Review: 50% longer with SportLegs….sort of

[Editor’s Note: For a full review and discussion of SportLegs, please read SportLegs: Ride Further More Comfortably.]

My brother, Matt, passed me a baggie yesterday with some pills in it. He told me that they are completely legal, called “SportLegs” (What is Sport Legs?) and will keep the lactic acid from building up in my legs, as quickly as normal, if I take them one hour before exercising.

I figured that I would give them a try this morning, because I would be pushing myself with a six-mile run. Six miles is the most that I’ve run so far – I’m working up to 13 miles for the Miami Half-IronMan this November. (For those keeping track, it took me just under 60 minutes to complete the run.)

I missed the one-hour mark, but I did pop three of the SportLegs pills about 20 minutes before going to the gym. When he handed them to me last night, he also mentioned that I should take ONE pill for every 50lbs and to not take too many at once, because there was the potential for getting ‘the runs’.

It had been three weeks since I had done any type of physical activity, because of a busy work schedule and a vacation mixed in there, too. So, I was surprised that I managed to get my 5K distance done two minutes faster that normal and still felt really good. When the clock ticked past 45 minutes, I was 4.5 miles into my run – a solid 10 minute mile pace. About this time, my legs felt a little fatigued, but I ran through it and started to feel much better with about 10 minutes to go to hit my goal of six miles.

I’m pretty sure that’s when the SportLegs kicked in. I was actually able to raise the pace from 6 mph to 7 mph. I think my legs could have taken more, but my heart rate was getting very close to my max. About 5 minutes before the 60 minute mark, my stomach started to feel ‘strange’.

I slowed the treadmill down to about 6.5 mph and had a ‘come to Jesus’ moment. I decided that I would power through it and get to my goal of a sub-60 minute 6-miler. I finished, did a quick cool down, practically ran to my car where I had a pretty good stomach cramp. Needless to say that I rushed home as quickly as possible. I’m glad that I was on the treadmill at my local gym and not running in the middle of nowhere.

So…. Can I go further with SportLegs with less pain and a quicker recovery?

While my legs felt GREAT comparatively to what they normally feel like for that distance at that pace, my stomach wouldn’t have let me go any further. After the ride, my legs feel very little pain. I think that I’ll try it again with two pills instead of three. At this point, the jury is out on SportLegs.