Honey Stinger Introduces New Product Categories at Interbike: Gluten Free Waffles and Protein Chews

Honey Stinger will unveil two new product lines, Gluten Free Organic Stinger Waffles and Protein Energy Chews, this week at the Interbike cycling trade show in Las Vegas. The company will also introduce a fifth flavor, Mango Orange, to its Organic Energy Gel line.

“We developed the line of Gluten Free Waffles in response to our most frequent customer request—to meet the nutritional needs of those avoiding gluten in training or dietary restrictions while maintaining the great taste of our original Stinger Waffles,” says Jennifer Shea, Honey Stinger national sales manager. “The addition of the Gluten Free Waffles and the Protein Energy Chews not only strengthens our roster of nutritious and great-tasting, honey-based foods, they set us apart from all other nutrition brands. Customer and consumer demand for an additional Organic Energy Gel flavor also drove the launch of Mango Orange.”

GFWaffle_CinnamonHoney Stinger Gluten Free Waffles will be available January 2016 in three flavors: Cinnamon, Salted Caramel and Maple. The traditional stroopwafel, a waffle made from two thin layers of baked batter with syrup filling, originated over 200 years ago in the Netherlands and remains popular today. Honey Stinger’s version uses organic honey and other organic ingredients rather than syrup, making Stinger Waffles certified USDA Organic. The Gluten Free Organic Waffle is the only product of its kind, available in a single serving wrapper, MSRP $1.49.

ProChews_RaspberryAvailable January, 2016 in Raspberry, Juneberry and Cherry-Lime flavors, Protein Energy Chews maintain the same size and similar texture of the original Organic Energy Chews, but are unique in that they are the first chews to include naturally occurring fiber plus five grams of plant-based protein for sustained energy and recovery. Protein Energy Chews provide 100% of the recommended dietary allowance of essential Vitamin C, and Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) for optimal energy absorption into the body pre and during activity. MSRP $2.49.MangoOrangeGel

New Mango Orange Organic Energy Gels will be available January 2016. Mango Orange Organic Energy Gels are certified gluten free with organic tapioca syrup, organic honey, added electrolytes and a blend of natural flavors, MSRP $1.39.

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Racers Return to Steamboat for Fifth Annual Steamboat Stinger

Honey Stinger hosted its popular mountain-bike and running event, the Steamboat Stinger, this past weekend. The event was the largest Stinger to date, drawing more than 900 competitors, with the mountain-bike race component reaching its maximum amount of 600 spaces back in late May.

“What started as a backyard fundraiser race and a vehicle to promote some of our local trails has truly become a cornerstone event for Honey Stinger and Steamboat Springs,” says Honey Stinger marketing director Len Zanni. “We’re humbled by the success of the race and the rave reviews we’ve received from competitors this year. Our hats are off to all of this year’s finishers and volunteers.”

The 50-mile mountain-bike race took place on Saturday, covering singletrack on Steamboat’s Emerald Mountain two 25-mile laps starting near the base of Howelsen Hill and ending via Lupine and Bluff’s Loop. Riders in Saturday’s race could opt to ride the course solo or in a duo team with riders alternating laps. Sunday’s running competitors raced either a marathon, covering the same trail as one lap of the mountain bike race, or a half marathon, covering a portion of the trail.

Back for his third win, Russell Finsterwald of Colorado Springs finished nearly six minutes ahead of the pro/open men’s field in 4:04:22, with Kerry Werner in second and Chris Baddick in third. Park City native Emma Garrand, won the pro/open women’s division with a time of 5:07:38, ahead of second place finisher, Jari Kirkland, and third place finisher, Jennifer Moos. In the citizen division, Robert Umland finished first among men while Megan Short won the women’s race. In the duo divisions, Ian Anderson and Spencer Powlinson took first for the men, while JB Brockman and Maura McGovern won for the women. Brad Bingham and Hannah Williams led the coed duo division.

