The Best Supplements For Endurance

Part 2 Of EndurElite Chief Endurance Officer Matt Mosman's Interview On PricePlow where he discusses the best supplements for runners, cyclists, OCR, and other endurance athletes. For part 1 click here

The 5 Best Supplements For Endurance

  • Carbohydrates - 6-10 grams per kg body weight daily.
  • Caffeine - 3-6mg/kg body weight 30-60 minutes before exercise.
  • Beet Root Powder - 1670mg 30 minutes before exercise. Take every day.
  • Beta-Alanine - 3.2 grams every day. Timing does not matter.
  • Peak O2 - 1 gram every day 30 minutes before exercise.

Full Video Transcript:

Matt: These neuro supplement companies are a bunch of dinosaurs, basically, right now in my humble opinion, and...

Announcer: Welcome to PricePlow.

Mike: All right. And we're back. So, welcome to PricePlow. So, welcome to PricePlow. My name is Mike. And I'm here with the honorable Matt Mosman who is an extraordinary endurance athlete, yeah, and the Founder and...I wanna say Founder and CEO of EndurElite, a sports nutrition...

Matt: Chief Endurance Officer.

Mike: Chief Endurance Officer of EndurElite, a sports nutrition company that's clearly marketed towards endurance athletes like yourself, and like my former self.

Matt: Absolutely.

Mike: And so, we just had a video where we were talking about Matt, in general, introducing him, his history, and his past. If you wanna, you know, check his credentials, we'll make a link back to that video. But what I really wanna talk about are... Right now, it is August 31st of 2018. I wanna talk about the current state of endurance supplements, and different supplements, different diet tactics maybe if we have time, but different supplements for endurance athletes. And I suppose we should also have you preface this with like different types of endurance athletes because some people are considered endurance athletes and some people are ultra-endurance athletes.

Matt: Yeah.

Mike: So, welcome back to the channel, Matt.

Matt: I'm back. Trying to be back. So, yeah, like, right? When we're talking about endurance athletes, like I think runners, bikers, swimmers, triathletes, like obstacle course race, or some more like your traditional endurance sports. And I would even say like, you know, endurance sports even fall under like that ultra-endurance sports in terms of, you know, like diet, and nutrition strategies, and whatnot. So, yeah, when we were referring to that, I think that's kinda the athletes that come to mind. Now, the current state of endurance supplements, it's actually pretty interesting. Like, the majority of supplements for endurance athletes right now, I would say, are sports drinks, gels, chews, waffles. It's not really what you think of when you think of like a typical supplement like the gym crowd is used to you, right? I mean, would you agree with that?

Mike: Yeah. And your brand doesn't have any waffles, I don't think, do you?

Matt: I don't have any waffles, but those things are damn tasty. Well, I can, I gotta get you some of those. But that's what talking about, like, in terms of, like, what most companies do now in terms of endurance supplements. And some of this is, I mean, some of these are good, and we can get that in a second, but a lot of them, like the main players, really are missing the boat. I shouldn't even say this because I'm gonna let them into a secret, but I will anyways. They don't really focus on, like, your true supplements...not true supplements, but like your typical supplements like the gym crowd is used to. So, like, things like caffeine, and beta-alanine, and beet root powder, and taurine, and creatine, like. These neuro-supplement companies are a bunch of dinosaurs, basically, right now in my humble opinion. And, you know, that's what kinda they stick to, and that's what they're used to, and that's what most endurance athletes are used to. So, yeah, that's what I'd say the current state of affairs is with the current endurance supplements industry and something that, like, I'm really trying to change with what I'm doing.

Mike: It seems like you came, and people, go watch this in the previous video, you came from a sports nutrition industry background where there's mostly guys, you know, lifting in the gym, basically. But a lot of these supplements actually seem to work better for endurance athletes than anything, at least a few of them do depending on how long you're training and everything.

Matt: Yep.

Mike: So, it seems like you're taking some of that into this market that you are most familiar with, and you see that you're trying to disrupt it in a way.

Matt: Oh, absolutely. I'm gonna raise hell on this, and I'm gonna at people all angry about it. But, yeah. I mean, things like, just take, for example, going back to caffeine, like, probably in, God, what, 90% of the pre-workouts in, like, the whole-body building gym space, I would say.

Mike: Oh, yes, yeah.

Matt: Like, what most people don't realize is, like, the majority, I would say, like 95% of the majority of, like, evidence on caffeine is done on endurance athletes and shown to be most effective in endurance athletes, right?

Mike: Yeah. A lot of cycling and stuff.

Caffeine Is An Effective Endurance Enhancing Compound

Matt: So, I mean, and this, I think it's still up in the air if caffeine really does anything from, like, a weightlifting perspective. I mean, there's some research out there, it's not particularly strong. And if anything, it seems like the caffeine may have an effect on power and maybe a little bit of endurance. But, I mean, the majority of the research on caffeine in endurance athletes demonstrates, like, improvements, and time to exhaustion, time trial performance, focus memory, I mean, by various mechanisms that they think how it all works. So, yeah, it's just something, like, that's just one example of, like... A lot of companies won't use it, like, a traditional endurance company won't use because they think caffeine is a diuretic and it's gonna make your heart explode.

Mike: Right.

Matt: Which is total baloney. Like, this whole, like, caffeine being a diuretic was based on a study done, like, back before the time of Jesus Christ where this guy had like people drink like a cup of coffee or 12 ounces of water, and, or, like some [inaudible 00:05:15] noticed higher urine output. But like, no, duh, the guy drank like 16 ounces of liquid, what do you think is gonna happen? But there's like no significant differences between the water and the coffee, it's just it's ridiculous. And this whole thing about caffeine causing your heart explode, like, there's a lot of good research out there that shows, like, caffeine can actually lower heart rate during submaximal exercise. So, yeah, you get all that people buying into that miss and baloney and bro science that, you know...

