Hammer Nutrition Blog

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.

 

 

Do female athletes performing at levels similar to males have the same nutrient requirements?

January 23, 2014

Running on Mount Jumbo

From Steve Born:

Our position is that a person’s vitamin/mineral needs are based more on body weight, activity level, and other factors, more so versus one’s gender. Generally speaking, there is very little, if any difference between a female athlete’s nutrient requirements and a male’s, aside from the aforementioned body weight, exercise intensity, and other variables (e.g. specific health issues that may require more nutrient support).

A couple nutrients that most-to-all women — athlete and non-athlete alike — may need (key word “may”) more than male athletes:

1) Calcium – The Optimum Daily Intake (ODI) for both men and women is between 1,000 and 1,500 mg/day, and if a woman — especially one over the age of 50 — is consuming the upper end of that recommendation, she will be meeting her daily calcium needs. The only variation in calcium needs (men vs. women) that I have noted is the National Institute of Health’s recommendation of 1,000 mg of calcium for men age 50-71 and 1,200 mg for women age 50-71.

2) Iron – Women lose iron through menstruation, thus needing more iron than men. Ditto for pregnant women. Ditto for older women, primarily because men tend to absorb iron more efficiently, and store it more thoroughly, then women. That’s why the ODI for men is within a range of 15-25 mg for men, and 18-30 mg for women. All this said, the overwhelming majority of people — both male and female — consume far more than the ODI amounts from their food. The consumption of too much iron is particularly problematic in that excess iron generates massive free radical reactions. According to one source, “Human epidemiological studies show that those with high iron levels are far more likely to contract cancer and heart disease. A growing body of evidence implicates iron in neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease.”

So while iron is indeed a very important nutrient, too much of this particular mineral can present some very serious issues. This is why Premium Insurance Caps (and most other multivitamin/mineral supplements) do not contain iron, and it’s why we do not recommend that iron supplements be taken unless a blood test reveals a deficiency. More information on this topic can be found in the article “Iron – Yes or No?” 

Running on Mount Jumbo

3) When you look at the amount of nutrients in a 7-capsule dose and compare them to the Daily Value (DV) amount, you’ll see that most of them exceed this standard percentage-wise. This is because we don’t calibrate the product to the minimally needed DV amounts (or RDI/RDA amounts), but rather ODI amounts, which we believe are more appropriate. This is detailed in the article “Supplementation – A Necessity for Athletes”. In one section, entitled, “The Recommended Daily Intake: Recommended for what?,” I was given permission by Dr. Shari Lieberman and Nancy Bruning (the creators of the ODI standards), to reprint a portion of their book (which I highly recommend, BTW… great book). Here is that portion of the article…

The Recommended Daily Intake: Recommended for what?
The Reference Daily Intake standard (formerly known as the Recommended Daily Allowance, or RDA) doesn’t take into account the higher needs of endurance athletes. Dr. Misner states, “Researchers have established that athletes tend to deplete vitamins, minerals, enzymes, coenzymes, and other substrates more than sedentary people do.” It’s not just more calories that endurance athletes need; it’s the whole nutritional bag.

Moreover, conventional standards are tuned to deficiency avoidance rather than optimal health, so it’s questionable whether anyone should rely on them. In The Real Vitamin & Mineral Book: Using supplements for optimum health, 4th ed. (New York: Avery Publishing Group, 2007), Shari Lieberman, Ph.D., and Nancy Bruning devote a chapter to outlining the benefits of using a higher-dose vitamin/mineral supplementation regimen. I think the title of this particular chapter, “The RDIs – The Minimum Wages of Nutrition,” pretty much says it all. No one spells it out better than Lieberman and Bruning in their book, one that I highly recommend:

Just like the RDAs, the RDIs have three basic problems: (1) you cannot get all of the nutrients you need from today’s food; (2) the RDIs reflect amounts that are adequate to prevent nutrient-deficiency diseases, and are not tailored for individual needs; and (3) the RDIs do not address or consider optimum health or the prevention of degenerative diseases such as cancer and heart disease.”