Andrew Biglow of Littleton took first in Sunday’s trail marathon, finishing in 3:19:21, while James Johnson finished first for the fifth consecutive year in Sunday’s half marathon with a time of 1:33:21. Reese Ruland of Fort Collins won the women’s trail marathon with a time of 4:15:24, while Whitney Barrett led the women in Sunday’s half marathon with a time of 1:44:17. John Fitzgerald was crowned King Sting, completing the full bike race and marathon with a combined time of 8:40:21. Second-place pro division finisher, Jari Kirkland, took home the title of Queen Bee, finishing both events with a combined time of 10:04:09.

The 2015 Steamboat Stinger wrapped up a three-race mountain bike series that included the Firecracker 50 and the Gunnison Growler in addition to the Stinger. The two-day event also served as a prelude to the first stage of the USA Pro Challenge road cycling race, which began Monday in Steamboat. Proceeds from the Steamboat Stinger will benefit two local non-profits: Partners in Routt County, and local IMBA chapter, Routt County Riders

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Adventures in Fueling

Hive athlete, Adam Danks, shares his adventures in fueling during his beloved treadmill workouts ;):

Don’t do anything new on race day!  That’s the first answer that typically follows any question about fueling for a race, right?  There are pitfalls (not to mention porto-johns) that await you if you neglect this little golden nugget of conventional wisdom.  Sure, toward the end of a race, you may need to eschew all kinds of traditional thoughts on the matter and just throw random calories at the problem if you find your body in serious need.  But, if you’ve prepared properly, then you’re hammering your way toward victory lane with your favorite gel, chew, waffle, beverage, whatever, in your mouthparts. Honey Stinger gels

Following my own advice, I decided to use one BLISTERING day in Phoenix to try something new before an upcoming race.  Temps had hit 115 degrees for a few days in a row, and I needed to get my last strength interval session in before the Missoula Marathon.  So, I gritted my teeth, bought a month-to-month gym membership (not joking!) and proceeded to step onto a treadmill for a 2 x 5mi. interval session.  I would put in 15 total miles, listen to a couple hours of music from my “I Hate Treadmills” playlist, and inhale what I think was smoke coming off the motor of this hideous machine before I got out of there!  The beauty of it was… I had a way to distract myself from all of it!

My go-to fuel over the past few months has been the Pink Lemonade Honey Stinger Chews.  But, as is evidenced by my distain for treadmills, I don’t do so well with stagnation or monotony for very long.  So, I decided to give something else a try!  I would hit my stride and try out the Honey Stinger Ginsting and Vanilla Gels.  Controlled environment, known workout specifics, dreadmill negativity combated by conscious new fuel scrutiny?  It was a great combo!

I started with the Vanilla gel during my warm up miles and then started my first 5 mile effort.  I wanted to try to caffeinated burst from the Ginsting gels later in the workout just in case they happened to cause any stomach issues.  Good results on the first interval from the Vanilla, and then I hit the first Ginsting gel at the beginning of my mid-run rest mile.  Soon after that, I was off on my next 5 mile effort and really pushing.  I had a lot of energy and was able to push hard during the final couple of miles!  I took one final Ginsting gel right at the end of the workout so that I could evaluate the longer effects of the gels in my system.  They worked really well for me, and I was really glad I had put in a little research prior to my race.  Options are always good!

So, what did I learn?  1) still not a treadmill fan  2) I liked the Ginsting gels a lot and will definitely be using those for future racing  3) planning ahead works and it’s a good excuse for distracting yourself from any number of #runnerproblems !  #stingorbeestung

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A Year in the Life of the Haefeli Honey Bees


Honey Stinger at the Haefeli Honey Store in Del Norte

The Haefeli Honey Farm has been around for a long time. In fact, they have been great friends with Honey Stinger for a while. Tom Haefeli is a fifth generation beekeeper. He recently gave us a run down on his busy bees:

Our bees make a circuit. They are currently here in CO for the summer, which is for clover honey production. We ship them to West Texas (Presidio area) in October for the winter. Down there, they just hang out and get some rest.

