Sports Beans vs. Regular Jelly Belly Jelly Beans – What’s the difference?

By , April 26, 2009 7:29 am

I used my last pack of Berry Blue Sports Beans during my 12 mile run on Friday. I later drove to Sports Authority to buy a few more packs for next Saturday’s race, and… they were out. I actually said “shit!” when the sales clerk told me.

Since we’ve decided we like them so much, we looked into buying a case of them online (we’ll be using a lot once we start training for a full marathon!) yesterday morning. Then, we actually compared the nutritional label for Sports Beans versus regular Jelly Belly Jelly Beans and found out the differences are some added vitamins, potassium and sodium (electrolytes)  in the Sports Beans, and less calories in the Jelly Belly Jelly Beans. That’s it.

We basically just need them for the sugar/energy during endurance runs (I mean really, do you actually expect to get vitamins from candy?), so we decided to just buy regular Jelly Belly Jelly Beans for awhile and see how those work out. We’ll get to eat more. Ha!

Our Target has a HUGE Jelly Belly selection. So it was fun to pick and chose!

image: The Jelly Belly Aisle

There are actually more jelly beans not shown in the photo!

I decided to try one of the Cold Stone Birthday Cake Remix Jelly Beans, because they made me think of my sister. They were okay, but I know I wouldn’t like that taste in my mouth during a run!

image: Coldstone Birthday Cake Remix Jelly Beans

I chose (starting on the right): berry blue, kiwi, and watermelon*. Steven made two mixes: lemon drop with lemon lime, and orange juice with tangerine and orange crush. I put the Sports Beans in the picture below for comparison.

image: Jelly Beans we chose

I am not sure what those last things are on the left? They don’t look like Jelly Beans.

When we went through the checkout, I started chatting with the cashier about Sports Beans, and how we were buying these instead, and blah blah blah. She said  (something like), “It looks like you got a lot of healthy food, so it’s no big deal you are getting these!” Then I explained to her that we actually eat this while running. She was nice to me, but I think she thought I was crazy. And Steven probably did too. But you know what? I try to talk to the cashier, to be polite. Even if I don’t make sense (that’s often). What’s the point of acting like they aren’t there?

If we end up liking using these, it will be a huge cost savings. Sports Beans cost $1.00+ for a 1 oz. pack. Jelly Belly Jelly Beans cost $7.49 a lb. That is a saving of .53¢ an ounce!

So… we’ll see how it goes! Has anyone else tried doing this? Probably. It’s not that novel of an idea.

Kenosha Half Marathon Weather Watch Day 4:

image: Kenosha weather Day 4

Steven asked if looking at the weather every day was making me feel worried. Actually, it’s not. I am just looking at it for humorous purposes. It is what it is on race day!

*What’s funny is, these can sit in our pantry forever, and I won’t touch them unless I am running. I’m not that into jelly beans! But that peanut butter… oh, no.

28 Responses to “Sports Beans vs. Regular Jelly Belly Jelly Beans – What’s the difference?”

  1. Sophia says:

    I think those sports beans are just a smart business tactic to earn more money!

  2. kilax says:

    Sophia – That is kind of what we were thinking too 😉 But it worked on us! Ha ha! And we do like using them. So now we can buy their less expensive (but still overpriced!) jelly beans. LOL!

  3. kapgar says:

    Woah, just remember, they have peanut butter flavored Jelly Bellys. You’re treading a slippery slope, girl. 😉

    And seriously, how many vitamins can truly be in something so small that isn’t already a pill dedicated to being just a vitamin?

  4. Susan says:

    That is a HUGE selection of jelly beans! I don’t really like them that much, but if I did that aisle would be like heaven!

    I’m sure there are plenty of people running marathons who don’t use the fancy gels/blocks/beans/etc. People ran marathons before the “energy foods” were invented! If you’re going to go with plain jelly beans instead of the sport beans, I would recommend drinking gatorade (or some other electrolyte drink) so you can make sure you’re replacing electrolytes while you’re running. But other than that, bring on the sugar!

    I picked up my packet yesterday! We’re getting a hotel the night before so we don’t have to leave SUPER early to get there. I’m loving the current forecast…I hope we stick to it!

  5. Christina says:

    Haha ColdStone jelly beans?!!?! I don’t like cake batter anymore, tastes like play-doh! But do you want to know what I had the other day that was DELISH?

