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Vitalyte Sports Nutrition Blog

  • Consuming Chia Seeds for Weight Loss

    Chia comes from the Mayan word for “strength,” and the Mayans certainly knew what they were talking about. Chia seeds were a staple crop of the Aztec and Mayan empires more than 5,000 years ago, and scientists today are starting to uncover just how many amazing nutritional benefits these tasty seeds have. Chia is packed with omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, calcium, electrolytes, antioxidants, vitamins and even protein. Plus, chia seeds’ calories will hardly make a dent in your daily caloric intake. Few superfoods offer so many benefits.

    Regardless of your individual health goals, chia can make an excellent addition to your diet. The nutrients can promote overall nutrition, the protein can aid in physical fitness and improve your recovery time, and research shows that chia consumption may even offer certain benefits to individuals trying to lose weight.

    If you’re trying or struggling to lose a few pounds or even a substantial amount of weight, you may want to consider adding chia seeds to your healthy diet. It is believed that ancient Aztec warriors devoured chia seeds because of the energy and endurance they provide, and that same energy boost can give you the stamina you need to get the most from your exercise routine.

    Chia seeds can also aid your weight loss efforts for other reasons. For instance, there are a number of foods, energy drinks and supplements on the market that promise to raise your energy level, but very few of them have as few calories as chia, and even fewer provide the same essential nutrients. Chia gel can naturally improve your energy level and get your heart pumping without filling your body with empty calories. The benefits are astounding.

    Furthermore, chia absorbs up to 12 times its own weight, so it can work wonders if you have an overactive appetite. Even just an ounce of chia can reduce your caloric intake and help lower the energy density of the foods you eat, in addition to doubling the amount of fiber you receive, according to the Dr. Oz blog. In fact, just once ounce of chia contains more than 40 percent of your daily fiber recommendation, and fiber is the ideal nutrient for satisfying hunger.

    Any weight loss effort is difficult, and should include a combination of daily exercise and good nutrition. While chia is not a weight loss supplement, it does contain enough beneficial nutrients to help you meet your health and weight loss goals. Even small amounts of chia can go a long way in promoting good health, so try incorporating it into your lifestyle today.

  • Milena’s Top 5 Tips for Staying Motivated: #1

    In my last blog I discussed the best ways to train for your first 5k. Well, now that you have conquered that race and are settled into yourchester-cheetahtraining program, what do you, as a beginner runner, do to stay motivated?

    You asked for it, so here it is...Milena’s Top 5 Tips for Staying Motivated.

    In the nature of keeping you on your toes, I thought I'd start with number 1. Stay tuned for the 4 to follow.

    Don’t run as much!

    No you are not still hung over from the beer garden at yesterday’s 5k. Read it again. Don’t run as much. That’s right. The number one reason people lose interest in something is because they have become burned out by doing it too much. Is this a scientific fact? I don’t know, but trust me I know what I am talking about.

    Think of it this way. Remember the time when you were a kid and you over-indulged on Cheetos (or any food...and yes I am speaking from experience)? Tell me if you can even look at Chester the Cheetah the same way. I am right. Anything we over-indulge in eventually makes us sick and we never can stomach it the same way. Running is the same.

    So what’s the best compromise? Here’s a little secret...take mini breaks. I’m not saying you have to take a month off from training. Instead, here and there take a weekend off. Or do what I do. I run three to four days a week and the other days I cross-train. And mix that up too. Spin on the bike, jump into the pool for a few laps or grab your tennis racquet and play a few sets. I guarantee you will actually look forward to your runs when you don’t run everyday.

    Avoid the running trap of “more is better.” That way Chester gets to remain that undoubtedly cool cat in your mind instead of a little orange gremlin who loves to ruin your seventh birthday.

  • Triathlons can be very difficult races....