Late January, we ship them to Central California for almond pollination. That lasts for a month and a half. No honey is made, just pollinating the trees. 1.6 million colonies of bees are needed in CA just for the almond crop!

Honey Stinger

Haefeli Honey Farm

By mid-March, the bees head back to TX where we set up half the colonies for spring honey production. The other half we split in two and introduce new queens. This makes up for colony losses over the past year. We used to split less, but yearly losses have climbed dramatically in the past ten years. You will read that even though yearly losses are way up, the colony population in the U.S. is stable. Beekeepers are keeping that population stable by making more “splits” every spring.

If you look at our Facebook page, there is a very cool video son John did two years ago. He set up his GoPro and did a time lapse of us unloading a semi load of bees.

For a plant to reproduce, an exchange of pollen is required. In some plants, this is done by the wind. Most plants require a visit by an insect and often birds. Plants have evolved a process in which they offer a reward to the insect: nectar. Insects use the nectar as their carbohydrate source and haul pollen (protein) back to the nest. We humans do everything on different scales than Ma Nature. We plant a bazzilion plants in relatively small areas. There are simply not enough indigenous pollinators to do the job. Bring in the Commercial Beekeeper! We can place several million pollinators in just one night.

As for the bees: honey bees are about the only pollinator out there that produces a surplus. That is where our honey comes from. We take some of that surplus and leave them enough to get through the winter.

Honeybees2Nectar is taken into the honey stomach, and transported back to the hive. While in the honey stomach, the nectar is infused with enzymes. Deposited in the honey comb, the nectar/enzyme mix is 80% water. The bees will allow the mix to dehydrate to around 15-17% water and you have honey! The bees then place a wax capping on the honeycomb cell, and that honey will remain at that moisture level, and fresh, until opened up again by the bees for consumption (or when we do it to extract the honey).

Learn more about the Haefeli Honey Farm by visiting www.haefelihoney.com.

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A Finish to Remember

Hive athlete, Kyle Burnell, reflects on his recent triathlon with a very memorable finish:

I’m often asked how being a new father impacts my ability to train and race at a high level. The question to how the new addition to our family would impact my racing has been a difficult one to answer simply because I haven’t raced much since his birth at the end of March. In my one attempt, a half marathon in May, things went exceptionally well. However, one instance doesn’t make a trend. So heading into the Sebago Lake Olympic Tri,  I wasn’t exactly sure how I would hold up to the demands of racing. My training indicated that I was ready for a fantastic season, but transforming that into actual race results is a difficult task.

Photo cred: race photographer

Photo cred: race photographer

Over the past two seasons I have been diligent with regards to my pre-race and race nutrition. For years I struggled to find nutrition solution that I could tolerate while racing near the red line. Similarly, I’ve never been able to eat the morning of a race due to nerves. I tried countless products with little success; what would work in training never held up to the conditions racing presents. Enter Honey Stinger. The waffles are amazing and provided the perfect pre race fuel. Add in a gel or two during warm up and a few more on the bike and I was able to eliminate any worry of nutritional issues. The ability to trust the fuel I’m putting in my body is key. It’s one less thing to worry about, allowing me to focus completely on the race itself.

Photo cred: race photographer

The race itself got off to a relatively boring start as two of us broke away early, making it a two man race from the gun. On the bike, I rode hard, but not irresponsibly. I made sure to keep the pace honest, knowing that I had a solid run in my pocket. By the mid point of the ride it was clear that things wouldn’t break apart until we were on the run so I remained patient.