    Cheesecake Ice Cream + Cherry Pie Filling + Graham Cracker Pie Crust = Yumma Yumma!!!!

  6. Jo says:

    I talk to clerks, too, and I’ve said some stupid things in my day because I’m usually tired. lol

    I’ve never had the jelly bean bug, either. In fact, I don’t like them at all. I’ve tried, but..nada. Now chocolate is another story.

    I hope these work for you because they sure are a heck of a lot cheaper!!!

  7. Erin says:

    I think my only concern about eating regular Jelly Belly beans versus the Sports Beans would be the lack of sodium in the regular ones. I sweat like it’s going out of style (seriously, at the end of a run I’ll have visible salt crystals on my face from the evaporating sweat) so I like to think I’m replacing some of the salt that I’m losing.

  8. Jen says:

    I’m not all that into jelly beans either! Good gosh, Sports Beans are so flippin’ pricey!! I’m going to echo what Susan said up there–there has to be a cheaper way to replenish your energy & electrolytes.

  9. Mica says:

    I’ll be interested to see how jelly beans work. Let us know, lady!

  10. diane says:

    Wait, so are you telling me if I train for a marathon, I can start eating candy on a regular basis? 😉 That just might finally be the thing to push me off the edge of “I’ll never run a marathon”. Ha ha*! 🙂

    *Ha ha-ing at myself, not making light of your efforts!

  11. good thinking on the bean comparison!!! as daddy would say, way to use your noodle! and the selection of beans is amazing!!!!

  12. Alice says:

    i can’t even TELL YOU how badly i want jelly beans now. jelly beans are a trigger food for me… i’ll eat the whole bag in one sitting. it’s a sickness 🙂

  13. You can add jelly beans to my list of food crack. I LOVE Jelly Beans. Peanut Butter on the other hand, I can live without. Once in a bluemoon I’ll crave some, and sometimes I throw some on a sandwich because it’ll make it more filling, but otherwise bleh.

    Jellybeans while running, I wonder if that means I could eat more jellybeans? Maybe I’ll become a runner after all haha.

  14. I looove Jelly Belly’s! I’ll have to bring up your comparison to my running friends. I have never ever seen a Jelly Belly display such as the one you have in Target! Amazing!

  15. kilax says:

    kapgar – Ha ha, I think those ones are NASTY! Along with the buttered popcorn ones. Bleh. I doubt the vitamins in these jelly beans can even be absorbed into the body.

    Susan – There is A LOT of other candy in that aisle too! Those are two thoughts I had too – these things have not been around that long and they only extra thing they have is the sodium. I wonder if there will be gatorade on Saturday.

    Christina – Play-doh! Ha ha! That does sound good! I haven’t been to Cold Stone since we were in CF with you guys in January.

    Jo – It’s ALL STUPID coming out of my mouth. Ha ha! I always got grossed out at Easter time with all of those nasty jelly beans in my Easter basket.

    Erin – I am a super sweater too. I am so drenched! I will have to replenish the salt somehow!

    Jen – They are! I am happy we made these decision!

    Mica – I will let you know after Saturday’s race!

    diane – YOU CAN! Well, only when running 😉 And it IS funny!

    CourtneyInControl – Use your noodle, ha ha! It is such a fun selection of beans!

    Alice – Uh oh, I hope I didn’t cause an afternoon binge for you!

    Scale Warfare – I wish I could trade off my peanut butter trigger for something else! Hee hee. You CAN be a runner! Start in on those beans 😉

    Gina (Mannyed) – Please ask your friends! I hope they don’t think I am crazy!!!

  16. Bethany says:

    I actually love jelly beans, I just never think to buy them! I hope they work for you while running, so you can save money 😉

  17. kilax says:

    Bethany – You would LOVE this selection then! I hope they work too. I think they will!

  18. Carol says:

    I use the Sport Beans too. I’ve used a number of gels and this is where I’ve ended up. Many gels have upset my stomach, especially on longer races. The potassium and electrolytes in the Sport Beans are critical (cardiac wise) since we lose so much during running. We need to replace those things so we aren’t the ones being hauled away in the ambulance at the finish line. If you don’t replace the electrolytes you lose by sweating in what you eat, you might want to replace it in what you drink. Personally I dislike GatorAid so I go with the beans. Anyway, good luck with your experiment!

