. Our ability to utilize stored fatty acids as energy largely determines our performance, which is why we can continue to exercise when our caloric intake falls far below our energy expenditure. We want to enhance, not impede, our stored fat utilization pathways.

 

  1. A high insulin level will induce blood sugar into muscle cells, which increases the rate of carbohydrate metabolism, hence rapid carbohydrate fuel depletion. In simple terms: high insulin means faster muscle glycogen depletion.

You must complete your pre-workout/race fueling three or more hours prior to the start to allow adequate time for insulin and blood glucose to normalize. After three hours, hormonal balance is restored, and you won’t be at risk for increased glycogen depletion. Eating within three hours of a training session or race promotes faster release/depletion of both liver and muscle glycogen and inhibits fat utilization. The combination of accelerated glycogen depletion and disruption of your primary long-distance fuel availability can devastate your performance.

But I’m hungry!

Recall that I mentioned earlier that muscle glycogen, the main fuel recruited for the first 60-90 minutes of exercise, remains unaffected by a nightlong fast. When you awaken in the morning, you haven’t lost your primary fuel supply, and can’t add to it by eating within an hour or two of exercise. That’s absolutely correct, and believe it or not, being hungry before an event won’t inhibit performance.

However, hard-training athletes often do wake up very hungry and feel they need to eat something before their workout or race. This is especially true for half and full iron-distance triathletes, who start very early in the morning in the water, swimming for up to an hour or more where consuming food is not possible.

What to do? Try either of the following suggestions to help with this problem:

    1. Just start anyway, realizing that hunger is not a performance inhibitor, and begin fueling shortly after you start, when you get into a comfortable rhythm. The hunger sensation will diminish almost as soon as you begin to exercise, and you’ll actually be benefiting, not hurting, your performance by following this procedure. You can safely use Sustained Energy, Perpetuem, HEED, or Hammer Gel, or any combination thereof, as soon as you want after exercise commences. For details regarding appropriate amounts, please refer to the article Proper Caloric Intake During Endurance Exercise.

 

  1. If you feel that you absolutely must eat, consume 100-200 calories about five minutes before start time. By the time these calories are digested and blood sugar levels are elevated, you’ll be well into your workout or race, and glycogen depletion will not be negatively affected. In this regard, good choices are one or two servings of Hammer Gel or a generous drink from a premixed bottle of Sustained Energy or Perpetuem. This strategy is especially appropriate for triathletes who will hit the water first and not have a chance to replenish calories right away. Small amounts of nutrient-dense fuels, such as those named above, go a long way to stanching hunger pangs.

Are there any exceptions to the three-hour rule?

When you’re engaged in training sessions or races in the 90-minute range or shorter (personally, I prefer an hour limit), fasting three hours prior to the start is not necessary. Consuming some easily digested calories an hour or two prior to the start will not negatively affect performance, and may actually enhance it. Here’s why:

As we’ve discussed earlier, when you consume calories sooner than three hours prior to the start of a workout or race, you accelerate the rate at which your body burns its finite amounts of muscle glycogen stores. In events lasting longer than 60-90 minutes, refraining from calorie consumption for the three-hour period prior to the start is crucial because you want to preserve your glycogen stores, not accelerate their depletion. Muscle glycogen is the first fuel that the body will use when exercise commences, and your body only has a limited supply of this premium fuel. If your workout or race goes beyond the 60-90 minute mark, you don’t want to do anything that will accelerate muscle glycogen utilization.

SLEEP OR EAT?

Q: Should I get up during the wee hours of the morning just to get in a meal three hours before my race or workout?

A: NO – rest will help you more. Much restorative physiology occurs during sleep, so don’t sacrifice sleep just to eat. If you’re a fit athlete, one who has been replenishing carbohydrates immediately after each exercise session, you have approximately 60-90 minutes of muscle glycogen, your premium fuel, available. As long as you begin fueling shortly after the workout or race begins, perhaps 10-20 minutes after the start, your performance will not be affected negatively. Topping off liver glycogen stores is always a good idea, but not at the expense of sacrificing sleep, and certainly not at the expense of depleting muscle glycogen stores too quickly (by eating too soon before exercise).

However, when you consume calories within three hours of a race, that’s exactly what will happen; you’ll increase the rate at which your glycogen is burned.

During shorter distance races, however, accelerated rates of glycogen depletion/utilization are not problematic. You don’t need the calories for energy, but the presence of carbohydrates will elevate glycogen utilization. In a short race, that’s what you want.

Dr. Misner explains that prior to shorter-duration bouts of exercise, “& consuming a few easily digested carbohydrates [such as a serving or two of HEED or Hammer Gel] will advance performance, because carbohydrates consumed prior to exercise make the body super-expend its glycogen stores like a flood gate wide open.” In other words, if you eat something 1-2 hours prior to the start of a short-duration training session or race, thus causing the insulin “flood gates” to open, yes, you will be depleting your glycogen stores at maximum rates. However, at this distance it’s a beneficial effect, as glycogen depletion is not an issue when the workout or race is over within at most 90 minutes.

