Let them run with cake.

I like working out as much as the next guy, but find that it really eats into my daily allotted cake time.

With both cake and exercise being the cornerstones of my mental and physical well-being, this results in a difficult balancing act. I mean, it’s not like I can enjoy cake while working out…

…or can I?

On 6 May, V! Castella was released, which offers the pleasures of cake as a sports food supplement to be enjoyed before or after exercising — not during for obvious choking hazards.

This particular type of cake is “castella,” a Japanese take on sponge cake whose name is based on the Castile region of Spain where it is said to have originated.

The company responsible for this product, Bunmeido, normally makes castella with eggs, flour, sugar, starch, honey, and a sweetener called “mizuame” — and for V! Castella they didn’t bother to change a thing. The ingredients are exactly the same, because Bunmeido believes their cake is perfect for sports just the way it is.

While that might sound cocky, if anyone can make such a claim, it’s Bunmeido. This company has been making castella since 1900 and is literally so old that their phone number is “2.” If they’re saying their cake is good for sports, who are we to dispute it?

▼ The company is equally famous for its hypnotic TV ads from the 60s,
faithfully recreated here by maverick mascot Chiitan

Ordinarily, Japanese pound cake might not be the first food that springs to mind to cool down with after a vigorous jog or Muay Thai sparring session. That’s why Bunmeido created this helpful infographic which lays out the three key points that make V! Castella the ideal sports supplement snack:

First, it’s shaped like a bar, which has been proven by science to be especially easy to hold and carry as opposed to other shapes like a rhombus or even a Reuleaux triangle.

Second, one bar contains 150 calories, roughly equivalent to one onigiri. Not only that but V! Castella is high in carbs and has a good deal of protein for a ideal post-ultimate-Frisbee cake.

Finally, like other castella cakes, this bar of pure sponge cake is highly digestible, meaning it melts in your stomach, not in your hands.

Japanese National Paralympic Team paracanoe paddler Monica Seryu swears by them and especially enjoys the natural ingredients, as well as the way the wrapper can be opened with one hand.

▼ Monica Seryu, but her V! Castella is possibly in the boat

But you don’t need to be a world-class kayaker to reap the benefits of V! Castella, simply being hungry and on the go will do.

These cakes are currently being sold through Bunmeido’s online store in boxes of 10 for 2,000 yen (US$18). This is for the time being, however, and a wide release in stores is possible in the future if the demand is there.

Now, I imagine a lot of readers out there are still not entirely sold on the concept of a “sports cake,” but I ask that you please keep your reservations to yourselves. I… I need this.

Source: Bunmeido, PR Times
Images: PR Times
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