If you've heard of Apollon Nutrition, you probably are well aware that they create some of the most high powered, maxed out pre-workouts in the industry; their Hooligan V6 formula is no different. The newest rendition of their flagship pre-workout, Hooligan, features a jaw dropping 670 mg of total caffeine derived form three different sources- all while staying entirely compliant per WADA standards. Crazy? Crazy! But this thing isn't just your typical high stimulant pre-workout; it is loaded with other classes of ingredients that promote blood flow, focus, endurance, and performance. Let's take a deeper dive on this absolute doozy of a formula.
Apollon Hooligan Pre-Workout Supplement Facts Panel
*Disclaimer: This formula breakdown is based off one full scoop
L-Citrulline – 8000mg
L-Citrulline is an amino acid that plays a role in the urea cycle. It is responsible for promotion of blood flow via increase in serum arginine levels; this mechanism increases the production of a compound called nitric oxide. Nitric oxide promotes vasodilation; the dilation of blood vessels. Wider blood vessels allows for more blood to pass. Blood is a transporter of nutrients which is essential for performance activity. It also carries oxygen which is essential in… living! A clinical dose is considered 4000-6000mg, so Hooligan gives just a tad extra.
Beta-Alanine – 3200mg
Beta-Alanine is an amino acid responsible for the synthesis of carnosyn, which is responsible for acid-base regulation. As you exercise, lactic acid builds up which can induce fatigue and thus, hinder performance. Carnosyn helps to buffer this change in pH by binding to hydrogen ions and preventing any drop in pH levels; this mechanism prolongs time to exhaustion and ultimately increases performance in the gym.
Betaine Anhydrous – 2500mg
Betaine anhyrdous, also known as trimethylglycine, is an amino acid naturally occuring in several plant species including beetroot. It acts as an osmolyte; a compound that controls intracellular fluid balance and hydration. Evidence suggests that betaine poses benefits in endurance during both resistance and high volume training due to its hyperhydration effects.
L-Tyrosine – 2000mg
L-Tyrosine is a non-essential amino acid (one that the body can produce on its own) and precursor to both our “feel good” neurotransmitter dopamine and noradrenaline. It is one of the most popular nootropic compounds in the supplement industry and has been shown to increase cognition during bouts of acute stress, such as exercising.
L-tyrosine will provide a slight euphoric feeling that us gym rats absolutely adore, and it is becoming increasingly common to see supra-therapeutic doses of it in a pre-workout formula; some up to 4000mg. There also is literature suggesting that L-tyrosine supplementation may be beneficial for weigh management, as it plays a role in thyroid production.
Agmatine Sulfate – 1,500mg
Ah, the jack of all trades! Agmatine sulfate is an interesting compound and poses several benefits when it comes inclusion in a pre-workout powder. Agmatine sulfate is a metabolite of L-Arginine and plays a role in the synthesis of nitric oxide; the ultimate blood flow enhancing ingredient. It acts on the third nitric oxide synthase and promotes endothelial relaxation. The endothelium is the inner lining of blood vessels; dilation of the endothelium allows for a larger diameter of the vessel and thus, allows a larger volume of blood to be carried to muscle tissue. As blood carries oxygen and nutrients around the body and also transports waste products out of muscle tissue, it’s easy to see why promotion of blood flow is such an important classification of ingredient to include in a formula! There is also literature supporting the nootropic effects of Agmatine as well, as Agmatine is a neurotransmitter and enhances focus.
Lion’s Mane – 1000mg
Lions Mane is derived from Hericium erinaceus, a mushroom in the Hericiaceae family. There is limited literature suggesting Lion’s Mane has neuroprotective properties and protects the brain from neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimers and dementia. It also has been shown to improve focus and cognition. Lion’s Mane also acts as an antioxidant, as it is rich in bioactive compounds.
Alpha-GPC 50% – 600mg
Alpha-GPC is a precursor to our neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which enhances memory, cognition, and skeletal muscle contraction. Compared to other choline precursors (choline bitartrate, citichiline, DMAE), it has a significantly higher bioavailability and is more effective in crossing the blood brain barrier. Alpha-GPC has been shown to significantly increase vertical jump power and peak bench press force.
Theobromine – 500mg
Theobromine is a xanthine derivative found in cocoa beans that is used to enhance energy and elevate mood. It is similar to caffeine, but unlike caffeine, does not effect sleep scores to the extent of caffeine. Theobromine is typically used to provide longer lasting energy and pairs very well with caffeine. It also has been shown to play a role in insulin response, increases HDL (good cholesterol), and reduces blood pressure. 500mg is quite a hefty dose, as most pre-workout these days typically use between 200-400mg.
