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Podium Gold Reviews

By: CSA Nutrition



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Creatine > Blends
ABOUT
Podium Gold is a Creatine Blend manufactured by CSA Nutrition. It features multiple forms of creatines to take advantage of the various features of the different creatines. It can increase muscle power, translating to strength gains and increased muscle mass.
PRODUCT RATING
8.0
(Out of 10, after 12 reviews)
12

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REVIEWS (12)



Overall
Overall
8.3
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
8.5
Value
Value
7.5
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  July 17, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Increased Endurance
  • Increased Energy
  • Better Recovery
  • Increased Strength
  • Not Widely Available
  • Bit Too Expensive
  • Slightly Expensive
  • Full Pilot Study Not Available

Introduction

I apologize to CSA Nutrition for taking so long on this review. Thank you for letting me try Podium Gold.

Ingredient Profile

10/10
This profile is both simple and tricky to properly evaluate. It is simple in that there is 4500mg of one ingredient/blend: Carnoforge (patented B-Alanine, Creatine Monohydrate, and Creatine-B-Alanine Complex). The difficulty comes, however, in that this is a relatively unique creatine-esque product. CSA Nutrition claims that Carnoforge blends the "explosive strength specific ingredients Creatine and B-Alanine" into a more powerful ingredient, Carnoforge. Moreover, CSA claims that their ionic binding process is superior (in absorption/bioavailability and strength of results) to simply mixing Creatine and B-Alanine powders. Since both ingredients on their own contribute to improvements in strength and speed, CSA holds that Carnoforge, being superior, does so with a greater result/effect. Specifically CSA claims that Carnoforge increases "Exercise Capacity and Power Output by increasing intracellular carnosine levels in fast twitch fiber by 80%."

I hate to repeat a lot of marketing materials but I could not find anything on the Carnoforge patented form of Creatine and B-Alanine other than materials hosted by CSA. Therefore these claims must be understood along with a recognition of their [potential] bias. Still, there is a lot of research supporting the claims that Creatine and B-Alanine supplementation work synergistically to produce better (i.e. stronger) results than supplementing with just one of the ingredients. There are numerous sources in the public domain that back this up, but I decided to focus on some articles found via Google Scholar as opposed to one listed on a health/wellness store, site, or blog to reduce some possible bias in selection. I looked at "Effects of 28 days of beta-alanine and creatine supplementation on muscle carnosine, body composition and exercise performance in recreationally active females" by Kresta et al. (2014) which found no significant results from supplementing with either Creatine or B-Alanine. I also looked at "Effect of creatine and beta-alanine supplementation on performance and endocrine responses in strength/power athletes" by J. Hoffman et al. (2006) which supported the claims of improved results with Creatine and B-Alanine supplementation. Finally I looked at "The Role of B-alanine Supplementation on Muscle Carnosine and Exercise Performance" by Artioli et al. (2010) which supported claims that B-Alanine supplementation delays the onset of neuromuscular fatigue. It also summarizes other studies that found similar results. From these studies, it seems logical to me to conclude that creatine and B-alanine supplementation on their own produce desired results (strength and endurance increases) but to determine if one is better than the other or if a combination is better than either is alone may require more time than I have.

Thus, I am rating this a 10/10 because it has a patented, unique ingredient that has potential to be better than creatine or B-alanine supplementation alone. I have no way of truly fact-checking this. There seem to be few readily available studies on the unique Carnoforge blend and those that do look at Creatine+B-Alanine supplementation appear to be inconsistent. Therefore, I cannot easily conclude that the science supports or contradicts CSA's claims about Carnoforge or Creatine+B-Alanine in general.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

10/10
I received a powder form that was "mandarin orange" flavor. The powder is extremely fine and sort of grainy but not clumpy. It mixed extremely well with water. CSA suggests that people under 200lbs take 1 scoop (before or after workout) and those over 200lbs take 2 scoops (one in morning and one after workout) with water. Being under 200lbs, I took one scoop most days. I also took 2 scoops on occasion to see if there was any difference in flavor or noticeable results. CSA does not suggest a liquid amount (at least on my bottle) so I typically filled a shaker cup up with water (16-20z) and mixed it in. The flavor was stronger at 8-12oz but was still very light.

Effectiveness

8.5/10
I experienced similar results to ordinary B-alanine and creatine supplementation. I experienced modest strength and endurance capacity increases but nothing mind-blowing. I found that I could move up an extra 5lbs with dumbbell lifts or 10lbs in barbell lifts after a few weeks of use (beginning somewhere in weeks 3-4). This wasn't anything better than consistent creatine monohydrate or B-alanine supplementation in my experience. In fact, I feel like I have gotten better results from creatine gluconate supplementation. That is probably statistically false but that's how I felt.

I experienced the most notable results in respect to cardiovascular exercise. I found that in weeks 3-4, cardio became a little easier. At this time, I noticed that "the burn" that set in with cardio started to appear a little later into my workout. Instead of feeling "the burn" about 5 minutes into cardiovascular exercise, I started to feel it closer to 10 minutes in by week 4. Granted, some of this is undoubtedly the result of naturally adapting to static workloads. Still, I think Carnoforge supplementation sped up this adaption. I can't prove this definitively but based off my past experiences I would say that Carnoforge helped some - I just don't know how much. Furthermore, this may be no more impressive than B-alanine supplementation alone. I cannot really speak to that because I have not supplemented with just B-alanine enough. I can say, however, that Carnoforge supplementation seemed to add something "extra" to my standard pre-workout supplementation which usually included creatine and B-alanine.

