Serious Cramper, Adventure Racer, shares his NASA-developed solution

Serious Cramper, Adventure Racer, shares his NASA-developed solution

Barry Nobles 2014-Barry-Nobles-Profile-Photo-300x225considers himself a nerd at work and at play. He works on legislation and strategic planning at the Coast Guard headquarters in Washington, D.C. In his spare time, he’s into Adventure Racing. [Editors Note: Adventure Racing is one of the faster growing endurance sports in the US with over 50,000 competitors annually leading up to National Championships]

What is Adventure Racing?

usara2“It’s kind of this nerdy cross section of the sports world,” Nobles explains. “It’s kind of like a triathlon, except you’re on a team and you have a map and a compass. You have to figure your way from checkpoint to checkpoint to checkpoint to checkpoint – on foot, mountain back, paddling, climbing. You’ve got to figure out how to get from place to place.”  [Editors Note: Learn more at USARA – US Adventure Racing Assn.]

Nobles loves the sport but was hampered by cramping, a family condition shared by his sister, father, and grandfather. “I come from a proud line of crampers, he jokes, but his teammates were exasperated by the interruptions every few hours. “Nobody wants a teammate who’s standing there locked up and can’t move. I’d be a liability to my teammates” One teammate recommended The Right Stuff (NASA-developed zero carb, electrolyte drink additive), and Nobles tried it first at a mountain bike race, the Shenandoah Mountain 100.

I started taking The Right Stuff. I made it through the whole race and didn’t cramp once. Now I’m in love with the stuff.

“That was the first time I actually used it for an event,” he says. “I’ve attempted that race three times. The first two times, before I was even halfway there, I completely locked up, around Mile 45. Last year, I started taking The Right Stuff. I made it through the whole race and didn’t cramp once. Now I’m in love with the stuff. I have teammates in love with the stuff, too.”

Nobles uses The Right Stuff at least weekly. “That is my drug of choice,” he says. “If I’m going over an hour, that’s when I use it. I train pretty hard. I’ve been doing a lot of racing lately.” He participated in the Krispy Kreme Challenge, a charity race from the N.C. State University campus to a downtown Raleigh doughnut shop several miles away where runners consume a dozen doughnuts before racing back, all in less than an hour.

Nobles recalls a 24-hour adventure race where a friend cramped and lay on the ground in the woods while others tried to massage his legs. “That’s not a good way to win a race,” he says. “He definitely would benefit from The Right Stuff.”

2010 and 2012 NCAA Football Champion University of Alabama: Nutrition is Critical to Athlete Success!

2010 and 2012 NCAA Football Champion University of Alabama: Nutrition is Critical to Athlete Success!

Amy BraggAmy Bragg was the eighth full-time college sports dietitian in the entire US when she was hired at Texas A&M in 2004, a position created when the Athletic Director came from the pioneer athletic-nutrition focused University of Nebraska. As the profession has mushroomed in the past decade, Bragg, who moved to the University of Alabama Alabama Univ ofin 2010 (Editors Note: In 2011 & 2012 Alabama was the College Football Champion), hopes to see nutrition awareness expand into other fields.

Nutrition is a big, broad concept, beyond sports nutrition,” she says. “It affects every person. It’s something I would like to see grow.”

Bragg credits her interest to a nutrition and foods course she took as a high school senior, taught by a dietitian who was ahead of her time on the subjects of herbs, recipes, and sustainability in the 1990s. “Nobody was really thinking of sustainability in the food supply back then,” Bragg recalls.

Bragg earned a degree in Finance from the University of Texas, where she supported the athletic program as a football hostess, and went on to earn a nutrition and foods degree at the University of Houston. She became a Clinical Dietitian at the Texas Medical Center in Houston in 2001 and also started consulting with athletes about nutrition before she joined Texas A&M. Bragg, one of the founders and past-president of the Collegiate and Professional Sports Dietitians Association (CPSDA), witnessed the early days of the athletic nutrition movement.

Athletic Nutrition Movement

“Back then we were just getting connected, creating a listserv, starting to talk, about a dozen of us networking, going to meetings, running into each other and sharing ideas, how to navigate challenges,” she recalls. “It was slow initially. The growth has really happened, I think, in the last three years. It’s really evolved.”

…when you manage the food supply you get better outcomes, when you manage nutrition rather than just react to it or treat issues medically. You get a much greater benefit for the athletes’ development and their long-term health.

