Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Balance Bar Dark Review and Giveaway

For the past two days, my friend Elena and I have been getting up at the butt crack of dawn to attend a spinning class in downtown Traverse City at a new studio called Buka Bike. Just from glancing at their website, you know you’re going to be in for a one-of-a-kind cycling experience when you sign up for a class.

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The bikes are like nothing I’ve ever seen before – they actually tilt from side to side so that when you’re out of the saddle, you have to use your core in a way that you could never do on a traditional spin bike. The instructors lead you through intense workouts that engage your entire body and the 45 minutes flies by. You also have the option of wearing a heart rate monitor during the class (there is no charge for this) and after entering your stats online (height, weight, gender, age), your heart rate and calorie burn is displayed on the flat screen televisions that hang up on either side of the room. This morning I burned almost 700 calories in one class! That is insane. I’ll definitely be coming back for more classes!

So, if you follow me on Facebook, then you might have seen my post yesterday about almost passing out after class. When the class was over I started getting really dizzy and my ears started ringing. I started to panic – I’ve never fainted before – and sat down in the back of the room for a minute. The instructor saw me and the first thing she asked was if I had eaten anything before class. Whoops..my bad. Definitely learned my lesson there. The low blood sugar (caused from not eating anything before an intense workout), coupled with the fact that I am terribly out of shape right now is probably what caused my little episode and I made sure not to make the same mistake today. I ate a protein bar on the way to class and felt SO much better.

On that note, let’s talk about those protein bars.

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Balance Bar recently came out with a new line of products - Balance Bar Dark. They reached out to me a couple months ago and asked if I’d like to try out the new variety, and since I’m a long time fan of Balance Bars I willingly agreed. I was sent this lovely variety pack, which came with nine bars (three in each flavor), a cute little Balance Bar notebook, and an eco-friendly bag.

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The bars are available in three flavors: Dark Chocolate Coconut, Dark Chocolate Peanut, and Dark Chocolate Crunch.

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Here is some information about the bars from the company:

  • The Balance Bar Dark bars are high in protein, certified gluten free, an excellent source of antioxidants (Vitamins A, C, E), certified kosher dairy and contain 4 grams of fiber per serving.
  • As with all Balance Bar products, the new Dark line follows the 40-30-30 nutrition principle – a proven formula developed by scientists to help stabilize blood sugar levels that represents the caloric ratio the body needs to enjoy lasting balanced energy and satisfy hunger for longer; 40% of total calories from carbs, 30% from quality protein and 30% from dietary fat.
  • Balance Bar Dark is the first nutrition bar line on the market to bear the well-respected Rainforest Alliance Certified™ seal. The Rainforest Alliance certification assures consumers that our cocoa beans are grown on sustainably managed farms that protect people and their surrounding ecosystems of water, soil and wildlife.

I already knew about the protein content and the 40-30-30 principle that Balance Bar follows, but I was impressed with the new Rainforest Alliance Certification. I’ve never seen a protein bar that was eco-friendly – that’s pretty neat.

I’ve tried all three of the flavors, and they are all delicious. They have a dark chocolate coating and don’t taste chalky like other protein bars do. I’m especially fond of the the Dark Chocolate Crunch bar. My favorite Balance Bar flavor of all time is the Chocolate Mint Cookie Crunch from the Balance Bar Gold collection, and the Dark Chocolate Crunch reminds me of that bar minus the mint.

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Okay, so here’s the fun part of this post: Balance Bar offered to send one of you guys the same sample pack that I received so that you can try out the new flavors for yourself! Here’s what you have to do in order to enter the giveaway:

  • Required: Like and follow Balance Bar on Facebook and Twitter
  • Leave a comment letting me know your favorite way to fuel up for a workout, or tell me what Balance Bar Dark flavor you’d like to try.

I’ll choose a winner this weekend!

One winner per household, email address or home address. If you have won this prize on another blog you are ineligible to win again.


GOOD LUCK!


Disclaimer:
I was sent complimentary Balance Bars to review for the blog, but was not compensated for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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