Thus, I believe that Carnoforge supplementation helped my performance in terms of strength and endurance. I cannot definitively say that is was better than just creatine or B-alanine supplementation alone. I believe I noticed a positive difference from just creatine or B-alanine supplementation in cardiovascular exercise but merely similar effects to creatine or B-alanine supplementation in strength (lifting) workouts.

Value

7.5/10
I could only find Podium Gold for $43.99 for a (60 scoop) 60 serving tub or $29.99 for a (120ct) 60 serving bottle. At $0.74 a scoop or $0.50 a [capsule form] serving. While this is not terrible by any means, bulk creatine and B-alanine can be combined for a cheaper cost per serving. That being said, I don't know if Carnoforge is superiorly bonded, which may warrant an increased cost per serving. Therefore, I increased the rating from a 7.0 to a 7.5 to account for this unknown. I would rate this a 8/10 but I cannot be sure that supplementing with creatine and B-alanine raws produce statistically weaker results that also warrant an increase in cost per serving. As a financially conscious consumer I try to evaluate cost-benefit ratios for as much as possible and make decisions after comparing the cost-benefit ratios of different products. It can get a little tedious and in the weeds but for that reason I think a 7.5 is very reasonable. Additionally, increased retailer availability would also help the score here.

Side Effects

10/10
I did not experience the side effects that sometimes come with creatine supplementation (bloating) and B-alanine supplementation (paresthesia).

Conclusion

8.3/10
I get to a 8.3/10 after rounding up from 8.25/10. I get to 8.25/10 after averaging the scores for Value and Effectiveness as these are the most relevant sections. I added 0.25 for the high marks in the Side Effects, Taste/Mixability/Dosing, and Ingredient Profile categories. Overall, I think this product is worth trying out. I would probably not take the plunge if I needed to have a really strict budget because I feel that combined B-alanine and creatine supplementation may come close enough for cheaper. If I had a little flexibility with my supplement budget, I'd probably give this a try for convenience, novelty, and because it is light enough to be refreshing to drink intra-workout.



Overall
Overall
8.0
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
9.0
Value
Value
7.0
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  July 9, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Increased Endurance
  • Increased Energy
  • Increased Strength
  • Not Widely Available
  • Bit Too Expensive

Introduction

First I would like to thank CSA Nutrition for sending their product out and letting me try it, and the SR TROOP's program for giving me the opportunity to do so.
Hi i'm a 39 year old 6'2" 230 pounds gym rat. I usually go about 5 times a week to the gym. All of these days are strength training with a minimum 20 minute cardio. When I noticed this product being offered I wanted to try it myself so that I could push a little more on my muscles to get that full sourness. This might not be healthy but if I don't have sour muscles the next day than I think my previous day was wasted. Honestly I was taken by surprise how effective this product was ... I'm glad I can share this with you since a lot of times I've been let down by promises these supplement companies are making.

Ingredient Profile

So they bonded these two compounds called creatine and beta alanine together to bring you something new called 2-Methylguanidino Ethanoic 3-Aminopropanoic Acid. Creatine is a supplement that will give you extra strength while beta-alanine helps you with endurance. Now combine them both and you should be able to lift more for a longer time.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

There is nothing to comment here since these came in a pills format. I weight 230 pounds, therefore I took 3 pills in the morning and 3 pills in the evening as recommended. The pills were easy to swallow and there was no aftertaste. Picture added for reference.

Effectiveness

Here is where the product shines. I have broken all my barriers after a few days of taking this product. The results won't be anything massive but you will definitely go over what you did before. Please don't think you will all suddenly lift 50 - 100 pounds more but you will definitely be able to lift a bit more and what is more important you will be able to do more reps. I felt that endurance lasted longer while I was doing reps and I could easily transcend from doing 12 reps to 15 reps of the same weight. On some exercises I could stay at the same rep count but increase weight. This is not something easy to accomplish for me and it takes me weeks to make that jump. I did this just by adding this product to my supplement stack. So I believe this product really does what it says. The only thing that would be hard for me to judge is the speed part. I'm not really sure if that helped me run faster etc ...

Value

Here is where the product stops shining for me personally. You can only purchase this supplement from the manufacturer's website. The standard price is 30$ per bottle, since my size requires for me to take 6 tablets a day that comes out to 20 servings that cost 1.5$ per servings. That unfortunately is very expensive for me compared to taking just creatine monohydrate by itself. Now if you serious about gaining strength and if you making money from training than you could go for the sales ... currently they have a sale where you can buy 3 tubes and receive 1 for free ...
this comes out to 1.125 per serving for the 80 servings. It is still a little bit to much for the average Joe like me.

Now, if you weight under 200 pounds you would be taking 4 tablets a day. That makes it a dollar per serving per tube when you buy one and .75 cents if you buy 3 and get 1 free. If you under 200 pounds this actually comes out to be pretty competitive product compared to others.

Side Effects

I did not experience bloating like most of the others did. I have no side effects to speak of.

Conclusion

If I was making money from being strong than this would be the product I would be buying to help me with that. Unfortunately for me personally there is no need to gain strength at that price. There are other much cheaper solutions out there that will provide almost identical results with out spending all that money. If you are under 200 pounds (one day hopefully that would be me) this creatine blend becomes even more attractive. I might have to revisit this product if I reach a plateau and want some boost to go above it. I'm glad I was able to take a product that delivered on most of it's promise. If you have the money or the need you will not be disappointed.



