I started using Accel Gel as my primary gel for training runs (especially long runs) when I started training for my first marathon last winter. When I first increased my mileage enough to need to eat fuel on long runs, I started out with Gu but then switched to Clif Shots several months later because they’re mostly organic and are made with all natural ingredients. I’d been using Pacific Health Labs’ Endurox R4 for my recovery drink for a while, but I hadn’t tried using their gels. My boyfriend’s brother, who has run several marathons and the Disney Goofy Race and a Half twice, swore by Accel Gel, so I thought I would give it a try.
Research has shown that consuming a 4:1 carbohydrate-to-protein ratio after runs helps with recovery, but I don’t know if there have been any independent tests showing that the same 4:1 ratio helps during runs. I found that when I switched to Accel Gel I felt a lot better and stronger during my long runs, even when I was running longer distances than I did during my half marathon training. I don’t know if that was purely psychosomatic or if the Accel Gel was really helping, but I decided to stick with it. My main complaint with the old formula is that I didn’t think it tasted as good as Gu or Clif Shots. It had this weird aftertaste, to my palate, that seemed to taste almost too sweet or something.
Pacific Health Labs redid their Accel Gel formula a few months ago so that the gel is made with all natural ingredients. I had finally used up all of my gels that were made with the older formula, so I thought I’d give the new formula a try. So far I’ve tried the chocolate, vanilla, raspberry, and key lime flavors, and liked the taste of them all. Interestingly, this new formula doesn’t have that weird aftertaste that I experienced with the previous formula, so I’m really happy about that. As you can see, I wound up buying a box of the vanilla (no caffeine) and raspberry cream (with caffeine) gels; I like to be able to choose whether or not I take in any caffeine during my runs.
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If you haven’t tried Aceel Gel but are interested, I would definitely recommend giving it a try. The protein in the gel comes from whey protein, so it’s not appropriate for vegans, although I suspect vegans probably know this. Maybe you’ll feel stronger on your long runs, too.