Mike: I wouldn't mind seeing that study. I've never really looked into that.

Matt: Yeah.

Mike: But yeah, I think a lot of people will say like, "Okay, well, if I'm going for a crazy swim..." And I know, like, I'm very familiar with my body and swimming, I know when I have a nice dose of caffeine, my swimming is way more on point. But a lot of people are thinking, "Okay, swimming is very difficult for a lot of endurance athletes. Heart rates going like crazy because they're not as efficient and everything, and so, their heart rate's already up." I think they're afraid to get their heart rate even more up from a nice dose of caffeine. And so, I would love to see that study. Maybe we could put in the description or the blog post for this.

Matt: Absolutely. Yeah, I can send you to one on the diuretic, and then, lowering submaximal heart rate too, yeah. And it's not just one study, there's, I mean, there's not a ton, but there's a few, but it seems to demonstrate that.

Mike: Demonstration, right.

Matt: Yep.

Mike: And so, when you talk about... So, you are fine with selling caffeine. Now, it seems like with caffeine, it is obviously a personal kind of thing. And in terms of like safety parameters, it does depend on your size. And I don't think you're going off into the unsafe ranges that are out there. But so, when you're making your formula in a product, you're a relatively smaller newer brand and you can't have, like, all these different crazy, you know, caffeine platforms on your product. So, how do you formulate and how do you recommend to people the right dose of caffeine that you think will be good for their endurance sport? And, one question here. Given also that there's a lot of different types of endurance athletes, how do I dose my caffeine differently if I'm going on like a very long, whatever, bike ride?

Matt: Yeah, absolutely. I got an answer for you on that and it's actually pretty easy. I mean, the way I formulate, I mean, it's always based on the evidence. But you gotta make some like guesses as far as like what your consumer is gonna be. But, in general, like, the majority of the evidence shows that three to six milligrams per kilogram body weight of caffeine is the sweet spot for improvement in endurance performance. Like you go above...

Mike: That's a pretty big rage though.

Matt: What's that?

Mike: That's a pretty big range though.

Matt: Three to six milligrams per kilogram body weight, it's a big range, but that's gonna depend on like caffeine tolerance, body weight, and things like that too. So, it can be highly variable based on that. And in some studies, I mean, the three does just as well as the six, but everybody is so different. I mean, some people have a gene that expresses caffeine in a different way that they reacted into it. So, you start with that, and then, you figure that, you know, your typical endurance athlete is gonna be probably anywhere from 120 to 160 pounds, right?

Mike: Okay, yeah.

Matt: So, you just kinda try to hit the middle ground as far as what's gonna be the right dose of like caffeine anhydrous or if you're gonna combine it with like another form of caffeine like PurEnergy. So, you like get that kinda kick of caffeine anhydrous right up front, and then, you get an ingredient like PurEnergy that gives you a nice sustained release of caffeine and extends the half-life of it. So, you know, with caffeine, your initial dose, you wanna take anywhere from about 30 to 60 minutes before endurance exercise, right? Because caffeine in the blood reaches peak levels around 60 minutes. And then, the half-life of caffeine is about four to six hours, so the amount you ingest will be about half of that after about four to six hours. So, you know, with caffeine dosing is like an ultra-type event, again, depending on the person. You're gonna wanna take another dose of caffeine anywhere from four to six hours in like an ultra-endurance event to keep on having that effect on your body.

Mike: And obviously, it's smart to practice the way you wanna play, and don't do any experiments on race day or whatever. Like, you've gotta know exactly when you wanna time it up.

Matt: Especially with caffeine because you don't wanna do like a huge bolus amount of caffeine on race day, and like 10 miles in, you're about to poop your pants.

Mike: That's true. You gotta know how you respond. I didn't even think of that one.

Matt: Yes, and yes, and yes. Pooping is not funny, especially during a race.

Mike: Yeah, those are some of the things I forgot about since I haven't done like such a long thing for so long. That's great. Okay. And you've mentioned PurEnergy a couple times. So is that in your formula? You might as well talk about your supplements right now, or at least like introduce the names, and then, kind of...

Matt: Yeah. So, my formulas right now, it's basically a complete lineup. So, there's a pre-workout, there's a sports drink, and there's a recovery drink. But with the PurEnergy, I put that in my pre-workout. So, nobody's ever done like a true pre-workout for endurance athletes and this is kinda how the idea of EndurElite started. So, nobody ever did that. And we actually did, like we talked in the last video about my time at MusclePharm, we did actually quite a few studies on PurEnergy when we were there with some really solid results in terms of endurance. So, I was sold on it. So, for the people that don't know, PurEnergy is a combination of caffeine anhydrous and pterostilbene which is a blueberry extract. The ratios is... Let's see, what's the ratios? I think it's like 60% pterostilbene, 40% caffeine anhydrous. I could be wrong on that.

Mike: Okay.

Matt: But what they found is, basically, with all this research we did and the other research other people have done, is, you know, one, it extends the half-life of caffeine from like four to six hours, to six to eight hours. You're not gonna get a terrible caffeine crash, you're gonna get a nice release of energy without being over-the-top. And there's a lot of other cool stuff that it does as far as how fast and how, you know, it gets into the bloodstream. So, yeah, PurEnergy is one of those like specialty ingredients that we included because we know that, you know, it works. And then, the rest of the formula is just composed of things that have evidence on, they're not just something that was, you know, again, like, gave a rat, like, something to drink, and this rat ran like for two days straight or some crap like that.