Overall
Overall
8.2
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
8.5
Value
Value
7.8
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  June 27, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Increased Endurance
  • Clean Energy
  • Increased Muscular Integrity
  • Increased Strength
  • Builds Muscle
  • Increased Energy
  • Better Recovery
  • Not Widely Available
  • Bit Too Expensive
  • Slightly Expensive
  • Excessive Water Weight
  • Full Pilot Study Not Available

Introduction

First off I want to thank CSA Nutrition for letting us troopers have the chance to give this product a try. I had been wanting to get back on creatine again and when I first saw this show up on the trooper program I passed on wanting to try it because I was not to sure about it. When the reviews started showing up for this and saw that they were pretty good reviews and were giving this product some high ratings I decided to give it a try next time it showed up on trooper program and it did. I was not to sure what to think of this since it was straight up creatine monohydrate. I like creatine mono because it does give me some good strength gains but the down side is I usually get really bloated from it. This is why I was a little unsure of wanting to try this but I decided to try it anyways.

Ingredient Profile

I was sent the pill form instead of powder. I think I was the only person so far on all the reviews on here to have been sent the pills instead of the powder. You get in each serving which is two tablets 2250mg. This has a mix of beta alanine and creatine Monohydrate. They bond and buffer these two ingredients together to increase the absorbability and bioavailablity. When creatine is not buffered it can turn into creatinine faster which you don't want. There is no banned substances in this which is nice. With this being a single ingredient product there is not much else to really say about it.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

No taste. I had the capsules instead of the powder.
Nothing to mix.
Dosing= It says on the label if your under 200lbs to take 4 capsules daily and if your over 200lbs to take 6 capsules daily. Since I am just under 200lbs I would take two capsules in the morning and two later in the day right before my workout.

Effectiveness

The biggest thing I was looking to get from this was some good strength gains and be able to put some more size on and get my weight up a little. I usually respond really well to creatine mono and able to get a lot of good strength gains from it. With this my strength gains I thought were minimal. I did notice some strength gains but not what I am use to getting when I have used creatine mono in the past. I know my weight did go up a bit from this which I liked but I feel that a lot of this was mostly from water weight. The reason I say that is because I did notice a bit of bloating in my stomach. It was not as bad as I figured it would be which I am ok with. When I have used creatine mono in the past I usually get a lot of bloating from it but it was not as bad with this product. The really bad bloating I usually get from creatine mono is a big part as to why I don't use it as much even thought I get a lot of good strength gains from it. I guess that's the price to pay for the strength gains. Thankfully this was not as bad bloating wise.

The part that really stood out the most for me was my endurance and how much it was greatly improved. I felt like I needed a lot less time between sets and could go a lot quicker between them. Also I was able to do more higher reps and not get as tired doing them. I could really tell a big different in how much quicker I would recovery between sets. My overall workouts seemed to last a lot longer because of how good I was feeling. I felt I could keep going a lot longer and not get as tired and at the end of my workouts I still felt like I had something left in me to keep going if I needed to. I feel like this really helped give me some good energy and made me feel a lot better while I did my workouts. I know my recovery seemed to be a lot better also.

Value

Right now on their website is the only place you can get this and they want for the pills (which I was sent) is $29.99 for 120 count bottle. If your taking 4 capsules it will last you 30 days and if you need 6 it will last you 20 days. For a month supply it is slightly on the high side but not horrible. If you need 6 capsules then I feel the price is a little to high for me. I would like to see some other sites start carrying this and maybe that could help lower the price a little more.

Side Effects

Nothing to much maybe just a bit of bloating and that's about it.

Conclusion

Overall I thought this was a fairly decent creatine product. The strength gains were decent but I would have liked just a little bit more in the way of strength gains. If the strength gains would have been as good as my endurance was this could have been one of the best creatine product I have used. I do like that it did not cause me to bloat as badly as I have when I have used other creatine mono products. If your looking to really improve your endurance this product for sure will really help you with that. The way my workouts improved endurance wise was amazing . I would for sure recommend giving this a try if your in the need of a good creatine Mono product. The plus to this is that you get some beta alanine in this also. I would like to see a few more places start carrying this and maybe that would help get the price down a little. Again I want to give a big shout out to CSA Nutrition for making this product and letting me have the chance to try it.



Overall
Overall
8.5
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
8.0
Value
Value
7.5
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  June 27, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Increased Endurance
  • Increased Energy
  • Builds Muscle
  • Increased Strength
  • Not Widely Available
  • Heavy Bloating
  • Slightly Expensive
  • Excessive Water Weight
  • Full Pilot Study Not Available

Introduction

Creatine has always been a staple of mine since I first starting lifting. I can remember buying those big tubs of cell-tech back in the day thinking I would look like the man in the ad. This obviously never happened but I still took creatine. I have bounced from various forms but always went back to monohydrate. This is because monohydrate is the most cost effective and actually has validated research studies behind it unlike other novel forms. In my research, I also saw that some believe creatine combined with beta-alanine can yield increased performance. The major study noting this concluded that "creatine plus beta-alanine supplementation appeared to have the greatest effect on lean tissue accruement and body fat composition." (1). What does appeared mean? I do not know but this same study noted changes in lean body mass and body fat percent in the creatine/beta alanine group. I cannot see the whole study so I am unsure how large the changes were. So, when CSA Nutrition put up their Podium Gold creatine formula with creatine and beta-alanine combined I had to try it.