In another chapter, “The Optimum Daily Intakes (ODIs),” they write:

In order to attain a state of optimum health and disease prevention, we must take into our bodies optimum–not minimum–amounts of vitamins and minerals. To distinguish them from the lesser amounts characteristic of the RDIs, I have called these amounts the Optimum Daily Intakes, or ODIs. The need for ODIs is based on six factors:

  • The RDIs are generally based on an amount that simply prevents overt deficiency diseases.
  • The RDIs do not take into account preventative or therapeutic levels of nutrients.
  • We cannot meet the RDIs even if we eat the “perfect” diet.
  •  Because of many factors, including the loss of nutrients through shipping, storage, and processing, the foods available to us do not contain the amounts of vitamins and minerals they should contain.
  • Owing to the constant bombardment of stress factors, from pollution to emotional stress, we require higher levels of vitamins and minerals than originally thought.
  • We do not absorb 100% of the vitamins and minerals in foods and supplements.

Are you convinced yet that you need to supplement? Remember, Dr. Lieberman has regular human welfare in mind, and not the even higher demands of endurance athletes.

4) Going back to my earlier statement: “When you look at the amount of nutrients in a 7-capsule dose and compare them to the Daily Value (DV) amount, you’ll see that most of them exceed this standard percentage-wise,” you’ll notice that the amounts of calcium and magnesium are lower than the DV recommendations. This is simply because the DV values are so high that it’s not practical (or even possible) to fit this much calcium and magnesium into a capsule that isn’t massively sized. So for these two minerals, supplementing with additional calcium and magnesium from another product is something I consider to be worthwhile.

5) Also, though 7 capsules of Premium Insurance Caps contain 500 mg of vitamin C (834% of the DV), I always supplement with more vitamin C— an additional 1,000 – 2,000 mg daily in divided doses—on a daily basis. I usually take an additional 1,000 – 2,000 mg daily in divided doses. Same thing for vitamin D. Though the amount of vitamin D in 7 capsules of Premium Insurance Caps (500 IU) is 125% of the DV, a huge body of ever-growing research suggests that much more than that is necessary for optimal health… it can be anywhere from 1,000 IU to 10,000 IU (sometimes more). The general consensus is 1,000 – 2,000 IU of vitamin D per day, though a specific blood test (Vitamin D, 25-Hydroxy) will let an individual know how much vitamin D they need to take to reach optimal vitamin D levels. Dr. Michael Holick, arguably the premier nutritional scientist on all things vitamin D-related, states: “I think you need to maintain your 25-hydroxyvitamin D level above 30 ng/mL. For my patients and for me personally, I like for it to be between 40-60 ng/mL of 25-hydroxyvitamin D to guarantee vitamin D sufficiency and its health benefits.”

Running on Mount Jumbo

Conclusion

While there is “no one size fits all” amount(s) in terms of nutrient requirements, in general — aside from the few nutrients mentioned earlier — male and female nutrient needs are very similar. Body weight, activity level, and specific nutrient needs addressing health issues, are the primary factors in determining how much nutrient support you require. Formulated with Optimum Daily Intake (ODI) amounts, Premium Insurance Caps covers the wide-ranging nutrient needs of both male and female athletes/active people, and much more thoroughly than multivitamin/mineral products that contain extremely low Reference Daily Intake (RDI), Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA), or Daily Value (DV) amounts of nutrients.

 

Runners shown in this blog are Anna Zielaski, Daniel Zielaski and Cory Kaufman. Photos provided by Myke Hermsmeyer.

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.

