Friday, 3 May 2013

Review | MyProtein BCAA & MAX Elle Thermopure

Whilst I attempt to eat clean as much as possible, I do also have a place in my diet for health and fitness related supplements such as protein shakes and vitamin/mineral tablets. I've been taking multivitamins, cod liver oil capsules and also having protein shakes for just over a year now, and they have really helped me get any nutrients that I was struggling to get and I do feel as if they have really made a difference to my overall health!
Personally I am extremely brand loyal to MyProtein with regards to their whey protein as I genuinely think they're amazing value for money as well has having heaps of amazing flavours to choose from! So when Hassan from MyProtein approached me asking if I would like to give any of their other products a go I couldn't resist! After telling Hassan my goals of reducing my body fat whilst trying to maintain the muscle which I has already gained, he recommended that I try their Berry Blast BCAA* and their Elle Thermopure* capsules. I had heard of both of these before, and had actually almost bought the Thermopure on more than one occasion but had never actually bitten the bullet and pressed 'Confirm Order', as I was worried about wasting my money!
So, what are they???

What is BCAA?

BCAA stands for Branched-Chain Amino Acids, and are recognised as being the three essential aminos which humans need in order to survive. Unlike other nutrients, BCAAs are metabolised directly in the muscles instead of in the stomach, and help build lovely lean muscle tissue as well has helping prevent the breakdown of existing muscle mass (known as catabolism).
This makes BCAA super good for those who are on a calorie-deficit or those who are on fasting programmes such as Lean Gains to lose weight, as it will help prevent your body from breaking down muscle to use as energy when your carbohydrate and fat levels are low. This means that you will maintain that higher metabolism from maintaining your muscle mass, which will allow you to burn more calories even when you're body's at rest!

What is Thermopure?

Thermopure is slightly different in that it is based more around aiding the reduction of fat stored in the body through a fusion of natural herbs and ingredients. Ingredients include Green Tea Extract which has been proven to reduce the amount of fat yo are able to digest and store, as well as increasing the rate at which body fat is burned for energy. This is combined with other ingredients such as raspberry ketones, cayenne and caffeine to boost your metabolic rate meaning that more calories are able to be burned during your workout.
MyProtein have also added some B Vitamins into the mix will will help you keep your muscles working for longer, by increasing the release of energy to your working muscles.

My Experience

Starting with the BCAA, my experience as a whole was a good one. I was sent the Berry Blast flavour which I took once a day (due to me using it in conjunction with Thermopure) with a serving being a 5g scoop of product combined with 250ml water. The flavour was nice as it wasn't too sickly sweet - something I hate in a drink - and tasted just like a fairly dilute mixed berry squash/cordial.
The main thing that let this product down was that it was really hard to get some of the granules to dissolve properly and although I wasn't too bothered by it, I could see that it might be a problem to some people! MyProtein do have the option of BCAA capsules as well so if you are worried then you can always give those a try instead!
With regards to how it affected my exercise, I didn't feel that much of a difference at first, but after a week of using it I noticed that my I could push myself further with my workouts as I could lift more weight/run further before my muscles began to tire, something which I has never experienced in quite the same way before.

I've also seen a noticeable difference in my body since beginning to take Thermopure with my body looking a lot leaner since I started two weeks ago, as well as my body feeling super pumped for workouts. I have been taking the capsules every day, consuming 2 before a workout plus one later on in the day, and also having three spread out across the day on rest days. It literally gives me so much energy that combined with the BCAA I feel as if I can go forever!
Because it raises your heart rate, you do get A LOT sweatier during workouts when you have Thermopure beforehand, so make sure you have plenty of water with you so you stay hydrated. Because it contains caffeine I also wouldn't recommend taking it too close to bed time either or you may struggle to sleep as I found one time!

Would I Recommend Them?

In short, yes definitely! If you are attempting to lose body fat then I would definitely recommend giving them a try if you've reached a bit of a plateau and need that little something extra to give your body a little kick into motion again.
I'm going to be continuing to use both of these products in the run up to my holiday in a couple of weeks to help me shed some of that extra fat that's preventing me from getting that beach body, whilst still allowing me to weight-train effectively!

Some Important Last Notes

Overall I have had an amazing experience with both the BCAA powder and the Thermopure capsules but I do want to reiterate to you guys that these sorts of products should only be used as part of a healthy, balanced diet! I would never suggest that any supplement product should be used in replacement of 'real' food, and that they should only be used to give you that little extra boost when required.
In my opinion, I wouldn't suggest taking Thermopure for any real length of time unless there are considerble breaks in between. This is because you don't want your body to end up relying on the caffeine and other ingredients to keep going, or you'll start going backwards with your progress when you do stop taking them! I'm going to stop taking the capsules after my holiday and probably won't use them again until I next go on holiday, trying to reduce my body fat naturally in the mean time.

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