Nutrition & Weight Loss

Ultragen by First Endurance

Ultragen by First Endurance

The running population and technology continues to increase tenfold each year but our knowledge of what we put into our bodies before, during, and after a run doesn’t seem to be keeping pace.  I know lots of ultra runners and marathon runners out there that think every Gu, gel, and recovery drink is the same so they buy the generic version of certain products to try and save some money.  Yes, there are a ton of recovery drinks at your local health food store or big box store but how much research has been done on these products?  Do they provide you with the right nutrients and vitamins to help aid in recovery or do they simply just provide protein to fill you up after a run?

Recover Faster, Run Better Tomorrow
I have tried many different recovery drinks on the market but for my money I rely on the research and how my body feels after I take them.  For those of you who don’t know me I am a streak runner and I have currently ran 709 days in a row with at least 4 miles while completing 14 Ultra’s including two 100 mile races, three 100K’s, four 50 mile races, and some of the hardest 50K’s in the country including Speedgoat, so recovery is my number one priority.  Yes, my body may recover faster if I took a week or two off after a 100 mile race but that is not something I want to do.  I love to train, run mountains, do speed work, and compete in every race that I enter so I need to put the right nutrients into my body and out of ten plus products I have tried so far I have found that the only thing that helps me truly recover is Ultragen by First Endurance.

My Introduction to Ultragen
My first experience with Ultragen was immediately after finishing the grueling Speedgoat 50K which boasts 11,800 feet of climb in 31 miles.  I was well trained going into this event and I am a mountain runner but the pain I felt when I finished this race was indescribable.  My legs were not injured, they were exhausted and when I crossed the finish line the first thing that was handed to me by Karl Meltzer, the Speedgoat himself was a 20 oz bottle of Orange Cream Ultragen. I kind of looked at him funny and thought why are you giving this to me, I want some cool swag for just finishing that death march.  Most races will give you Gatorade, water, and fruit to recover with after a race, Speedgoat gives you Ultragen.  I took down that bottle so quickly not only because I loved the taste but because it started to bring me back from the dead.

So what is it about Ultragen that makes it a product that runners and Tri Athletes have enjoyed for 10 plus years?
Ultragen provides the body with glycogen during the 30 minute window of opportunity immediately after a run and it helps tired muscles open the door for nutrient uptake.  Most of the recovery drinks on the market will give you sugar and protein but they don’t provide any other nutrients that help the body actually recover.  The body needs high glycemic carbohydrates right after exercise to help with nutrient uptake that provide you with improved physical endurance, reduces soreness, and makes for a quick recovery.   Most of the protein drinks on the market are Whey protein but it is the Whey protein Isolate and Hydrolyzed Whey protein that meet the bodies’ requirements to compete in endurance events such as ultra running and Ironman competitions.

Ultragen, Easy on my Stomach
Jay Danek - 4th Place Overall 2011 Lean Horse 100One of my biggest struggles in being an ultra runner has been finding the proper nutrition during and after a race especially with my sensitive stomach.  I use Ultragen a little different than a lot of athletes in that I rely on it solely to get me through 100 mile races instead of taking in any food.  I have found that my stomach cannot handle any food before, during, or after a race so I need to get my calories from liquids.  While I do take EFS Liquid shots during my runs I also drink an Ultragen every 15 miles of a race. This is an easy way for me to get 320 calories in a couple drinks and my muscles feel great right after allowing me to continue on up in an ultra.  In a typical ultra I will burn between 4000-10,000 calories so I need to stay on top of my nutrition and this combined with the liquid EFS shots has done it for me and got me two top ten finishes in my 100 mile attempts and 10 top ten finishes in the other ultra distances.  As I said you can use this before, during, or after a run/race and there will be no stomach issues, it tastes great and it will provide your body with the energy it needs to complete an endurance event.  Some people swear by the Cappuccino flavor but I am an Orange Cream guy, it is also available in Fruit Punch.  I mean who doesn’t like a protein drink that tastes like a pushup?  For more information check out their website at  Their products are available at most running and bike stores as well as REI.

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This post was written by:

- who has written 22 posts on Trail Running Club.

Started running for the first time in my life three year's ago after losing my Dad to a pulmonary embolism at the age of 58 and since he began running he has lost close to 100 pounds. On 9/23/2012 Jay finished a running streak of 923 Consecutive days with at least 4 miles while compiling over 9,400 miles with 975,000+ feet of elevation gain and completed 15 Ultra's in honor of his Dad who passed away on 9/23/2008. Jay holds a Bachelor's Degree from Michigan State University in Crop and Soil Sciences.

Jay's recent trail ultra running results:

• 13th OA at San Diego 100M in 22:01:26
• 10 Top Ten Ultra Finishes in 14 races
• 4th overall at Lean Horse 100 in 19:01:12
• 9th overall at Javelina Jundred in 2011 in 18:28:26
• 100K Javelina Night Run Champion in 2011
• Cave Creek Thriller 50K Champion in 2010
• Runner up in 2011 DRT Ultra Series

2013 Race Schedule includes:
• Castle Hot Springs 22M
• Phoenix Marathon
• 3 Days of Syllamo
• Miwok 100K
• Speedgoat 50K
• Pike's Peak Marathon
* Mogollon Monster 100

Jay Danek is sponsored by iRun Honey Stinger

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