Mike: Yeah, right. Yeah, we've... As a previous researcher on our channel here has said, we've cured cancer in rats like 100 times, so we can...

Matt: Yes.

Mike: Sometimes you have to look beyond the rat research, of course, even though we do appreciate, you know, their contributions to the scientific community.

Matt: Yep.

Mike: So, with the caffeine in your pre-workout, what is the total dose of caffeine if I were to like do the math on all that? And then, I'd like to know, like, if you have a preferred ratio of the PurEnergy to regular anhydrous.

Matt: Yep. So, the total amount of the pre-workout is approximately 215 milligrams.

Mike: Nice.

Matt: So, that kinda hits like the sweet spot like as far as what a typical endurance athlete would wear on average. Now, they could like dose lower if they want less, I don't really necessarily recommend that because you're not getting the proper dosages of the other ingredients, but you still could. Now, as far as the ratio in the product, so I have 150 milligrams of pure caffeine anhydrous in there, so, again, you get that immediate kick. And then, I have another 150 from the PurEnergy, but you gotta remember the 150 is part caffeine anhydrous and part of the pterostilbene blueberry extract. Jesus.

Mike: There we go. And that all adds up to 215. Okay. And then, some people try to tweak it. If I'm gonna have like a swim workout, I know that, yeah, I would like to have that 30 minutes before for myself probably, and then, enjoy. What I also like about someone's longer-lasting caffeines, even if it's like an hour swim workout or whatever, I like to still be riding high after the swim because I got work, I gotta get back to here, get back to work and everything. So, it's not, yeah, sometimes I try to time it and a lot of people will be like, "This is wrong." But sometimes I try to time it for optimal work, and not always optimal workout but a lot of people would disagree with that. It just depends on what's the most important in your life sometimes, and hey, you know, none of their business. That kinda happens. Okay. So, outside of caffeine, what else can we do for an endurance athlete that they might not know about?

Matt: Well, like I can think of like four or five like the most effective, like, supplements for endurance athletes, but let's just, like, get the obvious out of the way, and a lot of people aren't gonna expect this answer. But, like, hands-down, the most effective supplement for endurance athlete is, definitely, without a doubt, carbohydrate.

Mike: Can I guess? Oh, okay.

Nothing Is More Important Than Carbohydrates For Endurance Exercise

Matt: Without a doubt. Yeah. I mean, caffeine is high up and, like I would rank probably caffeine as the second most effective supplement for endurance athletes. I don't think a lot of people would disagree with me there and I don't think a lot of people, like, in the scientific community would disagree with me that carbohydrate is the most effective supplement for an endurance athlete. Now, a lot of people are probably saying, "Well, carbohydrate is a food you big dummy, Matt. And it's like, Oh-oh, nuh, huh." When you think about the stuff that we were talking about at the beginning of this video, the sport drink powders, the gels, the chews, those are supplements, right? So, you know, the majority of endurance athletics, I mean, relies on carbohydrates, especially, like, as intensity gets higher and you rely on anaerobic glycolysis, that's the only fuel source your body can use for the most part. So, as an endurance athlete, for your diets, I mean, depending on what your training is like, on a daily basis, you should be eating about 6 to 10 grams per kilogram body weight of carbohydrate, like, just during the day to basically replenish muscles, [inaudible 00:14:41] when you're all done. But then, when you're out there like exercising, say, on like a 2 to 3-hour bike ride, you're gonna wanna consume anywhere from 30 to 90 grams of carbs an hour, again, depending on intensity and duration.

And where things get really funky is like with a lot of these sports drinks, a lot of people don't realize that your body prefers to have multiple sources of carbohydrate. Like, it can only absorb like one source of carbohydrate up to about 60 grams an hour, right? So, like, a lot of people will use, you know, maltodextrin, crap, tea, and whatnot, but, I mean, maltodex, I mean, it's not the devil but it is, but they put like, you know...

Mike: You could do better.

Matt: ...that has maltodextrin as the main ingredient, you know? Thirty grams of maltodextrin for your carbohydrate and people will go out and they'll exercise for, you know, 2 to 3 hours and like, "Man, why do I have this gut distress, like, why am I feeling sick?" It's because your body gets to a certain point, you know, above that 60 grams of carbs an hour where it can't utilize just one carbohydrate source. So, your body is able to utilize up to 90 grams of carbs an hour, but you wanna have a different combination. So, like fructose combined with cyclodextrin or just other combinations of sugars, so, like, you can get more carbohydrate if the training or race demands it.

Mike: Is this commonly known because I've never heard that? Is it demonstrated by science?

Matt: It is demonstrated by science. A lot of research by Asker Jeukendrup, is the individual's name, showing this. There's a ton of body of evidence out there, but, you know, like with most neuro supplement companies, they don't they don't give a flying flip about the research. They just wanna like push out sugar, water, and weird ass gels and stuff.

Mike: Yeah. Maltodextrin is probably cheaper than sugar water, that stuffs like filthy cheap.

Matt: Oh, Lord, yeah, maltodextrin pays on the dollar.

Mike: Yeah. Okay. So, it's still a lot of carbohydrates. You're going out for a 3-hour ride, you're gonna need, let's just say on average, 150 grams of carbs, you're saying? Somewhere in that range, maybe a little bit more, maybe...

Matt: It just depends. Like, if you were doing like... So, let's look at it this way. If you were going out for under an hour, I wouldn't do any carbohydrate unless you just wanted something to drink. Your body doesn't need it, you have enough glycogen.

Mike: Right.

