Everything you need to know about Transparent Labs’ PreSeries BULK supplement.
How can you be sure you’re getting what you pay for with any pre-workout supplement, especially when there are literally hundreds of brands to choose from on the market? To answer this question, we tested the Transparent Labs BULK Pre-Workout Supplement as part of our ongoing series comparing the best supplements of 2020.
BULK Pre-Workout is one of two available pre-workouts made by Transparent Labs this year, the other being LEAN. BULK is specifically formulated to help bodybuilders gain mass using a patented blend of amino acids and testosterone support. We broke down the entire ingredient list below so that you can see what’s really going on with your pre-workout powder.
Transparent Labs stand firm on our commitment to full-label transparency. Every single ingredient in their supplements, even the flavoring and sweetener, is listed in exact doses so you know you’re getting precisely what’s on the label (and just as importantly, nothing that isn’t on the label).
Transparent Labs never “label dress” formulas with inferior amounts of bogus ingredients, nor do hide formulas behind proprietary blends.
All Transparent Labs products are manufactured in a state-of-the-art facility that is certified current good manufacturing processes (CGMP) and registered with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
As part of their ongoing dedication to complete product transparency and guaranteed purity, they take the initiative to have all of their product batches tested by an independent third-party lab. You can see the test results by going to their certificates of analysis page. They also have a certificate of composition for every product that they offer.
Transparent Labs is on a mission to help consumers make smarter choices about what they put in their bodies so they can reap the benefits of quality supplements that are backed by scientific research and clinical studies. Most importantly, they can be confident that each bottle of PreSeries BULK is free from impurities and tested before being put on the shelf.
PreSeries BULK Highlights
PreSeries BULK features 20+ grams of 19 active ingredients per serving (30 servings per tub) and absolutely no artificial food coloring, no artificial sweeteners, no preservatives, no fillers, and no body-taxing chemicals that do nothing but detract from workout performance.
Instead, PreSeries BULK is naturally flavored and sweetened with stevia, making it a sugar-free, vegan-friendly pre-workout formula. It also comes in a variety of delicious fruit flavors, including:
- Blue Raspberry
- Tropical Punch
- Green Apple
- Sour Grape
- Strawberry Lemonade
This pre-workout is designed specifically for athletes, bodybuilders, and gym-goers who want to pack on lean muscle mass, maximize muscle cell volumization, enhance blood flow/muscle pumps, and increase strength. You’ll notice that each serving contains a blend of bioavailable zinc amino acid chelate (30 mg), boron citrate (5 mg), and vitamin D3 (3,000 IU), all of which are suggested to boost free testosterone levels in men (1, 2, 3). In turn, this has a positive effect on muscle growth, recovery, and athletic performance.
Citrulline Malate 2:1
The major active ingredient in BULK Pre-Workout formula is citrulline malate 2:1 (each tub comes loaded with a whopping 6 grams.) Supported by decades of workout science, citrulline malate is a highly potent amino acid that improves strength, aerobic performance, and muscle endurance and has also been shown to be at least twice as effective as the leading competitive amino acid, L-arginine, at raising nitric oxide levels in the blood. It’s a great product to serve as the backbone of the BULK formula and a highlight of the product overall. While many other pre-workouts utilize citrulline malate, the BULK formula has a much higher concentration of it than average.
Beta-Alanine and BCAAs Leucine, Isoleucine, Valine
Beta-Alanine and BCAAs — short for branch-chained amino acids — are two more groupings of amino acids and the second largest main ingredient in BULK Pre-Workout. Bulk Pre-Workout is specifically formulated with the BCAAs leucine, isoleucine, and valine, which are the only three proven by science to promote endurance and metabolism. While citrulline malate makes you stronger by improving the performance of your muscles, these amino acids function slightly differently by increasing your endurance once you’re already working out. Leucine was recently proven to be the most anabolic amino acid, meaning it stimulates the transfer of energy through muscular cells faster than any known amino acid. Overall, this is another great cornerstone ingredient.
Betaine Anhydrous is another crucial component of the BULK Pre-Workout formula. Betaine anhydrous reduces downtime and fatigue between workouts by encouraging muscle growth. You will feel less sore after an intense workout when taking betaine anhydrous because it improves the ability of your muscles to respond and rebuild to traumatic stress. Even though it doesn’t improve strength on its own — trust me, the 6 grams of citrulline malate will probably get the job done there — it’s crucial to the formula because of the performance boost it gives any athlete.
The largest components of BULK Pre-Workout are citrulline malate, beta-alanine, leucine, isoleucine, valine, and betaine anhydrous. However, there are ten other ingredients present in much smaller doses — taurine, n-acetyl l-tyrosine, choline bitartrate, l-theanine, caffeine anhydrous, Mucuna pruriens, l-norvaline, synephrine, hordenine, and bioperine. All of these are controlled for quality by Transparent Labs and promote muscle growth in various essential ways. These ingredients along with the previously mentioned citrulline malate, betaine anhydrous, beta-alanine and BCAAs are the key nitric oxide (NO) boosters, muscle cell volumizers, and strength-driving ingredients in this formula, all of which are backed by multiple human studies (4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9).
And last, but not least, PreSeries BULK provides a comprehensive lineup of mental performance ingredients that work synergistically to optimize cognitive function and ramp up focus so users can push themselves to the next level in the trenches. These ingredients include just the right dose of caffeine (180 mg), L-DOPA (68.6 mg), synephrine (50 mg), and hordenine (25 mg) to satisfy the stimulant lovers out there while not being so excessive as to make users jittery, anxious, or lethargic. Transparent Labs also included hefty doses of L-theanine (360 mg), N-acetyl-L-tyrosine (600 mg), and choline bitartrate (500 mg) for supporting dopamine, acetylcholine, and serotonin production and ensuring a proper balance of pyschostimulation while remaining cool and collected in the gym (10, 11, 12).
Chances are you’re also wondering why there is no creatine in PreSeries Bulk?
Transparent Labs expressed that they didn’t feel creatine makes much sense for their pre-workout formulas since it’s undeniably better to take creatine post-workout based on recent research (R). This is why they opted to make a separate creatine monohydrate supplement with Creapure® and HMB.
Price, Flavors, and Other Features
Everything comes second in important to the actual formula, but there are other considerations to be made when buying a pre-workout formula. When it comes to BULK Pre-Workout, there are six delicious flavors to choose from, so if you’ve had trouble with pre-workout in the past there will probably be an option for you. It has a fairly average price point for the industry at $49 per 2 lb. tub and has a stellar product formulation.
Transparent Labs BULK Pre-Workout is an excellent choice of pre-workout based off of the formula alone. The fact that it tastes good, is available in many flavors, and is not the most expensive formulation is just icing on the cake. What you’re really buying when you buy pre-workout is the best formula to support your metabolism; the synthesis of amino acids and testosterone support in this blend is extremely high quality and you’re unlikely to get another pre-workout this effective at this price.