Product Review: Energy Bits

Please note:  I was not asked to write this review and I am not being compensated in any way for this post.  I purchased this product for my own use.

I mentioned recently that I got some samples of Energy Bits from Cape Cod Runner.  I’ve seen these little green pills all over the internet, and know a lot of runners who use them regularly, so I was mighty curious to see what they’re all about.

For the price of $5, I received (2) 30 tab sample packs, so I was able to try them out on two different runs.  I appreciated this, because sometimes once isn’t really enough to tell if something works or if it’s just a fluke.

What are Energy Bits?

From the website:

Made from 100% organicallly grown, NON GMO spirulina algae and loaded with 40 nutrients, ENERGYbits® algae tabs have the highest concentration of protein in the world (64%) all for just one calorie per tab. Spirulina has been endorsed by the United Nations and Olympic gold medalists for decades. Now it’s your turn.

ENERGYbits® algae tabs are your answer for raw energy and health. All naturally too. With just one calorie per tab, ENERGYbits® will stop your cravings, slay your hunger and give you a steady stream of mental and physical energy all day or night. They may even make you want to leap over tall buildings in a single bound, but we think that’s best left to the guys in the red capes and blue tights. 

Remarkably, ENERGYbits® have just one ingredient, spirulina algae which is a super hero in the world of super foods. Spirulina’s nutritional pedigree is so impressive that The World Bank, NASA and Olympic athletes have all declared spirulina to be the most nutritious food in the entire world. Why? Well for starters, it effortlessly and naturally boosts your energy like an energy drink, energy bar or coffee  but without the downside of chemicals, caffeine, calories, gluten or sugar. Gram per gram, there is no denser source of nutrition than spirulina algae.

Research done by NASA showed that that 1 kg of spirulina had the nutritional  equivalent of 1000 kg of fruits and vegetables.  That’s a lot of groceries! But if an endorsement by NASA isn’t enough to convince you of the health benefits you’ll get from ENERGYbits® spirulina, consider that many International Health Organizations including the United Nations have hailed spirulina as one of the “Greatest Superfoods on Earth.” Don’t worry if you haven’t heard about this super food yet. You will.

energy-bits-label

I have to say, I’m naturally skeptical about so-called “superfoods.”  And the website’s overly peppy tone made me extra skeptical.  However, I really liked that the product is made from a single, organic ingredient, when so many running fuels are made with tons of sugar and chemicals, so I really wanted to like Energy Bits.

As I said above, I tried the bits twice; once before a tempo run, and once before a 10k “race” (I was racing against myself!).  The first time, I could say that they were pretty effective.  I usually have an afternoon snack at about 3:30 or 4 o’clock if I know I’m going to the gym after work, but I’m typically still pretty hungry by the time I finish my workout.  I had my usual snack before leaving work, and swallowed a serving of bits on my way to the gym.  I was maybe slightly less hungry afterwards than I would be normally, and I felt pretty good during my tempo run.

The second time I tried the bits, I ate a fairly normal pre-run breakfast of a whole wheat English Muffin with butter, and two cups of coffee.  If I weren’t going to take the bits, I probably would have put sunflower seed butter on my muffin.  Instead, I swallowed another 30 bit serving of bits and headed out.  I had pretty good energy levels during the first half of the run, but I was also running downhill the first half.  I started to flag in the second half and contemplated taking the Gu I had brought along, but since I was running for a PR, I didn’t want to slow down.  I was pretty exhausted by the end, but not overly hungry.

Pros:

  • 100% real food–no sugar or additives
  • Organic
  • No stomach upset (but then, I don’t have a sensitive stomach to begin with)
  • No funky taste when swallowing
  • Seem to be at least as effective as other running fuels I’ve tried

Cons:

  • EXPENSIVE!  A bag of 1000 bits (33 adult servings) is $115, or roughly $3.48 per serving.  Even with the 25% off codes that Ambassadors can provide, that’s still $86.25 per bag and $2.61 per serving, which is more than I typically pay for Gu or other fuel.  And to pay $86 up front is too much for me
  • Swallowing 30 pills is hard enough pre-run, but there’s simply no way I could take another serving in the middle of a run or race.  I’d have to come to a complete stop, and even then, swallowing that many pills when I’m breathing hard wouldn’t be pretty.  So really, these would only be good pre-run for me, and there are plenty of other healthy, real food options I can have before a run

So do they work?  Based on my two trial runs, I’d say yes.  But I don’t feel like they work any better or faster than other forms of fuel I’ve taken.  And trying to swallow 30 pills in the middle of a race seems really silly to me.  AND I’m simply not willing to pay for them.  I think if you were somebody with a very sensitive stomach, or who is really careful about what goes into your body, then Energy Bits might be the right choice for you.  I personally think that I could find other, cheaper options that are still relatively natural, like Honey Stinger products, and pay less money.

Have you ever tried Energy Bits?

What’s your go-to running fuel?

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4 thoughts on “Product Review: Energy Bits

  1. dgobs says:

    Huh, I had heard about these bits and assumed they were little tiny green chewy things and not pills. To be honest, neither option appeals to me! (But I’ve always been wary of green things… I didn’t like my vegetables when I was growing up 😉 ) I can see that they’d be difficult to use mid-run if they’re pills, and if you have to swallow so many!

    I use the Honey Stinger chews, partly because I love the way they taste, and partly because I bought a case of them for cheap from Steep and Cheap 🙂 I need to do more “scientific” testing of others ones – Clif Bloks worked really well for me once, but I haven’t tried them again so I don’t know if it was a fluke – but for now they’re good enough.

    • DarlinRae says:

      Yeah, I’ve tried a few different things and just stuck with Gu because they were relatively inexpensive and easy to find. I want to get my hands on some of the Sport Beans with caffeine, and the Honey Stinger chews with caffeine, but they seem to be a bit less common. I think I need to be taking less fuel more often (a few beans every few miles instead of an entire pack at once) to get optimum fueling. Time for more experiments!

    • DarlinRae says:

      Yeah, I actually reached out to the company on Twitter, and even they were gonna charge me $5, so I figured I might as well get them through a blogger I appreciate so she can maybe get commission on them.

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