Matt: Go out for two hours. Up to two hours, you can probably do, yeah, you know, 30 grams an hour, 2 to 4 hours, 60 grams of carbs an hour. And then, when you get into the ultra-endurance stuff, then you can like kinda bump it up from there up to 90 grams of carbs an hour.

Mike: Gotcha. Okay. And so, in your products line, I'm assuming you have carbohydrates, what is the carbohydrate blend that you've chosen and why?

Matt: So, I use dextrose, fructose, cyclodextrin, excuse me, potato powder and rice powder. And the majority of that is made up of cyclodextrin because cyclodextrin is really high-density, low-osmolarity, meaning that it gets in the gut, it passes through quick. If you do other carbohydrate sources in a bolus amount, like that signals the gut to send a bunch of water in there to basically digest and absorb it and it just sits there and that's where you kinda get that stomach distress. So, you know, with my sports drink, I have that five-carbohydrate blend, which actually, like, a lot of weightlifters love our sports drink. Even though it's meant for endurance athletes, people love it. Because, in addition to that, I have the BCAAs in there, and then, an electrolyte blend too, so it kinda covers everything. Like in the last video, you know, I think we talked about BCAAs, BCAAs have quite a few benefits as it relates to endurance performance.

Mike: Okay. Yeah. And then, the cyclodextrin, it's expensive, but it's very popular with that weightlifting community because a lot of people seem to get a better pump off of it when they're training. And, like, there's something about the carbohydrate getting to the muscle cell quicker or something like that.

Matt: Yep.

Mike: And it seems like, yeah, very few people have any type of negative effects with it. I've never felt bad on it, you know, where I have felt bad on other types of things.

Matt: No. And that's the crazy thing, like... Yeah. And I'm not, like, I'm not aware of any other like endurance supplement company that uses cyclodextrin in like their sports training. That just blows my mind. Like, it's such a great ingredient and there's research behind it too, which, I mean, it's really cool, like, swimmers, and time to exhaustion, and all those other good stuffs.

Mike: Right. So, what about creatine?

Creatine Is An Under-Rated Endurance Supplement

Matt: Good question. So, creatine, yeah, most endurance athletes have a negative stigma about it. But I would put it up there as one of the most effective supplements for endurance athletes and for a couple different reasons. I mean, one, I mean, you think about what creatine does, you know, it helps you basically rephosphorylate ATP, and ATP is your main energy source that is especially good for like explosive muscular contractions, so you think like sprinting, or climbing up something. And then, in a lot of endurance athletics, you have that moment where you're gonna need to like sprint to the finish line, or do a breakaway, and things like that. And, you know, the creatine really helps there. So, you know, you take creatine, it saturates muscle creating storage are creating phosphate. And, again, that contributes the phosphate group to the ADP to make ATP and you have energy. So, that's one part of it. And then, another part potentially is creatine acting as an osmolyte too. It may help with like intercellular hydration. So, in really hot and humid environments where some endurance activities might occur, you know, creatine could provide a really good benefit. So, the one caveat with my creatine for endurance athlete is like... We all know creatine is well studied, it appears to be safe, but the one negative side effect, if you can call that, is weight gain, right?

Mike: Mm-hmm.

Matt: So, what I usually recommend, like, with creatine endurance athletes is you can get a lot of the good benefits of creatine without the weight gain if you do about 2 to 3 grams daily, and that seems to be the sweet spot. Now, if you don't care about the weight gain, then, yeah, absolutely, stick with the typical 5-gram dose of creatine and, you know, even endurance athlete, and then, go to the gym and crush out something too, so...

Mike: Right. I guess, does that little bit of weight gain offset, you know, if you're heavier on your bike or you're heavier swimming on your shoulders, does that weight gain offset the potential benefit that it would provide?

Matt: Well, then you're opening a whole another can of worms in terms like of strength to weight ratio, really, what that sweet spot really is. And that's, you know, there's a ton of variables that go into that. So, I take 2 to 3 grams daily, and that seems to be good, like I like it, I like the way I feel on it.

Mike: And I should know this, but I didn't look at the products this morning, unfortunately. Is it in any of your products?

Matt: It is not right now. Our plan is to make a standalone just like creatine monohydrate product. And that way, the consumer can add it to their recovery drink, they can add to the pre-workout if they want to, and it just allows for a little more flexibility.

Mike: And that's what I was gonna ask. If you're training for a triathlon and you do decide, you know, you look at the research, clearly, I want to do some creatine, and lets the stick with 2.5 grams per day just like you said, what is the timing that you think is best for an endurance athlete?

Matt: As far as I know, there's only been one study done on like timing of creatine, but that was done in weight training by a guy named Jose Antonio. And he showed like creatine post-exercise seemed to have the most effect on gains and muscular strength and mass, and I think those were the parameters they measure. But that's just one research study that demonstrated, you know... We talked before, like, research gets closer and closer to an answer. So studies definitely need to be replicated to demonstrate anything further. So, for, like, my opinion on the whole matter now, and I think a lot of people would agree with me, is, like, timing with creatine, it doesn't really matter, honestly.

Mike: Yeah. That's typically what we write in our blog post and talk about on these videos and stuff. But a lot of people who might be watching this may not be as experienced as some of our other sports nutrition users who just, yeah, any time of the day, whenever it's convenient, some people like it pre, some people like it post, like, whatever.

Matt: Yeah.

Mike: Okay. So, I forget which product it was, but you did have some Peak O2 in one of your products. Did you not?

Cordyceps For Improved VO2 Max

Matt: I did, yep. The combination of cordyceps and a whole bunch of other mushroom strings.