  19. kilax says:

    Carol – I think I need the electrolytes for longer runs… but do I need them for a half marathon? That is what I am trying to figure out. I know I need to eat after exercising for an hour, but when do I need to refuel with something like gatoride? I do like powerade and drink it after a long run, but so far have done well without it during, and don’t even notice the bean’s effect. I think you are right, but I wonder if I have less of a salt loss because I am not running that far?

  20. Carol says:

    Here’s my take on it. First of all, a 13 miler IS a long run. Even though it can be run on a regular basis without any problem or much difficulty, you do need to respect the distance because it is a considerable physical stress on the body. The body needs potassium & electrolytes to maintain cardiac rhythmns. Where is the line on when you’ve lost too much and that process is compromised? Hard to say but I don’t want to find out “after the fact”. I’d rather error on the side of caution. I am a very salty sweater (not all people are) so I do replace it with the beans. Is it just the carbs you’re trying to replace during the run? Maybe we should just eat chips during our runs – ha! ha! Actually I tried using salty peanuts (for protein & sodium) but I felt pretty crappy. I needed the carbs. It was interesting to witness the difference. But, we are all different.

    I don’t care for Gatorade and always drink water during the race. I run faster racing (as opposed to a 13 miler training run) and don’t want any more gastric issues that the Gatorade can cause. I’d just say to be sure you’re giving your body what it needs, when it needs it.

  21. Ren says:

    I’ve found that I really like Wild Berry Skittles during bike rides, though I’m generally not a Skittles fan. Interestingly (maybe), it’s their consistency that I prefer over jelly beans during the ride and that same consistency difference that leads me to prefer jelly beans (well, Jelly Bellys) when not active.

    I haven’t tried them during a run though, mostly ’cause I just haven’t been running. 🙁

  22. kilax says:

    Carol – I have noticed that I DO sweat a lot, but that I am not a salty sweater. I will be dripping in sweat, and my husband won’t be, but he’ll have that white rim around his forehead and armpits. I ended up running the race with the beans and just water, but I think I would use something with electrolytes for something longer. Or maybe try some regular beans and something with electrolytes for a shorter one. I felt okay… I guess it is hard to know if I hurt my body by doing that since I felt good.

    Ren – Get back to running! 😛 Hee hee. I am not a jelly belly or skittles fan, but like you, I like to have something sweet while running. I wonder about skittles. Hmm. They are a bit harder, and give me headaches when I eat them usually.

  23. Crissy G says:

    For races when I was younger I used GU gels. They were good the chocolate one! But, then since we live so close to Jelly Belly stores and the Jelly Belly Factory we buy the flops. They have a pound of Sport Flops for $1. But, I have been using both Sport Beans and the ColdStone Jelly Belly’s for training biking and running! It’s very good! I prefer the ColdStone Jelly belly’s better! They also have flops that are a good price, too.

  24. jeff s says:

    A new formulation of Sport Beans will be hitting the market in time for the Fall marathon season. They will have no corn syrup and no artificial ingredients. The packaging will be user-friendly and recloseable. As far as taste goes, these are better than the current ones. They don’t look as pretty as the ones sold now, but that’s because of no artificial coloring. Give them a try when you see them out, maybe end of August.

  25. I discussed my experience with Sport beans during a long run recently. Listen to episode 4 of my podcast at the blog: I personally like the Sport beans; they work for me and I don’t have to find water to eat them, I can drink water when I get to it, even if it is later. Try that with a gel. For runs longer than about 90 minutes, I would definitely recommend electrolyte replacement. Even if you don’t feel like you need it, you will notice a difference in your endurance. Let me know what you think of the podcast.

  26. kilax says:

    Crissy G – Ooo! I wish I could get some flops somewhere! Soon I will need more…

    jeff s – Sweet! I will keep an eye out for them. It sounds like something I would really like.

    Roland Cavanaugh – Sorry I am getting to this so late! I will go check out your post. I agree that when you get to a certain point, you definitely need the electrolytes.

  27. Greg says:

    I’m way late. But here’s my take.

    Even if regular beans are half the price, I’ll easily eat twice as many just because they’re so tasty and they’d be tempting me while not exercising. Call me weak, but I’m not good at resisting sugar urges. The fact that they’re packaged in the little bags and come at a premium price keeps me from eating too many during workouts or just grabbing a pack when I feel like satisfying a sugar fix!

  28. kilax says:

    Greg – LOL! Luckily, I don’t care for them that much, so I buy them in bluk and they just sit in our pantry until I take them for a run! 😉 I do have a hard time saying no to OTHER sugary snacks though!

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