Beets #2.1 Thoughts on Beet Juice for performance

Jason’s thought after trying out Beet juice to help with athletic performance….

Juicing itself is a pretty well documented and solid idea when it comes to getting a strong nutrient balance into our bodies.  As a juice-able food source, beets aren’t too bad of a choice.  It’s a sweet vegetable and generally tastes similar to doing carrots although a little more so in terms of sweet-ness.  To offset a little with some tangy citrus flavor, Hillary added an orange.  

It was proposed by the experts that one should consume the beet juice 2 hours before a workout.  

Workout number 1 – I drank the juice mid morning as I was going running later.  At that point in the day I had not eaten since breakfast about 2.5 hours earlier.  On a basically empty stomach with no protein the juice gave me a pretty good glucose shock.  About an hour or so later I started getting pretty jittery and did not feel like working out at that time.  I chomped on some chicken as soon as I could and waited a little while.  The run was fine after I balanced out a little, I did not feel supercharged though.  

The sugars in this drink should be paired with either a protein powder or a lean protein source in my opinion.  

Workout Number 2 – Followed my own advice, in addition to breakfast, when I later drank the beet juice I also ate a little bit of protein with it and about a teaspoon of protein powder, not much.  Two hours later, I did not feel the jitters and started into my weight training session.  All was fine and I did feel pretty good for about the first 45 minutes of my workout.  The last 10 minutes I definitely started to feel the same jittery feeling from before but not quite as bad.  I also knew that after I was done I would be able to eat my lunch right away.  

Bottom line, I happened to read an article that came up for me from a guy who also was drinking beet juice before a half marathon.  The difference there is he drank every day for a week leading up to the event and also did moderate to little training.  I think that if I were to do the same and drink every day for a week with proper pairing I probably would have been able to see some benefit.  

This guy claimed that he matched previous times despite having not done a proper training lead up.  That might be so, I think that beet juice is good, and it’s good for you.  I think whatever benefit it might provide would really only be noticeable to someone invested in higher levels of performance.  Weekend warriors or folks whose only ‘event’ is Bloomsday each year probably won’t notice.  

Beet juice is tasty, but there are a couple of things to be aware of in my opinion. 

1.  the glucose dump that you’ll get might mess you up and if you’re sensitive it might be a problem. 

2. a day or so later you have to remember that you drank the beet juice, otherwise you’ll think you are dying from ebola.  FUN!

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