Mike: That's right. Can you explain to the viewers. Like, why would you put in a mushroom extract into an endurance supplement?

Matt: Well, like, cordyceps, as a whole, is a pretty researched, like, supplement for endurance athletes. And Peak O2 just kinda like upped the game from just having like pure cordyceps as a standalone ingredient. I mean, they have... What do they have in there? King trumpet, Turkey tail, the cordyceps, and a lot of other reishi, a lot of other mushrooms I can't even pronounce, right?

Mike: Yeah.

Matt: I fully admit that half these supplements I can't even pronounce. But, you know, Peak O2 I was mostly sold on because there was research done at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill by Abbie Ryan Smith, and they showed some really promising results in terms of like improvements in VO2 max and peak power output. I think there were benefits after... Can you still see me, Mike?

Mike: I hear you, I don't see you.

Matt: Okay, hold on. Some...

Mike: Come on back.

Matt: I'm sure you can edit this out, right?

Mike: I can if I remember to.

Matt: Oh, I promise...

Mike: You just see your face though. You face is stuck on quite a scene here.

Matt: Oh, boy, there we go. Okay. Good?

Mike: Hey, all right.

Matt: Welcome back.

Mike: I don't know if I'm gonna edit that. No, we'll see. Okay. So, where were we? We were talking about mushroom, Chapel Hills.

Matt: Yep. So, yeah, University of Chapel, North Carolina Hills demonstrated that Peak O2 can improve VO2 max, peak power output in endurance athletes. And that's what really caught my attention, there's been a few studies on it. And the thing with Peak O2, kinda like with like beta-alanine and beetroot powder for endurance athletes, the more you take it, the better it works, so it's like a loading thing. But even after, I think it was like 4 to 7 days of Peak O2 at 4 grams daily, and I think there was another part that was one gram daily, started to show these improvements in these endurance parameters. So, that's really why we included Peak O2 in our endurance pre-workout.

Mike: Gotcha. Yeah. And so, some of our regular viewers will be sick of hearing this story, but I like to talk about it for anyone who's new coming from the endurance role. My story with Peak O2 is that I wear a heart rate monitor across my chest when I train, and I'm very familiar with what different exercises do to my body, especially when weightlifting pretty consistently. And I noticed that when on Peak O2, the same, like, weight in deadlifts, for instance, when I'm Peak O2, my heart rate is considerably lower, like 10 beats per minute lower after the same exact training. And so, I like to use my heart rate monitor as a way to measure, you know, basically, the physical amount of work my body's gotta do to keep up. And, to me, it's like one of the easiest things to measure to communicate with my body and get its feedback outside of how I'm feeling. And so, it's like a more of a mechanical thing. And for whatever reason, this stuff makes my heart have to do less work to get the same job done. I don't know why. And that's not necessarily endurance, but it could correlate to endurance because of that. So, that's my story, and that's why I like Peak O2. It does add a little bit of like earthiness to the flavor, but, at this point, some of the companies have gotten so good at flavoring it, it's not negative, it probably it won't taste like candy anymore. But, to me, the benefits definitely outweigh that little bit of negative, and there's a little bit of earthiness to the taste. But that's my Peak O2 story.

Matt: Yeah. Yeah. I just depends what you wanna do. Like, I'd rather have, like, performance over taste any day. Like, if you're gonna hit a happy combination between those two, like, I'm happy.

Mike: Absolutely. Yeah. And it seems like, yeah, your demographic are definitely the more hardcore endurance athletes who are on the same page as you.

Matt: Yeah, they're a little more crunchy, hippy individuals too, so they probably like the earthy taste.

Mike: Oh, yeah, that's true. Are they gonna be mad when you call them crunchy?

Matt: Not at all. But my followers love me, they know I just like tell it how it is.

Beta-Alanine For Battling Muscle Acidity

Mike: Awesome. So, you also have mentioned beta-alanine. What's the story with beta-alanine for endurance athletes? Very, kind of, controversial, it's like that unsafe but controversial, and that doesn't work for weightlifting is what we have to, you know, deal with a lot on this channel. What about you?

Matt: Yeah, I still think the research is a little bit conflicted, but along the same lines of caffeine, I think beta-alanine is probably a more effective supplement for endurance athletes. So, I mean, as you guys all probably know, like, it's not the beta-alanine that does anything. Like, when you ingest the beta-alanine, it's converted to Carnosine. Carnosine is a muscle acidity buffer. So, like, when you're at endurance exercise and it gets more intense, the breakdown of, like, all the macronutrients causes a rise in hydrogen ions, causes muscle acidity, and Carnosine basically buffers that in a sense, right? So, beta-alanine is most effective for, like, really intense bouts, lasting bouts, from research, if I remember correctly, 62 to 240 seconds.

Mike: Yeah.

Matt: So, again, like, things like breakaway sprints and things like that. But again, the research is, I mean, it's a little hit or miss. Like, some research shows, you know, it is pretty effective, some shows no results, some show, you know, not significant compared to placebo, and who knows just why. I mean, there's so many variables that go into play, like, with a person's physiology and the type of activity and things like that, I mean, it's really hard to say. So, I mean, with like the beta-alanine, you know, 3.2 grams daily, up to 6.4 given range. I think beta-alanine, it's one of those ingredients you gotta experiment with and see if it, like, it actually works for you. Like, I'm not absolutely sold on it. I think the evidence does point to it working but, you know, I still think more research needs to be done. And there's probably been a ton of research done on it already, but, yeah. I was reading my sports nutrition book the other day, and I think it was one of like possibly effective ingredients.

