Beatroot Juice

So I keep hearing that runners should drink some beatroot negore as race as this can help them out. Has anyone tried this and did it work for them or is it just another one of those passing fads??

Comments

  • Its gross!

  • Theoretically it's supposed to help increase the oxygen carrying capacity if the blood and boost endurance. I tried it for about 3 months in the run up to a marathon last year. I got used to the taste and ran a pb, but it's impossible to differentiate the effect of the juice vs the myriad of other factors that determine performance.



    It won't do you any harm but more academic research needed before anyone can say fir definite that it helps performance.
  • Even later latest research says that cooked beetroot works as well - more palatable and much cheaper.

  • Dunno if it works, but it makes my pee a lovely shade of pink.

  • Thanks for the responses everyone!! Might give it a go for my upcoming marathon!! What harm can it do? Lol



    Will make a mental note about the red colour pee!! Lol
  • mr fmr f ✭✭✭
    I might try it just for the novelty of seeing my pee come out pink!!!
  • They mentioned it on 'Bang Goes the Theory' the other week and just thought if it would be any good for runners??

    Anyone that has taken it, do you know anywhere you can get it from?? H&B, Boots, major supermarket??

     

  • I bought it from Sainsburys... awful stuff and had to work very hard to drink a normal size glass of it. I decided I would just train harder! image

  • popsiderpopsider ✭✭✭

    I've got it from Sainsburys too - it isn't nice but if you neck it straight back it is just about drinkable.   Too early to tell you if it works yet but yes it does turn your pee pink.    

    I don't know about cooked beetroot being more palatable - I've tried it in the past and it's just as rank but you can't tip it down your neck like you can a drink - the pickled stuff isn't too bad but who wants to stuff themselves with pickled beetroot.   

  • I tried it and couldn't really tell if it affected my performance or not

    but the pink pee was a bit alarming

    (there was a warning on the bottle)

  • MinniMinni ✭✭✭

    I've used it for three races and pb'd on each, but I like to think that was more down to the training than the beet juice! image  However, it didn't do me any harm and might have contributed so I'm willing to use it again.  I juiced my own the first time around but used Beet It shots for the marathon, which were easier for travelling. 

    Charles J - the recommendation is that you take 140ml for the four days leading up to the event (with the last one on the day of the event).  As far as I know there's no evidence that taking it for months on end makes any more improvement and I don't think it would be recommended for prolonged use since there have been no tests done to rule out long term side effects.  

  • Actually I love the stuff, but I like beetroot sandwiches image

    tried it for 4 races, taking it for 5 days beforehand. Pb'd everytime....obvioulsy has nothing to do with me increasing my mileage, and running more days a week.

    As I like it, I'll keep doing it for those special events, but a bit pricey for everyweek. I'll just stick to the sarnies.

  • DeanR7DeanR7 ✭✭✭

    regards long term side effects,   this is a drink that some of the non running general public drink...so i think it will be ok.

    Also if you get a "boost" in races by drinking 4 days before, would it be reasonable to think that if you drank it everyday it would "boost" the effort you can put into your training and therefore perform better

    I have been drinking it for 2 weeks now, the only thing i know for sure is im about £6 lighter. image

  • I am tempted to try it again... 140ml doesn't seem too bad. I have an ultra in 4 weeks so will see if it works.

  • All of the academic research I've read seems to support the claim that it does impove endurance capacity. All of the research was conducted on trained/professional athletes though, so how that translates to improved performance in recreational (I don't really like that word but can't think how else to put it!) athletes I'm not sure. 

    It won't hurt though, and it certainly gives other health benefits so it's worth a try image 

    It's also worth noting that the research has been conducted using a concentrated beetroot juice, so you need to check the nutrition info./ingredients of the different brands. 

  • Hallam BlueHallam Blue ✭✭✭

    Not endorsing it, or dissing it, but here is some research posted on the "Beet It" website http://www.beet-it.com/research/ (there may be some selection bias here - they probably wouldn't post any negative findings, but these may, of course, not exist).

    I'm drinking it daily now - interested in the endurance and blood-pressure effects. I dilute it with apple-juice (about 50:50) which makes it a bit more palatable. I also tried the Beet It concentrated shots pre-Brighton marathon. These were quite tasty really - earthy, but quite sweet - a bit like undiluted Ribena!) As with other posters, I can't discern a particular effect (no single person ever could).

    As regards the pink wee: the main problem with this is that you can't use the colour of your wee to assess whether you are dehydrated.

  • Dan Ellingworth wrote (see)

    As regards the pink wee: the main problem with this is that you can't use the colour of your wee to assess whether you are dehydrated.


    You sort of still can - if it's pale pink you're probably hydrated well, if it looks like Ribena, you need to drink moreimage

  • Wow looks like more people are taking / tried this than i thought. I found some Beet It Stamina Shots on the H&B site, So gunna pop in there and grab a few and see how i get on??

