I recently came across this pre-workout as it is listed as the best rated pre-workout supplement on amazon. I was curious and took a closer look to see what all the fuss was about.
It is easy to get confused with all the new substances introduced in all the new pre-workouts we see on the market. But Tier 1+ from Citadel Nutrition is a solid mix of a few, tried and tested substances, at the very right dosage. Some might consider it a bit thin, but a lot of people clearly like it (based on the amazon rating).
Going through the website of Citadel Nutrition, it is actually easy to see why people really like the company and their products. They list the following principles as key elements to their business: Honesty, Simplicity, Purity and Effectiveness.
We are committed to finding and using the best possible ingredients in our products. The bottom line doesn’t matter. Purity and potency does. Others claim it. We prove it. Third-party test results are provided for every product so you can verify for yourself
Let’s see what Citadel Nutrition has to say about their pre-workout supplement Tier 1+. Here goes:
MORE KICK. FOR THOSE THAT NEED IT.
Tier 1+ follows the same straightforward approach as Tier 1. Non-proprietary blends, effective doses, high quality ingredients, and third-party verification. The key difference between the two is that Tier 1+ contains more caffeine per serving, to the tune of 100mg, or the caffeine typically found in a cup of coffee.
Just because Tier 1+ has more caffeine doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for you. The root of the problem was that we found a certain demographic of our customers were taking more than one scoop of Tier 1 in order to obtain the stimulant boost they wanted, specifically heavier individuals, habitual caffeine users, and those less sensitive to caffeine. By doing so, they were taking more creatine and beta-alanine than necessary, reducing the value of the product.
Tier 1+ solves that problem.
On the surface, 100mg of caffeine per serving may not seem like a big difference, but providing the most value and benefit for you and your training is always a relentless pursuit here at Citadel Nutrition. Tier 1+ is not “better” – just more appropriate for certain individuals. At the end of the day dialing in your training and supplementation with more precision is a good thing.
Here are some relevant studies that you may find useful in determining if Tier 1+ and the additional caffeine is for you.
- Evidence-based recommendations for natural bodybuilding content preparation: nutrition and supplementation. (Eric Helms, Alan Aragon, and Peter Fitschen)
- Examine.com page on Caffeine.
- JISSN Position Stand: Caffeine and Performance.
In summary (not adjusting for individual stimulant sensitivities and frequency of use) a good general guideline is to aim for
3-5mg of caffeine per kg
of bodyweight. As always,
we recommend caffeine be cycled
in order to counteract tolerance and obtain maximum ergogenic effect.
SAME GREAT EVERYTHING.
Other than the dose of caffeine, everything else you’ve come to love about Tier 1 is the same. High quality ingredient sourcing, a focus on the essentials, effective doses of Creatine and Beta-alanine, and third-party certification.
- Creatine from Creapure.
- Beta-Alanine from Carnosyn.
- Caffeine and Tyrosine are USP grade.
TRUST THROUGH VERIFICATION.
Every batch of Tier 1+ is tested by an independent testing agency to verify label claims and ensure safety and effectiveness.One of our biggest challenges before starting Citadel Nutrition was trying to get test results from companies.Others make bold claims about quality. We prove it so you can have peace of mind.
Now let’s take a closer look at the supplement facts of Tier 1+. There isn’t a whole lot of different substances used here. As you can easily grasp from the product pitch above, Tier 1+ is based on a few, but proven substances used at the very right dosage.
Supplement Facts – Tier1+
- Serving Size: 12.9g
- Servings Per Container: 30
- Creatine Monohydrate: 5g
- Beta-Alanine: 3.2g
- L-Tyrosine: 3g
- Caffeine Anhydrous: 300mg
Supplement Facts in Details
As you can tell, the list is short and basic. Some might even question this as a pre-workout, but the Caffeine and L-Tyrosine put’s it in this category. Now all the stuff listed are very common ingredients in pre-workout supplements and I have posted about all of them, several times before here on muscles.zone. Just to set the record straight, the substances are covered in details, below. Here goes:
The standard stuff that has been on the market for years. It’s been proven time and time again to be beneficial for anyone looking to enhance performance output, gain strength and muscle mass and improve recovery.
Creatine is a naturally occurring amino acid which is essential in providing energy to the muscles. It is formed by dehydrating a solution of creatine, leaving a single water molecule bound to the Creatine powder. With thousands of scientific studies on this stuff, results naturally vary a bit, but it is believed the body’s absorption is around 80-99%.
Creatine functions in the following (simplified) manner. Once creatine is consumed, it goes to the muscles via the bloodstream. Once inside the muscle cells, it is converted into a substance called creatine phosphate. Creatine phosphate helps in replenishing your reserves of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). ATP is responsible for providing power for muscular contractions, and is used as the main fuel source for short term energy bursts (such as weight training).
Hence, supplementing with creatine will equate to more available creatine phosphate in your muscles cells which quickly can be converted to ATP, when needed for weight training. The end result of this is an enhanced performance output that allows you to do more reps and set, which will optimize your muscle building efforts.
The typical recommended daily dosage is 3 – 5 grams. Tier 1+ will get you right up to the top of that range. Good stuff.
