When you add a tagline like the “Official Sponsor of Hard Work” to your brand, you’re practically setting yourself up for failure.
High expectations. Globally-known professional athletes agreeing to sponsorships. Results!
Miraculously (or not), Ascent Protein has managed to do the unthinkable — all three of those things and then some. But is Ascent Pre Workout the cure to lagging gains or gloomy plateaus?
We’re tired of the garbage products too!
Let’s cut to the chase.
About the Creator – Ascent Protein
Ascent Protein is a diamond in the rust in the remarkably careless fitness supplement industry.
On top of being a proud family-owned, Colorado-based business over the last three decades, this “clean” supplement manufacturer delivers where other companies fail miserably:
- No artificial ingredients (colors, flavors, additives, or otherwise)
- Using high-quality Grade A milk bottled by local farmers
- Gluten-Free Certified & Informed-Sport Certified
But the company’s restless gloating isn’t pure talk; they’ve earned quite a deal of fanfare from the professional athletic community too.
We’re talking about the CrossFitter dubbed “World’s Fittest Woman” (Katrin Davidsdottir) and a current Carolina Panthers running back and talented Pro Bowler (Christian McCaffrey).
What is Ascent Pre Workout?
Boy, where do we start on this one?
Ascent Pre Workout is all-natural like the rest of Ascent’s supplement line-up (and very much unlike some of the more popular industry competitors).
But it also goes above and beyond, in the name of being 100% clean:
- Electrolyte-infused hydration booster (no more feeling lousy half-way through leg day)
- Modestly-caffeinated energy igniter (feel the pump as you load those plates!)
- Protein-laden muscle preparer (set those PRs and repair muscles quicker)
- Certified Gluten-Free
- Informed-Sport Certified — tested for banned substances by a third party
If it works as remarkably as spelled out, you’ll waltz into the gym feeling refreshed, ready to crusade through an hour-long saga, and outlast your previous performance (to an extent).
But … does it?
Ascent Pre Workout Details and Benefits
Clean ingredients, a partnership with the World’s Fittest Woman, and American-made? Ascent Pre Workout certainly sounds like it checks all the boxes for an energizing pre-workout jolt.
But let’s trudge through the finer details before officially deciding yea or nay.
Flavors & Serving Sizes
Flavor-wise, Ascent pre workout wouldn’t fill an entire grocery store health food shelf. Nor can you introduce a new “flavor of the week” to keep those taste buds guessing at 7 a.m.
But there are three fruity (and generally highly-respected) flavors to try:
- Orange Mango (for those who can’t choose between tangy & sweet)
- Raspberry Lemonade (if tart is more your speed)
- Watermelon (an ultra-refreshingly sweet taste)
Ascent offers two packaging options: A 30-serving bag (limit your landfill waste by ditching the plastic tub) or 15-count single servings (pour the bag into your shaker bottle and hit the road).
Either way, both will tuck nicely into a gym bag, office desk, or school backpack … not like those bulky tubs that clonk around in your bag every time you climb the stairs.
Take a glimpse at the nutrition label, and you might blurt out, “Wow, that’s a lot of zeroes!” Yes, but that doesn’t mean they stripped it of nutrients; they merely refused to add junk ingredients.
When you sip that juicy watermelon mixture before hitting the squat rack, you’re totaling:
- 35-40 calories
- 250mg sodium
- 5g carbs
- 2g total sugars (plus 1g added)
- 5g protein
- 2% calcium
- 150mg caffeine (naturally-sourced, about 1.5 coffee cups-worth)
- 250mg electrolytes
Now, if you fancy yourself a pre workout connoisseur, two nutrients probably stuck out to you: 5g protein and 250mg electrolytes. Those bizarre additions were 100% entirely by design.
The protein can stimulate protein synthesis as effectively as post-workout without missing that “anabolic window.” But with 5g per serving, it’s only ¼ of what you need — the thought was nice.
