“Powered by bits”
Today, I broke the cardinal rule of racing, something I frequently advise people against: I tried something new the morning of a race.
Gasp! Yes, it’s true. I made one change to my morning race-day ritual – Energy Bits. I’ve been curious about Energy Bits for awhile now, seeing many runners post their success stores on Twitter with the #PoweredByBits hashtag. I was fortunate to receive a sample and have been excited to try them out. But, as I mentioned in my last race-related entry, I haven’t been training like I usually do. New job, weekend trips, College Game Day being in Fargo again…Yes, yes and yes, but not trying to make excuses. Simply put, I have been slacking on my speed training so hadn’t given myself much opportunity to try them. I decided to take a leap and try them out on a race day. Results? I came in second overall for women and put up a time of 45:04 (not my best performance but not bad, considering).
Now let’s backtrack a bit. When I first heard about Energy Bits, they sounded great. Just pop a couple vs. downing a full energy gel or bar and be good to go. When they arrived, I was pleasantly surprised by how tiny they were. Bits? Indeed! But reading the label, I noticed approximately 30 bits was listed as the standard serving. 30? Holy sh*t. Especially for someone who has never been a good pill-taker, that’s a lot to swallow – literally. Still, I wanted to give them a shot, so popped I did.
As I made my way to the start line, I was feeling really good – energized and ready to run. I didn’t feel any strange effects from the bits so that was a good sign. The first two miles were tough – not on my stomach, my legs felt tight and heavy. I know this was due to my lack of training yet somehow I maintained a 7:05 pace. My legs started to feel better going into mile 3 but then a sideache hit. I’ve been running long enough to know that this could be attributed to a dozen different factors and likely had nothing to do with the bits so I just tried to keep even breathing and forge ahead. My pace dropped slightly the next three miles, as low as 7:28 on mile 5. But I was pleasantly surprised by how good and energized I still felt. Sideache gone, I managed to push my last mile a bit, crossing in 45:04. All in all, I feel this was a great race for me – not my best, but still a good one.
Do I think the Energy Bits had a positive effect on my run? Absolutely. Truthfully, I had no business running as fast as I did. At the pace I was going, I should have been gassed halfway through, and especially the last mile. But I wasn’t. Granted, I wasn’t in the best racing shape to push my pace to the max of my capabilities. But still, something kept me churning and I know, today, I’m officially one who can say I was #PoweredByBits!
Side note, I believe in flukes and “good days” so I’ll need to run with bits a couple more times to draw a full conclusion. I still have a couple servings left of my Energy Bits sample, and I’m planning to run another race in mid-October – so watch for a follow up to this blog on my next experience with Energy Bits.
Have you ever tried something new on race day? How did it work out for you? Comment or tweet me @runlikeagirl311.