Very few things are more fun to watch than two bodybuilders having a heated discussion about why their chosen pre-workout is the best for achieving fitness goals.
In a recent discussion with clients of mine, I stepped in and decided that side-by-side research and testing would be the only way to solve the issue.
The pre-workouts in question were Gorilla Mode and Total War, and we got together with a few clients to do some in-depth testing over four weeks.
Here’s what we found.
How We Tested Gorilla Mode and Total War
When it came to testing Gorilla Mode and Total War, we didn't just rely on the label claims or user reviews. We took a hands-on approach, ensuring that our insights were both objective and personal. Here's a glimpse into our testing process.
I, along with a few team members, incorporated both Gorilla Mode and Total War into our fitness routines. I distinctly remember my first workout with Gorilla Mode; the energy surge was palpable, and I managed to squeeze in an extra set of deadlifts. With Total War, my focus during my runs was sharper, and I felt less tired towards the end.
We meticulously broke down the ingredient list of each product, comparing them with scientific studies to understand their efficacy and safety. Our late-night discussions often revolved around the synergistic effects of certain ingredients and how they impact performance.
Feedback from Fellow Fitness Enthusiasts
We reached out to our gym buddies, running partners, and even some professional athletes in our network. Their feedback, especially from those who've used both products, was invaluable.
Taste and Mixability
Let's be honest; no one likes a pre-workout that clumps or tastes off. We tested both products with various liquids, from plain water to protein shakes. I personally loved the tangy kick of Total War when mixed with my morning citrus smoothie.
It's not just about the boost during the workout but also how you feel afterward. We monitored our recovery times, muscle soreness, and overall energy levels on the days following intense workouts.
Value for Money
Fitness supplements are an investment in our health and performance. We crunched the numbers, comparing the cost per serving, ingredient quality, and the overall benefits of both products.
Key Differences Between Gorilla Mode And Total War
The main difference between Gorilla Mode And Total War is that Gorilla Mode has a more scientifically proven formula.
To identify this fact, I had my dietitian list out all the ingredients in both supplements and then check if there were reliable scientific studies to support them.
With Gorilla Mode, my dietitian found that almost all the listed ingredients had substantial and proven effects, such as intense focus, mental clarity, or reduced muscle fatigue.
But with Total War, there are a few ingredients where research doesn’t confirm the efficacy.
More on those shortly.
The other significant difference I have to highlight is that Total War has an extremely strong dose of stimulants. There’s as much caffeine in this pre-workout supplement as in three cups of coffee plus some added taurine as well.
And because your body absorbs caffeine in as little as 15 minutes, that can make you very jittery in a short space of time .
And that also makes it less than optimum if you tend to hit the gym later in the day as it could mess up your sleep and recovery time.
Features Head to Head
The next thing we did was compare the products based on a few important features.
The nutritional labels were very interesting. Both pre-workout formulas contain citrulline, agmatine, caffeine, and black pepper extract, but it’s the details that count.
First of all, Gorilla Mode contains L-citrulline, and Total War contains citrulline malate. Based on our research, L-citrulline has shown better results in clinical trials, especially for performance athletes .
Total War also has almost 50% more caffeine than Gorilla Mode for a standard dose, and that’s a lot.
A study conducted by Professor Terry E. Graham from the University of Guelph showed that caffeine can help with strength and endurance during workouts, but you have to be careful with the dose .
In addition to making you jittery, it can mess with your sleep and cause dehydration. And that’s why it’s better to be cautious on the low side.
And both products contain agmatine, which can impact nitric oxide levels and muscle pumps . And while Total War does contain twice the dose, we found that the L-citrulline in Gorilla Mode more than makes up for it.
We had our team and clients do one full week of training with each product and one week without any pre-workout as a control.
We also had them take note of how they felt going through their gym sessions and gathered details of the training sets, reps, and weights.
Overall, our testing showed that both supplements improved either the reps or the weights we could lift. And we also noted improvements in pumps and muscle growth.
However, after a detailed look at the results, we saw noticeably better improvements with Gorilla mode pre-workout powder.
Nine of the ten of us that took part in the testing had more strength, endurance and could perform better during intense workouts (like High-Intensity Interval Training) with Gorilla Mode.
Both pre-workout supplements come in powder form with a serving size of about 15g each.
