Today lets look at some alternative fuel for bike riders, everyone knows about bars and most people know about gels, but how many people know about, “Gel filled chews.” Powerbar Energy Blasts come in a box of 4 for about 4 dollars making them about the same price as gel pouches. They are a solid “gummy” chew with a center of gel filling. Each pouch has about 6 or 8 of these little chews and the whole thing provides 45g of carbs, 60mb of sodium, and 3g of protien.
I have never really cared much for gels, you could probably count the number of gels I’ve consumed in my life on one hand. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, a gel is a pouch full of sugar goo that you squueze out and swallow during a ride. I was explaining this to a non rider once and they couldn’t believe it, but its true. The idea is a very fast way to get alot of calories into you body very quickly. Since I don’t race and I rarely ride with super fast groups I really don’t need to the fast carbs of gels, I usually just eat a cliff bar, but I am sure that if you do use a gel you’ll get a noticable burst of energy as your body metabolizes all that quick sugar.
This leads me to the problem of PowerBar Energy Blasts, while they taste really good, just like candy in fact, and I really enjoy eating them, you still have to eat them. With a gel you just squuze the goop in your mouth and swallow, all very fast and effiecent, with these you stick a few in your mouth and chew them up. My wife loves these and usually splits the package with me during the course of the ride. I never notice a burst of energy, but I’m only eating about 3 at a time. On a recent solo ride I took the whole package but couldn’t eat them all at once, I lost interest and ate a few at a time.
So what good are PowerBar Energy Blasts? Well they taste really good, and they are a welcome change from the Cliff bars and granola bars I usually eat on rides, but you could buy a bag of orange slices for a dollar and get pretty much 4 times the calories for less money. Gels make sense for super quick energy since you just swallow, chews only really make since if you want quick energy but can’t stand gels, even then I’d just buy some gummy bears.