Photo cred: race photographer

After exchanging our bikes for racing flats, we headed out on the run course where we ticked off splits in the 6:00-6:10 range for the first four miles. This pace was comfortable for me and I knew I had more to give, but I didn’t want to play my cards too early and blow up late in the race. It wasn’t until there were only two miles remaining that I made any significant move in order to secure the win. It took three mini moves for the elastic to finally snap. The first two surges, only about 10 seconds in length, took place on slight uphills. After each, I settled in and was rejoined. The third and final move came at an aid station where I skipped the fluids and my running mate went for water. A solid 60 second push into the mid 5:30s broke the race open and allowed me plenty of space and time to enjoy the victory during final mile of the race.

Photo cred: race photographer

As I neared the finish line I looked desperately for Eileen and Kellan. Since learning Eileen was pregnant I’ve wanted to win a race with my son in my arms and now I had the opportunity. Fortunately, they were at the start of the finishing chute and I had plenty of time to stop and make the handoff. I quickly found that running with a baby in my arms is more difficult that I’d imagined. So my celebratory stroll to the finish was more of a walk than a run. But I didn’t care. The time on the clock didn’t matter. I’d crossed first and I’d done so with my little buddy in my arms.

I’ve been fortunate to win a decent number of races in my career, but none was as special as this. To be able to share the moment with my son, even though he’ll never remember it, was an amazing experience and one that I will never forget.

Read about Kyle’s races on his blog: http://kyleburnell.blogspot.com and follow him on Twitter: @tri3kb


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Honey Stinger Mountaineer’s Account of the Everest Earthquake

Honey Stinger sponsored mountaineer, Dr. Jon Kedrowski, happened to be at Everest Base Camp when the deadly earthquake hit Nepal this past April. The earthquake triggered a deadly avalanche over Base Camp. Kedrowski recalls his recent expedition in Nepal, that tragic day of the earthquake, and how he helped in the aftermath:

This spring, I headed to Nepal with a little bit of nervous anticipation.  I felt like I was ready to tackle the peak of Lhotse 27,940’ (4th highest on Earth) which would place me on Mt. Everest again for the 2nd time in my career.  A few weeks into April, en route to the Base Camp and start of our climb, I passed the Everest Memorials near Base Camp, where the respects are paid to the people that have lost their lives on Everest and Lhotse.  That’s when the expedition went from just an incredible trek over two mountain passes to a full-on committed Himalayan expedition with real dangers. Honey Stinger makes its way to Nepal

The choice I made to go to Everest Base Camp and climb again was truly a choice that made me.  There was no turning back. If you are working on a personal goal, or a professional task, you have to commit yourself fully to the responsibility of sacrifice, and the possibility of failure.  You have to be ready to also accept the fact that with failure could come a catastrophic outcome.  You never want the worst to happen, but you should always be ready for it.

During my pre-acclimatization climbs of two 18,000’ passes called Renjo La and Cho La, I had to stay on the top of my game all day long.  I carried some of my favorite Honey Stinger products with me every step of the way.  Not only was it great to have my favorite energy chews and gels  (especially the Pomegranate Chews and Ginsting Gels) to push me over those passes and climb some high peaks, but I also found that having plenty of snacks and protein added to my diet in a 3rd world country went a long way.

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The Summit of Luboche East

The Peanut-Butta Pro bar was my go-to Protein Bar.  It tastes so good, like a Reese’s on Steroids!  Delicious, nutritious and high octane to deal with the high altitude I did on the trip. I would always have a couple of Ginger Snap Waffles in my pocket as well anytime I was out on a peak or away from camp for extended periods.  En route to the Base Camp to start climbing Everest, I also climbed Luboche East, a Peak over 6000m/20,000’.  That day, I even remember enjoying my favorite Stingers on the Summit!

Basecamp Late April:

I just witnessed and experienced the deadliest day in the History of Mount Everest. The 7.8 Magnitude Earthquake struck around Noon on April 25th.  The earthquake triggered a massive avalanche and the avalanche killed over 20 people.  In my case, the choice I made to fully commit to my expedition may have put me in the line of fire. However, I was not only willing to accept the outcome of being there, but the decision made me be strong, resilient, and helpful to all of the people that weren’t so lucky that day.

