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Marathon Diary: PhD Nutrition

This year I am honoured to have been given the chance to run the Virgin London Marathon. On Sunday 26th April 2015 I will take to the streets of London, adorned in race gear, to take part in the biggest fundraising event in the world. Wearing my bright orange vest, I am running in aid of Elimination of Leukaemia Fund, a brilliant small charity that does excellent work in the blood cancer world. Striving for better treatments and improved care for families devastated by a leukaemia diagnosis, ELF have been working for almost 40 years to improve the lives of patients with leukaemia, lymphoma and other blood disorders.

A dream of many, taking part in the London Marathon is massive. It's a massive commitment, trying to cram in 4-5 training runs a week for 16 weeks is a hugely time-consuming task!

Having watched for years as a child, I will be following in the footsteps of such greats as Haile Gebrselassie and Paula Radcliffe, hundreds of celebrities and thousands of charity and fun-runners who have pounded the 26.2 miles before me (that's 42.16km for the metric lovers among you). 

Over the next 6 weeks I will update you on training, nutrition tips and product reviews, all culminating in a special post from the big day itself. Since the new year, I have been building up my fitness and stamina by doing a combination of interval training and longer runs, not to mention shedding the pounds gained over the festive period! So first up is a nutrition review, something to help with early morning/late night training, and also, not too shabby in helping shift some flab!

London Marathon 2014
London Marathon 2014

PhD Nutrition are a leading brand in the sports nutrition world. I added a couple of their products, a recovery drink and a protein flapjack, to my weekly training regime and here's what I thought. 

PhD Recovery 2.1- 1.28kg £39.99 

The first product I tested was a recovery drink supplement. Added to water and devoured after a run/gym session, PhD Recovery 2:1™ is a premium, high protein, post exercise formula that assists with lean muscle gains during periods of intense exercise. It contains a precise 2:1 ratio of carbohydrates to protein, which is designed to provide an excellent nutrient ratio for any athlete looking for replenishment after exercise. The ingredient list is makes for a very scientific sounding read. A multi-stage carbohydrate blend including waxy barley flour, a premium triple source whey protein matrix, Recovery 2:1™ has been designed to aid recovery after exercise, whilst helping to reduce tiredness and fatigue. Marketed at endurance athletes who require a “higher than usual” level of carbohydrates to replenish systems after training! It is available in a number of flavours including Fruit Smoothie, Berry Blast, Raspberry Lemonade, Double Chocolate and Orange and Mango.

Not a product I have used before, opting for an energy drink after exercise, this has converted me! It's an amazing way to refuel post-gym and provides you with the quick protein and carbs needed. Given that you need to consume protein and carbs within 30 minutes of exercise in order to aid muscle recovery, getting home to prep, cook and eat becomes a challenge in itself. This product solves the problem, leaving you time to relax, safe in the knowledge you are properly refuelled. 

PhD Protein Flapjack: £1.79 each 

The second product was a high protein flapjack, designed specifically to help with the building of lean muscle. Available in 3 flavours, peanut butter, forest berries and apple and raspberry, these bars contain 2g of sugar per bar which is 80% less than they contained previously. The plus points continue as they now have less than 3g saturated fat per bar. Marketed as an ideal snack for any athlete looking to increase muscle mass and help replenish the body with quality, healthy calories after a hard bout of intense exercise or throughout the day to support an athletic lifestyle.

I have used these type of flapjacks before, but many other brands on the market do not taste great. These PhD flapjacks, however, buck the trend. They taste great! All 3 flavours taste great! Perfect for a quick hit of protein after a hard run or gym session. I've had protein bars before, and they can be a little chalky, none of that with these. They were so good in fact I had no problem switching my go-to chocolate bar for one, a much healthier choice! As for protein content? 19g! That's almost as much as many protein shakes! A huge amount by anybody's reckoning, these will fill your muscles with all the amino acids they need following the obligatory gym sesh! 

*Athlete, Runner images via Shutterstock


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