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Sustain Intra and Recovery Reviews

By: HD Labs Nutrition



Overall
Overall
7.0
Effectiveness
Effectiveness
8.1
Value
Value
5.9
Full-Container Received through SR TROOPs.
Thanks to HD Labs Nutrition for sending it out!
(Show run details )
  August 28, 2018

 Pros:
 Cons:
  • Reduced DOMs
  • Endurance Support
  • Hydration Support
  • Fully Disclosed Profile
  • Too Expensive
  • Not Widely Available

Quick Summary

A well-rounded BCAA with added caffeine, but the price may scare some away. Price is the only reason this isn't a full green light recommend for me.

Introduction

As I've written in other reviews, I'm a fan of consistently supplementing BCAAs for overall health and recovery. I try to ensure I'm ingesting 5-10g of BCAAs every morning during my fasted window, regardless of whether I work out or not. I also tend to prefer simpler BCAA products that don't contain prop-blend complexes but do include hydration support. Sustain hits all of these marks, so I decided to give it a run.

Ingredient Profile

For most of my BCAA supplements, I am primarily concerned with the actual dosing of BCAAs. 5g of essential BCAAs per serving has been clinically proven to be the minimum effective dose for an average-sized human. As do most intra-workout products, Sustain includes 5g of BCAAs at a 2:1:1 ratio. Nothing flashy here, but on point and meets the appropriate standard.

Sustain also includes hydration-focused minerals e.g. potassium and sodium at solid doses. I like to see ~150mg+ of each of these individual supplements in an intra-workout, and Sustain is packing 210mg of Potassium and 190mg of Chloride. Good stuff.

The rest of the profile is a mixed bag. I like the inclusion of Choline for cognitive support, but the dosage is low. The classics B6 and B12 are also here; both with solid doses. And finally we have 117mg of caffeine which might be an appealing addition to some users. Personally I didn't notice caffeine was included in Sustain until the product had already arrived and I generally prefer my intra-workouts not contain any additional stimulants as I'm always running some sort of preworkout plus I'm a big morning coffee person. But 117mg was a small enough dose to not cause me any concerns. Could be a nice bonus if someone wants a BCAA product for mid-day and needs that extra boost. I personally did not use the product in this fashion.

Taste/Mixability/Dosing

I received the Crackberry Lemonade flavor, which I enjoyed. It's nice and tart with a good berry-lemonade flavor. Very drinkable in 32 oz. water. No issues with clumping or excessive foaming, however I did notice my bottle would sometimes have a peculiar odor after I'd finished the serving.

I generally dosed one scoop per day in 32 oz. ice water and sipped either preworkout or throughout the morning.

Effectiveness

I personally can't tell the difference between most BCAA products. I do notice a difference in my general recovery and the amount of DOMS I experience when I'm taking a BCAA versus when I'm not, but not usually between individual supplements. Same can be said for hydration support. I definitely notice the lag and the fatigue set in earlier when I'm running a product that lacks those minerals and electrolytes.

Sustain was right on par with most other intraworkout products I've reviewed recently: solid recovery, good intra-workout support, and decreased DOMS. I personally didn't notice the kick from the caffeine, but I could tell the hydration support and additional vitamins and minerals were helping battle fatigue. I've had a nice run of some strong BCAA products that have kept my DOMS low despite me getting into the gym 4-5 times a week, and Sustain kept that streak alive.

Value

Most solid BCAA supplements will cost you around .80c per serving. Some of the flashier products with broader ingredient profiles will run you closer to $1.00 per scoop.

Unfortunately the price of Sustain is not very competitive. I'm hypothesizing this is because HD is a relatively new company and its products are not widely distributed. Hopefully, with time, this will change, as right now Sustain is only available on HD's website at $35 for 30 scoops. While not insanely overpriced, that's still a steep $1.16 per scoop, and there're simply too many awesome BCAA products with extremely similar profiles for significantly less money to make this a competitive price. VMI's Aminogex is an example. Aminogex has a similar mineral profile and 7g BCAAs for .76c per scoop. If you're on a budget like me, saving $10 on a tub of intra-workout does matter and will sway my buying decision.

Side Effects

None.

Conclusion

I enjoyed my experience with Sustain. I personally didn't experiment with multiple servings per day and don't feel that needs to be done for this product to be effective. The profile is on par with many other BCAA supplements, and the inclusion of a small dose of caffeine could make this product stand-out for some people. Bring the price down to around .80c a scoop and I'm on board. If you've got some cash to spend and don't mind dropping a few extra dollars for a new product, I'd say Sustain is worth a look.
Flavors:
  • Crackberry-Lemonade: 7/10



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