Mike: Right. Yeah. Every study should always end with more research is needed. But yeah, I definitely appreciate the honest response there. And so, what doses have you gone within any of your supplements with it?

Matt: I always go with 3.2 grams because if you give...

Mike: Well, going all in.

Matt: Yes. But if you give a consumer more of that and they feel like their face is gonna melt, they tend to freak out.

Mike: Yeah. So, and obviously, our regular users know, they, all, like guys who've been lifting at everything they know, like we have beta-alanine in a lot of our pre-workout formulas, and it doesn't necessarily need to be taking pre-workout, by the way, but... And the studies showed that 3.2 grams, I think, the best studies show they space it out throughout the day. So, I mean, that's kinda tough to replicate, obviously. So, a lot of supplement companies, like yourself, just throw it all in at once.

Matt: Yeah.

Mike: Now, beta-alanine does cause some people to have a tingling sensation known as paresthesia. And it is a non-toxic reaction, but some people seem to freak out over it. Other people love it because, like in the weightlifting world, people like, Oh, you know, they take their drink, and then, maybe they're messing around with their phone or whatever. The tingles is just like the reminder, like, "Yo, this stuff's in your body, go workout," and so, a lot of people do like it. But for those of you who are in the endurance world looking for a little bit extra kick, yeah, this beta-alanine stuff, it's controversial for many, multiple reasons, and none of them because it's unsafe, but more because, like, some people get the tingles up their neck and they freak out, other people I love it, some people think the studies are good, other people, you know, want more research and so on.

But overall, it's to this point where it's been shown to be safe enough and it's been shown to be, you know, inexpensive enough that it is definitely worth messing with. Now, one thing that we sometimes say is that, if you have a high amount of carbohydrate in you, it might dampen the amount of tingles that you get from it. And given that endurance athletes are usually carbers, that might work out in favor. And so, I think there's like kinda a Carnosine pool in your body, and so, maybe for some people it doesn't work, maybe, like, for whatever reason, they already have tons of Carnosine and don't need any more, and they're kinda like maxed out or something like that, I don't know. Maybe you could speak to that, maybe not.

Matt: Yeah. I mean, beta and Carnosine kinda falls along the same lines as like creatine. One, it needs to be loaded to be effective. So, like beta-alanine, you need to load 3.2 grams for 28 days to saturate muscle Carnosine stores. And on the same token too, like, you couldn't eat enough meat unless you'd like to go to a Brazilian steakhouse and eat like 20 these steaks to get the amount of Carnosine to like saturate Carnosine stores. So, kinda like creatine, like, legitimately, to get 5 grams of creatine a day, you'd have to eat like 20 pieces of meat, which some people might be going, "Oh, yeah, that's awesome." But Carnosine is along the same lines. For it to be effective, like, I would highly, highly, highly doubt any individual can saturate their muscle Carnosine stores through diet alone. It's something you have to supplement with just like creatine.

Mike: Gotcha. Okay. So, it sounds like something definitely to be added. When you mention beta-alanine, you also mentioned something else, and now I'm forgetting though. What else do you like to rely on? Any other...? You mentioned branched-chain amino acids, there might be some benefits there.

Matt: Well, like in the whole hierarchy of things, so, like, so far, we've talked about carbs, caffeine, and beta-alanine, but before beta-alanine, I would put beetroot powder...

Beetroot Powder Lowers The ATP Cost Of Endurance Exercise

Mike: Oh, that's the one, yeah.

Matt: ...before that. So, most supplement companies use beetroot powder as like a coloring agent, right?

Mike: Right.

Matt: But beetroot powder is pretty darn effective and consistently effective in improving endurance performance, and I guess one of those ingredients that will have an acute effect, but the more you take it and load it, the more effective it becomes. And the way that beetroot powder works is it's actually pretty interesting. And I don't know if anybody knows the exact mechanism. If they tell you they do, they're probably lying. But somehow, it lowers the oxygen and ATP cost of exercise, and it also decreases the breakdown of phosphocreatine. So, it makes, basically, muscular contractions more efficient, and it makes harder exercise seem easier because it requires less ATP. Now, I don't know if this is due to...since beetroot powder is a high source of nitrates and nitrates cause endothelial relaxation, you know. That might be one of the reasons why beetroot powder works so good for endurance athletes. I mean, we're talking anywhere from like 5% to 15% improvements in time trial performance for some cyclists, but I would be lying if I said I knew the exact physiological mechanisms as far as why it works, like, and we know it's the nitrates, but, you know, what the nitrate's doing to produce this effect, you know? Who knows for sure?

Mike: But yeah, there are plenty of nitrate-based ingredients out there, but there's also just beetroot extract, which seems like it needs to be standardized for a high amount of nitrates. And there's, of course, we're getting a lot of stuff that might be untested or cheaper. How do you go about deciding on if you do want to go the beetroot method instead of just getting like a patented nitrate? How would you decide that? Because with a patented nitrate, I know...or even if I was gonna take like potassium nitrate or something, I know that I'm gonna get X, Y, Z, a perfect, you know, a percentage amount. With beetroot extract, yeah, I don't know what's going on back there. So, how do you, as a supplement company, formulate and choose a beetroot?

Matt: Well, there's one of three things you can do with, like, beets. Like, through your diet, like, you can drink 0.5 liters of beetroot juice daily with... You know, I would not wanna do that. You can eat a ton of beets, or you can go the beetroot powder, or you can go with the beetroot extract. Now, if you're dealing with like a beetroot powder by itself, the main thing is the amount of beetroot powder you put in, you want it to yield about 300 to 500 milligrams of nitrate. So, you just basically figure out, you know, what you have, how much it's gonna take to yield that amount, and that's how you do it from a formulation standpoint. Then it's all over the place. Like, I mean, the extracts, I don't know. I don't know like in terms of efficacy. Like, you know, I've heard standardized extracts from like 3% to 8%, but I would be leery to say if that really did anything from an endurance perspective. You really need to hit that, like, 300 to 500 milligrams of nitrate yield from the beetroot powder.

