Review | Low Carb, High Protein Bars

Without a doubt, my favorite bars are “The Simply Bar“.  They have a 1:1 ration of protein to carbs, they range from 150-160 caloires.  Perfect for a snack mid-morning or mid-afternoon.

Becuase i’m based in the west coast, I have to order them online and have to pay for shipping ($14…ouch!).  This means I have to be more organized than I often am and that I have to be at the tipping point of frustration wiht my locally available options.  As I’m not yet at that tipping point, I thought I’d try a few other protein bar options.

My criteria:

  • Less than 200 calories
  • Close to 1:1 ratio of protein to carbs
  • Not too many ingredients i can’t pronounce
  • No aspartame
  • More fiber is preferable to less

Here’s what I’ve tried out so far:

  • NuGO Slim – Brownie Crunch
    • OK.  Innoffensive, didn’t taste like a brownie, or chocolate…. but also didn’t taste like chemicals (a frequent complaint)
    • 190 calories (bit on the high side); 16g protein (good, not great), 19g carbs… higher than i’d like, but the 7g fiber but this into ‘ok’ territory for me
    • Added bonus — Gluten free
  • Atkins — any flavour
    • Couldn’t do it… the ingredient list was too chemically oriented for me.  What’s the deal with all the sugar alcohol?

I have a stockpile of options in my suitcase for the week… stay tuned for other otpions.


I thought I was just slacking off…

But no, I wasn’t taking it easy, taking a break from loosing weight, not being as diligent at tracking my food.  No, that’s not what I’ve been doing, I’ve been flat out off the weight loss plan and gaining weight.  Yikes.   I’m up 2lb from January 1. 

One of the things that weight watchers emphasizes, is that you can eat anything you want, you just need to manage portions, eat when you’re hungry and make healthy choices most of the time.  At this stage it seems to me like this is a bit like telling an alcoholic that there are benefits to be had from red wine and to drink it in moderation.   There is no moderation for me.  If I eat dessert, I eat another the next day and then another the day after that.  Next thing you know you’re eating a spoonful of Nutella and wondering why the weight isn’t coming off.  Yes, the later is a true story.  The Nutella was pitched in the bin after that incident.  There is no moderation around here.

Why are some muscles so strong?

And others so pathetically weak?  A few months ago, I noted that I’m a cylinder, now I’m simply off balance.   Biceps curls,  no problem bring them on.  Quad muscles, check.  Anything involving my calfs, forget it.  They are stumpy little muscles shortened from years of high heeled shoes and boots, and there’s no way those are going away.  Tricep exercizes, next to impossible to execute properly as those muscles cannot lift more than a pea.

Thank goodness I’m going to bootcamp and working all these muscles.  My life thus far has created an imbalance and there’s no reason to think that things were going to even out all on their own.

Not sure an Olympic is in the cards for me this year

The volume of my posting correlates precisely with the volume of training that I’m doing.  Ahh… talk about off track.  I’ve taking my measurements monthly, but not much movement on that front, and the weight is sssssllllooooowwwwllllly coming off.  The latter is more of a fluke than a true effort.

I’m reevaluating what my objectives should be for this year and what my priorities are.  There are many competing things in my head: loose weight, get strong, build core strength, compete in triathlon, built up cardio endurance, ensure low saturated fat diet, etc., etc..  

In theory many or most of these should go hand in hand nicely.  For me, as I try to focus on more than one at a time, I loose track of them all.  What I want to figure out now is at the end of 2009, what do I want to have accomplished, what’s going to make me feel good about myself as I watch the 2010 Olympics and what’s going to set me up for my next set of goals, objectives and activities.  

That’s a whole lot of fancy objective talk and it’s coming from a girl who’s wanted to be curled up in a ball in bed this whole week. The family is coming of of +3 weeks of non-stop flu, cold, flu combos and landed 3/4 of us on antibiotics this week.  We’re a mess.  At least it’s given me time to think about what I want to tackle once I’m back on my feet.

October is no sugar month (at least for me)

In thinking about a month where I exercized likely more than I have at any other point in time, and was nursing, it seemed strange to me that my weight remained the same.  When I think about what I inhaled over the course of the past month, it’s not as surprising.  

What to change this month, so that I not only build muscle, but also shed some of the extra pounds?

I’ve decided it’s going to be sugar.  Sugar’s a huge danger food for me. It will start off with a couple of low fat ginger cookies to go with a cup of tea, but then sugar slowly creeps in everywhere and eventually takes over.  From the cookies, I’ll add a spoonful to a cup of coffee, or I’ll order a cookie from Starbucks (think I’ve mentioned that one before… it’s the size of 4-5 regular cookies, nothing good can come from that).  From there in the cereal aisle, I’ll venture out of the organic, bran buds section and start looking at frosted mini wheats or honey nut cheerios (equally bad ideas).  

So with two planned exceptions: my birthday and pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving, I’m off added sugar for the month.  The fact that ‘All Bran Flakes’ have some sugar added I’m going to let slide.  In turn, if I find out that my whole grain, organic flax bread has some sugar added, it also gets a pass.  But there will be no sugar/maple syrup/honey in: yogurt, tea, cereal, pancakes, nor will there be more obvious sources: cookies, cakes, candy (doh… I forgot about Halloween when I first wrote my 2 exceptions).  It will also mean no more chai lates, or hot chocolate…. those are big empt calories that I will strive to eliminate this month.  

Here’s hoping that when I log in for my November 1  measurement check that I’ll be under ABC!  Yay…