Some guys fret entering their 30’s and 40’s, but to us, that’s when the real fun starts.
If you’ve been training hard, this is when your strength really begins to shine. You still have good energy levels, but now you’re starting to develop some wisdom and confidence and are more attractive to women than ever, given that you’ve stayed fit. This is the age range when the vikings became true leaders.
Pre Workouts come in all shapes, sizes, flavors, and potency. Some are marketed towards stim fiends, while others are “lifestyle brands” made to support “fitness celebrities”. However, it’s rare that we see a pre workout marketed towards a specific age group. And that’s exactly what Muscle Research has done with today’s Pre Workout du Jour:
Pump Juice Extreme is an interesting pre workout designed for the 30-55 year old bodybuilder / athlete that’s not looking for fully loaded stim-bomb like many of today’s high energy pre workouts, but still wants to get after it with a solid, blended dose of everything else!
And if you’re in that age range, the group of guys at Muscle Research have your back.
We’ve got the analysis down below, but before we get to it, take a moment to check the best deal and sign up for PricePlow alerts and see the coupons:
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Pump Juice Extreme Ingredients
Pump Juice Extreme really leaves us in a quandary. While on one hand, it touts an open label that clearly spells out the dose. The downside is that we can see that several of the ingredients are underdosed. But maybe some of the middle-aged guys are okay with that?
Beta Alanine (2.5g)
Batting lead off in this weekend warrior pre workout is the tingle-inducing carnosine precursor, Beta Alanine. Following ingestion, Beta Alanine binds to histidine in the body and forms carnosine a potent intracellular buffer that transports lactic acid away from skeletal muscles.
Removing lactic acid helps displace the burning sensation that sometimes develops in the muscle belly during extended working sets. Supplementation with Beta Alanine has been documented to improve endurance, time to exhaustion, strength, and power across a wide range of sports.[2,3,4]
However, the dose needed to truly model those studies is 3.2g, which we’re just shy of getting here. To maximize BA’s potential, we’d recommend adding a dash of bulk beta alanine to your post workout shake or some other beverage you drink during the day.
Betaine, a.k.a. trimethylglycine (TMG), is a tried and true muscle builder originally obtained from sugar beets. Betaine helps boost strength, power, and endurance, while also reducing muscle soreness.[5,6,7]
Betaine is also a synergist of creatine via the inhibition of the production of homocysteine. The outcome of this synergistic relationship is that betaine increases production of creatine in the body as well as the utilization rate of supplemental creatine.
Again, we’re a tad short of the clinical dose (2.5g), but not nearly as badly as our next ingredient.
Crea-Trona® is a double buffered form of Creapure® creatine monohydrate created by SynTech Nutrition. To formulate this novel form of creatine, SynTech uses a double buffer from sodium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) which creates an alkaline environment with a pH value between 8 and 12.
SynTech Nutrition hypes this as a “more efficient” form of creatine compared to others, and claims on its site, “The double buffer prevents the pH-value in the muscles from dropping during the workout leading to an increased workout capacity and a larger training volume. This also stimulates faster recovery of the original pH-value after the workout.”
SynTech also claims that you only need 3g of this to per day to obtain “optimal results.” However, this dose isn’t even close to that, nor is this form of creatine backed by any sort of peer reviewed, published research. We’ve addressed this pixie-dusting before in our mega post Creatine is BROKEN.. and Your Pre Workout is to Blame.
Our guess is that at this stage of the game, the older crew of guys knows that it’s cheapest to just get your creatine in separately, and many others are already doing so in the form of the products discussed in the all-purpose next-generation muscle building supplements. Meaning that the added Crea-Trona is simply a nice benefit to raise the pH of the entire pre workout.
However, Muscle Research went on to say this:
Studies by Jeff Golini have shown 1g of buffered creatine is actually a sufficient dosage since it does not transform into creatine waste when taken. Same idea as Creatrona.
We haven’t found that study but will try to locate it.
L-Citrulline Aspartate (1g)
When one’s interested in potent nitric oxide boosters, they can turn to one of two places, Citrulline-based ingredients or nitrate-based ones. Citrulline Aspartate falls into the former, as evidenced by the name.
We know that L-Citrulline is powerful stimulator of nitric oxide (N.O.) in the body, much more so than say, L-Arginine. Increased N.O. yields enhanced vasodilation, nutrient transport, and best of all, pumps!
Additionally, citrulline malate (a different form of citrulline than what’s shown here) also helps to remove lactic acid and ammonia build up which increases your endurance and ATP production.[11,12,13,14] We assume Citrulline Aspartate does something similar to the malate version, but we haven’t really seen the studies on this alternative form, or the dose needed to elicit effects to either that of Citrulline or Citrulline Malate.
