Iskiate … a natural EPO?

Iskiate Chia 3Is Cat What?

Well, if I’m honest, I’d never heard of it until a few days ago when I was reading Born To Run, the best-seller about the Tarahumara Mexican tribe. In summary, they can run hundreds of miles without stopping with hardly any physical (or mental) consequences  and their diet’s pretty limited. One thing they do drink for their races however is  Iskiate: it looks a little like a bucketful of tadpoles and feels a little like that too when you drink it. Thankfully, no baby frogs are required…

It’s actually ridiculously easy to make: one and half tablespoon of chia seeds, 16 oz of water, leave it for 5-10 minutes, add lemon/lime juice and honey for taste et voila, you should be able to run 100 miles without a blister, tendinitis or a failed drug test.

Tadpole soup
Tadpole soup 

The best way to scientifically test this is to select a sample of one (moi) and repeat the test just once to get conclusive answers. Cue my 35km run this morning. Although the placebo effect probably had a fair part in it, it does seem to work a little and I deserve the Nobel Prize in Medicine for conclusively sorting global famine. I would have been on target for a <3h10 marathon (which isn’t bad for a training run) if I’d done the extra 7km and I didn’t feel particularly exhausted at the end which I really should have as I’d already done 10km yesterday. My leg muscles were a little tender but nothing too bad.

Of course, this probably has more to do with my obsessive approach to running over the last few years which has conditioned me for this. Anyway, chia seeds (full of omega-3, calcium and other goods) should do me less harm that a bottle of caffeniated energy drink and it actually tasted pretty decent. It’s also a fairly fail-safe way to make sure no one drinks out of my bottle at a race!

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