This week we take a moment to review Tactical Recovery Protein from American Gainz Nutrition.
Item: Tactical Recovery Protein
Price: $65 USD (907 grams)
Retailer: American Gainz Nutrition
A short time ago The Rx Review published a product highlight video showcasing some of the latest supplements from American Gainz Nutrition: a relatively new brand to the functional fitness world, which specialises in high performance supplements.
One of the supplements we focused on was the Tactical Recovery protein powder by American Gainz Nutrition.
Tactical Recovery is pretty much the stock standard protein product from American Gainz and designed to be taken immediately after a workout to help kick start the muscle recovery process.
According to the American Gainz website, Tactical Recovery is a:
“Post-workout recovery designed to immediately spike your blood stream with the highest quality amino acids (2:1:1) and the fastest absorbing protein available.”
The Rx Review first got its hands on the Tactical Recovery protein a few months ago and have been putting it to the test since, using it after training in numerous sports, including CrossFit, and other functional fitness training.
Here is what we thought of the supplement and whether or not we think the protein powder is a worthwhile purchase:
High Quality Protein: Nowadays there are so many protein powders on the market that it can be tough for the average person to know if what they are buying is decent. With the fitness industry growing exponentially, we have seen a number of new brands target the market, selling cheap, low quality protein. Tactical Recovery by American Gainz Nutrition, however, is not one of these. Unlike several ‘whey’ products from China and Asia, Tactical Recovery comes with no fillers, gums, added salts, viscosifiers, heavy metals or unwanted chemicals. The protein mix is also super low in sugars, carbohydrates and fats and is formulated with the highest quality of Hydrolysed Whey Protein. In addition it also comes with a high level of Branch Chain Amino Acids to kick start that protein synthesis and fight muscle fatigue.
100% Made in the U.S.A: Now, just because something is 100% made in the U.S.A, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is high quality. However, at least we know we are getting something that has met stricter standards that what we might find overseas. Brands that source their protein from China or New Zealand are out of FDA control, meaning it’s hard to gauge exactly what standard of protein you are getting. The good news is that 100% of all ingredients in Tactical Recovery protein are sourced from America and meet all applicable state, USDA, and FDA regulations for the manufacturing of Dairy Products.
Appearance: When it comes to buying protein, I usually don’t care what the packaging looks like, as long as it’s a decent product. I’d happily buy it in a plastic shopping bag as long as I knew it was high quality. That being said, it is nice to buy protein that does come in impressive packaging. Tactical Recovery protein comes in a nice, sturdy silver coloured glossy bag, that can easily be sealed after use. The graphics on the bag are eye catching and certainly do not look ‘cheap’. You can tell straight away that the brand cares about its product by the time they put into the design.
“Nutrition Facts” Versus “Supplement Facts”: American Gainz Nutrition products, including Tactical Recovery, are considered “Foods” not “Dietary Supplements”. The brand pays for all the regulatory bodies to ensure their products can state a “Nutrition Facts” label on the back, rather than just a “Supplement Facts” label. Most people don’t realize that if a product says “Dietary Supplement Facts”, it doesn’t answer to anyone unless the FDA gets involved through someone getting ill or sick and filing lawsuit claim. It’s also important to know that there is no regulation on how the “Supplement Facts” panel is even formatted, meaning many don’t even have to show ‘sugar’ content in their label. The good news is that Tactical Recovery pays the extra money to ensure they have a “Nutrition Facts” label, meaning they fully disclose everything they put into their powder.
Endorsed by CrossFitters: Tactical Recovery protein by American Gainz Nutrition is endorsed by several athletes and CrossFitters, most notably CrossFit Games competitor Jenn Jones, or Jenn Astle as she’s now known as.
Taste: Tactical Recovery protein comes in a standard chocolate flavour which, when mixed, has a nice taste and certainly one that is easy to drink.
No Stomach Issues or Side Effects: As expected, I had no stomach issues taking Tactical Recovery protein and certainly didn’t get any bloating or ‘sick stomach’ feelings like cramps or reflux. In addition, I didn’t notice any side effects like pimple breakouts, fatigue or skin issues from taking the protein.
Mixing: While I quite enjoyed the taste of the Tactical Recovery protein, it was sometimes hard to mix in. If you use a shaker bottle and mixer, you shouldn’t have a problem blending in the powder. However, if you’re someone who likes to use a spoon and stir, you might find it takes a little longer to blend in all the powder and have a consistent blend.
Lack of Flavours: At this stage Tactical Recovery is only made in a ‘chocolate’ flavoured blend. Unfortunately, if you don’t like chocolate flavoured items, there isn’t too much of an option for you. American Gainz does have two other protein supplements which are available vanilla and peanut butter flavoured, but in terms of the Tactical Recovery, it is only available in chocolate at this stage.
Price: A 907 gram bag of Tactical Recovery protein will cost you around $65 USD, depending where you buy it (American Gainz website, Amazon etc.). Each bag contains 28 servings with each serving containing 25 grams of protein. The protein is designed to be taken immediately after a workout, so if you train 4-5 times a week, you could easily go through a bag of Tactical Recovery protein in just over a month. Compared to some other protein powders on the market, $65USD for a month and half supply of protein is a bit more expensive than some other brands. Although, that being said, it is around $5 cheaper than the equivalent Progenex ‘More Muscle’ protein, and it’s fair to say the quality of Tactical Recovery is higher than most cheaper brands.
Lack of Overseas Distributors: Being a small company hailing out of Houston, Texas, American Gainz Nutrition doesn’t have any real overseas distributors at this stage, but it is something they are working on. They do, however, offer overseas shipping meaning you can get your hands on the product anywhere in the world.
In summary, I had a positive experience using Tactical Recovery protein.
On paper, the protein powder ticks most of the boxes an athlete should look for: It’s low in sugars, carbohydrates and saturated fats, and is formulated with high quality hydrolysed whey protein. In addition, it doesn’t come with any unwanted chemicals, fillers, heavy metals or poor quality protein as we often see in cheaper, overseas brands.
American Gainz Nutrition is also very transparent and honest with how their protein is formulated, and they also pay for all the regulatory bodies to ensure buyers know their products are up to standards.
While the powder itself can be a little harder than others to mix and blend in, once it does, it has a nice chocolate taste and I also didn’t experience any side effects from taking it, which is positive.
In terms of results, it’s always hard to gauge how effective protein powders are. If you get muscle and fitness gains, are they a result of the protein or your training? If you plateau, is that a case of your protein being poor, or just your training tapering off?
What we can control is what we put into our bodies, and our aim should be to find supplements which best fit what our bodies need.
Tactical Recovery protein by American Gainz Nutrition seems to be one of the better protein powders on the market at the moment. While it might cost a little more than some other, cheaper brands, I believe it’s worth it for what you are getting.