Ingredient Profile

When I claimed Podium Gold, I requested the pill version of the product. The pill version comes with 120 tablets. The serving size is two pills twice a day for anyone under 200 pounds and three pills twice a day for anyone over 200 pounds. Each serving contains the CarnoForge Proprietary blend of creatine-B-alanine complex at 2250 mg. CSA Nutrition mentions that CarnoForge is created using a patented manufacturing process that ionically binds creatine and beta alanine. Due to this manufacturing process, CSA Nutrition claims that their product is superior to other competitors who merely mix the two ingredients together. There is suppose to be a pilot study and on CSA Nutrition's website, they mention some results. The results are 12.59% increase in 1RM, 4.89% decrease in body fat, squat 5 rep max 9.86 % increase, and 70% bench reps 74.17% increase. However, I could not find a place to actually read the entire study and it was not cited on their website. I would definitely like to see the entire study and perhaps I missed where it was linked but I do not think so (http://shop.csanutrition.net/).

Just in case a reader was unsure, what supplemental creatine does it increases creatine and phosphocreatine levels within the body. As you work out your body converts ATP to ADP, the latter cannot be used for energy. The ADP will bind to phosphocreatine (the levels are higher now) and convert back into ATP, which can be used for energy. This will give you more energy thus increased performance. As for beta-alanine, it acts as an acid buffer in the body and can improve fatigue resistance increasing endurance. I do like that both creatine and beta alanine are in the product as I have stacked both in the past with positive results. I am unsure if those results were enhanced when I took them together but they were still positive. I will go into detail in the effectiveness section if I believe this product out performed creatine and beta-alanine mixed together.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

Taste and mixability do not really apply to pill versions. However, I will say that the pills had a chemical smell and taste to them almost like alcohol. In terms of dosing, I am over 200 pounds so I took three pills twice a day. However, I noticed some bloating at that dosage and went down to two pills twice a day and the bloating lessened but was still there. I will note that my results were similar with each dosing, which leads me to believe I would have been fine with two pills twice per day from the start. As far as timing goes, I took one dose in the AM and other post workout.

Effectiveness

Prior to taking Podium Gold, I was taking creatine monohydrate at 5g per day. I noticed that my strength and endurance levels slightly increased when I switched over to this product. The strength increases were slightly higher than just creatine monohydrate. However, I felt like they were similar to when I stacked bulk creatine and beta alanine together. For example, I swap between dumbbells and barbell for bench press throughout the year. I noticed that I was able to push slightly more weight with podium gold over just creatine monohydrate (results were similar to bulk creatine and beta alanine). In terms of endurance, I do trail running and I noticed I was able go slightly farther (several hundred feet) on the trail for my runs and I was less out breath. The results I felt were higher than creatine monohydrate alone and even bulk creatine monohydrate and beta alanine. Overall, Podium Gold is an effective product and was superior to just creatine monohydrate for endurance and strength. Comparing it to bulk creatine monohydrate and beta alanine the results were similar for strength but slightly higher for running endurance. I do not feel like the slight increase in my running endurance is worth the price. However, I would definitely give Podium Gold a try.

Value

In terms of value, Podium Gold is on sale for $29.99 making it a $1.00 per day, which is slightly expensive. You can bulk order it and get four bottles for $89.97, which comes out to about $0.75 per day. This is for the pill version. I cannot see the ingredient profile of the powdered version but check out the other reviews since some other reviewers had the powdered version. It is hard to compare this to anything else so I will compare it to bulk creatine monohydrate and beta-alanine. You can find Nutrabio Creatine Monohydrate for $14.99, which is $0.15 cents per day (5g serving in 100 serving tub). Nutrabio beta alanine retails for $33.99, which is $0.18 cents per day (2g serving in 180 serving tub). Combining those totals, you are looking at $0.33 per day taking 5g of creatine monohydrate and 2g of beta alanine. It comes down to whether you believe that CarnoForge is superior to bulk powders. Personally, I will stick to bulk powders but I do think that Podium Gold is worth a try even at $1.00 (or $0.75) per day.

Side Effects

As mentioned previously I did have some bloating while using this product. I noticed increased bloating at the higher dosages but it lessened when I backed the dosage down. The bloating was slightly more than I have had with other creatine products.

Conclusion

Overall, CSA Nutrition Podium Gold is an effective creatine product for strength and endurance. It performed similar to bulk creatine monohydrate and beta alanine in strength but was slightly superior to those in terms of endurance. The product is slightly expensive going for $0.75 per day as opposed to $0.33 for bulk powders. Even though it is more expensive, I still would recommend trying it. I will probably stick to bulk powders but I am glad that I was able to try this through the trooper program. I would like to thank CSA Nutrition for sending the product and the trooper program for coordinating it.

-Xcmiler

(1) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17136944



Overall
Overall
7.5
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
7.5
Value
Value
8.0
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  May 12, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Increased Endurance
  • Increased Strength
  • Mixability Needs Improvement
  • Heavy Bloating
  • Excessive Water Weight

Introduction

Thank you to the folks at CSA Nutrition and the SR Troops program for the opportunity to try Podium Gold.

Why I chose this product:

I haven't tried a straight up creatine mono related product in quite some time, possibly over 5 years. I respond well, strength increase, some endurance etc. however, I have had bad issues with bloating on many occasions. My go to creatine of choice is Kre-alkalyn, the buffered form of creatine monohydrate and I love it. Works like a charm and no bloating ever. So I figured I would give this a go.