To test out how they compared when mixing with water, we timed how quickly they dissolved. First, we just put a scoop in a glass of water and waited until the powder sunk to the bottom.
In this test, Gorilla Mode was significantly faster, and that’s often an indication that it will mix easier.
Then we simply stirred them with a spoon to see what the consistency was like.
We found that Gorilla Mode mixed faster and didn’t have any lumps in it.
Both products come in a wide selection of flavors, but Total War does have more flavor options, like fruit punch.
Overall, we found that they both had tasty choices, but Gorilla Mode just seemed to have ones that were a bit more natural tasting. Also, the number of flavor options for this protein powder is more refreshing.
Meanwhile, some of the Total War flavors were a bit on the sweet side, which isn’t all that pleasant just before a workout.
Gorilla Mode costs $49 per tub of 40 servings, but you can get a discount when ordering three tubs for $137.
That’s a pretty good deal for a good pre-workout that will enhance your workout routine with a solid and proven formula.
Total War is cheaper per tub but not per serving when you compare the two products.
You can also get a subscription discount of up to 30%.
Overall, I think Gorilla Mode is a better value for money.
Related Article: Best Pre-Workout Supplements
Unique Supplement Features
In this section, I want to focus on the unique features of each of these products and see if those things make one of them a better choice.
Since both of them come in powder form, we looked at the unique ingredients for a better look at what they do.
Here are the most interesting ingredients that only Gorilla Mode contains:
- Creatine: This amino acid has been linked to improved strength and endurance during training .
- GlycerPump: An interesting study on soccer players showed that glycerol improved blood flow and aerobic exercise performance .
- Malic Acid: This is another proven ingredient for exercise performance that seems to work well when combined with citrulline .
- Betaine: One study was able to show that regular betaine supplementation can help increase physical power .
- L-Tyrosine: Studies have shown that a tyrosine boost can help reduce feelings of fatigue .
“Creatine is thought to improve strength, increase lean muscle mass, and help the muscles recover more quickly during exercise. This muscular boost may help athletes achieve bursts of speed and energy.”
- Stephanie Watson, Writer at WebMD.com
Here are the unique ingredients for this effective pre-workout:
- Beta-Alanine: This is a proven ingredient for exercise performance, but studies have used higher doses .
- Taurine: Studies are a bit mixed about this ingredient, and it can have a stimulating effect .
- Juniper Extract: Studies for this ingredient are very mixed and mainly inconclusive.
- Di-Caffeine Malate: As the name suggests, this is an additional dose of caffeine.
- Theobromine: A meta-study concluded that the results from testing theobromine are inconclusive at present .
- Green Tea Extract: This is a great thermogenic ingredient that can help control your BMI .
- Naringin Extract: This has also been linked to thermogenic effects, but given the amount of caffeine, it’s not clear that this would increase the benefit .
The Science Behind Pre-Workouts
Pre-workouts are not just about giving you an energy boost. They are scientifically formulated to influence various metabolic pathways, ensuring that you get the most out of your workout.
A study from the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) highlights the effects of pre-workout supplements on cardiovascular health and body fat .
The study found that the right blend of ingredients can significantly improve resistance training outcomes.
When choosing between "Total War" and "Gorilla Mode," it's essential to understand the science behind their ingredients to make an informed decision.
Is Gorilla Mode Good Enough to Improve Gym Performance?
Yes, Gorilla Mode is good enough to improve gym performance. This is a cognitive and energy booster you should consume as a pre-workout.
Can I Take Gorilla Mode Daily?
Yes, you can take Gorilla Mode daily, up to two times per day.
What is the Role of Adaptogens in Pre-Workouts?
The role of adaptogens in pre-workouts is to help the body resist stressors, be they physical, chemical, or biological. They have gained popularity in pre-workouts for their potential to enhance performance and speed up recovery. Ashwagandha, Rhodiola, and ginseng are some of the commonly used adaptogens in fitness supplements.
Our Verdict on Total War vs Gorilla Mode
Out of the two products, I would advise my clients and readers to invest in Gorilla Mode.
With more of the ingredients backed up by strong scientific research and given the test results we saw at the gym, it’s simply the better one to boost your performance.
It also works out cheaper per serving, especially if you order the bulk discount of three tubs. Those will keep you going for a few months, and that will be long enough to really see a major difference in your training routines.
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