    By Laura Conley

    Triathlons can be very difficult races, but sometimes its the training that is even harder! Everyday working out for hours on end... evenchia-swimwhen you're tired/burned out/stressed....but that's just what we do as athletes! However, I have found that Vitalyte products taken before/durning and after my training workouts have made it significantly easier and more enjoyable! I drink Tri-phase first thing in the morning then run anywhere from 8-15miles or bike for 2-3 hours. Then as I drive over to the pool, I drink Vitalyte and take 1-2 chia surges so I am ready to hit the water! How else could I keep up with the Master's swim team for 1hour!?

    Finally after I'm all done, I drink the recovery drink (while in the shower haha!) Without the help of my super nutrition I don't think I'd make it through these grueling training days! What a difference  this all has made.

  • Strength Training for Able Bodies and Amputees Alike

    Being an endurance athlete encompasses a lot of things. One that usually doesn't get touched is building a base with strength training. As an amputee, I have many muscle imbalances that restrict my performance. As a result, I spend a lot of time doing unilateral training to make sure no body part doesn't gets left behind. Here is a look at one of my basic training workouts.

    15 Box jumps

    15 Forward lunges

    15 reverse lunges

    15 lateral lunges

    15 transverse lunge

    12 1 leg deadlift

    15 1 leg squat

    15 opp prone cobra "Backlift (no hyper extension)"

    20 Oblique twist band

    25 Wall ball

    15 tuck jumps

    (1xs)

    20 Stability ball single leg ham curls

    20 Stability ball locust lifts

    20 Stability ball kick lifts

    20 Stability ball reverse leg extensions

    20 Stability ball superman

    20 Stability ball oblique twist

    20 trx ball leg curl

    20 trx single leg pike

    (1xs)

    swim 1 mile.
    It is very important to continue strength training during your season to help decrease your chance of injury. During the season I lighten up on the weights I lift and use more body weight exercises...in case you were wondering. Hope you enjoy it!
    Until next time,
    Jamie
  • I'm a Tri Phase Mom

    When I was approached to write a quick blog post discussing my experience with Mother's Day around the corner and my being a mom and all, I can't tell you how different my mom life is now, compared to a mere 12 months ago. I'm a Tri Phase Mom and this is my story.

    My name is Karen and as I said, just over a year ago, I was a new mom trying to get back into the real world groove after having my second baby. Anyway, I was never what I'd call 'athletic' before. I mean, sure I'd walk with my friends on the weekends, flutter around the occasional aerobic class, try my hand at the sporadic jog - but I didn't know what it meant to push myself - so I never did. I was a pretty healthy eater and it wasn't like I didn't move during the day.  Still though, after my daughter was born I couldn't help but feel like I was in something of a fog. My life was not my own for the first time - and even though this was my second child - it felt different this time around.

    I confided in a workout buff but wildly compassionate friend of mine and the rest really, is history. I started working out with her three days a week. We took Tri Phase before our workouts - and in all honesty, at that point, I was just following suit. I drank the good tasting watermelon flavored water, ate what she told me to, and worked out harder than I ever have because well, she yelled at me until I did... in a nice, encouraging way of course. :)

    After a few weeks, I felt empowered. I started working out on my own, pushing through workouts I didn't think I was capable of, and feeling better than I had in years. It was then that I bought my own jar of tri phase endurance and took a look at the ingredients, calorie counts, etc. Now, I'm telling you this because my gut reaction was probably what yours is. 100 calories per serving? You've got to be kidding me. That basically means I have to run another mile to work off this drink before I even start doing anything. Mind you, I had never questioned it before and in fact, had lost 15 lbs by this point, but this social stigma hit me like a ton of bricks to the face. Women don't need extra calories - never drink them - watch them closely - eat lettuce - the socially constructed list goes on...

    Being the rational mind that I am though, I stepped back from my gut reaction and decided to do something different for a change: educate myself and boy am I glad I did.