Regardless, we’d definitely need more than 1g of the ingredient to get any significant nitric oxide boost worth getting pumped about… but thankfully we’re also going to get a gram of HydroMax and a gram worth of agmatine to follow:
HydroMax® is highly concentrated form of powdered glycerol that contains 65% glycerol by mass.available. Glycerol essentially turns your muscle into a highly-absorbent sponge that soaks up gobs of extra water, thereby creating a state of “hyperhydration.” [16,17]
The result of this hyper-hydrated state in the muscle results greater endurance, stamina, and “water-based” pumps. We’ve seen good results from this ingredient when dosed closer to 2g, so it’ll be interesting to see if 1g yields any noticeable results – they key comes in how well you do with the two forms of agmatine:
AGMACORE™ Agmatine HCl (500mg)
AGMACORE™ is the first of two forms of Agmatine in Pump Juice Extreme. AGMACORE™ is a newer form of the powerful nitric oxide extender agmatine comprised of Agmatine bonded to a molecule of hydrochloric acid (HCl).
No doubt you’ve encountered Agmatine Sulfate before, and are well acquainted with its ability to prolong the effects of arginine in the body via arginase inhibition. What Muscle Research must be doing with the HCl version of agmatine must be similar to why some companies use Creatine HCL rather than Creatine mono, improved solubility of the ingredient that would theoretically lead to greater effectiveness.
Be warned that this has yet proven more effective / beneficial for Agmatine HCl vs. Agmatine Sulfate. But we’re not done with Agmatine yet:
AGMAPHOS™ Agmatine Phosphate (500mg)
Following on our previous ingredient is another new agmatine hybrid titled AGMAPHOS™, or Agmatine Phosphate. In this version, the sulfate ion has been replaced by a phosphate ion. We’ve honestly never seen why Muscle Research uses two novel forms of agmatine. Our best guess is that including two “new” forms of agmatine will catch the eye of people wooed by novel-sounding ingredients.
However, agmatine sulfate is easily absorbed and from what we know, no research has been published proving otherwise. So we asked Muscle Research on this one, and they responded:
There are many special arrangements of the agmatine molecules at a certain pH and the most effective one seems to be the phosphate form because is buffered. There is actually a patent application on these forms in PJE that will hopefully get approved and help make them stand out more. These ingredients are currently Patent Pending.
You can reference this study for info on those: Agmatine Is Efficiently Transported by Non-Neuronal Monoamine Transporters Extraneuronal Monoamine Transporter (EMT) and Organic Cation Transporter 2 (OCT2),” by Dirk Grundemann et al., Department of Pharmacology, University of Cologne, accepted October 30, 2002.
— Muscle Research
Caffeine Anhydrous (200mg)
Pump Juice Extreme starts its energy-boosting portion much the same as all stim-powered pre workouts, beginning with good old caffeine. This age old stimulant is world-renowned for its ability to put some “pep in your step” by increasing energy, alertness, performance, and mood. It’s great for just about everything, except sleeping!
Don’t be put off by the 200mg dose of caffeine, as we still have 2 additional forms of this stim to come a little further down the label.
Following on the heels of its more well known sibling caffeine’s “little brother”, Theobromine. Similar in structure (and function) to caffeine, theobromine is also a CNS stimulant, though not quite as powerful as it’s more popular counterpart.
Don’t worry though, theobromine does carry one distinct advantage over its big brother. The energy derived from theobromine has a much smoother and longer lasting feel to it than caffeine, which is often described as harsh and responsible for “the jitters” in some people.
Citicoline Sodium (105mg)
Choline supplements are well known for their ability to significantly increase focus and the “mind-muscle” connection during exercise. They also come in a variety of forms ranging from decently bioavailable (choline bitartrate) to highly available, as we have here with Citicoline, a.k.a. CDP Choline.
Seeing as this is the lone nootropic in Pump Juice Extreme, we’d really like to see 250-500mg included, but you may see a smidge better focus with the paltry 105mg included here.
Grape Seed Extract (100mg)
Grape seed (and skin) extracts are derived from the vitis vinifera plant and are typically standardized for polyphenols to improve their efficacy.
Studied conducted with grape seed extracts demonstrate increased nitric oxide production and reduced oxidative stress in the body following intense exercise. Most likely, the extracts effects can be primarily attributed to the high levels of tannins and catechins found in grapes.
This rounds out five different ingredients that can potentially give a pump (we’re including betaine here), all hitting various pathways, and although none of them alone are bombastically dosed, their forces should combine to boost strength and give a very solid pump, but it may depend on how well the gram of agmatine works, since that’s going to be the strongest component.
Infinergy™ Dicaffeine Malate (68mg)
The second form of caffeine in Pump Juice Extreme comes via the time-released caffeine variant, dicaffeine malate. Infinergy™ is a patented form of caffeine and malic acid that provides a more prolonged release of energy resulting in less jitters and no harsh kick, only a smooth, long-lasting energy that feels good hours after your workout is complete.
Infinergy yields 73% caffeine by mass, so according to our calculations, the 68mg of Infinergy included here provides an additional 49.64mg caffeine, bringing the total dose of caffeine so far to 249.64mg in a single scoop.
