The GymburritO® Story

Jim Barcena is at the top of his game. The year is 2001 and his renowned personal training center in Hollywood is thriving. Among his clientele are some of Hollywood's brightest stars and biggest 'movers & shakers'. Things couldn't have been better for the young professional trainer. Although Jim's clients were extremely happy with the actual training they received, there was one 'complaint' many would voice again and again after their training sessions: They all wanted a healthy yet tasty post-workout meal that they could 'eat on the go' but their real world choices were extremely limited. Sure they could munch on a protein bar or gulp down a smoothie, but that got old… fast! After a hard workout, they craved 'real food', the kind that not only satisfies your conscience, but more importantly, your hunger. And, don't forget, it also needed to be very convenient as time typically wouldn't allow a 'sit down' or homemade meal. Problem was, most of the so called 'fresh', 'natural' or 'healthy' selections at fast food/quick serve restaurants were anything but. This inspired Jim to hit the kitchen and take matters into his own hands.

Now Jim has never claimed to be a chef or even a cook for that matter. However, he did know what would make up a healthy meal that was high in protein and low in fat. Unfortunately, his initial concoctions lacked the most important ingredient of all, great taste. Undiscouraged, Jim knew an expert in this area, so he called his Mom for help. She gave her son access to all of the family's secret seasoning and sauce recipes. Problem solved! He cooked ultra-lean ground turkey using his Mom's unique seasoning blend, added some egg whites, a dollop of pinto beans, a pinch of low fat cheese, a touch of rice, wrapped it all in a multi-grain tortilla and voila, the original GymburritO® was born!

Jim soon started giving his 'healthy hand-held hunger buster' to friends and clientele - sort of as a post-workout reward. Weighing in at nearly three quarters of a pound, they satisfied even the heartiest of appetites. Packing 42 grams of protein while being under 400 calories and having very little fat, they were also accepted by those even with the most stringent of diets. Everyone absolutely loved his burrito! People raved about how it “tastes so great” and that they “don't feel guilty” eating it as it is very wholesome. From this praise, came the creation of Our Mantra, “GREAT FOOD… not guilt food!”®

Demand for "Jim's Burrito" soon soared out of control, and he quickly out grew Mom's kitchen. Realizing he had something special, Jim decided to have the burritos produced in a professional kitchen and sell them at his training center. Humility may deserve the credit, for instead of calling the product "Jim's burrito", he came up with name GymburritO®.

The next few months were somewhat of a blur as word spread about this 'awesome healthy burrito' and soon other gyms wanted to sell the product. Jim spent his days working hard keeping his training business going. At night, he delivered his GymburritOs to the refrigerators of other local gyms and health food stores. It wasn't long before he once again looked to his family for help. This time, it was his younger brother J.P.

J.P. Barcena was a chef by trade and once he came on board, things really started to shift gears. Production was increased ten-fold, Ultimate Performance Foods (UPF), was officially formed, logos became trademarked and four new flavors were developed, including one for kids (and those with smaller appetites). This was the birth of the GymburritO jr®.

By 2004, GymburritO®/GymburritO jr® Nutritional Products were now being distributed to select locations throughout Southern California. That same year GymburritO® captured a major industry accolade by winning the prestigious California Restaurant Association's Innovator Award for Healthy Foods. It was also in this year that production came to a complete halt!

This was not due to a family feud or because demand for the products suddenly faded. Actually, it was just the opposite. Jim and J.P. loved working together and due to the overwhelming product demand they found themselves at a significant fork in the road. They could either keep this venture at the 'hobby' level or jump in with both feet and take it to its true potential. Well, they both were in it for the long haul, so they set the goal of taking GymburritO® nationally. This meant finding a professional food manufacturer (co-packager) in order to produce the extremely large quantities needed. In addition, the products would go from being a refrigerated item to a frozen one.

Funny thing about freezing, it changes things; and in this case, the burrito's texture, consistency and taste. Thus, JP got together with our food technitions to begin the painstaking task of reworking formulations for ALL varieties of GymburritO®/GymburritO jr® Nutritional Products and test run them more times than we care to remember, in order to get them to reflect the original refrigerated versions. Next, the new frozen versions were sent to R&D to ensure the Nutritional Facts were not compromised in the process.

In the meantime Jim and J.P. got together with the help of an outside marketing firm and have been working on the new labels. We are ditching the butcher paper wrappers and going with a plastic film. Not only do the colors look better on plastic film, but it also keeps the products fresher longer.

Soon, we will reintroduce the entire GymburritO® product line to the entire nation not only through fitness centers and health food stores but also wholesale/warehouse stores and fine food grocers. We certainly appreciate the patience of our loyal fans and customers - just hang in there, we are almost there!

GymburritO®/GymburritO jr® is a Registered Trademark of Ultimate Performance Foods™
78036 Betty Barker Wy. Suite A, Indian Wells, CA 92210
Phone: 760-409-5404
2004 © copyright by GymburritO®/GymburritO jr®. Email sales@gymburrito.com

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