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Devastation in Nepal after the earthquake

Climbers and mountaineers as a whole are a resilient bunch, and so I want to give credit to all the people who stepped up in Everest Base Camp.  We helped each other, and the test of my character during that time is continuing to shape who I am overall.  While many of the injured were being cared for, I stayed and collected scientific data about the earthquake. I was even fortunate to share all of the extra supplies and Honey Stinger products I had brought for my expedition with fellow climbers and local villagers in need as I trekked out of the region.

Since returning to the states, I now give presentations about how we can help the people of Nepal. Next year, I will return to lead at least one service trekking trip to Everest Base Camp that will help the local people of Nepal to restore their homes in the aftermath of this huge disaster.

IMG_2383 (00000002)“Sometimes you make choices in life, and choices make you.”

Forge ahead with your choices and decisions wholeheartedly, and realize that through the good and the bad,  good things will inevitably happen if you believe in them.

Well, I made it through that experience safely and am optimistic that good things are going to happen for me, especially when I head out on my next expedition and with the help of my friends at Honey Stinger, anything is possible! All the Best-  Dr. Jon Kedrowski, Vail, CO.

More info about Jon’s guided trips all over the world, email dr.jonked@gmail.com or visit www.jonkeverest.org

You can view the full Smithsonian Everest/Nepal Earthquake Documentary here: https://app.aframe.com/links/b50dbfd3b4554bea5d1ec28378e45fb7

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New Grapefruit Energy Chews Win Women’s Running Magazine Award

Honey Stinger is pleased to announce that its new Grapefruit Organic Energy Chews were honored in the Women’s Running “Fuel Up Awards,” for best new chews. The Fuel Up Awards ran in the Women’s Running June issue, featuring their editors’ top picks for chews, drinks, bars and gels in 2015. Honey Stinger grapefruit chews

“Our Organic Energy Chews continue to be a favorite among consumers year after year,” said Jennifer Shea, Honey Stinger’s national sales manager. “The Women’s Running Award and Triathlete Buyer’s Guide inclusion indicate that our chews are ideal for fueling runners, cyclists and triathletes alike.”

Honey Stinger’s Organic Energy Chews were also awarded in the 2015 Triathlete Buyer’s Guide for nutrition alongside several gels, chews, protein bars, hydration mixes, hydration tabs and more.

Honey Stinger introduced Grapefruit Organic Energy Chews in March of this year as a result of the popularity of the grapefruit flavor in the Kids’ Organic Citrus Chews. Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews are now available in Grapefruit, Lime-Aid, Pomegranate Passion Fruit, Fruit Smoothie, Cherry Cola, Pink Lemonade, Orange Blossom and Cherry Blossom flavors.

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Conquering Capitol Peak with Honey Stinger

Honey Stinger Hive

Colter Hinchliffe admiring the sunrise from just below K2

Capitol Peak came a calling our names again this year with an incredible amount of late season, sticky spring snow.  It’s always an interesting dilemma on the logistics side when there is no snow down low, but an insane amount up high.   Capitol Creek was no different and as Colter, Riley and I started our trip out with skis and boots on our backs and shoes on our feet, it made it slightly better to have a full moon to tackle the 8 mile approach with.  We rolled out of the parking lot at around 12:30 AM in hopes of being on the summit early morning.

We spent most of the night walking or skinning by just the light of the moon and the slog really went by rather quickly.  Having transitioned to skis around 3.5 miles in, it was a welcome relief when the first booter up to the Daly-Capitol saddle came in to view and we were allowed to switch muscles for about 1000 feet of climbing.  I make it a goal to stuff my face just about every time I transition and this morning was no exception.  For a line like we’ve had in mind, I was going to need all the energy I could get.  After eating a Honey Stinger waffle, some chews and a gel, it was up and away to the saddle before transitioning again and slamming a bar.  I’ve been on quite a few lengthy expeditions with Honey Stinger product and to this day I haven’t really become tired of it and still enjoy it.  That’s not something I usually say about energy food.


