Product Review: Hammer Gel

I’m on the constant quest for “energy gels that don’t hurt my stomach.” Although I generally make my own fluids (ok, Will makes my fluids) for major long runs or races, I do tend to use gels for medium runs or regular long runs. I’ve had a long standing tolerance with Clif Gel, but wanted to try other products this spring as I’m rebuilding the foundation.

I don’t normally gel before running but Friday was a weird day with an exam and 2 pm run start time that prevented me from eating a normal lunch. I felt punky before my run so I tried the Hammer Gel Vanilla that I bought as part of my “try new things” trip to Fleet Feet.

And YUCK. I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to even finish the packet. From the runny consistency to the most bizarre rendition of vanilla flavor, I only finished this one for the purposes of being able to do a product review. The run didn’t feel great either; I spent most of the run bemoaning the fact that it’s too early in the season for porto-potties to be out on my run route. From a more science-based perspective, Hammer also has 20 fewer calories per packet than Gu or Clif and a few fewer carbs. In the marathon or a long run, that’s a big difference. This one was a big no for me!

Who this might work for? Someone with little preference for flavor but who wants a very thin gel.



4 thoughts on “Product Review: Hammer Gel

  1. bpangie

    Someone hooked us up with a bunch of Hammer Gels for the 50 we just did down here. Not sure how I feel about it… Montana Huckleberry I think was the flavor, which wasn’t awful, but definitely couldn’t tell any difference on my runs. Ever try to make your own gels, or running food?

  2. runnerunderpressure

    Hm, I’m not sure what a Montana Huckleberry might taste like in the wild! I don’t make my own gels, but I’ve experimented with energy chews and bars of my own. My big issue is the portability. I do make my own sports drink with glucose and water; took a long time to find the perfect percentage that kept me going without upsetting my stomach, but definitely what I will do going forward for liquid.


Join the Conversation!