This advice assumes that you have been effectively refueling your body after each workout, as this is the primary way to increase muscle glycogen (see the article Recovery – A crucial component of athletic success for details).

Bottom line: Fast three hours prior to the start of a longer-duration event (60-90+ minutes). For shorter events, consuming a small amount of fuel an hour to two prior to the start may enhance performance.

Pre-exercise fuel recommendations

  • Eat a pre-race meal of 200-400 calories at least three hours before exercise.
  • Focus on complex carbs, starches, and a little protein for your pre-race meal.
  • Avoid high fiber, simple sugars, and high fat in your pre-race meal.
  • If you must, consume a small amount of your supplemental fuel (Hammer Gel, etc.) about five minutes before exercise.
  • Make sure that you re-supply your muscle glycogen by eating a good recovery meal after your workouts.

Any of these pre-race meal suggestions will keep you in the preferred 200-400 calorie range:

  • Three scoops of Sustained Energy
  • Two scoops of Sustained Energy flavored with one serving of Hammer Gel or one scoop of HEED
  • Two to three servings of Hammer Gel or two to three scoops of HEED fortified with one scoop of Sustained Energy
  • Two to two and a half scoops of Perpetuem
  • One white flour bagel and a half cup of active yogurt
  • A banana and a cup of active yogurt
  • Cream of Rice, sweetened with a serving of Hammer Gel
  • One soy protein-enhanced pancake, sweetened with a serving of Hammer Gel
  • Half of a skinless baked potato topped with a half cup of plain active yogurt

For more detailed and scientifically-referenced information regarding this topic, please read Dr. Misner’s article The Science Behind the Hammer Nutrition Pre-Race Meal Protocol, found in the in the Endurance Library portion of the KNOWLEDGE section.

SUMMARY

Though the recommendations outlined in this article may seem counterintuitive, they make perfect sense physiologically speaking. Apply them consistently and watch how well your body responds.

Over the years we’ve noted that most athletes are very skeptical about our pre-exercise recommendations, probably because it’s a concept that they’ve never heard of before and/or because it doesn’t appear to make sense. However, over the course of more than 24 years we can honestly say that we’ve yet to have one athlete tell us that the principles outlined in the article didn’t work.

Applying these steps regarding pre-exercise calorie consumption for all your workouts will definitely enhance the quality of each and every one of them. Then, follow these same recommendations prior to your races and enjoy the distinct and noticeable advantage you’ll have.

For more detailed and scientifically-referenced information regarding this topic, please read Dr. Misner’s article The Science Behind the Hammer Nutrition Pre-Race Meal Protocol, found in the Endurance Library portion of the KNOWLEDGE section at www.hammernutrition.com.

 

L-Carnitine – Is it good or bad for your heart?

April 9, 2013

Recently, there has been some negative press on l-carnitine in the news. In a nutshell, the results of this study, published online in the journal Nature Medicine, suggest that orally dosed l-carnitine is metabolized by intestinal bacteria to produce a substance called trimethylamine (TMA), which is further metabolized into trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO). It is theorized that TMAO prevents of excess cholesterol from being excreted, thus allowing it to infiltrate artery walls, which is being studied as a possible culprit for increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Sounds a bit scary, doesn’t it? But does that mean that l-carnitine supplementation puts you at risk? Let’s take a closer look at l-carnitine in general, and this recent study and its implications.

First, however, it’s important to keep in mind the axiom, “If a little is good, a lot is not necessarily better.” Even the basic substances required for life can be overdosed or under-dosed, contributing to harmful life-threatening consequences. Examples of excess or depletion extremes are water, sodium, and carbohydrate substances:

  • Water depletion/dehydration can kill you, but too much water (“water Intoxication”) is also lethal.
  • Too little sodium is known as hyponatremia, a life-threatening emergency. Too much sodium results in hypernatremia, which also has potentially fatal consequences.
  • Too much sugar or carbohydrates has been associated with diabetic issues, yet when the blood glucose turnover is excessive, consuming carbohydrates during exercise is safe and recommended.

Essential for athletic performance, heart health, and more

L-carnitine is a natural substance found in food; however, it is not considered an essential nutrient because the body can make it from the amino acids lysine and methionine. L-carnitine is the nutrient that transports fatty acids to the mitochondria for use as a fuel source, and research shows that muscle carnitine levels are rapidly depleted during exercise, even moderate exercise.

