My buddy Pete gave me a big jug of Hammer Perpetuem Café Latte the other day because now that he’s into Cross-Fit he doesn’t get into distance running anymore. He’s more about the weights and sprints right now. I was pretty excited because the price tag on the 32 serving size isn’t tiny ($45). I gave the stuff a try for the first time on Tuesday night. As is quite usual for the male of the species, I didn’t read the instructions. I simply mixed one scoop with a 24 ounce bottle of water, both bottles. I had my first swig about five miles in and, put simply, it tasted like vanilla flavored butt. It was not good. Still, it was the only liquid I had on the bike so I suffered through drinking it to stay hydrated. After the ride, however, I noticed something funny – I felt fantastic. Better than I’ve ever felt after the 33 (or even the 30) mile circuit. I can not emphasize this enough – I felt awesome.
Last night, while getting ready for our 42 mile ride, I actually read the instructions. They have a weight breakdown that calls for so many scoops based on how much you weigh. I’m about a scoop and a half, so like any good drunk (recovering or not), if some is good, more is better. I went with a scoop and three-quarters – and only in one of my bottles, the other is supposed to be straight water.
The extra three-quarters of a scoop made the taste much more bearable, even decent, and I had the same results… I felt a lot better than I normally would for the effort and distance. After only two times using the Perpetuem, I’m hooked. Not only does it help me feel fresher after a decent ride, I felt much better during both rides as well.
The Café Latte has a decent helping of caffeine packed into each scoop so I really wasn’t too surprised that it helped charge me up, but there’s more to it than just a jolt of caffeine. This is from Hammer’s website:
“Perpetuem – This newer product takes the concept of long-distance fueling to the max. We designed it primarily for extreme endurance events lasting about six hours to many days. Perpetuem contains 75% carbohydrates (from long-chain maltodextrins-no added simple sugars), 13% fatty acids from a specially made long-chain lyso-lecithin, and nearly 10% soy protein. A small portion of fat seems to cue your body to more liberally release its fatty acids stores, which account for up to 70% of one’s energy requirements in long bouts of exercise. A little fat in the fuel also slightly slows the rate of digestion and thus promotes “caloric satisfaction,” another attractive plus during primarily aerobic ultra-long distance events. Perpetuem provides maximal benefits at an aerobic pace (under 70% MHR).”
Now I don’t know about the science behind all of that, but I’m telling you right now, the stuff works. I’ve ridden the Tuesday night ride with straight water for going on two seasons now so when I introduced the new “fuel” to the ride, sensing a change was quite easy.
All I can say is that, if you can live with the taste (which isn’t stellar but isn’t bad either), Hammer Perpetuem is great stuff. I highly recommend it for longer rides.
It’s rare that I’m one of the stronger riders in a group but last night was my day in the sun. There’s an invite only club ride that starts at the shop on Thursday evenings. That’s usually a recovery maintenance night for me so I’m usually busy but yesterday evening I decided to see what the ride was all about – and the evening that most everybody else decided to take a night off. Only four of us went on the 42 mile ride.
The goal of the ride, and the reason that it’s “invite only”, is that the guys who put the ride together wanted to keep it sane… They keep the crowd down to those who are happy between 19 and 21 mph average. They don’t invite the horses or the speed challenged because the racers really don’t want to ride that slow and the speed challenged don’t have the lungs or legs.
There was a very interesting dynamic with the four of us though. We had one guy who is used to about 19 mph, Matt who is good at 19-20 and Carla and I who are good around 21… When we headed out, we lined up perfectly so that we could maximize Carla and my ability to pull just a little faster. In fact, it was really kind of cool – if we’d have switched the line-up I don’t think we could have run as fast as we did. It went Matt, Kevin, me and Carla (all from the Tuesday night group). What ended up happening is that Carla and I would crush it for between a mile and a half to two miles, then when Matt and Kevin pulled, Carla and I could recover a bit before our next big pull. The tough part, at least for me, was that once I was done pulling Carla kept the train going so I had a tough time latching on towards the end of the 42 mile ride. Once I got the timing right though, we were like a well oiled machine. Once Carla was done, Matt would slow it down just a touch and then Kevin just a touch more so by the time Kevin was done pulling I was well rested to give it another go.
With a pretty healthy breeze in our face for the first 20 miles we ended up at about a 19 mph pace (2:59-3:10 per mile) but once we turned and had the wind at our backs we really picked it up (2:30-2:50 per mile) so we ended up pulling in with a 20.1 mph pace. I was happily surprised that we ended up with that as a finishing average… It was, in my opinion, a perfect ride.
For today, we’ve got an easy 15 mile ride planned with the kids – 7.5 miles, a stop at an ice cream shop, then 7.5 miles back. It should be spectacular. It’ll be Mrs. Bgddy, me and our two daughters and Carla, her husband and their kids… Tomorrow will be a day off and then the Assenmacher 100 on Sunday for a 205 mile week. As far as I’m concerned, it just doesn’t get much better.