The electrolytes, in this case, are the 250mg sodium. By dosing with this “frowned-upon” nutrient, you can replenish 50% of your lost electrolytes before they escape via sweat.
If dizziness, fatigue, or a dry mouth hit after the bench press, hydration might be the issue! Ascent Pre Workout could just kill two birds with one stone as you ramp up your PRs.
This is where we like to pick apart the ingredient label and “shame” supplement companies for taking cost-saving shortcuts that drive garbage into your body. But … we’re having a hard time.
That’s because Ascent’s ingredients are gluten-free, soy-free, and 100% natural:
- Whey protein isolate
- Citric acid
- Orange cane sugar
- Sodium citrate
- Natural flavors
- Coffee fruit extract
- Stevia leaf extract
- Sunflower lecithin
- Malic acid
Aside from containing milk (from the whey protein) and possible nut contamination, Ascent doesn’t take the “easy out.” These natural extracts add sweetness and flavor without sugar.
But there are a few things missing from this list: Um, almost everything. Ascent’s steepest pitfall is that it took the electrolyte route instead of the beta-alanine path.
The caffeine will wake you up and energize you before an ungodly 6 a.m. workout. But it’s also missing creatine, beta-alanine, and other BCAAs that boost power and endurance mid-workout.
How to Use Ascent Pre Workout
Alright. You unpeel the bag, dig around for the scoop, plop the powder in some water, and give ‘er a shake. How hard can it possibly be? For the most part: You’re absolutely correct!
But Ascent’s powder isn’t like your run-of-the-mill beta-alanine-infused pre workout. To mix it:
- Fill one heaping scoop — don’t level it off!
- Toss it into 10+ ounces of water (or more if robust flavors and tangy sweetness get your taste buds excited in the worst possible way).
- Shake or mix.
- Allow the foam to fizzle and disappear completely before chugging.
Warning: Ascent’s pre workout powder will always seem “unmixed,” compared to the other guy! This powder is merely less transparent and somewhat thicker than C4, BPI, or SixStar.
Ascent Pre Workout vs. C4
C4 does have some hard-to-pronounce artificial ingredients (eh), but it also steps up where Ascent fails:
- 1.6g CarnoSyn Beta-Alanine (patented and proven to improve performance)
- 1g creatine
- Seven flavor options (hello, variety)
- Zero calories
Ascent might seem like a decent pre-workout cocktail, but its all-natural recipe conveniently missing the most essential ingredients leaves C4 as our winner.
5 Benefits of Ascent Pre Workout Powder
- The infused electrolytes can help you outlast long workouts where you’d normally feel fatigued or flat-out drained.
- It seems to mix well with gag-inducing chunks or floating sediment, though you might want to add extra water to tone down the sweetness.
- The lack of beta-alanine will leave those pre-workout jitters and full-body in the rearview (for better or for worse).
- Ascent doesn’t sneak in any B.S. ingredients. Its all-natural recipe makes it a superb option if you have a sensitive digestive system or helicopter every ingredient.
- Even though the consistency can take some time to get used to, the consensus is that the flavors are awesome and easy to gulp.
3 Negatives of This Pre Workout
- Without beta-alanine, niacin, or creatine in its recipe, the transition away from your old powder can be challenging. It could potentially stall gains, endurance, and power.
- It’s low on the caffeine front (150mg compared to the usual 200+), meaning it might not perk you up from a dead sleep as you’d hoped.
- The taste is either too pucker-inducing or bland, spending on who you ask.
Wrapping Up This Ascent Pre Workout Review
Ascent Pre Workout is a big ‘ol double-edged sword.
It’s easy to mix, tackles the hydration aspect that man powders overlook, is relatively jitter-free, and is a textbook definition for “clean.”
But on its trek toward becoming the “alternative,” Ascent also forgot the beta-alanine, niacin, extra caffeine, and flavor variety that other companies value.
The consensus: It’s a decent product, and it won’t be a mystery about what you’re putting into your body. But without those few must-have ingredients, your performance might suffer.