Ingredient Profile

The ingredient 4.5 gram proprietary blend called CarnoForge is trademarked, which is a blend of beta alanine and creatine monohydrate. From what I have read, the ingredients in this product are bonded and buffered.

The company claims that Carnoforge increases exercise capacity and power output by increasing intracellular carnosine levels via fast twitch (Type 2) muscle fibers. The product is free from any banned substances and is touted by a few powerlifters online and in several weight lifting forums.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

Taste:

I received the unflavored powder, which had zero taste to it. I did mix it with powerade zero, and the product had no much effect if any, on the flavor of the powerade zero.

Mixability:

Not the greatest mixing product, I had to stir the product often, especially after drinking half the glass. A ton of settling of the powder at the bottom, and gritty as I got towards the bottom of the glass.

I mixed the product in 12 ounces of beverage, sometimes water, but for the most part powerade zero. When I would take 2 scoops, I went with 6 ounces pre and 1 scoop and 6 ounces post workout with 1 scoop. The goal here was to keep my water/beverage intake the same, and to hopefully minimize water weight.

Dosing:

Directions state, once scoop daily before your workout for people under 200lbs and once scoop daily preworkout and once scoop post workout for people over 200lbs. Pretty straightforward here, no loading etc.

Effectiveness

Appearance Effects:

Based on my starting weight of 233, I started the product as directed at 1 scoop before my workout and 1 scoop after my workout. Now here's where my issue arose. After 4 days of 2 scoops per day, I felt noticeably more swole, heavy and bloated, so I stepped on the scale and whoa, 240 lbs, I gained 7 pounds of water weight in 4 days. So I had to rethink my strategy with product as I didn't want to find out what the scale would read another 4 days from now. So at this point, I scaled back to one scoop preworkout. My weight came back down to 233 after another 4 days at one scoop. In the end I was up about 2 pounds only.

Also, just to note, I didn't increase my water or beverage intake, or change my diet whatsoever, everything was as close to the same as possible.

Physical Effects:

The product worked as a creatine monohydrate product should, some strength gains, but most noticeable endurance. I felt like I could train for hours on end, even with the one scoop. During the tub run, I was craving more weight on my lifts. I would say as opposed to no creatine, I probably increased most of my lifts by about 5% from the start of the tub, to the end of the tub.

The strength gains were positive, but the endurance aspect was tremendous for me. Normally, at the end of a workout, I am spent, nothing left in the tank and I am stumbling out of the gym. With podium gold I was craving more lifting and had so much in the tank. Also, I noticed my recovery post workout was increased, as I didn't feel that afternoon crash at work from training in the am, or the need to take a nap after dinner. I had more energy period. Huge props here, as I don't remember any prior creatine product having this much of a positive endurance effect on me.

Value

The powder version costs $43.99 for 60 servings. If your needing just one scoop (under 200lbs) a day, that's 60 days of product at 73 cents per day, that's really good value. For those over 200lbs, double that cost at 30 days servings, not the best value.

Side Effects

7lbs of water weight gain in just 4 days of use, at 2 scoops per day was just too much for me. Bloating, a sense of heaviness in my muscles.

At 1 scoop I didn't experience any side effects.

Conclusion

An interesting experience to say the least. I was curious how much water weight I would have gained if I continued at 2 scoops. Absolutely loved the endurance aspect of this product.

Personally, I will stick to my Kre-Alkalyn, however, if you are a hard gainer, I feel this product has your name all over it.



Overall
Overall
7.5
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
8.2
Value
Value
7.0
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  April 15, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Increased Endurance
  • Increased Strength
  • Better Recovery
  • Not Widely Available
  • Bit Too Expensive

Introduction

I use creatine year round and always am interested in trying new types that come out. CSA's Podium Gold looked interesting because it was basically a two in one product that most of us use on a daily basis already.

Ingredient Profile

Each scoop provides 4500 mg of CarnoForge which is a trademarked proprietary blend of beta alanine and creatine monohydrate. This blend is touted to provide the athlete with enhanced strength and speed. These two ingredients are bonded and buffered to greatly increase the absorbability and bioavailablity. Without being buffered, creatine converts to creatinine faster which you do not really want. This product is free of any banned substances. Single ingredient supplement, so not much to talk about here.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

Taste: I received the unflavored powder and this was truly unflavored. This did not affect the taste of anything I mixed it in. If you are looking for a flavored powder, they should have them in stock shortly if they do not have them already.

Mixability 5/10: There is a lot of settling with this supplement. Creatine monohydrate and beta-alanine are pretty course, grainy powders by themselves, so this is pretty much expected.

Dosing 8/10: One scoop daily for person weighing less than 200 lbs. Two scoops daily for person weighing over 200 lbs. They recommend taking one scoop before or after workout if you weigh under 200 and for anyone over 200, you could take one scoop in the morning and one post workout.

Effectiveness

Okay so I decided to kind of take it upon myself to go with 1.5-1.75 scoops since I only weighed slightly above 200 pounds. I dosed this at about the .75 marking on the scoop each time. I chose to mix it with my pre-workout and with my post-workout. Figured I was getting a little bit extra beta-alanine and creatine in my pre workout anyway. I just took one heaping scoop in the mornings on my off day (Sunday). The beta-alanine tingles were definitely felt and increased the amount that I would have gotten from a pre-workout alone.