Mike: And is this more of an acute thing taken pre-workout?

Matt: Yeah. Beetroot has nice acute effects, but it's something, again, you wanna take every day like beta-alanine, and creatine, and even like Peak O2 to get a greater magnitude of effects.

Taurine Lowers The Stress Of Endurance Exercise

Mike: Awesome. Okay. Now, what about taurine? We've been seeing a lot of good taurine research lately. Is this something that...?

Matt: Yeah. I saw that big meta-analysis come out a while back.

Mike: Right, we covered that, yeah.

Matt: Yeah. With like, I think it was... I'm not super familiar with it, I don't think I had a chance to read it through, but I think there were some nice acute effects on endurance performance. But from what we know or what the evidence demonstrates is taurine can do a couple thing. One, it can act as an osmolyte, it can act as an antistressor, and then, it can also promote angioneogenesis or the formation of new blood vessels. So, you know, take your pick as far as which one that might be in terms of endurance performance. But like the sweet spot, like, 1,500 and 2,500 milligrams needs to be the sweet spot with taurine. But yeah, that meta-analysis was pretty cool. Like, I mostly thought of like taurine as more of like a chronic thing where you take it over time and it becomes effective. But after this huge meta-analysis, you know, might have to rethink...

Mike: Yeah, there's enough data to show that right from the first dose, you're gonna get some sort of benefit, so that's a pretty cool thing that a lot of people are looking to get after it. So, at the risk of overwhelming people with too many supplements, I think we covered most of the main ones, of course. But what about betaine? Have you gone down that road at all looking into that?

Matt: Betaine, you know, I really haven't, not because it doesn't work, but because at least I'm not familiar with a lot of research done on endurance athletes on betaine. I think betaine is kinda along the same lines as taurine a little bit as an anti-stress or an osmolyte if I remember correctly. And there's, you know, some research out there, like, I forget what it is, maybe more reps, things of that nature. But betaine is not really something I've explored yet for the endurance market and for no particular reason other than...I would probably wanna wait to see more evidence come out in endurance athletes.

Mike: Right, yeah. And the reason that's on my mind is Jason Cholewa, who put out the first study, 2.5 grams per day led to a whole lot of...more like the muscle parameters, let's say. Then he put out another study recently showing that 2.5 grams per day in women had a lot of great results and better fat loss and all sorts of stuff. So, I've invited him onto the channel, hopefully, I can get him on. But I would like to just make a solo video, kinda talking about the research study he put out there. And so, pretty cool to see it's like you got the same guy who's been driving after this one ingredient for last four or so years, maybe even a little bit more, and he seems to be the expert on that. So, I'll definitely ask him about that. But my question is, you know, it seems to work kinda similarly to creatine. And so, I'm wondering if, you know, we're already taking creatine, are there many benefits in addition, and if so, like, what doses and all that? So, that's where we're gonna be, so I guess subscribe to the channel, my shameless plug there. We're gonna try to get into that stuff. And there might some endurance stuff, so we'll stay tuned. But yeah, most of the research has been geared towards the aesthetic stuff and less of the endurance, for sure.

Matt: Absolutely.

Mike: All right. Yeah, awesome. And so, that should be a pretty good batch of stuff right there. But are we missing anything else, anything that you're excited about, anything in the future maybe happening or?

Matt: I mean, yeah. It's just, you know, I'm just trying to bring a lot of innovation to, like, win the endurance supplement industry. Like, out of all these, you know, years, like in our first video, we talked about my consulting gigs, you know, I've taken a lot from each company I've worked with, and that's what I'm really trying to combine into EndurElite. So, like, for example, with NutraBio, trying to have that quality and transparency, you know? And then, with like innovation, the guys like performance and Chris O'Brien inspired nutraceuticals like the innovation standpoint. And then, like the guys over at MuscleSport, like, you know, run a business in a good way and make a product appealing and look good and stuff like that. So, all these things I've taken together to learn, I mean, that's my main goal. Like, I wanna bring innovation to the endurance supplement industry that's beyond just like the sports drinks, and the gels, and, you know, the chews, and waffles, and stuff like that. I mean, will I do products like that? Yeah, because tjhere's a place with like, you know...

Mike: And so, I'm thinking you can do a gel, but then throw in some of these ingredients we're talking about and disrupt each individual thing with our know-how and all that, I guess.

Matt: Absolutely, well, that's the exact plan. Like, I have zero interest in making a crap product, I have zero interest in, like mimicking somebody else. Like, if I'm gonna make something, like, I'm not gonna put my reputation on the line just to put out another piece of garbage.

Mike: Awesome. Awesome, Matt.

Matt: Yep.

Mike: Okay, cool. So, we're gonna link to, in the blog post and in the YouTube description, we're gonna link to all your channels. You have a lot of videos on Facebook, you put it on YouTube, Instagram, all that fun stuff. Do you have a specific video that you think people should watch on your channel that you...maybe something recent in your head, or just like the go-to video, like, to see, like, what's this brand is all about, or just like a little bit more down this road? Do you have the one that you wanna specifically link to or embed?

Matt: I mean, I'm gonna steer you with like... Oddly enough, like, I shot over probably close to 200 videos now, and I think only in 5 of them, I have talked about one of my products honestly.

