Chocolate # 9 is a new energy gel designed specifically for athletes. This product fits a gap in the current market of energy gels, by delivering a consistent energy flow without the spike and bonk of the energy gels that are currently available. Chocolate #9 is made with the organic, natural sweetener Agave, as opposed to the other gels on the market that are made with various combinations of refined sugars.
From the manufacturer: Chocolate # 9 * contains no refined sugar * is sweetened only with organic agave. * contains pure belgian cocoa * has been tested and certified as a LOW glycemic index item (e.g., * because of its low glycemic index, when you use the gel you will reduce the negative effect of repetitive insulin spiking during sustained exercise (it's the reason you choose wheat bread rather than white bread, fruit rather than candy) * won't cause sugar low-bonk * is an excellent energy choice for athletes in general, and for those with diabetes, low blood sugar in particular, or those who want to avoid refined sugar * it is vegan and low in fat * contains no synthetics, no unpleasant after taste.
My personal experience with Chocolate #9 I took along 3 Chocolate #9 packets for my 22 mile run this past Saturday. A pretty big risk given that I have been having issues and eventually gave up the Chocolate GU I absolutely love taste-wise. I anxiously took the first gel at mile 5. The packet was easy to open, and it did not require a stop (I absolutely hate stopping when I run). The gel had the consistency of chocolate syrup, and it went down easily. It tasted great, too, like melted chocolate, much better than the Chocolate Gu. I took the entire gel with water, over the course of a quarter mile, as I wanted to enjoy the taste. I did not feel any different after I took the gel. Typically I can "feel" a Gu, I get a burst of energy. I did not feel this with Chocolate # 9. My stomach reacted very well, and I had no post gel nausea or bathroom (aka woods) emergencies. I took another gel at mile 10, even though I did not need it. I took the final gel at mile 15. I was running pretty hard by this point, my legs were getting sore, and I was breathing harder. I had to push myself to take another gel. As much as I like the idea of chocolate, and the taste of Chocolate #9, it was hard for me to take the last gel in chocolate. I wished for a different flavor. I took it, however, and reacted very well to it. Again, no highs or low. The gel has 75g sodium/pack, a bit more than Gu, so I drank less Nuun than typical. The gel and Nuun combo did not hurt my stomach. 22 miles, 3 packs of Chocolate #9, 2 Nuun pills, 2 hours, 59 min and 40 seconds! Tired but feeling great.
Things I like about Chocolate # 9 1. The taste - it has the best taste of any gels I have ever tasted. In fact, it does not taste like gel, more like dark chocolate syrup (but not too sweet). 2. Consistency - went down very easy. The manufacturer noted that the gel does not harden in the winter, so it is easy to take regardless of weather. 3. More sodium. I have salty sweat, and sometimes eat salt during races. I love gels that add sodium, so that I have to eat less of it plan (blah!) 4. Consistent energy flow - although I missed the initial boost I get with typical gels, I did not miss the low. 5. Did not upset my stomach (no nausea or bathroom urgencies).
Things I would change: 1. The gel does not contain caffeine. While I know that caffeine has some effects on blood sugar, I would prefer to have the option of caffeine in the gel, given all the research about increased performance due to caffeine intake. Can the manufacturer make a caffeine version in addition to the almost caffeine free current product (there is only caffeine from the cocoa)? 2. How about other flavors? It was easy for me to take Chocolate #9, but after 2 gels, I was done. I would have prefered to have the option of other flavors. 3. Speaking of flavors.....how about a ginger flavor? I would absolutely love to be able to take a ginger #9 during the last part of the marathon, when I tend to get a bit nauseaus due to the hard effort, as ginger has anti nausea properties.
The Giveaway: The manufacturer is giving away 2 boxes of 24 Chocolate #9 gels to two readers (one box each). Here are the rules: 1. One entry if you leave a comment. 2. One additional entry if you become a follower. 3. One additional entry if you mention the giveaway at your site. 4. One additional entry if you write a comment (can be same comment) including what you are looking for in a gel. 6. Giveaway ends September 21st, midnight. 7. The winner will be selected via a random drawing. Good luck!
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Long terms goals/dreams
Marathon: sub 3:00:00 PR: 3:14:29 Halfmarathon: sub 1:25:00 PR: 1:28:46 5K: sub 18 PR: 17:26 on short course (2.99miles on Garmin) 10K: sub 40