A number of published studies on athletes have shown that l-carnitine supplementation supports exercise performance. Athletes have a requirement for more carnitine than they are capable of producing endogenously (inside the body). L-carnitine may be particularly important during periods of intense exercise as it may help to reduce post-exercise lactic acid accumulation and may increase maximal work output. It may also preserve muscle glycogen levels during exercise.

As reported in the majority of studies, an increase in maximal oxygen consumption and a lowering of the respiratory quotient indicate that dietary l-carnitine has the potential to stimulate lipid metabolism (e.g. the utilization of fatty acids for fuel). Treatment with l-carnitine has also been shown to induce a significant post-exercise decrease in plasma lactate, which is formed and used continuously under fully aerobic conditions. Data from preliminary studies have indicated that l-carnitine supplementation can attenuate the deleterious effects of hypoxic (low oxygen) training and speed up recovery from exercise stress. Recent data have indicated that l-carnitine plays a decisive role in the prevention of cellular damage and favorably affects recovery from exercise stress. [1-7]

Additionally, among its other benefits for brain, body composition, and mitochondrial health, l-carnitine is essential for normal heart function. [8, 9]

 

So what does this particular study mean for me?

While this study is certainly intriguing, it’s important to keep in mind that the study subjects—both humans and mice—were given “chronic” amounts of l-carnitine. While we do not know how much was given to these test subjects, previous research done on humans suggests that a very large amount of l-carnitine—2 grams, three times daily (6 grams total/day)—is required for significant increases of plasma TMAO. Other dosages (0.0g, 0.5g, and 1.0g) administered three times daily—a total of 0.0g, 1.5g, and 3g total per day—showed no change in plasma increases of TMAO.

REFERENCE: Bain MA, Milne RW, Evans AM. J Clin Pharmacol. 2006 Oct;46(10):1163-70. Disposition and metabolite kinetics of oral L-carnitine in humans. Sansom Institute, School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia.

Conclusion

Athletes can safely consume l-carnitine in supplement form to justify replacement. If you are consuming supplemental l-carnitine, we recommend keeping your totals in the range of 2000 mg (2g) per day. A non-athlete who consumes large amounts of meats that contain l-carnitine does not need to supplement this substance. Animal meat not only generates bodily carnitine increases, it also generates a protein structure that drives weight gain, growth factors, and plaque formation. If not derived from naturally raised grass-fed animals, there are other harmful substances found in meats that over time may prove harmful to health. Overall, we recommend not overconsuming substances from the animal kingdom that drive cholesterol accumulation on artery walls.

L-carnitine levels in foods (per 100 grams)

  • Lamb – 190 mg
  • Beef – 94 – 145 mg
  • Pork – 28 mg
  • Poultry and Seafood – 1.6 – 6.4 mg

L-carnitine in Hammer Nutrition products

  • Mito Caps – 125 mg/capsule
  • Perpetuem – 25 mg/scoop
  • Perpetuem Solids – 6 mg/tablet
  • Sustained Energy – 16.6 mg/scoop

 

REFERENCES:

1. Brass, E. P., et al.  The role of carnitine and carnitine supplementation during exercise in man and in individuals with special needs.  J Am Coll Nutr.  17:207-215, 1998.

2. Dragan, I. G., et al.  Studies concerning the ergogenic value of protein supply and l-carnitine in elite junior cyclists. Physiologie.  25(3):129-132, 1988.

3. Cerretelli, P., et al.  L-carnitine supplementation in humans. The effects on physical performance.  Int J Sports Med.  11(1):1-14, 1990.

4. Karlic, H., et al.  Supplementation of l-carnitine in athletes: does it make sense?  Nutrition.  20(7-8):709-715, 2004.

5. Lancha, A., et al.  Effect of aspartate, asparagine, and carnitine supplementation in the diet and metabolism of skeletal muscle during moderate exercise.  Physiol Behav.  57(2):367-371, 1995.

6. Lennon, D. L. F., et al.  Effects of acute moderate-intensity exercise on carnitine metabolism in men and women. J Applied Physiology.  55:489, 1983.

7. Siliprandi, N., et al.  Metabolic changes induced by maximal exercise in human subjects following L-carnitine administration. Biochem Biophys Acta. 1034(1):17-21, 1990.

8. Chao HH, Chen CH, Liu JC, Lin JW, Wong KL, Cheng TH. L-Carnitine attenuates angiotensin II-induced proliferation of cardiac fibroblasts: role of NADPH oxidase inhibition and decreased sphingosine-1-phosphate generation. J Nutr Biochem. 2010 Jul;21(7):580-8.

9. Gomez LA, Heath SH, Hagen TM. Acetyl-L-carnitine supplementation reverses the age-related decline in carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1 (CPT1) activity in interfibrillar mitochondria without changing the L-carnitine content in the rat heart. Mech Ageing Dev. 2012 Feb-Mar;133(2-3):99-106.