I noticed that my strength increased or stayed the same as I upped the frequency of my workouts over the past month or two. I have decreased my calories since the winter and increased the amount of cardio I have done, so strength most likely should have decreased. For the most part, that was not the case. I have increased in reps or weight in almost every exercise except for bench, which I cannot seem to make any progress on for the life of me lol. For my main five lifts, I have been keeping reps low, but working with more sets than I have in the winter. I have also been doing a lot more isolation exercises in the 12-15 rep range and it seems that I have recovered decently while using this.

Value

For whatever reason, the powder will cost more than the tablets off of the CSA website. For 60 servings, you can purchase the powder for $43.99 and the tablets for $34.99 (excluding any shipping costs). If you could get by with one serving a day, it is not that bad of price, but if you are using two servings a day, it is probably considered pricey for a month run of a creatine blend. I guess you do have to remember that you are getting creatine and beta-alanine in one, so maybe this could be used as a pre-workout if you are cycling off stimulants for the month.

Side Effects

I did not notice anything.

Conclusion

I enjoyed my run of this product and would recommend it if you are in the market for a blended creatine. It was an interesting ingredient that proved to be effective. Thank you to CSA for sending this out. I will definitely be on the lookout for any future products of yours.



Overall
Overall
6.5
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
7.0
Value
Value
6.3
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  April 11, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Builds Muscle
  • Increased Energy
  • Increased Endurance
  • Better Recovery
  • Increased Strength
  • Not Widely Available
  • Bit Too Expensive
  • Mixability Needs Improvement
  • Slightly Expensive
  • Heavy Bloating
What's up SR family, hope all are doing well! I would like to thank CSA Nutrition and the Trooper program for allowing me to give Podium Gold a run. It's been a while since I have ran any product that is Creatine Monohydrate based; therefore, when I saw Podium Gold come up for the Troopers, I decided to give it a run. I wanted to add some strength and see if I could increase my 1MR by a couple of reps; Podium Gold do it? Let us find out

Ingredient Profile

Podium Gold is a proprietary blend of 2 ingredients, Creatine Monohydrate and B-Alanine. I will keep this section somewhat brief, since other members who have already reviewed Podium Gold, provided some great information on the profile; I will focus more on what the product effected by performance at the gym and my body. Some of the claims for Podium Gold are:

Increase Speed
Enhancing Explosive Strength
Increase Recovery Time

Taste - I received the unflavored, so there was not taste; I just mixed in fruit juice

Mixing - as with any Creatine Monohydrate product, it tends to be a little bit of a challenge to mix without clumping; Podium Gold was no difference. I find that you really need to shake this up good.

Dosing - It is recommended that you take 1 scoop if you are 200lbs and less and 2 scoops if you are over 200lbs; I needed the 2 scoops. On non-training days, I would take 1 scoop in the AM and 1 scoop in the afternoon or early evening with my protein shake I take to help with my Marcos.

Effectiveness

Podium Gold worked as CSA Nutrition claimed it would; for me, I was pleased with the performance. The sides I got on the other hand is a different story, I will elaborate more in the side section of the review.

I started to notice my strength started to increase, after about the 4the day of using Podium Gold. I have a bad right shoulder from being hit with a bat as a kid during a block fight; yes, fighting in the Bronx as a kid was as normal as getting out of bed, my shoulder never recovered. Therefore, I am limited on how much I cab flat bench; however, while on Podium Gold, I was able to increase my 1MR from 305lbs to 310lbs within that 1st week and reduced the normal pain in my shoulders I get after heavy benching.

During my run, Podium Gold was there to help with DOMS and the ability to keep going, my endurance was above normal. I typically finish my workouts with some cardio on the treadmill, while on Podium Gold, I notice that I would go longer than normal, which was nice, since it helps me burn off any of the my pre-workout I had left in my system. Now, for the B-Alanine, it was an odd effect I received from it. Normally, when I have taken B-Alanine in the past, when it kicks in, I feel like a gang of Ants are having a party all around me. However, with Podium Gold, the effects of the B-Alanine, where not aggressive, but I can feel it under my muscles, tingling away. I knew it was working, since my lactic acid buildup I get when doing a set of 21s, where under control.

Value- Podium Gold is on the pricey side and it only available so far on the company's site. At $44 for a 30 day tubs, you can almost get a pound or two of plain Creatine Monohydrate for less than the price. However, taking into consideration that Podium Gold worked and kicked it rather fast, if you have the extra funds, then it's worth the price tag.

Sides - I would have given this a higher score and a green light; however. Podium Gold killed me from buying another tub to continue increasing my strength. Many of us experience some bloating with Creatine Monohydrate products; however, it was an extreme effect for me. I sit for 8 hours a day at work, the bloating and the water retention I was getting was at times painful to sit. I had to release my belt while at my desk. My face looked like I was having an allergy attack; even drinking almost a gallon of water a day, I still was dealing with the bloating.

At the end of the day Podium Gold did what it claimed it would do, it increased my endurance, recovery, and strength; however, the sides I received will keep me away from buying this. For those who get a little bloating while on Creatine Monohydrate products, then I would recommend picking up a tub. Maybe as Podium Gold receives more exposure, it will become more available in other retail outlets and be in the range of $35 to $39, without any loss of quality.



Overall
Overall
8.2
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
8.6
Value
Value
7.5
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  April 9, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Increased Energy
  • Builds Muscle
  • Increased Endurance
  • Better Recovery
  • Increased Strength
  • Bit Too Expensive
  • Mixability Needs Improvement
  • Not Widely Available

Introduction

Whats up SR TROOPERS? Another review.... this time for CSA Nutrition Podium Gold. I use creatine on and off in years past, however I've been using it more and more. I'm up to try new supplements depending on the ingredient profile and this looked solid. The CarnoForge blend intrigued me as well so I decided to give this product a try. Sometimes less is more and in this case this was true with two staple ingredients: Beta-Alanine and Creatine.

