Energy Charge and Power Up
£34.99/£29.99 from Bio-Synergy
When energy supplement manufacturers conjure up new flavours in their little lab, you're waiting for the one that will have you running or cycling for the nearest bog! That's why you can't go wrong with Orange and the force is strong with this one. A recommended scoop per 250-300ml, I forgot this vital suggestion and put 4 scoops in my 500ml SiS bottle! Now I know not to do that as the mixture did become quite thick but it made me sip rather than gulp on my first test ride, I'll know better next time!
When you crack open the tin, the strong smell of cinammon hits you like a freight train. I am not usually a fan of this spice but it was like being surrounded by scented candles in a health spa. Traditonally, tablets and other oral depositories make people wretch but it was actually a joy swallowing these bad boys.
Half way through the cannister or battery cell, I have finally managed to crack my personal preference of the ratio of powder to water. It is a strong mix and very easy to make your soltuion too strong. One scoop and a half I have found makes the mixture consumable for all my ride. Like I have said before, you can not go wrong with orange flavouring and to compare the taste, I have been filling up my second bidon with squash to give my tastebuds a workout. I sip little and often and have been leaving no drops of the Activeman so thumbs up for half way!
You can not tire of the taste of these capsules. Makes you wonder why normal tablets like paracetemol are not flavoured?! It used to make me gag as a child with the Dexters Lab like taste. To look forward in taking a supplement says it all.
Towards the end, the orange flavour did start to get a bit bland, I began to take an extra bottle topped up with regular juice of a different flavour. With that said, I have come across orange powdered supplements which tastes of an old man's pee so introduce some flavours which will whet the taste buds but keeping the hydration factor in tact.
You can not These capsules will give most boiled sweets a run for their money! The coating has made them a joy to test out.
What to say about the packaging?! Put it on a shelf in any store and there's no way you will miss it and not give it a second glance. The battery style design gives it a bold presence and the obvious visual metaphor which is the battery cell itself is a design.
The smaller tin of the Power Up tablets hold their own against the bigger cylinder and with its cute battery features such as the battery head and power bar, the designer here must take his hat off, thank his Mum for support and walk off stage for 'Design Packaging of the Year 2016'.
Disregarding I cocked up the correct amount of powder to mix in the bottle, I usually keep to a 10minute hydration system unless I do have a mouth like the Sahara. Because of the thicker solution, I never required a gel and felt the sips were sufficient enough for the next segment on my ride. The test ride was accompanied by an horrendous headwind but I never felt any sapping of the legs and always felt I could kick on in any rise in graident. The main test will be when I tackle a group of hills and its effect on my recovery then.
Putting my hands up, I have never committed myself to a supplement plan before so I am quite keen to see what effect these tablets have on my performance and well being. Packed with nutrients from caffeine sources such as Green Tea and Green Coffee, I'm wondering if it has the same impact as having 10 mochas in one sitting?!
Since beginning the Activeman test and weather permitting, I have been upping my climbing game to see what effect it has on my energy levels and recovery stores. The Surrey hills are not particulalry long and you will find many short but steep climbs which sap the legs. My latest ride took in 3 short steep climbs in the West of Surrey which I fully had confidence on. I was keeping a cadence without too much resistance and recovering very well. The mileage game has also increased. Is it all down to Activeman? I have always had a theory that if you are taking supplements, you have set yourself a mental state of performing harder because of the belief your nutriton product has given you. Having said that, whilst pushing on further in mileage and elevation, Activeman has done its job by refuelling effectively so far for my next challenge.
As I have mentioned before, I have never taken an added supplement before and I am curious to see what loss in well being and fitness I will lose once the tablets have finished. I have a very active job as a SEN PE teacher and commute every day by bike so I will finish off the tin and then comment on the impact it has had on my every day biking life.
I used my main weekend rides as the performance testing for Activeman to see the effect it had on longer rides. The flavour factor did begin to have an hinderance on the consumption so I chose to always take from this bidon before moving onto my regular juice. Coupled with Adam's workouts, my climbing on the hills improved especially my ability to recover. Activeman did have a positive effect on my hydration and never felt any cramping or 'bonking' effects.
As I So did these capsules turn me into an Avenger or give me kidney failure?! Definitely not the latter. I like to think I have minimal health problems when it comes to vitamins so its difficult for me to judge the impact it has had on my overall health. But I have been very impressed with the science behind both supplements and would definitely trust to use them again.
Once over the tried and tested phase of finding the right solution, you do feel the effect of the hydration qualities this mixture gives you. The flavour though does become bland which is where a range and choice of flavours would overcome this.
Kudos to the nerds in the lab because the flavour of this little bullet stands out. That alone motivates to commit in sticking with the supplement. Our question remains though is the true scientific impact it has on a seasoned pro' or someone with a nutrition deficiency?