Honey Stinger

My rations for the 18.5 hour day. It got me through!!!

We drop in via headlamp and do a super icy dropping traverse into West Snowmass creek.  And put skins back on for the next 1000 feet up to K2.  ‘If you are hungry, it’s too late’ is the motto I live by (and try to act on) when it comes to mountaineering, so I keep emptying my pockets as we come up and get our first light of day just below K2.  We couldn’t help but dwell on the moment and snap some photos of an incredible sunrise before reminding ourselves that we had to climb east facing terrain to get to our summit.  We skin for another 10 minutes and the skis are replaced with crampons as we start our traverse around K2 and on to the knife edge ridge.  The conditions are prime for easy walking on most of the ridgeline and once across the flat section of the route we start our final ascent to the peak up 60-65 degree snow and rock sections before finally topping out on the summit ridge and traversing the final 100 yards to the true summit.  Half the battle is over, and I begin to stuff my face with more food than I’m hungry for, knowing full well that our descent is going to take plenty more energy, and will likely not leave any time for another meal.


Honey Stinger Hive

Riley Soderquist and Colter Hinchliffe climb some of the steeper snow and rock en route to the summit.

After some deliberation we decide on the north facing line but decide that the traverse in is unreasonable.  Good thing we have ropes!  A 150 ft rappel puts us on skiable snow and after a couple hundred feet of 60+ degree skiing we have another short 30 foot rappel.  Following that we all give a small sigh of relief and get down to skiing 55-60 degree terrain for the next 1500 feet before we hit the final 400 foot rappel and build an anchor.  We all rappel to the ends of our ropes and find a crack to build our last anchor that will get us all the way down to the relative safety of the apron.


Honey Stinger Hive

K2 looks on as we traverse the flat part of the ridge before the final push to the summit.

We reap the reward of another 1000 feet of corn turns to the lake and find a big boulder to crash on for a few minutes to reflect and just look at our line.  Cherry Cola Chews are my favorite, and I made sure to have no shortage of them today.  Another pack hits my belly before we shuffle our way down to our shoes and load up for the rest of the walk out.


This is easily the most committing line any of us have ever done in Colorado, and we feel lucky to have found it in good condition and to have finished it safely.  On the walk out and while BBQing in the parking lot, we christened the name Peg Leg for our new line.

-Hive Athlete Jordan White


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The Magelky Cycling Blog: Summer is Coming…

For as many years as I’ve been racing bikes, I’ve learned that I just have to face the fact that I struggle in the first few races of the season. It just hurts out there. And even though I work very hard in the off season and feel strong as I start racing, the intensity of a race is just a huge wake-up call. Another factor is getting into the mindset that everyone else is hurting, too. (which, admittedly, is hard to do when you’re in survival mode!) This year was no exception and I actually struggled to even finish the 50mi Ridgeline race. It was brutal. FB402

Truth be told, I’m horrible about eating and hydrating in races. I have NO PROBLEM eating when I’m not racing. Believe me. However, when you’re in the fog of battle and ‘race drunk’, (as my friend Michael Friedberg calls it) it’s easy to let time go by without staying on top of the important stuff. I’ve learned to be better about it by putting a specific amount of food in my back pockets and making sure it’s gone before I’m done with the race. I also try and drink a bottle an hour – depending on the temp. For those who are like me and want to know what others do for their food intake, I eat a bag of Honey Stinger chews every hour. Even if I have to slow down due to trying to eat on tricky terrain, you MUST eat! I actually won the Laramie Endure a few years ago just eating chews because they were the only thing that sounded good to me in the race. Ever since, they’re my go-to. Lucky for me I’m sponsored by Honey Stinger…

There was some redemption a couple weeks after the Ridgeline race as I lined up at the Desert RATS Classic out in Fruita, CO. The weather has been so crazy here in CO and pretty much every race has been postponed due to rain, but after neurotically checking about 5 different weather sites for 2 days straight, this was the only event with a possibility to even happen. And after being postponed for one day, it was on. (Even though we rode for 4 hours the day before, we were still excited to clean the bikes and race for 100k the next day!)

