review and giveaway: energybits

If you spend any time in the Twitter athlete/healthy-living circles, you’ve probably seen people talking about ENERGYbits. I know I’ve been reading about them, and I’ve been curious. I’ve definitely been focusing on eating cleaner (most of the time!), though I still struggle with running fuel. I’m still pretty stuck in my Gu ways!

I was doing some chatting on Twitter a few months ago and scored myself a sample of ENERGYbits to try out.


From my contact:

ENERGYbits is a new Boston based sports nutrition company. Our “bits” are rapidly becoming the fuel of choice for athletes and people looking to lead active lifestyles. ENERGYbits have the highest concentration of protein in the world and deliver a steady stream of energy, all naturally and all without sugar, caffeine, chemicals or stomach distress. Even better, ENERGYbits are the only protein in the world that also contain natural antioxidants and Omega 3 which reduce muscle inflammation, iron which prevents fatigue, chlorophyll which builds the immune system and electrolytes which replenish mineral imbalances, all for just one calorie per tab. No other protein offers all this.

ENERGYbits are all natural too, because they are a food, not a supplement. They have just one ingredient – 100% organically grown spirulina algae. Algae has been used by Olympic athletes for over 50 years, but is still virtually unknown in the USA and Canada. We are the first company to bring algae to national attention as a high protein, high performance snack food for athletes and active consumers.

I had a small sample (about two and a half servings), which I saved for the Rock ‘n’ Roll VA Beach half marathon I ran Labor Day weekend. I know they say nothing new on race day … but I was mostly treating this race as a training run, anyway. I’m not totally a stranger to spirulina, either.

Let me start off saying I didn’t plan properly for my pre-race breakfast (mistake #1). I forgot to pack something, and had hoped to find Larabars at the expo … and when that didn’t happen, I hoped Rite Aid would help me out. Nope. I settled on some peanuts and figured I’d grab a bagel at the start line. That’s close enough to my usual peanut butter sandwich.

I ate some peanuts and swallowed 30 ENERGYbits while I got ready to go. Since I needed more distance for marathon training, I left my hotel early enough to get in some miles before the race. I ran up and down the boardwalk, and stopped in a public restroom (yay! they’re open early!) before heading to the race start.  I felt great during my warm-up, and finished four miles by the time I got to the start line.

I had a little time left before I needed to line up, but I wasn’t feeling hungry. I decided not to seek out any more food (mistake #2), so I just walked around a little bit and headed over to the corrals.

I started out feeling OK, running a decent but not-to-fast pace. It was fine, I was planning on keeping this fairly easy. By the second mile, I decided I needed more fuel. I didn’t have any more bits with me, so I was fueled by my old standby Gu for the rest of the race.

And … I wish I could say that handful of bits I ate led me to a fabulous race … but, that’s not the case. The heat and humidity was rough that day, and I just couldn’t hold a good pace. I ended up walking through water stops in the second half, and finished in one of my slowest half marathon times in years. Not awesome, but looking at everything else that day, I can’t really blame that on the bits. I was asking a lot from those 30 calories!

I used the rest of my sample on a shorter workout day. Two days post-race, I had my bits for breakfast and hit the boardwalk for a run before we had to check out and drive home. I was starting my run on the late side (8:30am), and would be running in the sun. Oh, and of course I had a few beers the night before. I gave myself the option of an easy, slow run, three miles minimum.

But then I read the workout my friends would be doing on the track that evening. Eight minute warm up, then 2 minutes on at 5k pace, 2 minutes at recovery pace. Ten repeats total, 8 minute cool-down.

I decided I’d start that workout. Maybe I’d do five repeats. I did have a lot to deal with making this more difficult than it would be on the track at night — 79 degrees, 88% humidity, ocean wind, concrete path, and having to pass trucks emptying porta potties (several times)!

But I stuck with it, only cutting the cool down a little bit short when I hit an even 5.5 miles on the Garmin. My paces may been a little shy of my 5k pace, but the effort was there.  I felt great about sticking with it for that run!

Was it the ENERGYbits that gave me the power to push through that workout?

Nutritional Comparison Chart

Even with mixed results, I think I could really become a fan of ENERGYbits. I’m definitely interested in adding them to my diet, and will likely look into making a purchase. It’s a bit of an investment, but I think it’ll be worth it.

ENERGYbits are only available at, and Jonathan (their Brand Manager) has shared with me that he’d be happy to connect anyone with a current ambassador to share a discount on a bag of bits – you can email him at

A lucky winner will get to try a sample of ENERGYbits for themselves. Enter below! (US, sorry International friends!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: I received a free sample in exchange for my review. I was not compensated any other way. Opinions are my own.

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