Ingredient Profile

CSA Nutrition Podium Gold is a proprietary blend of B-Alanine and Creatine Monohydrate. The manufacturer notes CarnoForge increases Exercise Capacity and Power Output by increasing intracellular carnosine levels in fast twitch (type II) fibers by up to 80%. With the increase in intracellular carnosine levels buffer the increase in metabolic acid - this results in improved ergogenic effects.... Basic terms: Increased Endurance and Improved Recovery time.
http://shop.csanutrition.net/Podium-Gold-Powder-1-lb-Jar-60-Serving-C1002.htm

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

Taste - For this review I received the unflavored powder version. They do offer three (3) new flavors which are currently on back order: Fruit Punch, Mandarin Orange and Grape. Some people prefer capsule/tablet forms of creatine and CSA Nutrition does offer those. Taste grade N/A unflavored

Mixability - This was indifferent for me... the mixability was a bit gritty/clumpy however I kind of expected that from "Monohydrate." Grade 5.5/10

Dosing - CSA Nutrition recommends using two (2) scoops daily for someone weighing over 200lbs or one (1) scoop if you weigh under 200lbs. The tub suggests for those weighing over 200lbs (which I am) to take one (1) scoop in the morning and another scoop post workout. I took one scoop 20-30 min before training and another post-training with my protein shake.

Effectiveness

I have used many different creatine products in the past and must say this was the most effective one I've used to date. This isn't a miracle supplement, however with the right training/diet regimen this is really effective. It took about a week and a half to start noticing effects from Podium Gold. The two (2) biggest things I noticed from that time was endurance and recovery. Too be honest I'm not built for endurance whatsoever and high rep sets seem to tire me out quickly (maybe I'm just fat?). However I noticed those high rep sets seemed to feel easier and easier and low rep sets were more powerful. With the increase in endurance my recovery times were shortened in between sets and after training sessions. Both of these aspects really surprised me from a supplement with two (2) main active ingredients.

Value

CSA Nutrition sells a 60 serving tub on their website for $43.99, they also offer a promo of Buy 3 Get 1 Free for $131.97. If you prefer the tablet form the offer that for less at $34.99 or Buy 3 Get 1 Free for $104.97. For someone weighing over 200lbs you would have a 30 day supply, with the current price of $43.99 I find that to be on the higher side when compared to other creatine supplements. However you can't deny the effectiveness of Podium Gold and for that alone its worth trying at least once.

Side Effects

Just some bloating

Conclusion

In conclusion this is a really solid supplement from an up-and-coming company. CarnoForge really intrigues me with how effective it was in terms of endurance and recovery. I'm hoping CSA Nutrition expands out in the marketplace becoming more widely available. I believe this product could become the new pedestal for creatine supplements. I want to thank CSA Nutrition for giving me this opportunity and I look forward to seeing them grow as a company.



Overall
Overall
8.5
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
9.0
Value
Value
7.0
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  April 9, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Better Recovery
  • Increased Endurance
  • Increased Energy
  • Builds Muscle
  • Increased Muscular Integrity
  • Increased Strength
  • Not Widely Available
  • Bit Too Expensive

Introduction

First I would like to thank CSA Nutrition for sending Podium Gold out to review, and the SR TROOP's program for making the connection possible. I use creatine on a routine basis and don't believe you need to cycle off of it. Can't see a reason why anybody thinks they need to. Anyways, routine creatine use means I don't have to load it. I take all kinds but honestly prefer monohydrate over them all. This product is micronized creatine blended with beta alanine. You get strength, power, endurance, and skin tingles!

Ingredient Profile

The ingredient profile is quite simple and good to see. You basically get 4.5g's of what is called CarnoForge, which the label says is a mixture of creatine and beta alanine. Not much else to say aside from this mixture is not the same as if we took creatine monohydrate and beta alanine and mixed together in a shaker. These two are chemically bonded together making it have a different outcome benefits and absorption wise.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

I had the powder and if I took this in juts water it didn't have a taste at all. Only did this to test it out once, and the other times I mixed with a flavored carb supplement for maximum muscle loading.

Mixing isn't too much of an issue. Creatine monohydrate has never mixed fully from any of the supplements I've used, and overtime I've learned you gotta stir and drink haha

Dosing was two scoops on training days and 1 scoop non training days.

Effectiveness

Okay, so once I started using this version of creatine I started noticing differences a few days in. Partly because I shuttled the creatine better using a good carb supplement, but regardless the changes were noticeable. Definitely felt skin tingles as well.

Strength and power wise I noticed the most. I mainly do powerlifting based workouts focused around heavy lifts, but do also like muscle building accessory lifts. What does that mean I need supplements to push beyond the muscle fatigue barrier and allow those focused lifts after heavy lifts.

I definitely pushed and pulled more weight while using this product. This is how I noticed the awesome changes because by end of week using this I stepped into that squat rack and repped them out x3 reps for x7 sets instead of x2 reps. VERY big difference for power and strength to accomplish this.

Muscle endurance was on point as well as the fatigue was pushed away to allow about 30 more mins of training. If you want to move heavy weights more efficiently then I'd definitely say the CarnoForge formula is the right one to do the job.