Although there wasn’t a big field of pros out there it was a great event on some great technical terrain. I really prefer the more rugged trails out in Fruita so this was an ideal race for me as the organizers added in the Zion Curtain trail, which has some tough climbing and descending – as well as some great views! I ended up taking the win out there, but the best part of the weekend was just being able to spend some time with a good friend, get some additional training in, and completely steal the ‘boots’ from Rob so my legs were nice and recovered.

I know I write a lot about how hard it is to balance work and racing, but it’s something that will always be a challenge as long as I want to race at my best level. Sometimes that struggle needs to be remedied by a good ol’ trip to the mountains. No racing. No work. I mean getting down to the basics of why one lives in the mountains. Well, Rachel had an outdoor conference in Snowmass for a couple days and I jumped on the opportunity to go and ‘shut the outside world out’ for a bit. I have no problem with doing this these days. I used to freak out about who was trying to get a hold of me and all that, but these days? Nope. I had my wife with me and that’s all that mattered. I needed to have some soul nurturing and that came in the form of riding my bike all day for a few days. It went something like this: Wake up, drink coffee, eat a big breakfast and look at maps. Then go ride all day. Ride everywhere. Climb as much as possible. Meet cool people around Aspen and Snowmass. Crawl back to the hotel because you’re exhausted and it’s a 5 mile climb home. Clean up, eat dinner, drink a beer, stretch and relax. Then just repeat the next day. A truly soul nurturing ‘training camp’. Oh, and I went through a huge chunk of my Honey Stinger inventory during that trip. It’s pretty amazing how much you’ll eat on an all-day adventure like those were. IMG_3881

Earlier I mentioned great, challenging trails to race on. Enter another race with plenty of those. I finally made it to the Firebird 40 in Eagle, CO this year. That whole rain delay thing we’ve been experiencing here actually played in my favor this time. Due to my hectic and unpredictable travel schedule for work I’ve had to skip a lot of races in the last couple years. This was one of those that I would be jealous about when hearing my friends talking about how great it was. Well, it turned out that this year was the year to do it since Mike McCormack produced an amazing race with a true backcountry feel. Imagine high desert, twisty singletrack, steep climbs, cattle, several ‘stream’ crossings, (well, maybe one river in there, too) aspen groves and breathtaking views. Yep. That was the Firebird 40. And it was a hell of a race.

Leading into the FB 40, I had been in Austin all week on a shoot. Granted, I did have the training camp miles in the bank from the weekend before, but I wasn’t able to do any prep in the lead-up to the race. I literally landed in Denver at 11PM on Friday night, drove to King Soopers to get supplies for the race, got home and ate, wound down a bit, and then went to sleep at 1AM. Then the alarm went off at 4:30AM. All glamour. I did a moderate warm-up and then the race started. I was not feeling like superman during that first hour. I even made a mistake that led to me dropping my chain. (I’m on a 1×11 so there’s no trick to getting your chain back on while riding) I pulled over to get it squared away and then dropped back to like 20th or 30th. This is where experience led me to remain calm and try and work back up. I made it back to the top 10, but I pretty much blew up in doing so. Then the training camp miles kicked in and I started feeling a lot better. In the end I worked my way back to 4th and I’m pretty happy with that. The field was fast and it was a true mountain biker’s course. All good prep for the months ahead.

