My Usual GameApril 19, 2016

Is the key to better golf the right energy bar?

Gerry Mullally grew up in Belfast, Northern Ireland. In the early 1970s, his father sent him to the United States to get him away from the Troubles. His first job here was as a caddie at Maidstone, where, among other things, he was stiffed by Juan Trippe, the cheapskate founder of Pan American Airways. Mullally became a food scientist, and worked for several major corporations, and retired last year. In January, he began manufacturing a post-career invention of his: the Par Bar, a nutrition bar formulated specifically for golfers. I learned about him from a friend who belongs to the same golf club he does, and invited him to play with the Sunday Morning Group. He brought treats:

"I created a must-have list of features and benefits and set that as the development goal," he explains on his website. "It needed to taste really good, it should be made with only natural and healthy ingredients, and it would have to provide sufficient energy for the whole round." The idea is to eat about a third of a bar roughly 15 minutes before you tee off, then take another bite or two every couple of holes. "The bar I set out to develop was high in protein, high in slow-release carbohydrates and high in dietary fiber," he continues. "I had become aware of a recently approved food ingredient from green tea leaves called L-Theanine. Its properties seemed tailor-made for the challenges of golf, and clinical studies had already confirmed its ability to increase mental alertness and focus."

I followed Mullally's instructions and had my best round of the season so far. Does Par Bar get the credit? I can't say for sure, but I've noticed this sort of thing before. Many years ago, I covered a multilevel-marketing convention for another publication, and one of the exhibitors gave me some bee-pollen tablets. I swallowed one, and a couple of hours later I was stung by a bee. On Sunday, just about everybody played with exceptional mental alertness and focus, except for three guys who had recently watched videotapes of their swings. In the photo below, Mullally and I are on the fourth tee. You'll notice that there's still some advertising space available on my jacket:

The Par Bar solves a perennial mid-round problem, to which my solution, heretofore, has usually been either a Snickers or a hot dog. And it tastes good!

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