Hey hey hey, I’m back! My holiday in Orlando and Dallas was AWESOME. It was just amazing. I’ll do a full reap when I’m back to normal functioning and get my schizz together…At the moment I’m just about coping with regular life.
We got back on Saturday morning about 7.30am British time (1.30am Dallas time – ouch). I had a pretty terrible flight back. Leading up the flight I felt really ill – like massive stomach cramps going on. So the first hour of the flight was basically Ben holding my hand and me wincing at cramps which felt like my stomach was being torn in two. This meant neither of us could relax. Eventually after standing up and pacing at the back of the plane things calmed down and we could finally just chill. What a trooper Ben is to deal with me! I watched Gone Girl which was really good. Rosamund Pike is amazing!
I’m such a light sleeper that sleeping was really hard (especially as there was a lot of turbulence) so after 2 hours or so I gave up and watched Whiplash instead. Definitely a good move. What a film! I definitely recommend. It is so tense!
Saturday and Sunday are basically as blur of tiredness. I slept for 12 hours on Saturday night but woke up exhausted, dizzy and disorientated. Basically I felt rough. Like awful. Not just tiredness, but a deep exhaustion and confusion. I’m feeling more normal now but still tired. Ahh the joys of long-haul flights!
Anyway before I get back into the swing of things, I have a review. I was kindly sent some MuleBar energy products to review a few weeks ago. The company sounds brilliant. The idea of the products came from these two guys who wanted energy bars that tasted good and didn’t upset their stomachs when they did crazy things like climbing the Andes! They made prototypes in their own kitchens and, in their own words, “peddled them around” races (source) to get people to try them and give feedback. I love that the products were born this way – it just feels so much more “real” that way, you know?
I was sent a range of different type of bars/gels and different flavours. I was quite intrigued by a curry flavoured one!
ReFuel Protein Bars (find HERE)
This is their answer to protein shakes. They’re basically high protein to help the growth and maintenance of lean muscle mass after exercise (not necessarily climbing Everest or the Andes though!) What’s cool about them is that they’re the only Fairtrade protein bars on the UK market. There’re also no synthetic ingredients, artificial preservatives, colourings, flavourings or palm oil, and are suitable for vegetarians.
I was sent two flavours: Chocolate Date and Chocolate Banana.
Chocolate Date Nutritional Info:
- Calories per 65g serving: 240cal
- Protein: 13.3g
- Carbohydrate: 31.8g
- Of which sugars: 27.9g
- Fat: 6.7g
- Of which saturates: 1.6g
- Fibre: 2.5g
- Salt: 0.1g
And the ingredients don’t look awful at all (compared to some energy bars!).
Thoughts? I tried the Chocolate Date one and Ben tried the Chocolate and Banana one (I’m not a big banana fan – other than actual bananas strangely enough). We both thought they were really tasty. Very sticky, chewy and sweet and it felt “naughty” eating it, you know? Nice and filling too without any synthetic after taste. This would be a good snack between lunch and dinner, or (and this is how I would use it) straight after a race when you know food might be a while away but you need something. The protein and sugar in it will be perfect for muscle recovery and tide hunger over. Alternatively, when you’re up a mountain and need an easy snack! 😉
Energy Bars (find HERE)
Apparently easy on the stomach and digestion, these are ideal for during exercise for the slow release energy they provide. They’re Fairtrade and organic certified, and contain no synthetic ingredients, artificial preservatives, colours, flavourings or palm oil, and are suitable for vegetarians. And they have a compostable wrapper!! So if you do drop the rubbish accidentally then it’s not going to harm the environment.
Mango Tango Nutritional Info:
- Calories per 56g serving: 201cal
- Protein: 4g
- Carbohydrate: 36g
- Of which sugars: 23g
- Fat: 5g
- Of which saturates: 0.5g
- Fibre: 2.g
- Salt: 0.04g
They all have a similar nutritional profiles, the calories being around 200 calories (some less, some more). Interestingly the savoury Eastern Express bar contains Garam Masala and cayenne pepper so is a more spicy and obviously savoury bar, rather than simply another sweet one. Really enjoyed the Summer Pudding flavour
Thoughts? I really enjoyed these. Kind of sticky and chewy, and not too sweet. Definitely came in handy when we flew from Orlando to Dallas and arrived quite late in the hotel and were hungry and needed something smallish rather than having a big meal so late in the evening.
I also really like that there’s a savoury bar as sometimes on a long cycle or walk too much sweet stuff can get tiring and taxing. You need something a bit different from time to time. And I loved the curry flavour. It wasn’t hugely overpowering but very nice.
Energy Gels (find HERE)
Similar to the bars, these have been designed to be easy on the stomach and are organic. They contain brown rice, agave syrup and Himalayan crystal salt to keep you going during exercise. They also have a caffeinated gels (one with 50mg and one with 100mg of caffeine). Again no synthetic ingredients, artificial preservatives, colourings, flavourings or palm oil, and suitable for vegetarians, organic and Fairtrade certified. They also have funky quick tear packaging.
They have five flavours: Apple Strudel, Salted Caramel, Cherry Bomb, Zemon Zinger and Cafe Cortado.
Salted Caramel Nutritional Info:
- Calories per 37g serving: 108cal
- Protein: 1g
- Carbohydrate: 25g
- Of which sugars: 19.5g
- Fat: 0.17g
- Of which saturates: 0.1g
- Fibre: 0.5g
- Salt: 0.1g
Thought? I haven’t tried the gels yet purely because I haven’t been on any long runs or cycles to use them. However I LOVE the sound of them. I love that they’re fairly ‘clean’ with no nasties in there (though sadly not vegan for any vegan runners). The salted caramel one sounds made for me. Check out the ingredients:
Pretty good right? I’m very excited to give these gels a blast on my next longer run or cycle. I think these might be a game changer for me. And I really like the Lemon Zinger flavour has 50mg of caffeine, which I’m always a fan of.
I really like this company and the products. I’d be more inclined to have the gels but I can definitely see myself picking up the protein or energy bars occasionally for when I’ve got a race coming or am going for a long walk with Ben.
What’s your favourite flavour energy bar or gel?
What is your snack of choice if you’re on a long walk/hike?
How do you cope with jet lag?