IntroductionI have taken intra workouts on and off over the years depending on my training. When I do a lot of running I like to take an intra workout because I will usually go from the gym to the park. So, when Mind Muscle Nutrition put up their Hydra Focus intra workout I wanted to try it. Here is the review.
Ingredient ProfileHydra Focus comes in a tub with 30 servings that are about 20g. The first ingredient is 640 mcg of vitamin B6, which can aid in blood flow. The next ingredients are 220 mg of sodium and 170 mg of potassium, which act as electrolytes. Following those you have 4g of citrulline malate. The main benefit to citrulline malate is that it can boost nitric oxide levels and can help with pumps during your workout. Also, since it has the malate it can also help with endurance and has anti-fatigue properties. Next, you have 7g of BCAA with 3.5g of l-leucine, 1.75g of l-isoleucine, and 1.75g of l-valine. BCAA can aid in muscle recovery and can also reduce fatigue during a workout. After you have 2.5g of l-glutamine that can aid in recovery and also improve gut health. Although with l-glutamine you need to take a lot for it to hit the muscle so most of it will probably be taken up by the gut. Next up is a large dose of n-acetyl l-tyrosine (NALT) at 1g. The 1g dose is more than most pre workouts I have seen. NALT can improve focus during your workout. The next ingredient is 500 mg of choline bitartrate, which can improve focus. The last ingredient is coconut water at 500 mg to increase hydration and provide additional electrolytes.
I really like the ingredient profile and it was one of the most comprehensive intras that I have taken in a while. You could just add one caffeine pill and you have a pre/intra that is better than most pre and intra workouts on the market. The only thing I would have prefered is a slightly higher dosage of l-glutamine (5g).
Taste/Mixability/DosingHydra focus comes in two flavors they are orange smarty and blue slush. I received the blue slush as that what was available when they went up for the troops. The powder is white, which is great since there are no dyes in the product. The powder smells kind of like a dry berry type smell similar to blue raspberry. When mixed it has a faint blush slush smell. The taste of this is very tart, that kind of tart that gives you the weird feeling in the corners of your jaw. It was by no means bad and was kind of expected for what is in this. I have used several of the ingredients in bulk and they were hard to mask the flavor of especially NALT and citrulline malate. The flavor overall was okay but I have never been a blue slush fan. I think I would have preferred their other flavor (orange smarty). In terms of mixability, it mixed great and I never noticed any chunks nor did it ever foam. In terms of dosing, I would use one scoop either intra workout or I would drink it as I ran. I always used about 20-28 ounces of water with ice in a blender bottle.
EffectivenessHydra Focus was a very effective intra workout supplement for weight training and running. The major benefits I noticed from this were increased pumps, focus, hydration, endurance, and recovery. In terms of pumps, I noticed that I felt a lot fuller in the gym when took this product. It was most notable on chest/bi and back/tri days. I noticed that even as a solo product with a caffeine pill or coffee I still had pretty good pumps. It definitely enhanced whatever pre workout I was using with it. In terms of pumps for running I noticed that my calves and quads felt and looked pumped after I finished running. One of my major issues when I workout is a lack of focus after I start working out. I have a hard time "getting in the zone" so when I look for an intra workout supplement I look for focus ingredients. In this regard, Hydra Focus helped me a lot with focus especially in the gym. I found myself concentrating on the weights rather than checking my phone or talking. I also noticed that on the trail I was less focused on looking at the scenery (really cool old railroad buildings) and more focused on the run. For focus this product worked better than other intra workouts I have taken.
Hydration in my workouts is something that I usually measure based on how many times I will go up for water. Using this I felt more hydrated and found myself not needing to constantly be drinking water. In addition, I also noticed that I cramped less when running and did not need to stop and drink as much while running. This is very beneficial since if I stop I can lose my focus in the run and being able to stop less due to being thirsty helped a lot. Going off hydration I also noticed an increase in endurance in the gym and on the trail. In the gym, I noticed it more on supersets and on days I did the stairmaster. On the trail, I noticed it when I would do hill work and sprints (less in the winter months but I still do them). I also noticed it for long distance running but I think the main benefit to that came with the increased hydration.
Lastly, I noticed an increase in recovery in both the gym and running. I felt like I was able to push myself a little farther each week I took this. I noticed that I was able to workout a little more intensely on back and chest days where my bis and tris would still be sore and hold me back. As far as running goes, I noticed I was less sore than usual when taking Hydra Focus. This enabled me to run more often where some days I would go to the park and just jog.
ValueHydra Focus retails for $35 for 30 servings making it $1.16 per serving. Now, if you only take this on workout days the tub can last a while. Comparing it to other intra workouts Nutrabio Intra Blast comes in at $1.33 per serving. In-Kaged comes in at $1.30 per serving and Xtend comes in at $.93 per serving. Hydra Focus is very competitively priced and taking into account the formula I think it has a lot of value. Especially since just adding a caffeine pill or drinking a seperate cup of coffee with it makes it a solid pre/intra workout. The main problem I have with the other products listed in the comparison is they felt lacking in the area of focus. When I workout my main problem is focus so for me Hydra Focus has the most value.
Side EffectsI had no side effects while taking this product.
ConclusionHydra Focus is a fantastic intra workout supplement that improved my pumps, focus, hydration, endurance, and recovery. It tasted pretty good but was very tart so keep that in mind. I feel like it is a versatile product and can be taken as a pre workout if adding in a caffeine source (caffeine pill, coffee etc.). It is competitively priced and has become my intra workout of choice. I definitely recommend giving it a try. Thank you to Mind Muscle Nutrition for sending out the product.