A runner’s Christmas

This year, a good friend (who happens to be an extremely accomplished runner) gave me my first runner’s gifts for Christmas. It was an unexpected and thoughtful gesture. So much so that I’ve decided to share what was inside my goody bag.

When I first opened the bag, questions arose about some of the items – do I eat this or put it on my nipples?

First up – Sport Beans. The packaging says to consume these jellies 30 minutes before activity, and that they’re “scientifically formulated to maximize sports performance.” And we all know that if you can trust anybody, it’s a copywriter for an energy product. Interestingly enough, these little concoctions are manufactured by Jelly Belly – the same people who’ve brought us booger- and dirt-flavored jelly beans in the past. Let’s hope the flavor profile is a little better than those.

Beans, beans, good for your heart...

Next, a collection of preventive care packages – band-aids nipple protection, blister pads and anti-chaffing balm. OMG WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO MY BODY DURING THE RACE? I’ve seen horrific images of guys with bleeding nips after a long race. Not a pretty sight. And not one I’m willing to recreate.

See, my clever friend has written the word "nip" on the Band-Aid package.

Last, an assortment of packages full of something called Gu Energy Gel – in Strawberry Banana, Lemon Sublime, Chocolate Outrage and Espresso Love flavors. Really? Everybody gets a crazy name except for Strawberry Banana? Couldn’t they have gone the extra mile and called it Strawnana Xplosion or something? From what I can deduce from the packaging, these are for hydration during long runs. Sounds good. I hope they taste EXTREME.


Along with these items, there were other (also thoughtful) treats – including these delicious sea salt chocolate caramels (which I merrily scarfed down) and a lump of coal made from marshmallows and chocolate, among other things.

In all seriousness, I’ve had an awesome Christmas – I got to spend the whole day with my family, gave (and got) some great gifts and I’m off work for a whole week.

And my nipples – well, they’re just fine.


6 responses to “A runner’s Christmas

  1. the best thing about those energy jellies is the distraction they offer from pain and monotony during a race. i carry the jellies and allow myself one every mile. it’s like a little celebration every 9 minutes. it takes at least a third of the time in between to suck the remnants from your teeth. but beware: fingers aren’t as dextrous when your blood is involved in so many other functions—open the bag before the race! gu is good for when i think i’m about to quit. slurping that stuff out of its pouch and processing the extreme flavor burst is good for at least four tenths of a mile.

  2. Oh…those Sports Beans are amazing! I don’t like that gel stuff–the texture is terrible. But, those beans are great for long runs. I’d take 2-3 right before my run and then with about two more with 3 miles to go to power me through the last few miles. They have a bit of a gritty texture and are super sweet, but really gave me lots of energy. They also have some with caffeine. Those are nice. Magic jelly beans!

    • I think I’ll do a review of the GU flavors when I get into the long runs. Maybe I should just chug a Red Bull before the race. Kidding.

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