Caffeine Citrate (50mg)
Our final ingredient, and final form of caffeine, is one of the quickest acting forms of caffeine, caffeine citrate. Also known as CafCit, caffeine citrate only contains about 50% caffeine by mass, which means only an additional 25mg caffeine is added to Pump Juice Extreme.
This brings the total caffeine content of one scoop of Pump Juice Extreme to 274.64mg.
While Pump Juice Extreme may be short on a few key ingredients, it’s certainly not wanting for enticing flavors. The flavor line up includes:
- Cherry Berry Explosion
- Red Razz
- Strawberry Margarita
Pump Juice Extreme has been specifically formulated with the middle aged adult male in mind. It’s an interesting play, because we do know that some of the older guys are indeed tired of the exotic stimulants that we love in many of our Best-Rated Pre Workouts. This has none of them, and focuses on moderate blends of just about everything.
Pump Juice Extreme isn’t extreme by any means – and that’s kind of the point! While it’s lacking in full fledged doses of just about any one ingredient, we’re hoping that the combinations are enough to provide a good mid-level range of energy and a solid pump, without the panic that some of those other pre workouts bring.
Just don’t forget to add more creatine.
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- Baguet, A et al.; Journal of Applied Physiology; “Important role of muscle carnosine in rowing performance;” July 2010;” 2005
- Roger C. Harris; et al.; “The effect of a supplement containing β-alanine on muscle carnosine synthesis, ventilatory threshold and exercise capacity in Korean cyclists, during 12 weeks combined endurance and weight training“
- Hill, CA et al.; Amino Acids; “Influence of beta-alanine supplementation on skeletal muscle carnosine concentrations and high intensity cycling capacity ;” February 2007
- Kendrick IP, et al. The effects of 10 weeks of resistance training combined with beta-alanine supplementation on whole body strength, force production, muscular endurance and body composition. Amino Acids. (2008)
- Lee EC, et al. Ergogenic effects of betaine supplementation on strength and power performance. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. (2010)
- Cholewa, J; Effects of betaine on body composition, performance, and homocysteine thiolactone.; Department of Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport Studies, Coastal Carolina University; 2013
- Effect of betaine supplementation on power performance and fatigue
- del Favero S, et al Creatine but not betaine supplementation increases muscle phosphorylcreatine content and strength performance . Amino Acids. (2012)
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- Giannesini B., et. al.; European Journal of Pharmacology; “Citrulline malate supplementation increases muscle efficiency in rat skeletal muscle;” September 2011
- Perez-Guisado J, Jakeman PM; Journal of Strength and Conditioning; “Citrulline malate enhances athletic anaerobic performance and relieves muscle soreness;” May 2010
- Hickner RC. et. al.; Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise; “L-citrulline reduces time to exhaustion and insulin response to a graded exercise test;“
- Moinard C., et. al.; The British Journal of Nutrition; “Dose-ranging effects of citrulline administration on plasma amino acids and hormonal patterns in healthy subjects: the Citrudose pharmacokinetic study;” April 2008
- Glanbia Nutritionals, Inc; HydroMax: a better glycerol for sports nutrition; NewHope360; 2014
- van Rosendal, S; Guidelines for glycerol use in hyperhydration and rehydration associated with exercise.; School of Human Movement Studies, The University of Queensland; 2010
- Wingo, J; Influence of a Pre-Exercise Glycerol Hydration Beverage on Performance and Physiologic Function During Mountain-Bike Races in the Heat; University of Connecticut, Department of Sport, Leisure, & Exercise Science; 2004
- Demady, D; Agmatine enhances the NADPH oxidase activity of neuronal NO synthase and leads to oxidative inactivation of the enzyme.; Department of Pharmacology, The University of Michigan Medical School; 2001
- van den Bogaard B, et al.; Effects on Peripheral and Central Blood Pressure of Cocoa With Natural or High-Dose Theobromine Hypertension. 2010; 56:839-846, published online before print October 20, 2010
- Belviranlı M, et al; Effects of Grape Seed Polyphenols on Oxidative Damage in Liver Tissue of Acutely and Chronically Exercised Rats . Phytother Res. (2012)
- Belviranlı M, et al; Effects of grape seed extract supplementation on exercise-induced oxidative stress in rats . Br J Nutr. (2012)
- Erenberg, A., Leff, R. D., Haack, D. G., Mosdell, K. W., Hicks, G. M., Wynne, B. A. and Caffeine Citrate Study Group (2000), Caffeine Citrate for the Treatment of Apnea of Prematurity: A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study. Pharmacotherapy: The Journal of Human Pharmacology and Drug Therapy, 20: 644–652. doi:10.1592/phco.20.7.644.35167
- Gründemann, Dirk, et. al; “Agmatine Is Efficiently Transported by Non-Neuronal Monoamine Transporters Extraneuronal Monoamine Transporter (EMT) and Organic Cation Transporter 2 (OCT2)”; Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics; February 2003, 304 (2) 810-817; http://jpet.aspetjournals.org/content/304/2/810.long