All of us must have heard about sports bars. Most of us probably even tried a few.
The question remains, though, is it just a snack? Or maybe more than just that, like a bit more variety in one's diet, or maybe even a substitute for a meal? A workout snack, maybe? What should a good sports bar be like, then? Let me address this issue briefly today.
Consensus Statement of the International Olympic Committee
The above-referenced document, published this year, may well be regarded as a compendium of available facts on the dietary supplements currently in use by high-performance athletes. It comprises quite a lot of useful information on food substitutes and sweets for professional sportsmen, including special task bars.
First of all, the authors address various forms of food for professional sportsmen. Special task bars, apart from nutrition gels and drinks, are among the foods specifically designed and formulated for use by sportsmen. They are much more handy to use, e.g. they may easily be consumed around the actual area of sports performance, be that during intensive training, or the actual competitions.
Convenience of use is an indubitable advantage of all kinds of meal substitutes, regardless of whether it be a ready-made beverage, a powder for its preparation, a nutrition gel, or a special task bar. The time spent on its preparation is appreciably shorter, while its form actually makes it possible to be taken along almost everywhere.
Frequently enough, sports bars are the high-protein products, just like Activlab Lean Bar, 100g of the product contains almost 30g of protein of high bioavailability, originating from milk protein isolate and soy protein isolate.
Proteins are the basic building blocks of a human body, and simply a "must-have" solution for all professional sportsmen, especially in body-building and muscle strength disciplines. Without adequate protein intake, human body is unable to perform efficiently, e.g. produce antibodies, neurotransmitters, or hormones, nor indeed develop its muscle tissue, nor effect any repairs on the damage sustained by various body tissues as a result of intense exertion or accidental injury! Proper protein intake actually stands for effectively achieving and maintaining a high- performance level in sports at large.
An essential aspect is the low fat content in the special task bars, along with their metabolism boosting properties, as well as an ability of providing protein and energy within a short period of time. Lean Bar meets this requirement, and supplies just 6g of fat per piece.
What can a special task bar do for us?
Let's be frank about it, special task bars for professional sportsmen cannot really revolutionise your life. They are not really going to change your worldview, nor would they ever replace the need for an honest, sweat-breaking training. They cannot form the actual core of your daily diet, but they may well be included in your dietary intake. Special task bars are meant to help you design a comprehensively structured menu, be a fast rescue solution when you are pressed for time, and/or you are unable to make yourself a proper meal. They may also offer a tasty snack, or an extra bite before, during, or after any exertion.
When it's best to reach for a special task bar?
It's rather hard to address this question directly. Obviously enough, it wold be pretty foolish to talk anyone into replacing proper food with a snack in the form of a special task bar, but, on the other hand, now and again we might simply be forced to go for such an option, owing to some life's adversity.
Personally, I am an ardent advocate of having a little "something" smartly tucked away for an emergency, be that in a car, a backpack, or a briefcase, as this gives you a chance to reach for a nutritious snack at a long-and-drawn-out business meeting, in any sort of contingency, or when being stuck in a regular traffic jam. In such situations, one would usually go for whatever is at hand, e.g. a hot dog from a nearby filling station, a classic candy bar, or a packet of cookies from a corner shop. Now, when you come to think of it, is it really prudent to reach for a bombshell packed with sugar and highly processed fats, a dubious quality frankfurter sausage swamped in mayonnaise, or opt for a special task bar based on high-quality protein and polyols instead? The answer is obvious. Unless, of course, you just happen to have a tasty omelette on you, a delicious ragout with rice handy, or some nice sandwiches - just go for them, then, no problem. But when you face a choice between a poor quality snack, or a special task bar, always be sure to opt for the sportsmen's fare!
Another handy application is having it handy somewhere around the workout area. Not every time one has an opportunity to take along some ready-to-drink nutrient gel, or plenty of fresh fruit to make a fast and nutritious post-workout meal. The same also holds true for having meals during long periods of exertion. Handy gels and drinks fortified with amino acids and carbohydrates are a great choice, but often enough sportsmen would rather opt for something of a little more solid consistency. And again, a special task bar comes as a perfect solution here!
A special task bar offers a perfect alternative that should always be kept in mind. Surely enough, now and again you must have found yourself in a situation in which conventional food has failed you (in a manner of speaking), or you really craved something sweet. In any such situations, this alternative solution, designed specifically with physically active persons in mind, supplying plenty of proteins and carbohydrates, and very tasty at the same time, should be a perfect choice for you.