EPIC SESSIONS – STEVE BORN’S SUPPLEMENT SUGGESTIONS FOR WORKOUTS AND RACES

August 1, 2013

Originally posted 06/2011

Details of a supplement program

  1. While fueling (calorie, fluid, and electrolyte) should be the primary focus of all workouts and races, especially epic ones, the incorporation of an intelligent supplement program used prior to, during, and afterward will definitely assist in yielding tremendously positive results.
  2. The supplements suggested for use prior to an epic workout or race can be thought of as a preemptive strike dose, helping to prepare the body for the arduous task ahead, supporting its nutrient needs for the first hour.
  3. The products suggested for use prior to the workout/race and every hour during the workout/race will supply nutrients that, among other things:
    • Support efficient energy production from your calorie and oxyen intake
    • Help neutralize the negative effect of the numerous free radicals that are constantly produced
    • Assist in the removal of excess ammonia and its fatigue-casing effects
    • Aid in the prevention of lean muscle tissue cannibalization
  4. The products suggested for use after the workout/race will supply nutrients whose primary purpose is to:
    • Replenish what has been depleted during the course of the workout/race
    • Help with the muscle-tissue reparation process
    • Support enhanced glycogen synthesis
    • Neutralize free radicals and minimize the damage that they can cause

INTRODUCTION

I put this article together prior to the 2009 Highline Hammer cycling event, in response to the question, “What supplements do you personally take before, during, and after a long, hard ride, an ‘epic’ ride?” Before I go into the details of my supplement program, let me first mention a couple of things:

1. Most of these supplements are ones that I take on a daily basis for general health benefits, though not always in the same amounts that I take for an “epic” ride such as the 130+ mile, mega–climbing Highline Hammer loop through Glacier Park.

2. I take the higher dose of all the supplements on a significantly long ride, such as the Highline Hammer, and I’ll take the lower dose for less intense, less mountainous, shorter–duration rides (say, 3–5 hours).

3. These products, and the amounts listed, are what I use. I’m a pretty big guy (190+ lbs) so the amounts you should consider may be less than that, depending on your weight and activity level. Refer to the updated Product Usage Manual (PDF / 817 KB) (a.k.a. “The Little Red Book”) for suggested dosages.

4. The information I’ve provided in this article—in essence, the rationale for why I take these particular products—is but a sliver of what is available on the products and the nutrients they contain. Consider this information the “Reader’s Digest” version and refer to the Hammer Nutrition website for more detailed information about each of these products.

5. Carrying and consuming lots of pills during a long bike ride is, to some extent, an acquired skill and it may take awhile for your body to “learn” how to take a number of pills on an hourly basis. Additionally, it may be more challenging if you’re doing a more “digestively challenging” type of exercise such as running. If this is the case, simply start slow and increase the number of products you take—and the amounts of each product—gradually. Also, depending on the sport you do, it may be necessary to modify this supplement program in deference to the activity you’re involved in.

6. My hourly intake of each of these supplements, with the exception of Endurolytes, doesn’t change. Therefore, I’ll make “X” number of baggies of these supplements, each baggie containing the identical amounts of each product. I use the small, ziplock bags that are available on the Hammer Nutrition web site to carry the pills, and the amount of baggies I make will, of course, be dependent on how many hours I’ll be out there. Every hour I’ll open up a bag and consume the pills.

7. My dose of Endurolytes oftentimes changes hourly (for example, what I need at 2 p.m. may be higher than what I need at 8 a.m., if only because the weather may be hotter). Therefore, I’ll keep my Endurolytes separate from my zip lock bags of the other supplements. I use the plastic capsule dispenser that is sold on the Hammer Nutrition website to carry Endurolytes, and I’ll dose them as needed.

30–120 Minutes prior to the workout/race

1–2 Race Caps Supreme – This product contains CoQ10 and ibenenone, which are key substrates in the Electron Transport Chain (ETC) process of energy production. Race Caps Supreme also supplies the minerals calcium, magnesium, and potassium. These minerals are chelated to malic acid, citric acid, aspartic acid, lysine, and glycine, most–to–all of which are involved in the Krebs Cycle process of energy production.

CoQ10 and idebenone are also tremendous antioxidants (as is the vitamin E in the product), and I consider taking this product prior to exercise as giving the body a head start on free radical neutralization.

1–2 Mito Caps – The “mitochondrial support product” provides, among other nutrients, acetyl l–carnitine (ALC) and r–alpha lipoic acid (r–ALA).

Among its many benefits, Acetyl l–carnitine (ALC) helps the body use the calories from fatty acids as fuel more efficiently, while also increasing the volume/amounts/activity of key substances that are involved in the complex process of producing energy from your food and oxygen intake.