    Tri Phase is what the experts call insulinemic, meaning that it is a prolonged energy source allows women (and men) to work out longer and burn more fat over extended periods of time. It first uses your fat as fuel, as opposed to depleting your glycogen stores, which, you guessed it, means you can say goodbye to that fat. Beyond that, the amino acid profile of tri-phase, includes beta Alanine, which buffers lactic acid. What that means that basically, your body is recovering while you're exercising, which in turn, decreases your soreness the next day. This, ladies and gents, means you can get back to the gym the very next day - and not blame your skipped sesh on the booty pain from all those lunges.

    All in all, you get more out of your workout, you feel better, more accomplished, and subsequently, you're inspired to get back to it and do it all again. Yes it's 100 calories per serving, but it seems like a small price to pay for the 500 more you burn, the miles that fly by, the competition you crush, the life you lead. Am I right ladies? Nowadays, I'm a proud half marathon finisher - 2 hours 15 minutes mind you- and tri phase addict. It helps me be the woman I have always dreamed of being. On top of it all, I've lost 26 pounds and can honestly say I feel better than I ever have... inside - which is what matters.... and the outside part isn't half bad either.

    Cheers to my watermelon drink - I could not have done it without you.

    Karen

  • Chia Seeds FAQs

    What is Chia?

    Chia is an edible seed that comes from the Salvia hispanica plant, which commonly grows in southern Mexico. Anthropological evidence shows that chia seeds were a staple crop of the Aztec and Mayan empires as long ago as 3500 B.C. The Spanish conquistadors outlawed the cultivation of chia due to its connection to Aztec religion, and the grain faded into obscurity. In recent years, chia has enjoyed a popular resurgence as scientists have discovered amazing health benefits associated with it.

    What are the Chia Seeds Nutrition Facts?

    Chia is one of the ultimate superfoods. A single ounce of chia contains 42 percent of your daily recommended fiber, and more omega-3 fatty acids than salmon. It also contains very healthy doses of electrolytes, antioxidants, and even protein. In fact, chia is a complete protein source, containing all of the essential amino acids, and it contains 3 times more calcium than skim milk.

    What are the Benefits of Chia Seeds?

    Thanks to its myriad nutrients, chia offers a wide variety of health benefits. Chia consumption can help you to meet many of your daily nutrient requirements, and the fiber can help you to keep your appetite under control. The ancient Aztec warriors consumed chia for the energy and endurance that it provides, and you can experience the same energy boost by consuming chia seeds yourself. The ample calcium can help prevent bone disorders like osteoporosis. Chia also promotes heart health and beautiful skin, hair and nails.

    How Do I Consume Chia Seeds?

    You have many options when it comes to chia. You can eat the seeds by themselves or add them to your food or drink, and still derive all of the nutritional benefits. There are chia seed foods, chia seed drinks, chia seed oils and even chia seed bars. Other superfoods, like flax seeds, must be ground up, but chia seeds are beneficial no matter how you consume them. You can even consume chia as a gel, which offers many benefits of its own. Researchers have also found that chia seeds gel has the ability to slow the breakdown of carbohydrates into sugar. Vitalyte's Chia Surge energy gel is a great example of an effective use of chia.

    What are the Benefits of Chia Seeds vs. Flax Seeds?

    Flax seeds are very nutritious as well, but they do not hold a candle to chia seeds. For instance, flax seeds must be ground up in order for their nutrients to be digestible.  By contrast, you do not need to grind up chia seeds in order to obtain the nutritional benefits. Also, chia has much higher amounts of omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants than flax does, and is more nutrient-dense.

    What are Chia Seeds' Side Effects?

    Chia has many nutritional benefits and very few side effects. If you are taking blood thinners, you may want to speak with your doctor before adding chia to your diet, simply because omega-3 fatty acids can thin the blood. Also, the high fiber content may leave some people feeling slightly bloated. You will find though, that the benefits far outweigh the side effects.

  • Are You the Ultimate Athlete?

    Yes you are.

    At Vitalyte we wholeheartedly believe in empowering any and everyone to feel great, be amazing, and live an extraordinary life. As such we came up with the concept of the Modern Athlete. This athlete is a soccer mom, a marathon runner, a yogi, a volleyball player, a walker, you name it. This athlete is anyone who strives to be healthy and does their best to live an active life and here's where we come in. We've spend many a moon in the lab to craft products that empower you to live the life you want to live and that has resulted in, you guessed it, the Ultimate Athlete Package.

    Complete with our original electrolyte replacement formula, tri phase endurance - or pre workout fuel, chia surge gel - the only whole seed chia gel on the market complete with palatanose and beta alanine, and complete recovery - our amazing recovery drink - you've never experienced a workout strategy like this. This system will make you better - plain and simple as that. Feel free to read up on or ask more questions about any of the products in this revolutionary cornucopia of endurance, hydration, stamina and strength but know this: the products in this system are awesome... so if you're not ready to be awesome, steer clear. Jus' saying.

    In love, being awesome, and annihilating competition of any sort,

    Captain Vitalyte

  • Milena’s Top 5 Tips for Training for Your First 5k

    You’ve done it. You are committed. Your race entry has been confirmed. You have your new pair of running shoes and you’re ready to sport your entire LuLu Lemon ensemble on the running trail. But what you really need to know is where do you begin when you are a beginner runner and you are training for your first 5k. Well, here are my Top 5 things to do when you are looking to get fit for that first race. With some preparation and a logical approach, you will be fast on your way to that starting line. So here goes...

    My top tip for running your first race by far is...

    1. Train steady and slow - The build up is key.  You are new to running so you need to take time to acclimate to the sport and give your body time to adapt to its new training.  My rule of thumb is to allow yourself twelve weeks to train for your first 5k.  There are a lot of great resources to help you with your journey.  Try joining a local track club or visit a local running store for information on training groups.  Make sure they know you are a beginner.  Ideally, your running at first should consist of both running and walking and be sure to lace up those shoes 3-4 days a week.

    2. Meet but don’t compete - I highly encourage that you join a running club or group in the initial stages of your running.  You can ask the coach a lot of questions and get great information from more experienced runners.  Plus, it's a great way to meet training buddies.  Take note though, my big rule here is: “Meet but DON’T compete.”  You are there to meet new people and learn about running.  You are not there to compete.  Be careful not to be pulled into how much someone else is running or how fast.  No comparisons.  Remember, this is about your goals and there is only one of you so respect where you are in your fitness and know that eventually, with some steady training, you will be running with the pack.

    3. Hydration and nutrition are key - If you forget these two elements, your training is for not.  Yep, I know you have heard this a thousand times over, but keeping properly hydrated and following a healthy, balanced diet, are critical components to keeping you healthy while you train.  A healthy body can train and tow the line.  An injured body usually stays at home and tries to rationalize that the potato portion in the chocolate covered potato chip counts as one of the five fruit and vegetable servings per day.  Open that bag of decadent treats at the end of your first race to celebrate, not while you are depressed on the couch, nursing an achilles strain.  So, you ask, how do you hydrate?  Make sure to consume enough electrolytes to power yourself through your training.  In terms of nutrition, keep it simple and real.  That means, reduce sugar and high fat foods.  Replace the white flour with nutrient-rich grains such as brown rice, quinoa and amaranth.  Keep the gluten to a minimum to help reduce inflammation.  Make sure your diet contains lots of veggies and a moderate amount of fruit.  Buy local and organic whenever possible to make sure the nutrient yield of the food you are consuming is as rich as can be.  Protein should be lean and be about 35% of your total caloric intake.  Basically that means, about a third of your plate should be protein.  Ummm, and no it doesn’t count if two-thirds of your plate includes an apple pie and the remaining section is a grilled chicken breast.

    4. Don’t be intimidated - This is meant to be fun and empowering.  I know whenever you are learning something new it can be overwhelming and a bit intimidating.  All those pro-looking runners at the Monday evening run, clad in the latest “minima” shoes and wrists adorned with GPS units galore, yes even they were beginners at some point and had to learn.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions.  It's the only way you learn.

