Lately I have been trying a variety of different supplements to test for various attributes such as taste, effectiveness, and overall value for your buck. I am all about honest reporting and reviewing and if a supplement is not good quality, I will be the first to say so on here! You don't need to worry about that as I will be honest whether the news is good or bad.
After my first meal of the morning, I drank an AllMax IsoFlex protein shake in skim milk. I enjoyed the shake, although I didn't know what to make of the taste. I concluded that the NOS complex and glutamine complex had an effect on the taste which set it apart from other protein shakes.
Of interest lately to me has been a variety of protein supplements and weight gainers which I've sampled for mixability and test as well as nutritional content and how all of these factors relate to overall value. But even more recently, I have had an interest in nitric oxide products. The reason for this is because the pump is quite possibly the most satisfying part of working out to most people - it definitely is to me. So isn't it a great supplement which promises incredible pumps which are virtually guaranteed to add to the caliber of your workout? It is definitely something that interests me and so I have been excited to try a variety of nitric oxide pump products. When I was at the 2007 Arnold Classic I got a whole slew of supplements to take home for review, and one which I got was Dymatize Xpand. It promises to be a hardcore muscle volumizer for massive nitric oxide pumps. It also went on to list other details and bits of information, but I was sold when I read that and figured it would be worth a shot.
I should point out that I left my Xyience NOX-CG3 at a friend's house so I decided to forego it for today's workout and use the Dymatize Xpand for today's workout and see how that went down. I used the routine below for shoulders:
This was a fairly long workout for shoulders given that I did multiple sets of each exercise (at least four), and went from moderate weight to heavy weight for as many reps as possible for each exercise. If any workout was going to get me a pump this was going to be it. If you are seeking a pump, I would recommend a day filled with carbohydrates and use of the flushing training intensity principle. To be honest, while I trained for a great pump and had the assistance of Xpand, the truth is, I could have eaten more carbs during the day to achieve a greater pump.
I love basic pressing movements to develop the deltoids and to be honest, I think that basic hard and heavy exercises are the key to developing any muscle. I've always found basic presses with dumbbells and barbells to be great to help me achieve optimal results for my shoulders to grow!
NOTE: The picture above is not recent but I plan to include recent pictures in this log as I continue updating it so please stay tuned!
As you can see from the picture above, my shoulders are a genetic strong point and above and beyond a lot of my other muscle groups, so from a sheerly aesthetic vantage point, it is important that I curtail my development in that area so that other areas catch up. However, I would prefer to just go with it and let my shoulders grow as much as my genetics will allow. I figure, if other parts are lagging I may as well just make all the progress with the one area which has no problem with growth.
I started my workout with seated dumbbell presses and moved on to performing seated presses on the nautilus machine. Using dumbbells, I started with 45s, then moved to 65s and 85s which I did for reps, being under six reps with the 85s. I can tell you that I have next to no interest this summer in gaining strength and my goals are virtually 100% related to gaining muscle mass. Next week I think I will give the 95s a try and see if I can crank out six reps, but if I don't get that, I don't particularly care. Bodybuilding is not about strength and while I always wanted to get as strong as possible, I would say that it quite possibly hindered my bodybuilding goals more than anything because I focussed so much on gaining strength and lifting with my ego rather than squeezing and flexing and performing exercises with stellar form which directly relate to hypertrophy.
I performed rear butterlfies for my rear delts and briefly moved on to perform Arnold presses from a standing position until I found the movement to be uncomfortable and opted for standing dumbbell presses instead. I briefly superset the two exercises, but ultimately decided on the standing presses in the traditional form rather than the twisting motion which comprises the Arnold press. My last exercise for deltoids was rear lateral raises and I performed them exactly as shown in the video clip below:
NOTE: The video clip above is not recent but I plan to include recent video clips in this log just as I plan to include recent pictures as I continue updating it so please stay tuned!
Check out more exercise demos by clicking on the image below:
The truth is, some say that my form on that exercise as shown above is garbage, but I have tried that exercise using perfect form and I can tell you right now that I feel it much better and get a far better pump doing it as shown above than doing it "properly" with arms being raised in a perfect lateral motion starting from a position parallel to the body and raised straight up until dumbbells reach shoulder level. It is not that I dislike that exercise, but as I said, I feel it far better as shown above.
Overall Review for Dymatize Xpand
What can I say about Dymatize Xpand? I can say that it definitely works. I would put it roughly in the same league as NO XPLODE, although it is difficult to know that for certain since I have had one week of good eating and rest since the time I used NO XPLODE so it puts an extraneous variable in the picture. But from what I can tell, they are both roughly on the same level. I did get a great pump and it was also long lasting and really made me motivated to train. From my one day of using this product, I can tell you that it did work well, especially given that I did not have a particularly good day on the carb front. When I used NO XPLODE I had basically carb loaded that day and so the great pump I achieved would have been helped along by all those carbs. Unfortunately, it wasn't until I was into my workout that I realized that my carbs were lagging behind today and at that point couldn't do much to fix it. To get the most out of a nitric oxide product, I highly recommend having moderate to high carbs to help in achieving great and full pumps.
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I think that the chocolate flavour was delicious! The same thoughts that I included in my review of the mochachino flavour. It tasted great and in no way tasted artificial. The mixability was virtually perfect which made for a shake that went down smooth no matter how thick you choose to make it. I drank my shake in a tall shaker bottle with skim milk. I poured the milk in first and followed it up with a serving of chocolate flavoured BSN Syntha-6 powder. I quite enjoyed it. For more details and more extensive reviews than the one above, be sure to check out the links posted above!
Overall, today was a very good training day and I look forward to many more like it to come. My body weight is 180 right now and I see no reason why I can't be 200 pounds by the end of the summer in the same condition I am in now. I think it is very likely, even inevitable, if I continue to train and eat as I have been so far. Wish me luck and I'll keep you posted!
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