Still testing, but so excited
Tailwind popped up in my Facebook ads one day--something I generally don't listen to. But, they caught me on a day where I had bonked on a not-that-long run. I felt like I'd tried it all--Hammer, Gu, Honey Stinger, Fluid, Skratch--with little success. I have two big issues: a sensitive GI tract that leaves me either with heartburn or running to a port-a-potty, combined with an irritating brattiness that causes me to not hydrate/take in nutrition if I don't like or get tired of the taste.
Here's the deal: I'm not an elite athlete. I'm a back-of-the-pack, salty-sweating, chubby triathlete training for a half ironman that I'll be lucky to finish in the 8.5 hour window. I'm not a podium athlete, and on occasion get chased by the SAG pick-up van. Turns out, not just elite athletes need to figure out their nutrition, and it's probably *more* important for a back-of-the-packer to carry her own nutrition since stations are occasionally shut down when you're slow.
I started with the sticks. Promptly determined the caffeinated buzz flavors weren't for me (see port-a-potty comments above), but wasn't 100% sold. Part of this was my fault--I was still carrying and using chews because I didn't trust the Tailwind. Went ahead and ordered a couple medium bags. Finally did a brick of a 30-mile ride with a 3-mile run on only Tailwind. I felt fantastic. So I took the challenge. The longest I've gone on Tailwind so far was a 4-hour brick with a 50 mile ride and a 2.5 mile run. I carried--and actually consumed!!!--1000 calories worth. No side effects whatsoever.
My favorite flavors are the Naked and the Mandarin Orange. I love the Green Tea, and would buy it if it came in a caffeine-free version. The flavors aren't overly intense or overly acidic, and taste good cold and warm, which is ideal since even when some is frozen it inevitably thaws when it's 90 degrees out.
My event isn't until August, but I've started training with only Tailwind, and have turned a few of my teammates and my coach on to it. We're all a little stunned still, but I'm excited to have found something that I'm still willing and able to drink after 4-hours. Here's hoping I still feel that way after 6 or 8 hours!