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Post Workout Recovery Products: Slim Pickins

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So you’re wondering what is the ideal formula to take after your workout in the form of a recovery shake. You’ve probably read my post “Post Workout Recovery 101? where I recommend you replace your typical whey protein shake post workout with a blend of hydrolyzed protein, fast digesting carbs, leucine and BCAA’s, and glutamine and/or citrulline. So lets look at some of the most popular supplements that are designed especially for post workout:

1) BSN Cellmass – Everyone has probably taken Cellmass at least once, along with every other BSN product because BSN is the biggest supplement company on the planet right now. Whats contained in Cellmass: mixed creatines, glutamine, leucine and BCAA’s, insulin potentiators, and some electrolytes and phosphates. Hydrolyzed protein and carbs are missing completely even in the new Cellmass NT.

2) VPX Synthesize – Besides being basically a stimulant free version of NO-Shotgun, this formula is similar to Cellmass in a way. It contains mixed creatines, citrulline malate, leucine and BCAA’s, and even a small amount of hydrolyzed protein. Let’s clarify something about the protein though. Jack Owoc, owner of VPX, decided when he made this and the new NO Shotgun V3 that he could classify every ingredient in there as protein. That’s why you see Shotgun and Synthesize listed as having 20g of protein on the supplement facts panel, but make no mistake there is not 20g of protein in that formula. If you compare to an updated supplement facts panel on the NO Shotgun variety pack with 20 stick packs in it, it still says 18g of protein at the top but then below that breaks down the ingredients into separate groups. The first group which lists the proteins lists: Casein hydrolysate, whey protein isolate, and whey protein hydrolysate as 3.5g. I’m sorry Jack, but 3.5g of protein is 3.5g of protein….not 20. Not that VPX Synthesize is a bad formula altogether but in the opinion of this author, it lacks enough hydrolyzed protein to be significant and like BSN Cellmass NT it still lacks carbs = no insulin release.

3) Gaspari Size-On Max Performance – This is a new product which was reformulated from the original version of Size-On and in my opinion much improved. It contains mixed creatines, 5g of Leucine plus other BCAA’s, two of the best forms of glutamine on the market, 39g of carbs including dextrose, and 7g of hydrolyzed protein. Now we’re getting somewhere!

4) Universal Torrent – In this author’s opinion this is one of the most underrated supplements in the whole industry. Each serving contains: 20g whey protein hydrolysate, 52g carbs predominantly dextrose, 8g of L-Leucine, 7g of a blend of Glutamine, Citrulline Malate, and Taurine, and 3g of mixed creatines. It also helps that this product tastes really good (like candy) as do all the other products as well.

Choosing a post workout formula is still up to personal preference and alot of times brand loyalty has alot to do with it, and even the formulas that are lacking ingredients can be beefed up using carbohydrates such as AST DCG (dextrose) or Professional Supplements Pure Karbolyn, or pure hydrolyzed proteins such as AST VP2 or Optimum Nutrition Hydrowhey. This is just some post workout food for thought (pun intended).