As the heart of the season comes into view, I couldn’t be more motivated. I have a new focus added to this season in the form of the NUE Series, which will only help in my quest to have a good day at the solo 24 hour worlds in CA in Oct. I’m also happy to say that – for the first time in several years – I can actually plan out the summer since I won’t be traveling for 3 months outside of racing. I love what I do as a filmmaker as much as I love being an athlete, but the work travel has really effected me and I’m just looking forward to having a relatively normal life for a few months! I’m pretty disciplined when I travel, but the stress of trying to figure out a workout that will actually help in my training gets extremely challenging. There’s just a lot that comes into play there and I’m happy to be able to be in the mountains for an extended time.

Lastly, it should go without saying, but I’m sayin’ anyway – and often: Support from anyone and any organization is a huge luxury. I’m not quite sure how I ended up being so fortunate with having a team like the Honey Stinger / Bontrager Off-Road team take me in, but I couldn’t be happier. It’s a family and I feel at home with this group of people. From the athletes to the owners. Good people.

And speaking of family, my parents and wife continue to be my biggest fans and supporters. Any time I feel like my motivation suffers a bit, I just think about them and I get back to pedalin’.

Well, it’s time to go clean the muddy clothes and bike. However, before we know it Colorado will be hot and dry and we’ll all be reminiscing about the time when we had three weeks of rain and the vegetation was a rich green…

-Kelly Magelky



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A World of Skiing Fueled by Honey Stinger

Hive athlete and ski guide, Brennan Lagasse, shares a recap from his adventurous 2014/15 ski season:


Brennan touring the Himalayas

As a backcountry skier and ski guide, mountain nutrition is paramount. I was happy to join the Honey Stinger Hive this winter and found myself buzzing from the good energy all season long.

The buzz started in November with an early season assignment in Whistler, B.C. that carried on to the opening day of Revelstoke Mountain Resort. The weather was funky in Canada during the early winter, but “Revy” had a memorable first day with powder coating high elevation terrain, and heaps of happy skiers and riders celebrating the start of another winter.

Warren Miller Crew

Warren Miller Crew

After a quick trip to the frozen trails of New Hampshire, I found myself covered in cold, light snow reporting on early winter conditions in Chamonix, France and Courmayeur, Italy. February kicked off my guiding season with a session in the Kashmir Himalaya working for The Adventure Project. In March, it was time for Alaska where I co-guide a helicopter assisted ski touring program with Points North Heli-Adventures. We were happy to welcome Warren Miller Ent. this season to film a segment for their 66th film that’s due out in the fall.

Northern Lights – Greenland

After Alaska, it was time to head to Greenland to guide for Ice Axe Expeditions. This was our second trip to Sisimiut, Greenland, one of the most beautiful mountain regions of the Arctic. Back home in the Sierra for May, what had been one of the worst winters on record for precipitation in California turned out to be one of the snowiest, wettest months of May in years. Throw in a day of indoor skiing in Dubai, and even a few turns on some sand dunes in Nevada, and all in all it was a pretty memorable ski season.

Throughout my travels this ski year, I had Honey Stinger products in my pack on every mission. For the bigger days, I always had several gels on hand, becoming quite partial to the Strawberry Kiwi flavor by seasons end, but for everyday, I always had some combination of energy chews and waffles. The biggest problem for me after so many years of testing energy food is my palate has become strongly averse to enjoying it, to the point of having plenty of energy food in my pack, but not eating when I needed it because I had burned out on the taste. As nice as it is to sit down and enjoy a lunch or snack in the high country, I’ve become much more inclined to eat on the run, or skin track to save time over the years.

With Honey Stinger this season, I was actually able to get superior performance and enjoy what I was consuming. The waffles are tasty enough to just snack on, and the chews (Cherry Cola for the win!) are delicious. Imagine that – performance and taste. I definitely look forward to continuing to use Honey Stinger products in the field in the off-season for surfing, running, biking and climbing. Now my worry isn’t if I’m going to eat what’s in my pack, it’s keeping my pack stocked with enough goodies for every adventure!

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