Cyclists are so unbelievably particular when it comes to their nutrition. We all follow this same learning curve as we evolve from first time racers, to amateurs, to mid category to elites. The journey has us all learn the value of nutrition…from our first ‘bonk’ experience and the need to properly fuel during rides to advanced rituals we all have dialed for pre-race meals to ensure we perform our best.
There are a wide variety of choices out there for supplementing your nutrition alongside the clean, pure food I know you are (you better!) be eating. But when I saw these interesting little bars show up at bike stores, coffee shops and grocery markets here in Boulder, I was intrigued. Intrigued enough that I bought one as an impulse…then found myself just sweeping whole stacks of them into my shopping cart as I’d found a bar that FINALLY didn’t cause my stomach to do backflips and simply tasted great. When I flipped the wrapper over and found they were from Boulder, I had to learn more! Thus my inquisition of Ms. Breeze Brown, owner of her namesake, Breeze Bars, began. Registered Dietician, a masters in nutrition, ‘crosser, triathlete and all around ‘athlete evangelist.’ You want to be eating the stuff that’s truly got love for those who suffer baked in. And so, here’s your chance to learn more about Breeze, her company and the yumminess she’s created…
Breeze - I was doing some nutrition consulting for a pro triathlon team here in Boulder and they needed some new food options to experiment with. Specific they were looking for something that would give them quick as well as sustainable energy and wouldn’t upset or sit heavy in their stomachs. Around that same time my sister was diagnosed with celiac disease so when I started experimenting I made sure they were gluten free from the start. I came up with a bar that tasted great and had the nutritional value to support extended exertion. Not long after I started making the bars for the team and my sister a café manager at one of the health clubs got a hold of one of the bars and asked to sell them at the club. It was at this point that I moved my venture to an approved kitchen and turned it into a small business.
M&C - There are a lot of nutritional choices for athletes these days. What are the core values that set Breeze apart from the other products on the shelf?
Breeze - The key with Breeze Bars is that they are not a high protein bar nor are they a high carbohydrate bar they are carefully balanced. They have enough carbohydrate and quick energy to help with a bonk or administer an immediate pick me up but also enough protein and quality fat to allow for a sustainable energy. Oh, and they taste really good!
M&C - Tell me a bit about how these bars in particular are well suited to folks with digestion issues...Celiac disease in particular.
Breeze - First off, the combination of carbohydrate: Protein: Fat makes the bar easy to digest and easy on the stomach. For those people with wheat or gluten intolerances and those with celiac disease these bars are essential! They provide great energy without the risk of stomach upset, bloating or nausea.
M&C - Tell us about the "product pipeline". By now you've got rabid fans (me included!) on your bars. What else can your devoted 'consumers' look forward to in the coming months?
Breeze - Well, I am not going to put solid dates on anything but we hope to have some new bar flavors out this spring. I am working on a few specialty products as we speak and for those of you who are allergic to nuts and soy we have something new for you also!
M&C - You are an athlete. What are the sports you participate in and how do you apply what you know about sport and physiology into your products to ensure the best nutritional advantage for those consuming it before, during or after events.
Breeze - I race triathlon as an amateur, cyclocross and throw some road races in there every now and then. I know how difficult it can be to get in the proper nutrition while training or during a race, but it is a critical piece that can directly affect your performance. I can create a product that in theory will work to provide energy, aid in recovery and assist with training but it really comes down to how it works for the athlete/ individual who chooses to use the product. This is where our sponsored athletes come in! You need people who are willing and able to use the product and give you quality feedback and ideas on how to improve. Thanks to all of you who have done this and continue to help us in our venture!
Breeze getting her hup on – Photo by Grant Holicky
M&C - 'Extra Credit': OK, Sven Nys or Bart Wellens...choose!
Breeze - Sven Nys!!
Here’s how to learn where to get your own supply of these little delectable sumpin’-sumpins’: