Hammer Nutrition Blog

Updated Dosage Recommendations For Hammer Fuels

Posted by Steve Born on 02/18/2010 in Fueling Advice | 2 Comments »

Updated Dosage Recommenations for Hammer FuelsSeveral years ago, I was asked to put together some dosage suggestions for the various Hammer Nutrition fuels based on body weight. In formulating what were the original recommendations, I based them on two primary factors:

1) That, in general (“in general” being the key words here), the liver can return to the energy cycle a caloric amount of 4.0 – slightly over 4.6 calories per minute, or roughly 240-280 calories per hour.

2) That a small percentage of the calories consumed are lost (“burned”) during the digestive process.

However, over the past few years we have found— both from our personal use of the products and from clients’ experiences—that more times than not, less calories are required, especially when using Perpetuem. As a result, we’ve revised our dosage suggestions, which are listed later. These new recommendations will also be listed in the 9th edition of The Endurance Athlete’s Guide to Success (when that is finalized), the Product Usage Manual (a.k.a. Little Red Book), various places on the Hammer Nutrition web site, and on the labels of specific fuels (primarily Sustained Energy and Perpetuem).

Key things to remember regarding fueling

A) The goal in fueling is not to try and replace all the calories your body is burning with equal to near-equal amounts from your fuel. As explained in various articles found in The Endurance Athlete’s Guide to Success, and in back issues of Endurance News, the human body is not equipped to replace “X” out with “X” or “near-X” in. Fortunately, the body has many built-in mechanisms that effectively bridge the gap between what it’s losing and what it can comfortably accept in return from your fuel donation. That’s why your focus should NOT be “How many calories can I consume before I get sick?” but rather, “What is the least amount of calories I need to consume to keep my body doing what I want it to do hour after hour?”

Fueling this way—the “less is best” approach—makes much more sense, if only because a “not enough calories” problem is significantly easier to fix (you simply consume more calories) than an “uh oh, I overdid it on the calories” problem.

B) During exercise, the average-size athlete’s liver can effectively return 4.0 to slightly over 4.6 calories per minute back to the energy cycle. That’s 240 – 280 calories per hour MAXIMUM for the average-size athlete under normal conditions. However, we have consistently noted that most athletes do well on even fewer calories, so “average size” athletes (approximately 160-165 lbs/approx 72.5-75 kg) should look at that 240 – 280 gauge only as a reference point (you’ll notice that our recommendations are even less than those amounts). Of course, larger athletes on occasion may need slightly more calories and lighter athletes will most certainly need fewer calories.

C) All athletes must be willing to alter their calorie intake in deference to the weather, the terrain, their pace, and any pre-race anxieties they’re experiencing, as all of these things negatively affect optimal digestive system functioning.

With this in mind, here are our suggested dosages for the following Hammer Nutrition fuels. As just mentioned, over the years we have consistently noted that for optimal performance most athletes require far less than the theoretical maximum of 240-280 calories/hour. This is why we recommend starting with the lowest amount suggested, especially if your weight is at the lower end of the scale, and increase the amount of calories you consume if you find it necessary.

Remember, though, that these are just suggestions and that you need to determine, via thorough testing under a variety of conditions, what amounts work best for you.

Hammer Gel (90 – 100 calories per serving, depending on flavor)

Suggested Doses by Body Weight:

  • 0 – 120 lbs (approx 54.5 kg) – up to 1 serving /hr. This provides up to 90-100 calories.
  • 120-155 lbs (approx 54.5-70 kg) – 1 to 2 servings/hr. This provides 90-100 to 180-200 calories
  • 155-190 lbs (approx 70-86 kg) – 2 to 2.5 servings/hr. This provides 180-200 to 225-250 calories
  • 190+ lbs (86+ kg) – up to 3 servings/hr. This provides 270-300 calories

HEED (105 calories per scoop)

Suggested Doses by Body Weight:

  • 0 – 120 lbs (approx 54.5 kg) – up to 1 scoop/hr. This provides 105 calories
  • 120-155 lbs (approx 54.5-70 kg) – 1 to 1.5 scoops/hr. This provides 105 to 157.5 calories
  • 155-190 lbs (approx 70-86 kg) – 2 to 2.5 scoops/hr. This provides 210 to 262.5 calories
  • 190+ lbs (86+ kg) – up to 2.75 scoops/hr. This provides approx 289 calories

Sustained Energy (approximately 107 calories per scoop)

Suggested Doses by Body Weight:

  • 0 – 120 lbs (approx 54.5 kg) – up to 1 scoop/hr. This provides 107 calories
  • 120-155 lbs (approx 54.5-70 kg) – 1 to 1.5 scoops/hr. This provides 107 to 160.5 calories
  • 155-190 lbs (approx 70-86 kg) – 2 to 2.5 scoops/hr. This provides approx 214 to 267.5 calories
  • 190+ lbs (86+ kg) – up to 2.75 scoops/hr. This provides approx 294 calories

Perpetuem (135 calories per scoop)

Suggested Doses by Body Weight*:

  • 0 – 120 lbs (approx 54.5 kg) – up to 3/4 scoop/hr. This provides approximately 101 calories
  • 120-155 lbs (approx 54.5-70 kg) – 1 scoop/hr. This provides 135 calories
  • 155-190 lbs (approx 70-86 kg) – 1.25 to 1.5 scoops/hr. This provides approx 169 to 202.5 calories
  • 190+ lbs (86+ kg) – up to 2 scoops/hr. This provides 270 calories

Special Note on Perpetuem: Due to this being a high concentration calorie source (via its complex carbohydrate, soy protein, and healthy fat components), we have noted that many athletes do well with a substantially lower calorie intake when using Perpetuem as their primary-to-sole fuel. Therefore, with this particular fuel we highly recommend starting with the lowest amount suggested—perhaps even a bit lower—and work your way up to a higher amount, if a higher amount has proved to be necessary via testing in training.

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2 Responses to “Updated Dosage Recommendations For Hammer Fuels”

  • Your dosage information refers to “scoops”. How does that equate to one packet (69g)?

    Posted by Don M. | August 12, 2011 at 9:22 pm
  • Each single serving packet of HEED contains the equivalent of one scoop, which is the same as roughly 3.2 tablespoons (or 9.5 teaspoons).

    Each single serving packet of Sustained Energy contains the equivalent of 3 scoops, with each scoop being about 3.3 tablespoons (or a fraction over 10 teaspoons).

    Each single serving packet of Perpetuem contains the equivalent of two scoops, with each scoop being a tad over 3.5 tablespoons (or 10.75 teaspoons).

    Each single serving packet of Recoverite contains the equivalent of two scoops, with each scoop being just about 3.5 tablespoons (or slightly more than 10 teaspoons).

    Posted by Steve Born | August 15, 2011 at 10:42 am

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