I've decided that caffeine helps my long long rides. I've learned not to chew them so they last a long time. This sustained low amount of sugar and caffeine seems to help me get over the top of hills. Not all flavors have caffeine added.
Shot Bloks fill that space between gus and bars when you want something you can chew on, but not a meal. I've tried a lot of the flavor options and they're all pretty good - I prefer black cherry & margarita (not as disgusting as it sounds!). Definitely a staple in my fueling strategy.
My go to energy source during rides. The package can be a little difficult to tear open while riding, but if you open it before you saddle up or at a break, it's easy to grab and squeeze a block into your mouth during the ride. Best to avoid chewing while breathing hard since small pieces can be inhaled, but with a little forethought that can be avoided. It would be nice to have a box with assorted flavors since some variety would break the monotony of the same flavor all the time and allow tailoring the choice of chews to the ride, such as chews with caffeine for a long ride or sodium for a long hot day. That said, I have ordered two boxes at a time, one with and one without caffeine, but that gets a bit expensive, although the shelf life is good so no worries there.
The packaging could be easier to open while riding. Most of the flavors are very good, like that they chew easily. I like that you don't have to do whole package at once. It is easier to maintain even blood sugar levels for me(I am a diabetic).
The best choice for keeping yourself fueled. Not as tasty as the Scratch Labs chews, but a whole lot more useful when riding. These don't fuse themselves together like the other chews, and the tubular packaging makes for easy dispension while riding.
This is tailored for a semi quick chew. Yes you do have to chew each block thoroughly but in the name of not getting sticky gu all over the place, this serves the ticket nicely.
If you are a 'Foodie', Clif might not be the right brand for you (they are used to carrying a limited palette). I have noticed that I'm not getting tired of this particular product. Very quickly Clif Bars would carry the same taste (despite the various flavour options). Clif Bloks are not quite the same.
CAUTION to the winds, when they say a flavour contains caffeine, they mean it! Maybe if you live on that particular drug, it will not bother you.
BOTTOM LINE a great way to consume 100 to 200 simple kcals without adding salt (a half or full pack). They should be consumed with water (chew, chew and chew some more Then have some water see directions). REI and other vendors sells them individually so please dont feel the need to buy 18 at once.
For when you need a little pick me up, the flavor could be more robust tho, easy to carry and dispense out of package.
I once tried a sticky mess gel from another brand and Ciif blocks are the way to go.
Gatorade blocks are a pain to deal with while pedaling, you end up smashing them, they don't slide out of the package.
Im a big fan of Clif bars and Blocks
I really like the Clif Shot Blocks. They are easy to get out of my pocket and it is easy to calibrate how many
calories I use.
I don't like drink mix in my bottles , so I take a couple of these every half hour for the calories and electrolytes.
The flavors are good and I really like the orange, and the black cherry (extra caffeine ).
On hot days I use the margarita flavor for the extra salt.
I usually take 2-3 chews just before getting on my bike and 2 more chews every 45 minutes or so of riding. Does a good job for the 2-3 hour rides. For longer rides, you should supplement with additional foods and water.
Have to say, I never tried 'bloks' before this year, but I am now sold on them.
I've only tried the salted watermelon flavor, which is tasty. The blocks easily come off in about half inch square pieces. You can either chew them, or allow them to melt in your mouth. They seem to have helped me reduce cramping on my longer rides/races.
Dreading that 3K foot climb out of the canyon half-way through your ride . . . plan ahead with a few Shot Bloks. Perfect blend of sugar & caffeine to get you to the top. Easy to chew and wash down with a swig of water. But do moderate your dose, these pack a punch.