    5. Give yourself some credit - A lot of people forget to stop and tell themselves “good job” when they are picking up something new.  Whether it's a new job, relationship or skill, we tend to be overly critical instead of supportive of ourselves.  Realize you're doing this because you want to life a healthy life.  Yes- this is a lifestyle choice, so be happy that you are giving yourself that gift.  The rewards will flow over into all aspects of your life.  I guarantee it.

    Good luck with your first 5k and look for my next blog in this series for beginner runners.

  • My name is Jamie Brown. I am a Triathlete, AMPUTEE, and DIABETIC.

    Learning to be an endurance athlete with diabetes has always been tough.

    Constantly checking blood sugar has always made me think of an appropriate sports cliché: "NEVER GETTING TOO HIGH OR TOO LOW" will help you be successful. Well, I really have to live that lifestyle.

    Over the past year since I started my journey in this sport, I have been constantly looking for easy hydration and in race products to keep my training strong and races stronger. Since I started using Vitalyte products, I really have seen an increase in my ability to push my own limits... and I'm not just saying that.

    I'm currently training for 2 major races in May. The ITU triathlon in San Diego May 12 and The Paratriathlon National Championships in Austin Texas MAY 29. I have been using Tri-phase endurance, which has totally amped up my energy levels over all. I've been training in Escondido, CA in an attempt to replicate the heat I may encounter in some of my races. On my longer runs, I've been loving Chia-Surge to keep my calories up without feeling full at all. Beyond that,  the electrolyte replacement sticks have kept me hydrated and cool on some of the hotter (90+) days, allowing me to go for over an hour on hilly terrain! I'm more than excited to be a Vitalyte Brand Ambassador so keep an eye out for my blog posts in the months to come! Thank you to Vitalyte for your amazing products!!

  • Chia Surge: 90s House Pet or Modern Superfood?

    ramchia

    So you want to get the skinny on Chia Surge eh? I don't blame you. When I first heard about the newest Vitalye product, I was skeptical to say the least. Why would I want to consume an awkwardly grassy 90s house-pet trend, I asked myself. The answer proved quite a bit less trendy than I expected.

    Chia seeds are a super food that have been around for, well, forever. Chia was considered as important as maize by the Aztecs in the 16th century - see? -right away the 90s pop jams start to dissipate. You may have heard of chia usage from Born to Run, a wildly popular book about the Mexican Barefoot Runners, otherwise known as the Tarahumara, who consumed Chia seeds as fuel for their distance runs. Anyway, Vitalyte saw the value in this superfood and decided to do something about it.

    The science behind this seeded gel is unlike anything else on the market…. but seriously, it's the world's first and only whole seed chia gel. Complete with Chia seeds and Palatinose for prolonged energy and muscle fuel along with Beta Alanine and BCAA’s to buffer lactic acid and improve muscle performance, this gel is not at all like the others.

    Most chia surge converts, we're finding, are one of two types: Chia Nuts or Gel Addicts. Since this is a no brainer for the chia nuts, we'll focus on the later: the gel obsessors. Why Chia Surge you ask? You know that feeling when someone hands you a coffee or chocolate flavored gel or Gu at mile 8 of your half? Mile 20 of your century? That awkward, gag-inducing choke down of literal gu that you do because you have to? Because there's no other option? You know that crash that drops you down to the point of no return a mere 45 minutes after taking it.. and then you have to take another in order to function and finish? Yea… we were over that.

    Chia Surge is a light, textured formula that's not too sweet and much smoother than other gels on the market. It kicks into your system 8-10 minutes after consumption and gradually builds you up for two hours - sans crash-  thereby keeping you energized and loving life throughout your workout.

    The long and the short of it is that Chia Surge is one of a kind, comes in two flavors: Raspberry and Pineapple Orange- and is worth your while. So turn up those throw back jams, put on those moon shoes and suck in a Chia Surge - you'll be dancing, running, jumping, and rocking out till the break of dawn.

    In love and Chia

    Captain Vitalyte

    Want to learn more? Take a look at nutrition information and/or buy online.

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