I was able to represent Hammer Nutrition Canada at Expedition Africa. I contacted Hammer Nutrition Canada because well for one, they are Canadian, but for more importantly because their products are non-gmo, with some of them being organic, with no added sweeteners and all natural ingredients. When I opened the box of product the night before I left for my adventure, my dad said I was more than on any Christmas morning. Immediately I started using the water-bottle daily, but I waited impatiently till the race start to use everything else.
Endurolytes Fizz: These delicious water enhancer tabs were incredible. Through the entire race I was responsible for carrying all my own water and the legs of the race were extremely long. This meant we were on course for hours upon hours before reaching another transition. I carried a 3L bladder and two water bottles. In my 3L bladder I put my endurolyte fizzes. You are meant to put 1 tab in for every 500ml of water, but since it was not very hot, and I wasn’t sweating the way I normally do when I run (adventure racing the pace is slowed a lot because of the incredible distances you cover in one leg), I diluted the concentration. It is SO IMPORTANT to replace your electrolytes when doing any kind of physical activity. They prevent muscle cramps and muscle fatigue and are vital for proper tissue functioning. I used the flavours Mango, and Lemon-lime. I liked them both because the flavour is not too intense and they do not make the water taste carbonated. Lemon-Lime was definitely my favourite.
Heed: Heed is AWESOME. Seriously. It is a great way to stay fueled as it as both electrolytes and carbohydrates in it! One scoop of it has 25g of carbohydrates. I put heed powder in one of my hand held water bottles with 3 scoops in it. This meant I had 75g of carbohydrates very easily accessible. It was great to be able to hydrate myself and replenish my calories. I used the orange flavour and the lemon-lime flavour. Heed powder contains all your electrolytes and vitamin B6. Get some of this stuff, I promise you’ll like it.
Perpetuem: My opinion of perpetuem? Magic. The caffe-latte flavour was a total pick-me-up. Again I had this in one of my hand-held water bottles. Perpetuem is packed with calories because it has 54g of carbohydrates and 6g of protein in one serving!!! This is so exciting for endurance athletes because carbohydrates are what keep you going! I will admit that since the legs of the race were extremely long, I didn’t get to use as much perpetuem as I would have liked. For example our second trek leg took was 44 hours! We were without contact from the race or transitions for 44 hours, so my single bottle of perpetuem didn’t last too long!
Recoverite: The same thing unfortunately happened with recoverite as perpetuem during the race. There was only 6 transitions so I was only able to use it 6 times. My overall opinion of it is awesome though. I used the vanilla flavour and I was very happy with the taste. Most protein powders I can’t stand the taste to drink them by themselves, but recoverite is delicious and the powder is very fine so you don’t get that gritty feeling in your mouth. At every transition the FIRST thing I did was open my transition box, grab a premade serving bag and dump it into a water bottle to get that protein into my body as quickly as I could. I was really, really happy with this protein powder and I will continue to use it.
Hammer Nutrition Recovery Bar: MY ULTIMATE FAVOURITE THING EVER. No seriously. With 320 delicious calories, they were my staple during the race. On day 4 we were able 60km into the first bike leg and I got a hunger crisis. I was seriously the most hungry I have ever been. I crammed 2 of these down the hatch and I felt so much better!! I had the peanut butter chocolate flavour and it is seriously delicious. Some protein bars are very chalky and dry but these ones are delicious and moist. Even after living off race food for 6 days straight, these were still a welcomed treat.
Hammer Nutrition Bar: I used the cashew coconut chocolate chip flavour. These bars are very rich but they are packed full of all natural ingredients. They do not have a chocolate coating like a lot of bars do but they are still loaded with chocolate chips and nuts. The first two ingredients are almond paste and date paste. They are high in fat and carbohydrates which makes them the perfect bar for endurance activities. These bars were great for just grabbing a bar on the go. I did find them very rich so I had them less often. But they taste delicious and are made of all natural ingredients.
Cool-feet powder: This anti-bacterial, anti-fungal cooling feet powder saved our lives. We had multiple river crossings and our feet were constantly wet. We had to do foot care a lot during the race and we always applied the cool-feet powder to help dry out our feet and help prevent bacteria and fungus from growing. We spent 7 hours on day 3 with our feet wet, so the cool-feet powder was great to apply after we dried our feet off.
Seat-Saver: With 370km of riding on this race, seat-saver literally saved our behinds. The first part of the ride I have never been so sore back there but I applied seat-saver liberally. It is all natural, and I found it far more effective than Vaseline. We carried the container around with us every km of the both bike legs and we reapplied often.