    Would you say this is something you need to load a couple of weeks before a race maybe??

  • Nope.
    The research suggests around 2 hours before the race. 

  • MinniMinni ✭✭✭
    dean richardson 7 wrote (see)

    regards long term side effects,   this is a drink that some of the non running general public drink...so i think it will be ok.

    I asked Sarah, the Asics dietitian, about taking it regularly, thinking that if it boosted training this would boost race times but she said that at the moment they couldn't advise this was the correct thing to do.   Someone else commented that they had spoken to a toxicologist who is also a runner and he said from an athletic point of view he could see the benefits but from a professional point of view he would question the long term effects of nitrate in the system, which maybe linked to stomach cancer. 

    Anyway, who knows! It certainly seems to have benefits in races.

  • DeanR7DeanR7 ✭✭✭

    thanks Minni, interesting view regards effects on long term nitrate.  Will look at the label to see if any form of warning exists regards over consumption...but like you say its too early to say.   Glad its boosting performance, hope it has a similar approach for me image

  • Minni wrote (see)
    dean richardson 7 wrote (see)

    regards long term side effects,   this is a drink that some of the non running general public drink...so i think it will be ok.

    I asked Sarah, the Asics dietitian, about taking it regularly, thinking that if it boosted training this would boost race times but she said that at the moment they couldn't advise this was the correct thing to do.   Someone else commented that they had spoken to a toxicologist who is also a runner and he said from an athletic point of view he could see the benefits but from a professional point of view he would question the long term effects of nitrate in the system, which maybe linked to stomach cancer. 

    Anyway, who knows! It certainly seems to have benefits in races.

    My take on it (and by coincidence I'm also Sarah, a dietitian image ) is that more research is needed. 

    The current understanding of the role of nitric oxide in cancer development is unclear - it seems to depend on the source of the nitric oxide, so exogenous sources such as from beetroot juice may/may not have the same effect as endogenous sources such as those produced within the gut itself. 

    Using beetroot juice as a temporary ergogenic aid in the lead-up and on the day of a race may be safe, but using it every day... well, at the moment I wouldn't. Both because of potential health risks, because of the cost and because whilst I do like beetroot, I don't want it every day!

  • MinniMinni ✭✭✭

    Thanks for that Sarah.  Its all very interesting. 

    I have tried 3 'beet juice ' approaches. 

    1. I juiced my own before a HM.  I took 250ml per day for 4 days.
    2. I bought organic beet juice before a 10k and took 140lm for 4 days.
    3. I took beet shorts before the marathon and took one for 4 days.

    I much preferred the one I juiced myself with nothing else added.  I found the shots to be quite strong and tasted least like the stuff I'd done myself.  These must be quite concentrated.  I had some tummy issues in the latter part of the marathon and wondered if the beet shots had been partly to blame. 

    For my next event I'm going to juice it myself again and see if there's any difference.

  • I had a taste at the GMM recently and found the concentrated shots quite palatable. So I read a couple of the papers not expecting to be persuaded but now feel fairly positive to it for a few days leading up to an event. I agree with both Sarahs image IMHO one wouldn't need it during training - I don't mind having slight handicaps during training like a bit of extra weight in a rucksack - one trains to one's own VO2 max anyway. If endurance can be improved during an event by getting a bit more work per unit oxygen consumption then so much the better.

  • SlokeyJoeSlokeyJoe ✭✭✭
    Agree with the comments above, my experience is:

    700ml (bottle of BeetIt) taken over 3 days (including 150ml 3hours before) before both a HM (PB by 9mins (1:22)) and a marathon (PB by 7mins and run as a training run (3:12)). Most striking feature of those two races was that I seemed able to maintain a high work rate for much longer than I could have believed. The HM was a real breakthrough performance. I had of course trained hard for it!



    I think the stuff is revolting, have to hold my nose and fight the gag reflex every time I drink it however Im convinced it helps to the extent that I'm willing to torture myself with it before each race. Couldn't contemplate taking it as part of routine training though!



    I also caffeine deplete the week before a race and then load up 3-5 hours before race start (I use about 50mg per 10kg body weight through cups of tea and pro-plus tablets - this also gives a boost but my pre race routine is getting a bit complicated!!! image
  • Know this board hasn't been commented on for a while but am interested in the effects of beetroot on running performance

    Again I would agree with the above. I've taken the concentrated shots. Two before a marathon and one before a half marathon as well as one before a 10K. I managed to pb in them all. Taking over 10 minutes off my marathon pb. I am unsure whether I just trained differently or whether the beetroot did have an effect. But all races felt a lot easier than they did in the past. I usually load up on the beetroot juice by drinking it the few days before a race too. I just put it in a glass and pretend it is red wine!

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