October 11, 2012
We’ve mentioned before that we don’t spend time in the supplement section of fitness forums (Week 1 Blog Post), but a good friend of ours sent us a link to a couple threads where a company rep was making the following statements:
Everyone has a right to their own opinion so while we strongly disagreed with the comments, we didn’t think too much of it. Value is subjective, but when we discuss our product and provide value propositions we deal in objectivity. You can see our ingredient price breakdowns versus what is currently offered on the market on all our products.
What got us FIRED UP was when we discovered what this company provided as an alternative.
Their pre-workout product and pricing:
There are many reasons why we don’t recommend the pre-workout above, but what really punched us in the gut was that this product cost $25 dollars for 15 servings. It was perplexing to us why these comments were made about Tier 1, primarily because of what was being offered as an alternative.
Then it struck us.
In an industry with so much over the top marketing, it’s become very difficult to judge what “value” means.
One of our overarching goals is to help consumers make smart choices on supplements. Our personal journey included stumbling around the myriad of options without knowing what to look for and who to believe. Embracing the simple truth below will help everyone involved better understand the value of supplements.
Training and Nutrition are the most important factors toward achieving your fitness and athletic goals. Supplements can help. Once you have those factors dialed in.
A casual jaunt through the supplement section of some major fitness forums and you will see that this line of thinking does not persist. Miracle pills and magical bullets are the name of the game and the more over the top the promises, the better. What sucks is that the individual making a first foray into achieving their fitness goals gets hammered with misinformation, which in turn places an artificially high value on supplements.
Here’s some examples:
Individual wants to gain muscle mass. Worries about taking the best “type” of creatine. Not meeting protein requirements.
Same individual concerned about pre/intra/post workout supplements to gain weight. Eats at caloric deficit.
Individual on constant search for “best preworkout evar.” Has no consistent training program when in the gym.
These are a few examples of where the value of supplements is placed artificially higher than training and nutrition. If people start understanding that supplements provide those percentage points of increase AFTER training and nutrition, we believe there would be increased focus on simplicity and key ingredients and doses that DO matter.
In the case of pre-workouts for instance, our goal has never been to create an overwhelming “rush”. Our goal is for people to train with adequate energy/intensity when they need a boost. We believe that Tier 1 provides tremendous value in light of market alternatives, but especially from the standpoint of ingredient sourcing.
Even if you don’t like Tier 1, which is completely fine as it’s not for everyone, here are a couple things to look for when choosing a pre-workout product to make sure you are getting your money’s worth:
Do the ingredients have solid research behind them? (i.e. number of studies, study design, human, etc.)
Effective doses? If not, what is the substantiation for their doses?
Do the ingredients have expert validation?
Are third-party test results provided?
Quality of the ingredients and sourcing?
How many servings are provided? What is the price? (Price / Serving)
Filler and extraneous ingredients?
If you take all these factors into consideration, the value proposition then switches upside down from marketing spiel to objective criteria. It then becomes clear why we’re such big proponents of simplicity and the 80/20 rule.
Here’s what Campbell Fitness, who we’ve mentioned before as a solid resource on training and nutrition had to say about Tier 1.
But here’s the thing. You shouldn’t completely believe what any “for-profit” company tells you. Whether it’s one company telling you a product is overpriced, another saying it’s a value, or a third telling you that everything you eat combined with their products will turn into muscle.
Do your own research and investigation and decide for yourself what value means to you.
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