R–alpha lipoic acid (r–ALA) plays a major role in specific energy–producing functions within the mitochondria. It is also superb antioxidant, with the unique ability to neutralize both water– and fat–soluble based free radicals. Additionally, r–ALA is able to regenerate “used up” antioxidants, thus extending their activity (“shelf life”) in the body. Lastly, r–ALA assists in maintaining proper glucose metabolism.

Bottom Line: When you take Mito Caps you are providing two key nutrients that will help maintain optimal mitochondrial function, which is vital for energy production and overall health.

Thoughts on Mito Caps

“The longer you can stimulate the lifespan or health of the mitochondria, the longer you will live and the better you will perform in endurance events. Endurance athletes should realize how incredibly important it is to effect mitochondria and that everything formulated in this compound influences mitochondria cell biochemistry function synergistically and remarkably”

William Misner, Ph.D. – Direct of Research & Product Development, Emeritus

2–4 Anti–Fatigue Caps – Provides two nutrients—potassium/magnesium aspartate and OKG—that will help neutralize the negative effects of excess ammonia accumulation, which is arguably the primary culprit in premature fatigue.

2–4 Endurance Amino – Provides the primary amino acids—the three branched chain amino acids (a.k.a.BCAAs, l–leucine, l–isoleucine, l–valine) and l–alanine—that are used in the energy cycle during exercise. Plus, the BCAAs in Endurance Amino assist in replenishing depleted glutamine stores while also aiding in the prevention of muscle tissue breakdown. The latter helps to prevent excess fatigue–causing ammonia from being produced and accumulating. Additionally, research has shown that the intake of BCAAs prior to and during exercise may delay exercise–induced or central nervous system–induced fatigue. It is also believed that BCAAs may improve mood and cognitive performance.

On top of that, the reduced (metabolically active) glutathione component in Endurance Amino provides a number of benefits, primarily powerful antioxidant support.

Endurolytes – Provides a balanced supply of necessary electrolytes. Taking this product prior to a lengthy workout or race provides what I call a “pre–emptive strike dose,” meaning that you’re taking care of electrolyte requirements prior to them truly becoming a necessity. This frees you from having to take the product during the first 30–60 minutes of the ride. The dose will be dependent on a variety of factors (weather, fitness levels, acclimatization levels, body weight, etc.), and what you’ve already tested in training.

Every hour during the workout/race, starting at hour #2

1–2 Race Caps Supreme – By taking this product hourly during prolonged exercise you will be “replacing the spark plugs” in the body, helping to ensure more consistent energy production throughout the workout. In addition, you will also be providing the body with powerful protection (via the CoQ10, idebenone, and vitamin E components) against fat–soluble–based free radicals.

1–2 Mito Caps – By taking this product hourly you will be maintaining optimal mitochondrial function, which translates into more efficient energy production and free radical neutralization (the latter, as is the case with the antioxidants in Race Caps Supreme, being especially important for recovery as well). Plus, the r–ALA component in the product helps maintain proper glucose metabolism, which is undoubtedly beneficial during exercise.

2–4 Anti–Fatigue Caps – By taking this product hourly you supply the body with potassium/magnesium aspartate and OKG, which help to neutralize the negative effects of fatigue–causing excess ammonia accumulation.

2–4 Endurance Amino – By taking this product hourly you provide the primary “used–in–the–energy–cycle” amino acids (the BCAAs). The BCAAs in Endurance Amino, along with the BCAAs that naturally occur in the soy protein component in Sustained Energy and Perpetuem, helps prevent the muscle tissue from being broken down to satisfy the 5% – 15% of the body’s energy requirements. The result is less fatigue–causing ammonia to accumulate and less muscle tissue that will be broken down and needing to be repaired during the recovery process.

You also supply the body with l–alanine. The liver can convert l–alanine into glucose as needed (I like to think of it as an “emergency” energy supply), which the bloodstream transports to the muscles for energy. L–alanine also aids in the synthesis of pantothenic acid (vitamin B–5), which is needed for protein, fat, and carbohydrate metabolism.

