Friday, April 25, 2014

Fuelin' Up Friday: Osmo Nutrition

Summers are hot here in Atlanta.  Yes, I realize they tend to be on the hotter side a lot of places, but Atlanta is the place that most concerns me at the moment. Every year when summer arrives, I think it can't be as bad as I remember it and then a week later, I'm wondering why I ever left the northeast (I believe it's called January).

You see, I am not a ladylike, southern belle. It's blatantly obvious in the summer that I'm 'not from around here'.  I sweat. A lot. Especially when running.  On top of that, many of my runs are in the afternoon, during rush hour, on my runcommute home.  It is not unusual for my run home to be in the 80s or 90s during the summer. Scientists even have a technical equation to describe it:
Trust me, I'm a scientist.
So in an effort to run my best and deal with the fact that I have a fairly high mileage summer on the books, I've begun to prepare for summer.  I've been trying out new electrolyte and salt replacement options, as well as evaluate hydration and fueling strategies in high heat. Lately, I've been trying out Osmo Nutrition.
I'll be honest, I wasn't familiar with their products at all.  I had't even heard of the company until one of my friends mentioned using their products and gave me a few packs to try.  I was intrigued and needed to learn more.  So I did what any self respecting athlete blogger would do: Googled them and started following their twitter feed.  Their site is heavy on the science (you know I love to get nerdy), so here is a breakdown of what I learned.

Osmo Nutrition's product line is based off the idea that women are not small men.  From a physiological standpoint, men and women are different. Our bodies show differences in how we utilize fuel, recover from exertion, and how hormones affect our hydration and physiological needs. These differences lead to changes in body temperature, sodium loss, muscle breakdown and repair, and recovery times.  All vital elements of endurance nutrition.
I like their tagline. At 5'9, I don't think I will ever qualify as a small man.
Though science has recognized these differences, traditional endurance nutrition has failed to address it. To account for this, Osmo has created separate product lines for men and women with what you are drinking being just as important as how much.  As a proud member of the XX gender I tried out their Active Hydration for Women on a few runs. I will try to get a hold of the men's version for the Jayhawk to try out this summer and review for all the fellas out there.

Taste: Active Hydration for Women comes in one flavor: Mango.  It is not a sweet mango, but more of a hardy, savory mango if that makes sense. To be honest, I wasn't huge on the flavor.  It was by no means a deal breaker, but I think it could take some getting use to. I think it tastes better cold.

Consistency: Dissolves easily in water without a gritty texture to it, but it's there (i.e. not a clear solution).

During Run: So far, so good.  I haven't had the chance to use it on an extremely hot day yet because we haven't had any, but I've felt very consistent on runs when I have used it.

After run: No issues.  I've been hungry and ready to fuel post run which is always important, but not always the norm for me.
Overall: I like that Osmo addresses the differences between women's and men's physiology and that women's physiological needs fluctuate with hormone levels.  Personally, I've seen a difference in my performance and how I feel when working out based on my hormone levels and I know many of my female running friends do as well.  I am curious to see if Osmo help minimize or even eliminates these fluctuations. I am slowly getting use to the Mango flavor (hopefully they will develop a second flavor like the have for the guys) and am really interested in trying out the Preload Hydration for Women before some of my hijinx this summer (specifically my first Ultra in August as well as the training for it).

Cost: $19.99 for a 40 serving tub, or $1.99 for single serving packs.

What do you think about nutrition formulated for specifically men or women?


  1. Sounds interesting! I have a lot issues with the heat, so I am always willing to try something and see how it goes.

    1. The heat is killer! I'm really trying to focus on giving myself the best tools to still get in good workouts during the summer.


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