XBrain are my sponsor so they send me products to use and review for free. The views are my own and I only review the items I think make a difference to my training.
This is my first product review so bear with me a bit on this because I might need to explain some things about myself along the way so that you can see where I am coming from.
Ok, admission, I don't... wait, didn't use preworkout. When I spoke to XBrain initially about sponsorship it was because I have been a religious user of Onnit ShroomTech and AlphaBrain they are the UK's exclusive distributor for Onnit products. When we first spoke I asked the team for supplement advice and they said they would send me some things to try. My first package contained PreCharge preworkout. Honestly, I was a bit stumped. I put it in my suppliments cupboard with those things that I have bought and don't use.
Early Morning Call
Before the IBJJF Europeans one of my Combat Academy team mates Pat Baker asked me if I would do some strength and conditioning with him. The only snag was that he wanted to do it at 0800 in the morning. I am not a natural early riser so I needed an extra boost. I remembered that I had the PreCharge kicking about and that it had Caffeine in it. I mixed up a batch and fired it down. It was not unpleasant tasting but noticeably it is not super sweet. I use a BCAA drink during and post training normally and it is ridiculously sweet and chemically, however I persist with it, as all other BCAA drinks I have tried have made me nauseous.
When I first got the product it had a sticker on the lid that had dosing requirements on it. I wanted to take a picture of the packaging so I ripped that off (see previous note about not using preworkout). Therefore the first three or four mornings I just guessed the dosing. It had a pretty big scoop so I just used a whole one. OOOF! On the plus side I was awake, but I did feel like I had been strapped to a rocket. On the flip side, despite overdosing slightly, it delivered more BCAA's than I was currently using without making me want to hurl. So, plus one for no nausea, minus one for being more awake than I ever have been. After a few days of being a bit too wide eyed I read the side and reduced the dose back to 18g. Much better.
I found the effects, like a very very strong coffee, I could focus on a single task really well. So much so that I started using it for evening sessions where my coach was explaining techniques. I also noticed an increase in my energy levels during sparring. Not that dissimilar to other legal stimulants, I would find colours a bit brighter as the supplement kicked in, which like the itch, I took as a sign of it working, which I like.
What's that Itch?
The first morning as I drove to training I noticed I was itchy. Minor panic ensued as I checked for a rash (because I do BJJ and to be honest we spend a fair amount of time rolling about on the floor). It wasn't debilitating and I just focussed on training. I did note it and then look it up online. It seems that preworkout supplements are often high in Beta Alanine and Vitamin B3. These cause 'Paresthesia' which sounds scary but in preworkouts is pretty common and is harmless at preworkout doses. To be totally honest it worried me until I looked it up and then I came to welcome it as it was a sign of the supplement working.
You can read a bit more about the Beta Alanine and Vitamin B3 here:
I honestly was disappointed when this ran out. It had become part of my routine and because of the BCAA's in it I had ditched my 'during and post' BCAA drink in favour of just plain water. Overall I found it a good supplement which I would definitely use again for the focus element and BCAA content...
Did I mention I am a HUGE fan of BCAA's? I should probably write about them...
Ease of Use: 8/10