Bonking, hitting “the wall”, the sudden and overwhelming feeling of running out of energy. Most endurance athletes have experienced this more than once, and the good news is that it can be avoid through proper “during event” nutrition.
Bonking can be caused by a sudden drop in blood sugar, but more often it is caused by your “fuel tank” running out of energy. Your glycogen stores (your on-board fuel tank) only hold about 2,000 calories (1,600 in your muscles and 400 in your liver), assuming you are properly carbo loaded. You also have body fat that can be used as a fuel source, but fat is more of a survival fuel and you’ll feel horrible (bonk) if that’s all you’ve got left. The solution is to limit your use of simple sugars and rely predominantly on complex carbohydrates during your event. Watch this video (right) for a complete explanation of why complex carbohydrates allow your body to uptake twice as much energy compared to using simple sugars
e-Gel and e-Fuel are designed with this in mind and are loaded with complex carbs and very little simple sugars.
"My husband and I started using e-Gel seven years ago. We had tried everything available in local stores - nothing stood as well as e-Gel for us. We are long distance bicycle riders and now motorcycle riders. Look in our packs and you will find two things, packets of e-Gel and e-Fuel and then a baggy of 'USED' products from each outing. We are always giving e-Gel to fellow riders to help when their product has let them down. The overall experience of fellow riders is less bonking and longer ride times.
Now for the non-human story. My little West Highland White Terrier, Brodie, attends our rides with us. On a recent return trip Brodie seemed tired and hot as we live in Arizona. Checked with the vet who indicated some type of electrolyte product was needed. With explanation of ingredients and permission from the vet, I put e-Gel in his water bowl, added water and ice. Much to my delight, Brodie lapped almost 4 ounces up and with in just a few minutes was feeling himself. We are sold on e-Gel even for our 4-legged friend." ... continue reading
Phoenix, ArizonaSport: Cycling
Steve and Lynna Lyn
"My wife and I ride on average 200 miles per week. She is hypoglycemic and has searched for years for an energy source that she can tolerate on long rides up to 100 miles as well as higher intensity shorter rides. e-Gel and e-Fuel are absolutely the best for a no-bonk outing. We both use it on every ride." ... continue reading
Martinsville, IndianaSport: Cycling
"I am an Ultra-Runner and a proficient sweater and I need to take in large quantities of salt to keep from shutting down during training and races. I was relying on salt caps along with other Gel's like GU to try an maintain my metabolism but it was easy to get the mixture wrong and bonk....I plan on using e-Gel as my main electrolyte / energy gel at Western States 100 mile this June, bypassing the aid station's GU which made me so nauseous by mile 80, I almost did not finish the race." ... continue reading
Livermore, CaliforniaSport: Ultra Running
"My partner and I were 40 miles (about 5 hours) into the Gen. Clinton 70 Miler marathon canoe race in Upstate NY, and my body was starting to shut down. The bonk was coming. We were with a pack of five boats, taking turns pulling in the deeper water above Wells Bridge, but I didn't figure I would last much longer...." ... continue reading
Westmoreland, New HampshireSport: Canoe Racing
"My buddy and I were riding home after a 40 mile training ride-1/2 downwind, 1/2 upwind on the way home. My friend bonked 10 miles out against a 25 mph headwind. We stopped. I administered to him my coveted e-Gel. He complained-wondered if it would make any difference. 10 minutes later he was back on his bike, riding hard, and saying, 'This stuff is incredible.' He now buys from Crank Sports. I always thought our experience was a simple but elegant testimony." ... continue reading
Burns, OregonSport: Cycling, Mountain Biking
"I was at mile 73 of the Gears for Ears Ride for Arkansas Children's Hospital - and I had nothing. I had eaten a Powerbar, hydrated well, and even had a few caramels earlier in the ride, but I was bonking. Then somebody handed me a Crank e-Gel, and it was like coming back to life. I read the ingredients and saw potassium and sodium citrate - key nutrients in the Kreb's metabolic cycle ..." ... continue reading
Little Rock, ArkansasSport: Cycling
"I think everyone needs to bonk before they go on that search for the fuel that works for them during long training sessions and races. e-Gel/Fuel works the best for me of everything that I've tried (which is most). I'd like to think that my successes are do to hard work, but I believe that my lack of failures can be attributed to your products." ... continue reading
Santa Ana, CaliforniaSport: Triathlon
"I use e-Gel for cycling and it does help extend my level of energy and boost performance when I should be slowing down (bonking) due to depleted electrolytes in my body.
This product, along with good hydration has boosted my ability to perform at higher levels for a longer period of time. The clock doesn't lie and faster times means something is working to help me and e-Gel is that something.
Affordable and effective is a good combination but having this delivered to your door means it's convenient too.