“Those of us who have worked with Athletic Trainers and Strength Coaches for a while have been able to show…when you manage the food supply you get better outcomes, when you manage nutrition rather than just react to it or treat issues medically. You get a much greater benefit for the athletes’ development and their long-term health. It’s an important partnership with the other support staff. Parents and athletes value it. They value nutrition when you talk about it in a recruiting scenario and they value it when they come on campus.”

Athletes often overlook the importance of what they eat for their performance, Bragg says.

“Athletes don’t respond to lectures, and they don’t want to be forced to see a nutritionist,” she says. “They can’t see that they’ll get anything from it because they don’t have a weight problem. It shouldn’t be punitive. For every athlete, it should be about performance, it should be about health. They typically don’t eat well. Getting them to eat better keeps them on the field. You have to get them at the right time. Sometimes it’s when they’re injured. Sometimes they’re doing a rehab and you can affect them more – they’re more responsive. But really it’s for everyone.”

The nutrition plan includes The Right Stuff when needed to protect athletes’ hydration.

“There are occasions and specific athlete needs that require higher sodium intake,” Bragg says. “The Right Stuff is an effective add-on to whatever you’re doing for hydration. In the food plan, for some athletes, The Right Stuff becomes essential for them to perform well throughout an entire game. If you’ve ever had a full-body cramp, you’re responsive to anything that will keep that from happening again.  The Right Stuff is a powerful aid in prevention of cramps. [Editors Note: Studies show the formula also improves core thermoregulation, protecting the body from overheating and increases athletic endurance]

If you’ve ever had a full-body cramp, you’re responsive to anything that will keep that from happening again.

We try to have a full arsenal of things to get athletes through every situation, and The Right Stuff is an important part of that for us.”

Bragg hopes that the athletes’ nutrition education will impact the rest of their lives. “It’s part of their development and their performance and their lifelong health,” she says. “Athletes are going to go on and become parents, and they’re going to develop their children’s nutrition. We’re talking about the big picture.”

To learn more visit www.TheRightStuff-USA.com

NASA-developed Hydration Aid Helping Soldiers in Hot Climates

NASA-developed Hydration Aid Helping Soldiers in Hot Climates

The Right Stuff, NASA-developed electrolyte drink additive was originally created for our astronauts and now used by high-exertion athletes from football players to triathletes, is helping U.S. troops stay strong in high-temperature locations where they are deployed.TRS_LOGO_dbl drop w ™ jpeg

Keeping Our Troops Hydrated

Donations of the product by Colorado-based Wellness Brands Inc. are coordinated through Operation Troop Aid of Tennessee, a decade-old nonprofit committed to providing care packages and bill payment assistance to soldiers of all military branches.

“The Right Stuff is made for such intense athletes,” says Mark Woods, founder of Operation Troop Aid. “These troops are in harm’s way in a very hot environment, so keeping their hydration up is critical to their performance. It makes a lot of sense.”

Woods established Operation Troop Aid after he helped manage the nationally-televised Garth Brooks performance after 9/11 on the U.S.S. Enterprise, where he was stationed.

The organization, which partners with fairs, festivals, shows, and other events, has distributed more than $6 million worth of products. Sponsors range from restaurants and jewelers to radio stations, a popcorn producer, and a chocolatier.

David Belaga, CEO of Wellness Brands, contacted Woods when he heard about the initiative three years ago. Since the first donation, included in care packages, Wellness Brands has shipped The Right Stuff directly to troop stations for distribution to the units.

We’re grateful to Operation Troop Aid for making possible this way to serve and support our troops.

A wide cross-section of athletes from High Schools and Colleges to Pro teams (NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL etc.) and Olympians use The Right Stuff for training and competition.   “Athletes, firefighters, construction workers, and others who do strenuous labor in hot and humid conditions are benefiting from this product.” Belaga says. “We’re grateful to Operation Troop Aid for making possible this way to serve and support our troops.”

