The new official bar of Ironman, Bonk Breaker Energy Bars, are out on shelves, but I'm not totally sure they're going to be taking off or not. Like a lot of energy bars and other training supplements, it comes down to the consumer, and what he or she can or cannot handle. Some time was spent, so it seems, at Bonk Breaker to get a good balance of all the essentials and the right amount of flavor.
I got my hands on both the Peanut Butter and Jelly and the Almond Butter and Honey. Both of which have good flavor. In a head to head comparison, my vote goes to good old fashioned Peanut Butter and Jelly. The Almond Butter and Honey was a bit dry and cakey. Something I don't want on a hot day out on the race course or training ride or run. The PB&J has a layer of jelly through the middle, so when you bite in you get a good taste of jelly in every bite to mix in just like a classic PB&J sandwich.
I used both of these flavors on separate occasions during a couple of two hour rides. In terms of energy absorption, I seemed to get my gears firing about 10-15 minutes after eating a bar. Pretty standard for me. My body always seems to grab energy quickly, and respond rather well. With the amount of carbs (35g), sodium (170mg), potassium (175mg), and protein (8g), It seems to be a great combo for an endurance bar. Something of a 4 to 1 ratio in carbs to protein.
Now, I generally don't have much GI distress, so I cannot tell you these won't get your stomach churning in an undesirable way, but you do need some water nearby to help get it down your gullet. Even the PB&J likes to hang around in your mouth for a bit. Even though it does taste great, nobody wants to be trying to fork out some chunks hanging out in their mouth with their tongue while they're cruising along at a heavy effort. It just makes life that much more difficult.
This isn't a bar that I'm ecstatic about, but it is good. If you can find a place that sells them individually, buy a couple and give them a try. They taste good, but I'm not sure they're going to make it in my arsenal of nutrition. One last thing is that the packages aren't that easy to open. I'm still looking for that golden food to take on the bike that opens in an instant and goes down easy. Until then, it's back to the drawing board, to keep testing what works best for me.