Mike: Right. Right.

Matt: So, I'm gonna steer people down a little bit different road so that they can get a good laugh, and I'm gonna direct them to my busting the BS video on Bulletproof Coffee.

Mike: Oh, okay. Yeah.

Matt: It's a real gem.

Mike: Nice. And so, the bulletproof world, do you have a few minutes just to talk for a few minutes about this?

Matt: Oh, I have all the time in the world to talk about Bulletproof Coffee.

Mike: Oh, no. Okay. Well, I was gonna more go into the... So, bulletproof is obviously targeted well. It should be targeted more towards the people who are high-fat dieters looking to get a little bit more fat calories and less of the other calories is my take. But how does that play into the endurance world? And I don't know if you covered that, like, if that was even part of your video or if you're just taking Bulletproof Coffee or whatever, but...

Matt: I was just bashing Bulletproof Coffee, so, yeah. And it was just basically like on the fact of these, like, asinine claims like increases testosterone, burns fat, like. And that just like, okay, maybe it burns a little fat and a little of calories but it's... Let's shoot it straight here. On like any effect you're getting, like, for the most part, in terms of like increases in RMR and like, you know, losing body weight, stuff like that, most of it, feelings of well-being, all these other stuff people promote about Bulletproof Coffee, I mean, it's mostly from the caffeine, like. And they promote like all these healthy fats like CLA. CLA doesn't do a damn thing for fat loss, and it just... Beyond the things that, like, keep me up at night, I just like get pissed about it, I'm like, "Guys, we need to shoot a video on this because I need to get this out before I, like, do something." But, yeah, I mean, like, inherently, I don't have a problem with like Bulletproof Coffee and some of these other fads, I have a problem when people start making all these ridiculous claims that people buy into. That's when I have a problem.

Mike: I see.

Matt: Yeah. Like, you know, keto or like Bulletproof Coffee, yeah, if you like it, drink it, man. I mean, it helps you lose weight, it's not because it's a magic pill, it's probably just because you're consuming less calories throughout the day more than likely. So, yeah, if you like it, absolutely. Does it fit well within the keto lifestyle, yeah, it can mean you have the MCTs, you have the butter, you have low carbs. And then, yeah, the whole like keto and endurance athletes, that might be a tough...

Mike: That might be a separate video. But, I mean, here's my take as of right now, and you correct me if I'm wrong, I think it seems extremely beneficial for ultra-endurance athletes who need to carry their energy on their body. I mean, everyone else, if you're gonna do it, it will probably take a pretty sharp hit for quite a while unless you get adapted and very well adapted. And then, it depends on if it's good for you or not. Some people just seem to be genetic keto machines and other people aren't. So, my take is ultra-endurance athletes, I think is a very smart idea, everyone else, maybe, maybe not.

Matt: Yeah. I would attempt to agree with you in this. And here's how my big beef with, you know, being in keto, like, it makes sense for the ultra-endurance athletes because, as a whole, like, your muscles can store it, it depending on what type of athlete you are, anywhere from like 400 to 100 grams of glycogen that can be used as energy. Where, like, your fat pretty much like represents an unlimited, like, energy source. The thing I had with Kito, and where I get confused, and true to be told, a lot of people know a lot more about Keto than I do, is I just always wonder about that point of inflection where your body, like, on Kito makes that transition from burning fat to going on carbohydrate. So, even if you're on keto, if you're on a ketogenic diet and you're in ultra-endurance race, you know, I would probably still incorporate some strategy in there to use carbs during taking of carb.

Mike: Agree, yeah, especially from the past. Yeah.

Matt: Exactly. Because you get to a long grinder hill and, like, you're on a ketogenic diet, you're gonna have absolutely zero anything in the tank when your body goes into anaerobic glycolysis because, I mean that aerobic glycolysis wants a glycogen, it wants carbohydrate. So, in the research, I mean, there's decent research in endurance athletes in keto. My partner can speak better to this. But, yeah, it seems like what you said, like, the best application seems to be in those ultra-endurance type events. But the thing like with keto too is like, yes, some people really like it, but, man, I tried and it is damn hard to stick to. Like that's my whole thing with the two, like, not that I disagree with it, you know? I'm a carb machine, like, I'll always promote carb. And the body of evidence against carbs are better for endurance activity. But who knows, I mean, who knows what happens with keto in the ultra-endurance athlete. And, you know, you can read all the evidence and studies in the world too, but if you find something that works for you, it doesn't mean it's necessarily wrong, right? You don't have to rely on the science all the time, field experience plays a big role in success too in my humble opinion.

Mike: Definitely. I think we should, yeah, you know, we should get little bit deeper into that a little bit later. And overall, like, what are the strategies for an ultra-endurance or a longer endurance athlete who wants to be in this state of ketosis? But when do you spike in those exogenous ketones or spike-ins of carbohydrates to make it happen?

Matt: Yeah.

Mike: Because I think that's gonna be where the ultra-endurance roll can have some serious benefits, is having the best of both worlds when your body is just adapted to do whatever, and you just do the right thing at the right time. And so, that's my personal take. And typically, I like to let you close off with your personal take and everything. But I definitely thank you so much for joining us here and excited. We'll make some links down to your stuff below and to those videos that you talked about over... I definitely appreciate it.

Matt: Oh, boy, I'm gonna get in trouble.

Mike: Oh, no, you're already in trouble, it's already posted.

Matt: Yeah, I'm still here.

Mike: All right, Matt, well sign it off right now. Thank you so much. And you can subscribe to our channel. We'll make links so that you can EndurElite and find them on social media. And we will be linking to that video. Thanks again, Matt.