Lastly, you provide the body with glutathione, which is one of the most potent antioxidants there is, with an Oxygen Radical Absorbency Capacity (ORAC) rating of 12,000+. Dr. Misner writes, “Decline in endurance performance may parallel decline in glutathione concentrations imposed by the aging process.” That alone makes taking glutathione during exercise sound like a very rational idea to me.

Glutathione also facilitates the transport of amino acids which, hypothetically, will assist in directing the amino acids in Sustained Energy and Perpetuem to wherever they’re needed (one athlete reported that taking Endurance Amino is like “supercharging” Perpetuem).

3 Endurolytes (higher amount if weather dictates its necessity) – To keep the body’s “oil reservoir” topped off, which helps maintain the optimal performance of many important bodily functions, in addition to helping prevent cramping.

Special Note: Race Caps Supreme, Mito Caps, and Anti–Fatigue Caps also contain the patented Enzyme Enhancement System”, which helps with the absorption of the nutrients and may also aid in the absorption of the carbohydrate and protein components in the Hammer Nutrition fuels.

After the workout/race is over (with Recoverite)

Premium Insurance Caps – My dose after an “epic” ride is 7 capsules with Recoverite, with 7 capsules taken later with a meal. My typical suggested dose for lighter weight athletes after an “epic” workout is 4–5 capsules with Recoverite and 3–4 capsules taken later with a meal. Premium insurance Caps resupplies the body with the vitamins and minerals that have been depleted during exercise, including some key antioxidants such as beta–carotene, vitamins C and E, and the minerals manganese, selenium, and zinc.

1–2 Race Caps Supreme – For the antioxidant support from CoQ10, idebenone, and vitamin E, all three of which are also tremendous “heart health” nutrients.

1–2 Mito Caps – The r–ALA component provides significant antioxidant support while also helping to increase endogenous supplies of the key antioxidant glutathione. For additional antioxidant support, Mito Caps also contains ascorbyl palmitate, the fat–soluble form of vitamin C, and a small amount of vitamin E.

AO Booster (with another capsule taken with a later meal) - Provides a wide range of fat–soluble antioxidants – the entire vitamin E “family” (the 4 tocopherols and 4 tocotrienols), lutein (which also has eye–specific benefits), and astaxanthin, which is suggested to be up to 50 times more potent in its antioxidant capabilities than vitamin E.

During prolonged events you’re burning a lot of fat (utilizing the calories to satisfy nearly two–thirds of your energy requirements), which means you’re also producing a massive amount of fat–soluble free radicals. AO Booster is designed to neutralize the negative effects of excess fat–soluble free radicals, similar to how Super Antioxidant (below) helps to neutralize primarily water–soluble free radicals. Anti–inflammation is an additional benefit provided from the tocopherol/tocotrienol blend and the astaxanthin.

1–2 Super Antioxidant – Provides a variety of antioxidant nutrients, some of which also have circulation–enhancing benefits, which will help accelerate the clearance of metabolic waste by–products accumulated during prolonged exercise.

2–4 Endurance Amino – Even though the body is getting a significant bolus of BCAAs via the whey protein isolate component in Recoverite, I firmly believe that additionalamounts of these specific “ideal–for–recovery” amino acids is merited and beneficial. Additionally, I believe that providing the body with more glutathione at this critical time is also highly beneficial (in my opinion, any steps you can take to improve glutathione “status” in the body should be taken, especially after exercise). With Endurance Amino the body receives a nice dose of BCAAs and glutathione, complementing the BCAAs and the glutathione precursor amino acids in Recoverite.

Chromemate – Research suggests that athletes who consume chromium polynicotinate (Chromemate) along with ample carbohydrates within two hours of completion of exercise will experience a significant increase in the rate of glycogen synthesis compared to no supplementation.

I am a firm believer in the saying, “How well you recover today determines how well you perform tomorrow.” Taking a capsule of Chromemate with Recoverite is such a simple and inexpensive way to help maximize glycogen synthesis/ storage, which is an undeniably vital component in the recovery process.

Xobaline – Space limits me from listing all of the benefits that vitamin B12 and folic acid provide, though they are arguably best known for their role in the production of red blood cells. B12 and folic acid are also intimately involved in protein utilization and RNA and DNA synthesis, both of which have enhanced recovery implications.

