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      Article: The Pro Creator - Muscular Development JAN 2010

      The Pro Creator By Hany Rambod As seen in Muscular Development (January 2011) I don't understand why you are so against stimulants. Why don't you have anything in your EVP product to give it a nice kick, like every other pre-workout formula does? Let me clarify something. I am not against stimulants in general. I feel they have a place in fat burners, and can be useful when used at the proper time, such as prior to your cardio. What I am against is habitual, overuse of stimulants, which occurs when taking them on a frequent basis. In particular, I feel stimulants do not belong in a pre-workout product, for these key reasons:

      1. They have a vaso-constrictive effect, meaning they restrict blood flow and impede your ability to get a pump. 2. Stimulants dehydrate you, further working against the goal of building muscle. 3. Regular use of stimulants down-regulates your adrenal glands, meaning their effect becomes weaker and weaker over time. It turn this may decrease thyroid function. 4. Stimulants kill your appetite, making it difficult to take in the meals you need after training to recover and grow. The argument I often hear is, "Yeah, but I get great workouts when I take them!" But do you, really? I would counter that the negative effects of stimulants run counter to what you're trying to accomplish if muscle growth is your goal. It's even worse with some of the new 'concentrate products' that include 1,3 dimethyl. You might feel wide awake, alert, and energized, but good luck getting a pump despite the arginine and creatine also in the product. These extreme stimulant products might be great if you have a long, brutal final exam to take, but using them for training gives you a false sense of security. One way of looking at using a non-stimulant based pre-workout formula like EVP versus the others loaded with stimulants is like a guy going out on a date who wants to make a great impression. Let's say he gets a haircut, showers, shaves, and puts on some nice clothes before he picks up his date. Chances are, his date will at least be impressed with his hygiene and style. What if instead, he came home from the gym in his sweaty clothes, and did a couple shots of Jägermeister before heading out? He might get a buzz and feel the false courage that alcohol can bring, and think he's God's gift to women. But in reality, he's a smelly, delusional fool who will probably get the door slammed in his face! What I'm trying to say is, you can either use a product that actually has the ingredients to prepare you to have a productive workout, or you can tweak on a mega-dose of stimulants and think you're stimulating muscle growth when chances are you're probably preventing it. Smoke and mirrors.

      Article: The Pro Creator - Muscular Development DEC 2010

      The Pro Creator By Hany Rambod As seen in Muscular Development (December 2010) Hany, I have been hearing a lot about L-Leucine being a valuable supplement for bodybuilders to use before, during, and after training. Why should I use it, and what's the best source? If you've been reading my column for a while, you know that I'm a big believer in BCAA's, but especially the amino acid L-Leucine. Numerous studies have now shown it to be an 'anabolic trigger' of sorts. Perhaps more importantly, studies show that L-Leucine exerts powerful anti-catabolic properties, preventing muscle loss during periods of hard training, stress, and when dieting to lose bodyfat, all of which pretty much describes the typical bodybuilder's contest prep phase. You do need to know that all L-Leucine is not created equally, as there are different ways to derive it. Most of the L-Leucine on the market comes from China, and is extracted from either human hair or chicken feathers - really. The downside to those sources is that they tend to contain higher amounts of contaminants. Basically, traces of those will remain in the hair or feathers. If you're familiar with current drug-testing procedures such as often seen in the workplace, hair samples are now used to detect recent drug use. An alternate method of deriving L-Leucine is the fermentation process. A bacteria, which itself is often so specialized as to produce a specific amino acid chain that it's patented, feeds off an animal or vegetable source and multiplies. The amino acid is then separated. Many pharmaceutical-grade drugs are produced in this way, such as GH, insulin, and IGF-1. In the case of L-Leucine production, the bacteria is usually introduced to sugar cane, as this has been found to speed up the process. I've overly simplified this process due to space limitations and for the sake of brevity, but this is how the pharmaceutical-grade L-Leucine used in most research studies is produced. It has far less risk of impurities or contaminants. I would personally only trust L-Leucine sources made with the fermentation process, which is why it's the source I used for the L-Leucine in both EVP and Cell K.E.M. by Evogen Nutrition. It is a little more expensive, but at the end of the day you get what you pay for with supplements. Our L-Leucine has actually gone through an additional step, an ultra-solubility process that speeds up the absorption rate. I'll explain why that's critical in an upcoming column.