Runner Tummies on a Roller-coaster and Clif Protein Recovery and Electrolyte Drinks Review

Us runners sure do a number on our poor tummies. All the pounding, up, down, fast, jiggling, jiving…if our stomaches and intestines could speak I can only imagine the expletives they’d be yelling at us!

Actually, those stomaches and intestines of runners DO speak…just with things much more powerful, dare I even say explosive, than words. Yes, runners and their guts are stuck in a state of ongoing negotiations.

“PLEASE behave for my long run, preeeettty please!!” the runner’s silent prayer before heading out the door.
tummy on the run
Runners plan their foods accordingly, learn from trial and error, we do our best to set ourselves up to avoid a stomach related attack but sometimes it feels like we’re in some kind of peace-treaty contract negotiation House of Cards style.

Those runner guts are testy, moody, volatile. Sometimes there is just NO pleasing them despite what feels like us doing our best to abide by the ‘rules’.

I’ve done a few posts on handling GI issues HERE and HERE

Today let’s talk about those post-run, especially post-workout tummies and guts. After all that jiggling and jiving lots of runners complain of feeling nauseous, that food is the LEAST appealing thing in the world, and sometimes runners actually struggle to keep food down.

The issue is that runners ALSO know how incredibly important refueling your body and muscles is within the first 30 minutes of finishing your workouts. In order to maximize your recovery (upwards of 60% better) so you can come back stronger, it really is crucial to find something, anything that will get into your system and STAY there.

This is an occasion where liquids can be a runner’s best friend. If you struggle with keeping actual food down due to an upset stomach after your runs and hard workouts take it to the liquids. Recovery drinks and smoothies can get you those essential protein amino acids and carbs to repair those muscles.

Recently Clif sent me a care package, among the bars (which I already knew I liked and enjoy), they introduced me to their recovery and electrolyte drinks. I hadn’t tried either of those so was interested to test them out.
clif review
Clif Protein Recovery Drink

I sampled the Orange Mango and really liked it. I tried it mixed in with a smoothie (berries and other fruit) and I also tried it just mixed with water. It’s sweet but not overpoweringly so, and plenty tasty on it’s own just with the water.

Each pack has 170 calories and 10 grams of protein. If there was anything I would change or suggest it would be if there were more grams of protein. Ideally, post-run and post-workout you want at least 25 grams of protein. But other than that, I really liked this one…it also comes in Chocolate and while I didn’t try this flavor, really I’ve not met something chocolate I don’t enjoy.

Clif Electrolyte Hydration Drink

These little guys come in tiny sleeves and are really easy to carry around and stash in a bag. I tried the Cranberry Raz and it was a win in the taste department. The thing with hydration for runners is this is an ALL DAY thing, you need to continually be drinking water and fluids…not just right before or after your runs.

I’ve also explained a lot how crucial it is to drink not JUST water, but to find electrolyte replacement drinks to ensure your balances there are correct. Especially with the potassium and sodium. So this is why the market for electrolyte drinks has exploded the past few years. Taste-wise Clif nailed it. The only recommendations I have is that they offer a few with less calories…one pack is 80 calories because it also contains the simple sugars.

If you’re actually RUNNING (ie: part of your marathon training fueling strategy) you DO need that quickly digested glucose. But, if you’re not and you’re just needing the electrolytes the extra carbs and calories may not be what you need.

Thank you, Clif, for sending me these to test out and review!! All their products are available online and I’ve seen them in lots of stores too. 🙂

Soooo, while I STILL feel entitled to complain and be irked at my stomach any and every time it causes me trouble…on some level, when I imagine the bumping, jumping, jiving, and all that other stuff it has to put up with I can kinda sympathize with it for putting up with me as much as it does! 😉

Treat your stomaches with care, Runners!

1) If you’ve had a dialogue with your stomach how did it go? Do you say a little hope/prayer before long runs?? haha.
2) Something you’ve learned about running and nutrition lately?
3) Have you tried either the Clif Recovery or Electrolyte Drinks?

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4 thoughts on “Runner Tummies on a Roller-coaster and Clif Protein Recovery and Electrolyte Drinks Review

  1. still haven’t tried Clif, and it wasn’t until I was at a health food shop the other day that I finally saw tat we stock them (yay) AND that they are pretty natural. And I am so with you on the protein. I don;t care if it tastes awful – it’s necessary! I’d much rather that than the sugar or whatever gum companies use to make the texture, you know, less sh!t.

    Oh runner tummy. I love how honest you are about it, and the more runners run, the more they realise that no-one is too precious 🙂

    • you can ALWAYS count on this runnerchick to crack the runner gut/bush dive/woes jokes. 😉 #keepingitreal
      that’s SO awesome Clif is down in your parts, and i really like their products but also how they do business and their whole brand. the good news is their bars DO taste good too…hehe. 🙂 but i’m with you, i’ll suck down tar if i need to and it’ll help. 😉 *disclaimer: no one please suck down tar*

  2. My dialogue is usually ‘be quiet, I will feed you when we are finished’ or sometimes ‘oh dear tummy, please just, oh please, just don’t make me stop now.’
    I have definitely learned what stays down without causing me to feel like the writing pits of hell are in my stomach, and yet fills me up enough to get out there and go. I run on an empty stomach a lot of the time, but I make sure that I eat as soon as I possibly can afterwards!
    I’m not big on protein bars, but greek yoghurt has plenty of protein and when mixed with a banana and some gluten free cereal I get carbs too! Also, a good homemade smoothie never goes astray when you don’t feel like eating 🙂
    Also, I agree with Kate, the more running you do, the less precious you are! (and the more you talk about…stuff…)

    • haha…we’ll call it the running desensitizer. i remember the first time i had to go to the bathroom in a bush, i was in high school on the verge of a disaster but was nervous/embarrassed…flash forward to today…lol. do wat u gotta do!
      bars are great for convenience, but i’m with you and enjoy me my real food too!! hehe…if i could cook/bake like you, heck i’d about almost set up my own runner refuel biz! 🙂 #cupcakerefuel

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