Value

I received the powder container. This contains 60 servings for $49.99, which I think is fair for the benefits received and it being a chemically altered formula. Sure it's expensive in creatine terms, but never have I noticed these significant changes using creatine. Maybe slight changes knowing it's there, but nothing huge. Plus you don't need this after workout so can easily just use it for 60 days. I just did for more recovery benefits.

Side Effects

None

Conclusion

I've already recommended this to several powerlifting friends and trainers I work with. Definitely a creatine I will be buying more of again haha and CSA Nutrition you should get into the Instagram market for lifters to hear more about you. Just saying :) thanks again for allowing me to review this supplement.
Flavors:
  • Unflavored: 7/10



Overall
Overall
8.0
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
8.0
Value
Value
8.0
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to CSA Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  April 7, 2017

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Increased Energy
  • Better Recovery
  • Increased Endurance
  • Not Widely Available

Introduction

Hmm,, Yep I am a 44 year old (for a few weeks) family man, workout guy. Who has been slowly cutting for over a year, (fast cuts stopped working for me a while ago) I workout 4 to 5 times a week. I have been doing cardio and weight lifting. I wanted to add some creatine to my supplements as I have been off for a while. I want to say great job to SrTroopers, and to the guys at CSA nutrition for letting me try this. In fact CSA sent out the product 2 times as the first one exploded in the mail. Great service in a very fast time. Everyone knows sometimes things don't work, but its how you handle it that gets you customers.

Ingredient Profile

Lets check out the nitty gritty on this bad boy. First, it is a proprietary blend of ( b-alanine, creatine monohydrate, creatine-b-alanine complex) at 4500mg per scoop. This is a blend called CarnoForge, which is exclusive to this company. My first thoughts where, hmmm this could be an issue.

Remember that B-alanine is normally dosed at 3200mg to 6400mg in the studies that I have read. Also I have used this up to 4000mg. The best I have used is Carnosyn which is not used in this. Beta alanine can increase performance and endurance.

Creatine Monohydrate, which most of us use at 5g per day. However most of us also have heard that creapure is the best (in my studies) and purest form of this. Creatine improves performance and can help build muscle.

creatine-b-alanine complex, this seems to be a mixture of the two ingredients that is only available to this company.

So the problem is if you take these two ingredients you would need 8200mg at least. So for me, at a single dose this would be a little low. I understand that it is supposed to work synergistically together, however, I am not sure on this. Now, for me as I am over 200#s and it is suggested for me to use 2 scoops, (bringing it to a serving size of 9000mg) I think it will work well for us bigger people, as it worked well for me. Also their is more information on their website. www.csanutrition.com so feel free to check that out as well.

Final thoughts on ingredients. 1 scoop..... meh 2 scoops... great product.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

This came in an unflavored powder, (they have pills as well). I added it to my pre-workouts, or other flavored drinks.

I found that this mixed pretty good. If you haven't read my previous reviews I will once again state. I use a shaker cup always, I have the metal ball inside and finally I always shake then drink. So for me most things work well. I had no issues with this product at all.

Suggested dosing is 1 scoop for skinny people (ha ha(under 200)) and 2 scoops for the rest of us bigger guys. The 2 scoop dosage which I followed suggested 1 scoop in the morning and 1 scoop after workout. I took this on off days as well. I admit sometimes I took it pre workout, however most of the time I followed the directions and had it with my post workout drinks. Either way pretty darn simple. At my required amount this lasted 30 days, for you lighter guys you get 2 months.

Effectiveness

The important part of the review, how did this stuff work for me. I thought it worked pretty darn good. I could tell that I needed the 2 scoop dose, however that's how its labeled. First I felt the tingles (which they warn about) which is fine by me. How did it effect my performance? Pretty simple, I felt improved energy during my weight lifting and cardio. As I am in a cutting phase, I didn't expect much muscle gain but was more worried about loss. I kept my strength, and increased it just a little in a month. My cardio also increased throughout the month. I was also impressed with the added recovery that this gave. I had been increasing my workouts to try and shock my system. I feel that podium gold helped me this last month. I did however gain weight when I wanted to loose weight. This could be some water weight, and honestly I am a little stressed with having to buy a house and move and stuff. So I will update this when I see how much weight stays. I gained about 4 pounds, so we will see.

Value

This product is for sale only on their website for $43.99 (powder) $34.99 (tablets). I would assume the product might go down in price when they start getting this out to other sales places. However until then, as of today 4/7/2017 they have a buy 3 get one free which makes it $32.99. Honestly I think it is a pretty good deal. This isn't just creatine, and it's at least a months supply for everyone. Obviously if you are one of those guys or girls under 200#s it makes it a better deal, however I think it could be a little light on effective dosages. Bottom line, I would purchase this on my own, and that is also important. I am a deal shopper so I would get in on one of the sales.

Side Effects

The only side effect I had was weight gain. I am going to guess some is water weight, some might even be muscle. At my age probably more water than muscle.

Conclusion

So it seems I have written a review with a synergistic conclusion. If you missed that, I kind of have been giving you my thoughts on this in each section. But here we go anyway. I think this product worked for me as I would of expected it to work. I think they could use the name brand top end versions of the ingredients if they want to take it up a notch. However it worked, so as long as it didn't come from China I am not too worried about it. I think anybody looking to improve their performance and maybe, just maybe reach the meddle stand should give this a shot. I will add this into my rotation as I feel it necessary. Also I am looking forward to try the flavored versions of the powder as then I could use it as a stand alone. I hope you all enjoyed reading this and go get yourself some podium gold, as we all can use an occasional boost in performance.



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