Good stuff, thanks for bringing it to us Crank Sports!" ... continue reading
Mountain Dale, New YorkSport: Mountain Biking
"I play golf 12 months a year. In Texas it consistently hovers around 100 degrees during the summer. Anything that I eat during a round at those temperatures gives me a blood sugar crash that makes me lose concentration and, consequently, results in higher scores. Since using e-Gels the problem has disappeared. My recommendation is ... be prepared to drink 12-16 oz of water after eating an e-Gel. This is a GOOD THING. Getting the elements that I need to perform well and having a product that promotes drinking water is the best I've found. I'm 62 years old and play two to three times a week year round. I've had a number of friends my age that have suffered from heat exhaustion and I don't want to be one of them. I've found the solution for me!" ... continue reading
Fort Worth, TexasSport: Golf
"I skate inline marathons. I used to bonk about halfway through the race, no matter what sports drink or gel I consumed. E-gel not only tastes great, but I just don't bonk anymore. I just take in a packet at the beginning of the race and every half hour after that. Thanks for such an awesome product!" ... continue reading
Sun Prairie, WisconsinSport: Inline Skating
"I am an avid cyclist who was using Skratch and then I read an article about the e-Fuel and e-Gel so I decided to give them a try, sure glad I did. I have more energy and stamina and it tastes awesome. At 65 I still enjoy the ride." ... continue reading
McAllen, TexasSport: Cycling
"We were training on a long distance cycle ride. My friend bonked with 10 miles to go in a difficult head wind. I handed him two e-Gel packs and ordered him to eat them. 10 minutes later he was riding as hard as ever. This stuff really works!! I tell everyone who's training to get this stuff." ... continue reading
Burns, OregonSport: Cycling
"e-Gel quickly became my favorite energy source. For long endurance rides or my daily 25-30 mile practice rides e-Gel gives me the boost I need to finish my rides without bonking. Plus it tastes much better than the other gels on the market. " ... continue reading
Kingfisher, OklahomaSport: Cycling
"I have used accelerade, gatorade, powerade...ect and NOTHING was able to keep my energy up. My sugar would spike then crash! e-Fuel keeps my sugars up and STABLE! " ... continue reading
Tampa, FloridaSport: Triathlon
"I first discovered e-Gel at the L.A. marathon expo. I was kind of skeptical about how good it worked and was it really worth spending the extra money for the gels. The gels helped me complete my first marathon and they taste much better than Power gels or Cliff shots. I compared the nutrition facts on each of the labels and the e-Gel is much better than the others. It is the best gel product out there!!! I am a firm believer in e-Gels and I use them for everyone of my 60 mile cycling rides every Saturday and everyone of my brick workouts. I never forget to take them along with me to my triathlons, marathons and half marathons. When my friends are bonking, I'm still going!!! Thank you Crank Sports!!!" ... continue reading
Monterey Park, CaliforniaSport: Triathlon, Running
"I have been using e-Gels for my marathons (and long-run training) for over 2 years. I am convinced that e-Gel is the best -- for sodium and potassium replacement and for the 150-calorie energy boost. The taste is pretty good, and they digest easily with water just after gulping down an e-Gel pack. Bonking (or cramping) at the 20-mile mark of a marathon due to insufficient energy/electrlyte replacement happens; but, with e-Gel, no bonking or cramping for me. " ... continue reading
Dallas, TexasSport: Running
"I was having horrible blood sugar and electrolyte crashes during my long events (half Ironman & half to full marathons). I decided to try to find a new gel and drink with more electrolytes. I found such great success with e-Fuel! No more bonking in the last few miles of my events! One of my friends, who owns a running shoe store, was having similar issues. I told her about e-Fuel and gave her a sample. She didn't try it for months, claiming a sensitive stomach. Finally, out of desperation, she tried it. She loved it so much, she now carries e-Fuel products in her store! Thanks for success x 2 in the hot, humid summers of Florida!" ... continue reading
Cape Coral, FloridaSport: Triathlon
"I drank Gatorade as a source to keep my body hydrated and it didn't work. I cramped up on a 40 mile ride and felt terrible. My coach for Team in Training recommended e-Fuel, so I tried on our next ride. I felt great on the next ride and didn't bonk. e-Fuel doesn't load you up with a bunch of sugar either. Great product. " ... continue reading
Bellflower, CaliforniaSport: Cycling
"I have used basically all the other energy gels and hydration drinks available. There was one energy gel and drink that I used more than others. Then I heard about Crank Sports through a running friend. I decided to try both products offered by Crank Sports and now I'm not looking back. I have found, during the time I've been using them, that I'm able to run longer periods of time with a lot less burn out and more energy. I take one e-Gel every 45 mins. and drink at least 20 ounces of e-Fuel every hour and sometimes I can go to an hour and 1/2 What an incredible difference the both have made in my running performance and and energy levels on long runs. And I'm 67 years old. Thank you Crank Sports for two incredible products." ... continue reading
Suwanee, GeorgiaSport: Running
"Compared to other products I noticed a significant improvement in my energy level and duration. Both e-Gel and e-Fuel provide energy that doesn't feel like a rush like other products produce. I have also noticed that I don't crash after a hockey game or mountain bike ride like I did on other products. Plus, I never get a stomach ache like I would with other products. " ... continue reading
Yorba Linda, CaliforniaSport: Hockey, Mountain Biking