The Right Stuff from NASA is a prepackaged, electrolyte, liquid drink additive that goes instantly into solution when added to at least 16 ounces of water. The formula combats cramps, headaches and the other symptoms of dehydration; protects the body from overheating both in times of intense exertion as well as in high heat settings; and increases endurance over 20 percent more than any other NASA-tested formula. Plus, NASA studies show that the formula also offsets the negative effects of jet lag and high altitude.  Learn more at www.TheRightStuff-USA.com

From Attempted Suicide to Ironman is a Tough, But Rewarding Road

Shane Niemeyer Shane Niemeyerwas running to catch up when he became an Iron Man competitor. Niemeyer had spent much of his youth drinking, overdosing on drugs, getting arrested, spending time in prison, and barely graduating from the University of Southern Mississippi when he was homeless after getting kicked out of a long-term treatment center.

His story, told in the recently-published The Hurt Artist: My Journey from Suicidal Junkie to Iron Man, turned when he tried to hang Shane Niemeyer Book Coverhimself after a few days in prison – when the withdrawal symptoms were bearing down – and the extension cord snapped.

Achieving Your Goal

“I had never been able to quit or tone it down,” he says. “I didn’t want to live. I needed something to latch on to.” He read about Ironman in an Outside magazine in his cell and made a championship at Kona his goal. “It was the seeds that would grow into an ideal, a vision for myself,” Niemeyer says. “It helped me pull my life together as a person, not only as an athlete. It helped me start healing myself.”

In the decade since, Niemeyer, 38, made progress despite injuries and his body’s reluctance – “you start trying to compete at a very high level with people who were competing when you were getting drunk and doing drugs,” he says – and qualified four years in a row for Kona. He has won races as an amateur and found himself in the top 10 among hundreds of competitors in some contests.

Cramping Solution

One surprise as he began to compete was the debilitating effect of cramping – sometimes engulfing his body, including neck and face.

I was completely unaware that cramping could be so severe,” Niemeyer says. “The longer the event is, the more important nutrition and hydration and food levels become.

Not paying attention to details you don’t know about, coming into these things late in life, it became more and more clear that I needed something.” I don’t have to worry about taking pills. The Right Stuff is a liquid concentrate that goes easily into your water bottle. The Right Stuff was the solution. “I don’t have to worry about taking pills,” he says. “It’s concentrated and it takes you a lot further. You don’t need to focus on it. I need about 1800 milligrams of sodium an hour, so two bottles, two-and-a-half bottles will get me through the bike portion of an Ironman. That’s what works for me.”

Shane Niemeyer and wife Mandy McLaneNiemeyer, who married professional triathlete Mandy McLane two years ago and lives in Boulder, Colo., coaches other triathletes while he keeps pursuing his vision of a championship.

“You’re going to get out of a thing whatever you put into it,” he says. “The goal from here forward is to try to win a world championship as an amateur, a couple of Ironman championships.”

The Secret to Ironman Success!

The Secret to Ironman Success!

The day after another disappointing, cramp-hampered Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, George Robb was walking down Mauna Lani Drive when he noticed an empty packet labeled The Right Stuff that someone had tossed on the ground. Intrigued, he conducted some online research and discovered that the NASA-developed formula contained sodium citrate which might solve his decade-long frustration where high-quantity consumption of salt pills had failed.pouch on road 5in

“My Achilles Heel has always been cramping in the marathon of the Iron Man,” says Robb, 54, who has qualified for the Ironman championship since 2006. “I always got a cramp in my quad and I thought it was fatigue from cycling. I would get myself into incredible cycle shape and it would still happen 10 miles in to the marathon – I can remember the spot in Hawaii where it always happened. I’m pretty competitive. I would have been top three in my age group if I had not been ground to a halt by debilitating pain.”

The Right Stuff solved his cramping problem, which also shored up in his swimming, and energized his cycling. “I was talking about having to quit swim practice or slow down because of these cramps,” he says. “All of a sudden that’s gone. We’d go on these long bike rides and I’d take bottles of water with one packed of The Right Stuff in each water bottle on these long rides and I wouldn’t need as much nutrition or carbohydrates. What I thought was the depletion of calories was actually the onset of dehydration. I don’t have to eat like a horse on these long rides.”

What I thought was the depletion of calories was actually the onset of dehydration.

Robb and his wife, Linda Neary, a multiple champion triathlete herself, both recommend The Right Stuff at their Tri Bike Run store on US1 in Juno Beach, Fla., and customers come back for more. George is competing in two Ironmans this year, hoping to qualify for Kona again now that he’s solved his cramping problem with The Right Stuff. “There’s nothing like it,” he says. “I’m a heavy sweater, and I lose a lot of water when I work out. Anyone who is a super sweater should definitely use this. That stuff really works.”