Dr. Misner writes, “There are virtually 100′s of papers demonstrating the health benefits from folic acid and vitamin B12 in the cells, digestion, vision, hair, skin, immune system, musculoskeletal system, nervous system, oral health, and sexual system. It is a supplement I enthusiastically recommend and take every day.”

Boron – Boron is reported to raise testosterone levels to normal physiological values in older men to normal levels that they had in their 20–30′s. Supplementation with 10 mg of boron per day for 28–days increased testosterone levels in healthy males.

Note that Premium Insurance Caps contains 2.5 mg of boron per 7 capsules. Also note that females appear to not require as much boron as do males to attain optimal testosterone levels (3 mg/ day is suggested as being adequate).

Summary

There you have it, my “epic workout/race” supplement program. I hope it helps you as you put together your supplement program for your chosen sport. More information about all of these products can be found on the Hammer Nutrition website, or just call or email us& we’ll be glad to help!

Getting Started With Hammer Nutrition

June 17, 2013

Some essential knowledge republished from our knowledge base on how to get started with Hammer Nutrition products.

More articles and tips from Hammer Nutrition are available here.

Top 5 things you need to get off on the right foot.

  1. Keep fluid intake during exercise between 16-28 ounces per hour.

    HYDRATION: What You Need to Know
    What Is Hyponatremia? Am I At Risk?

    FACT: In general, most athletes, under most conditions, will satisfy hydration needs with a fluid intake in the range of 20-25-ounces/hour – roughly the equivalent of a standard size small or large water bottle. Lighter athletes and/or athletes exercising in cool weather conditions may only require an intake of 16-18 ounces/hour. Larger athletes and/or athletes exercising under very hot and humid conditions are the ones that can consider a fluid intake in the range of 28 ounces/hour, perhaps up to 30 ounces/hour in extreme conditions. It’s important to remember that regular fluid intake over 30-34 ounces hourly significantly increases the potential for serious performance and health problems.

  2. Restrict caloric intake to 300 cal/hr during exercise.

    Less is Best – The right way to fuel
    Proper Caloric Intake During Endurance Events
    The Hammer Nutrition Fuels – What They Are, How To Use Them

    FACT: Your body can’t process caloric intake anywhere near your expenditure rate. If you want to achieve your best performance, DO NOT follow the “calories out, calories in” protocol that some “experts” recommend. Instead, replenish calories in “body cooperative” amounts, allowing your fat stores to make up the difference, which they will easily do. For most athletes, 240-300 calories/hour will do the job. For lighter athletes, 180-200 calories/hour may be perfectly adequate, while larger athletes (190+ lbs) can consider hourly intakes of 300 to slightly over 300 calories/hour.

  3. Avoid simple sugars in your fuels; use complex carbohydrates only. For workouts or races in the 2- to 3-hour or longer range, 10-15% of the calorie content in your fuel should come in the form of protein, ideally soy protein. This protein donation helps satisfy energy requirements more completely while also helping prevent muscle tissue catabolism.

    Simple Sugars and Complex Carbohydrates – An Incompatible Combination
    Fructose – Negative Impact On Energy Production

    FACT: Simple sugars (glucose, sucrose, fructose, etc.) are inefficient fuels for exercise, and they’re health hazards when consumed regularly in typical dietary quantities. These “ose” sugars give you energy peaks and crashes, and they also have a severe limitation on absorption. They need to be mixed in weak concentrations for efficient digestion, which means you can only intake about 100 cal/hr. You can consume more, but you can’t absorb more. You’ll only get sick trying. Complex carbohydrates, however, absorb at about three times the rate as simple sugars. Plus you get smooth, steady, reliable energy – no peaks and valleys.

  4. Supplemental electrolytes in a balanced formula (not just salt!) should be taken in amounts appropriate to the heat, humidity and personal metabolic characteristics of the athlete.

