Why settle for protein bar flavors like chocolate or peanut butter when you can enjoy the performance-boosting nutritional goodness of compacted fish paste?

Nutrition and exercise are both pillars of good physical health, and Japan has plenty of supplements to keep its professional and amateur athletes supplied with the dietary building blocks their sports-loving bodies crave. Some of these are sports drinks, such as the startlingly named Pocari Sweat, while others are snacks in bar/stick form, like Calorie Mate.

Now Niigata-based Ichimasa Kamaboko is getting in on the sports supplement game. However, the company isn’t a pharmaceutical or general foodstuff maker. Ichimasa Kamaboko’s specific specialty is right there in its name: kamaboko, Japanese-style fish cakes. So naturally, its new sports-oriented products aren’t a sport drinks or protein bars, but a line of extra sporty fish sausages.

The new Supochiku gets its name from mashing up the Japanese pronunciation of “sports” (supotsu) and chikuwa, a type of cylindrical fish sausage with a hole in the center. Similar in appearance to Ichimasa’s ordinary chikuwa (seen at the top of this article), the Supochikuwa come individually packaged and packed with extra protein, 7.3 grams per fish sausage, while keeping the fat content low, at just a single gram.

In addition, the red-package Supochiku contains 1.5 grams of BCAA (branched-chain amino acid), while the blue-wrapper version supplies 1.5 grams of vitamin B1. Both are priced at 158 yen (US$1.40).

Ichimasa recommends a quick Supochiku before or following sports activities, although since it’s a solid food that requires digestion, it might be better to save it for afterwards if you’re going to be engaging in any strenuous exercise. The company also says that since the sausages can be eaten with one hand and no utensils, they’re a great snack choice for busy office workers, and if you’ve got time to sit down, we figure you could also use them to spice up your boxed lunch by turning them into adorable edible bento characters.

Sources: Ichimasa Kamaboko, Livedoor News/Narinari via Hachima Kiko, PR Wire
Top image: Ichimasa Kamaboko
Insert images: PR Wire