When you’re in the field, space and weight in your gear is always at a premium. If what you have in your load bearing gear is all about surviving what you’ll have to deal with, whether man, beast or environment, being able to save weight and space is not just convenient, but a necessity.
Plenty of times I’ve talked about being prepared to “Bugout” of your very own “TEOTWAWKISTAN” (the physical manifestation and location of The End Of The World As We Know It). I haven’t talked much about what I carry to feed myself along the way, but in this post I wanted to give my impressions of something called a MOAB protein bar made by a relatively new company called “Battle Bars”.
My Wife told me a while back that a Veteran friend of hers was starting a company with his Brother, and that they made protein bars. When she asked if I wanted to try one, I said “Sure, why not?”. Helping to support a friend of the Family as well as a fellow Vet is a big deal to me.
The first one I tried was their “Blue Falcon” bar. The BF bar has 21 grams of protein and 230 calories. The flavor was good, but I’m not a big fan of blueberry, so it didn’t do much for me, flavor wise.
A few weeks later my Wife told me they had a chocolate protein bar out now, so we ordered some. Now we’re on to something! It’s called the MOAB (Mother Of All Bars) and they taste great, they pack 25 grams of protein and 250 calories into a 2.5 oz bar. that measures 3.5x2x1.5 inches. This might not seam like much till you compare it to a freeze dried meal that I normally use.
Comparing the sizes, you can fit 7 MOAB’s in the space of two Backpacker Pantry “2-serving” meals. The difference between the MOAB and the BP meal is the seven MOAB’s have 1750 calories and 175 grams of protein, compared to 1200 calories and 64 grams of protein for the two, 2-serving BPP meals. All fitting in the same amount of space. Another plus is that the MOAB’s require no meal prep like a freeze dried meal does (fuel and time to boil water).
I’ve used the MOAB’s a number of times as a pre-workout energy boost, and can tell you I’ve noticed they do make a difference in my performance. One of their claims is as a meal replacement, so I put it to the test. What I didn’t do was put it to a normal test.
I started out my day with my typical LARGE cup of coffee, then I didn’t eat any breakfast. I prepped my gear for a mountain ruck and headed off. The temp. was 17 degrees and the snow was 10-12 inches deep. Around 11 AM, I was starting to get pretty hungry, so I decided to give the MOAB a try.
Keep in mind on the day in question, I’m ruckin’ around 90 lbs. of load bearing gear and a 13 lb. weapon up that mountain. Considering that I’m also slogging through 10-12 inches of snow, sans snowshoes (was just a little too shallow for me to get them out), I was burning some serious calories. After all that, I didn’t even begin to get hungry (no issues with my energy level) for about another three hours after eating the MOAB.
I’ve never been much into the whole “protein bar” thing that a lot of my friends have gotten into for pre-workout prep. My normal “Go To” before a workout is a big cup of coffee. What I am into is space saving, energy boosting, food sources that are not only compact, but give energy beyond what you’d expect from their size.
Not only does this make sense for the Infantryman while conducting combat operations. But it should also be something the Survivalist considers when packing a “Get Home”, “Bug Out” or “INCH” (I’m Not Coming Home) bag. The name of that “game” is to save as much space and weight as possible, while still covering what is needed in equipment and nourishment.
I know what you’re thinkin’, JC is pluggin’ his Wife’s, friend’s business because….”Wife’s Friend”. That’s not how I operate, and if I was gonna do that, I’d have put out a “Hey, this is good stuff” post a couple months back. I get no compensation, and didn’t have to admit to knowing them. I wanted to wait and give my impressions after actually using their product in a variety of situations (not just pre-workout) and seeing how they met my energy needs and supplemented my food requirement.
There isn’t much out there that will require the energy of heavy ruckin’ in a foot of snow. The MOAB passed my test for a compact, ration designed to give you an energy boost, give you the muscle building protein that is required to maintain fitness and endurance to help survive tough situations, and also to supplement meals you might not have the space for. At $2.50 a piece (12 pack for $29.99), it does a lot for a little, especially when compared to freeze dried meals.
Here’s the “Battle Bars” mission statement,
“We wanted to create a product catered to those who accept nothing less than victory, whether it be on the battlefield, in the gym, or in their daily lives.
This desire led us to create Battle Bars. Hand-crafted ingredients with an incredible taste and texture. Our protein bars will help you build muscle and maintain energy, keeping you at optimal performance during even the biggest challenges.”
Check ’em out, and tell ’em AP sent ya.
"Parata Vivere"-Live Prepared.