    Electrolyte Replenishment

    FACT: Sodium chloride (salt) is indeed an important component of electrolyte replenishment but it does not fulfill the entire requirements. Calcium, magnesium, and potassium should be replenished as well as all these minerals play key roles in the maintenance of many important body functions. Additionally, body weight, fitness level, weather conditions, acclimatization level, and biological predisposition all greatly affect electrolyte depletion and the need for replenishment, which is why a “one-size fits all” bottled drink or drink mix usually won’t work. Electrolyte depletion is widely variable, which is why the hourly Endurolytes dose can range from 1-6 capsules/hr. That being said, 2-3 capsules of Endurolytes hourly is a good starting point. Certainly there will be occasions when 1-2 Endurolytes will be completely adequate; on hot-weather workouts or races, it may be necessary to consume 5-6 Endurolytes hourly.

  5. Replenish your body with carbohydrates and protein as soon as possible after each exercise session, ideally within the first 30-60 minutes.

    Recovery – A Crucial Component For Athletic Success
    Post-Exercise Meal: Carbs Alone or Carbs + Protein?

    FACT: Equally important as your workout (muscle exhaustion and nutrient depletion) is what you do immediately following your workout (muscle repair and nutrient replenishment). If you neglect to “refill the tank” as soon as possible after your training sessions you’ll never get the full value out of all the work you just put in. Give your body what it needs immediately after exercise, when it’s most receptive to replenishment, and it will respond wonderfully-recovering faster, efficiently adapting to physical stress, and “learning” how to store more and more readily available fuel in the muscles.

 

Branched Chain Amino Acid (BCAA) May Help Reduce Weight Gain

March 15, 2011

Branched chain amino acid (BCAA) supplementation may help reduce risk of weight gain

In mid-December 2010 a study was reported in the online version of the Journal of Nutrition. The results of this study suggest that there is an association between an increased intake of BCAAs (l-leucine, l-isoleucine, and l-valine) and a reduced risk of obesity and becoming overweight.
Continue Reading »

Idebenone – The unheralded but powerful component of Race Caps Supreme

February 21, 2011

Idebenone The unheralded but powerful component of Race Caps Supreme

Author: Steve Born

“Ideba what?”  That’s what people often say when they first encounter this relatively unknown nutrient, pronounced eye-DEB-uh-known. So unknown, in fact, that I believe we’re the only athletic supplement company that uses this incredibly beneficial nutrient. In over two decades that I’ve studied nutritional supplements, I’ve become extremely fond of many nutrients. I’d say that idebenone shares the top rung with old favorites such as lipoic acid (the “r” isomer form), l-carnitine, carnosine, and coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10). Continue Reading »

Eat Fat to Lose Fat?

January 19, 2011

Salmon fillet

Author: Steve Born

It sure sounds paradoxical, eating fat to help lose body fat. But that very well may be true and at this time of the year, a time when we’re trying to keep that “winter coat” to a minimum and/or kick start our weight-loss goals, it’s something definitely worth considering. Of course, you want to make sure that you’re eating the right kind of fats—meaning the healthy Omega 3 essential fatty acids (and avoiding saturated fats)—and that you’re consuming an adequate, but not too high, amount of them. Continue Reading »

REM Caps, At Home in the Peloton

January 14, 2011

A guest blog post by Phil Elsasser of the Hagens Berman Elite Team Fueled by Hammer Nutrition.

While I have used several of Hammer’s products such as Heed and Sustained Energy in the past, this year I have had the great opportunity to explore some of their supplements through Hammer’s support of the Hagens Berman Cycling Team. One product that impressed me greatly was Hammer’s REM Caps. Being an endurance athlete means that generally by the time my head hits the pillow at the end of the day I am out like a light. As a result, I have never really thought about using a sleep aid. This year definitely changed that. Continue Reading »

Wintertime Fitness: Don’t Give it up, Switch it up!

January 5, 2011

On the wagon and on top of the valley.


Alright, let’s face it; for the next few months, the weather in about three-quarters of the U.S. just isn’t going to be that great. For those who are fortunate enough to live in warm temps in January, please continue with your winter running and riding (or take a trip down to Tucson for the annual Hammer Camps!) or whatever it is you get to do in short sleeves. But for everyone else longing for warmer weather, there certainly is still hope! Continue Reading »