Energy Bars vs. Chews vs. Gels - Which is Best?

December 18, 2013

When it comes to heavy exercise, nutrition is just as important as doing your exercise correctly. What you put in your body can sometimes make or break a workout. If you decide not to eat at all, then that can be just as bad as eating a whole meal beforehand. We'll go over some of the common food items that you can eat while you're exercising, warming up, or cooling down. When it comes to training hard and putting everything you've got, sometimes just that little extra piece of protein bar can help you reach that last mile.

    Energy Chews

    These are the newest forms of energy that have recently come out, but athletes and hard endurance trainers are already jumping on the bandwagon. These chews are meant to be consumed in a quick on-the-go basis. Chews tend to be very easily digestible and are full of lots of sugar to help give your body a boost that it may need during very long exercise routines. Available in a variety of flavors, these chews pack a punch in flavor and in size. You can stick them in a running belt and reach into one of your pockets during a moment that you think you'll need the extra energy. These items are best used when you're doing long distance hard training, such as running 10 or more miles or getting ready for a marathon.

    Energy Bars

    Energy bars are the most common when it comes to someone who wants a little bit of nourishment on the go. Packed with carbohydrates, these bars generally come in tons of flavors, and there are many brands and choices to choose from. This all depends on what you might be looking for. You might be interested in something that's small and compact in size so you can take it with you, or perhaps you're looking for one that has the most sugar to give you the spike that you need to keep going when the going gets tough. One thing to keep in mind however is that these bars are best eaten during exercise. Their simple carbohydrates and lots of sugar can be bad for someone who just wants an extra snack on the go. Bars can be very beneficial to those that are in need of extra nutrition, but if you're looking for a small snack to take with you and you're not exercising, try to grab a piece of fruit or trail mix instead. One great things about these though is how beneficial they are to athletes who need some extra protein as well. They help build muscle and can be the perfect thing for you after an intense workout.

    Energy Gels

    Energy gels are a great source to absorb nutrients in one of the fastest ways possible. Like the consistency of jelly, this nutrient is usually made and packed into packets that can be squeezed and eaten at a fast rate. These also come in a wide variety of flavors and offer a high amount of sugar for your body to quickly convert it into energy. What's great about gels is there is no chewing required; and when someone is out on a long run, having to chew things at the same time while running can be distracting and difficult. You may want to wash these gels down with water -- they are so high concentrated with nutrients that it can be a very rich flavor.

Each supplement offers its own advantages and disadvantages. At the end of the day, everything boils down to your own preference and what you think is best for the activity you're participating in. If you want something that you don't need to wash anything down with, a chew might be the best option for you. But if you don't want to have to deal with munching on something while you're on the go, then a gel might be the choice for you. Whatever you end up deciding on, make sure to keep consistent and always make sure that you're hydrated. What that in mind you should have enough energy to keep going for the long haul.

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