Beta Alaine is a non-essential beta-amino acid that allegedly helps to raise the body´s carnosine level and as a result of this, your performance output and with no side-effects (besides from some parathesia, all depending on the dosage you get). Since you won’t get much beta alanine (3-aminopropionic acid) from the food you consume, it makes sense to go with a trusted brand and get yourself some beta alanine in order to raise your muscles carnosine concentration.
More specifically Beta Alanine is the limiting precursor to the formation of Carnosine in our muscles. There is enough scientific evidence now to prove that when an adequate dosage of Beta Alanine is given to bodybuilders, there is an increase in Carnosine formation in the body. Carnosine is an extremely potent anti-oxidant and provides a real and tangible performance boost when its levels are high in the body. It prevents the build up of acidic ions in our bodies and thereby fights muscle fatigue.
Beta-Alanine is one of my favorite substances, and a good dose of it. Pre-workout supplements tend to contain around 2,000 mg on average of Beta-Alanine, but with Tier1+ we get a whopping 3.2 grams! This should get you some serious tingle, so you might want to start with a bit less than one serving if you have tried beta-alanine before. It has been proven beneficial from a bodybuilding perspective, over and over again. The short version is that supplementing with beta alanine will improve endurance, performance and strength, and combat fatigue.
In new pre-workout supplements we tend to see N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine used instead of just L-Tyrosine (hyped as having a better absorption), but L-Tyrosine is still a solid, tested and proven substance that I welcome in my pre-workout supplements.
I have posted about L-Tyrosine several times before here on muscles.zone. L-Tyrosine is a non-essential amino acid which produces noradrenaline and dopamine. There are several studies documenting the effects from L-Tyrosine, which include stress relief, cognitive enhancement, fat burning, mood improvement. It’s a typical substance in pre-workout supplements, due to the above-listed benefits
I think dosage of L-Tyrosine in pre-workout supplements tends to be in the range of 500 – 1,000 mg but with Tier 1+ from Citadel Nutrition, we get a massive 3 grams! Personally, I think this might be overkill, but I have never tried such a high dosage so I cannot really say for sure, how this is going to feel.
The good old caffeine and at a decent dosage. We all know what this stuff does, but just in case you have been you have been living under a rock, here is the short version: It will give you a physical and mental energy boost. 300 mg might be a bit too much for some people. The typical dosage tends to be closer to 200 mg and that is my personal sweet spot. 300 mg will typically make me jittery, but it depends on how much coffee I had beforehand. Either way, 300 mg will definitely get you going!
This is done in different ways, for one by boosting the effects of serotonin, acetylcholine and dopamine. It also blocks adenosine receptors and increase the release of catecholamines. All in all this allows your body to send more blood to your muscles, release sugar for energy and make your heart beat faster.
PUMP, energy, focus and endurance
The focus of this pre-workout supplement is not on pumps, although you will see some benefits in this relation from beta-alanine as beta-alanine increases carnosine and carnosine is a precursor in generating nitric oxide synthase which equates to more nitric oxide.
The caffeine dosage alone will give you a good energy boost, and combined with the massive dosage of L-Tyrosine, this is likely to give you a true energy and focus enhancing experience. Over time, the true benefits from creatine monohydrate and beta-alanine will kick in, and give you a solid improvement in endurance as well.
Price Per Serving and Ratings
I cannot find Citadel Nutrition on Bodybuilding.com – Their products nor any reviews. Tier 1 is reviewed on supplementreviews.com but not Tier 1+. The first mentioned holds a rating of 8.2 out of 10. Keep in mind though, that this is the best-rated pre-workout on Amazon. The price on Amazon fluctuates but at the moment you can get a jar with 30 servings for a total of $29.99, meaning that the price per serving will be $1.
Tier 1+ from Citadel Nutrition – Verdict
This is a solid PWO, no doubt about that. It is designed for people who prefer trust, transparency and honesty over novelty. The substances used are proven to work, and they come at clinical tested dosages. You know exactly what you get, how much of it you get, and it’s been verified by a third party independent testing agency. This is the only supplement I have reviewed here on muscles.zone that has been tested by an independent testing agency.
I really like transparency and honesty here. The third party testing and the fully disclosed supplement facts. I love all the substances used, and the dosing is perfect. With that being said, I think it might fall a bit short as a pre-workout when compared to other supplements on the market. Citadel Nutrition is miles ahead when it comes to transparency, but the blend is a bit thin.
Personally, I almost think of Tier 1+ as a supplement in a slightly different category than a pre-workout but I am not sure what. I am not a fan of combining a pre-workout with creatine, as its been shown that the time of creatine consumption doesn’t really affect the desired outcome. The other reason is that the creatine dosage in PWO’s tend to be way off from the recommended daily dosage but that is not the case with Tier 1+, so yeah.
If you plan on running a cycle of creatine and want some more energy when hitting the gym, without compromising with quality and transparency, Tier 1+ is a perfect match! If you are looking for extreme energy and pump potent pre-workout supplements, Tier 1+ is probably not what you are looking for.
Have you tried Tier 1 or Tier 1+ from Citadel Nutrition, then please share your thoughts below. If you enjoyed this post, please click one of the buttons below and share it with the world.