Caffeine Anhydrous – 450mg
Everyone’s favorite energy-providing, focus enhancing ingredient! This central nervous stimulant is well known throughout the industry; it is the purest caffeine source on the planet and enhances energy levels, focus, thermogenesis, and performance in the gym. It is backed my many studies and potentially the most consumed supplement in the world. While there are several forms of caffeine present in pre-workouts (ex. this is one of three caffeine sources within this formula), caffeine anhydrous is easily the most popular. And 450mg yielding 450mg caffeine… a hefty dose for sure.
Grape Seed Extract – 400mg
Grape Seed Extract is a polyphenol compound rich in procyanidins and tannins thats used in pre-workout powders to enhance blood flow. It does so by acting as an antioxidant, which promotes endothelial relaxation and expands blood vessels. This mechanism allows a larger volume of blood to be transported into muscle tissue and thus, increases muscle pump and performance in the gym.
Himalayan Pink Sea Salt – 300mg
Sea salt is rich in sodium, en electrolyte that plays a crucial role in regulating intracellular fluid balance and muscle contractions. As you workout, sodium is lost via sweat; this will impede performance, especially during endurance training. Time and time again, sodium supplementation prior to exercise has been shown to have ergogenic (performance enhancing) effects by promoting hydration and nerve conduction.
Rhodiola Rosea – 300mg
Rhodiola is known as an adaptogen; a compound that primes your body to deal with stress. It’s been shown to reduce stress, anxiety, and elevate mood. It poses a number of benefits, both cognitive and physical, that suggest increases in performance. In one study, Rhodiola was shown to reduce lactate levels and parameters of skeletal muscle damage following intense training. In another study, it suggested Rhodiola supplementation improved performance during endurance exercise by prolonging time to exhaustion versus control group. On the cognitive side, a 14-day trial showed that Rhodiola supplementation improved cognitive flexibility, elevated mood, reduced stress and anxiety, and also showed improvement in depressive symptoms. Overall, Rhodiola Rosea is a well rounded ingredient posing several performance benefits and works great in a pre-workout powder.
Di-Caffeine Malate – 200mg
Oh look, another caffeine source! Di-caffeine malate is the second caffeine source present in Hooligan; it provides longer lasting energy and is 75% caffeine by mass. At 200mg, this provides another 150mg caffeine. Di-caffeine malate helps to offset that ever-so-dreaded crash many experience post workout. It poses similar benefit to caffeine anhydrous, boosting energy, thermogenesis, and focus. It is important to note that the Blackberry Lime flavor does contain 270mg di-caffeine malate as this flavor is a collaboration with the Review Bros, while the rest of the flavors contain 200mg.
ElevATP – 150mg
This all natural, plant based compound from FutureCeuticals is comprised of ancient peat and apple polyphenols rich in antioxidants and used to increases endogenous ATP. ATP, known as adenosine triphosphate, is our cellular form of energy used to store and transport energy within cells. This increase in endogenous ATP leads to increases in strength, power, and performance during resistance training. ElevATP often finds itself used as a replacement for caffeine in non-stimulant pre-workout formulas. Without getting too deep into its’ mechanism of action, in order to obtain energy from ATP, a bond between one of three phosphate groups in the ATP molecule is broken. Any time a bond between compounds is broken, energy is released; in this case, ATP breaks a bond and becomes ADP. ElevATP provides the phosphate group necessary to convert ADP back into ATP and repeat the energy releasing cycle described above. And the beauty behind ElevATP is that it naturally carries out this process and does not introduce ATP from outside the body, known as exogenous ATP. To keep things simple, ElevATP provides energy at the cellular level.
Coffeeberry Whole Fruit Coffee Extract – 100mg
Coffeeberry is a unique ingredient derived from Arabica coffee cherries that yields 70% caffeine content by mass. Oh, you thought we were done with the caffeine content? Not quite; at 100mg, this provides another 70mg caffeine bringing our grand total to 670mg! The other 30% contains a minimum of 5% polyphenols which are rich in antioxidants and helps to improve blood flow. Coffeeberry provides similar benefits as other caffeine sources, but with added antioxidative properties.
Astragin – 50mg
Astragin is a patented, plant based compound providing “full gut support” through a variety of mechanisms:
- enhanced nutrient absorption
- microbiota viability
- immune cell viability
- promoting healthy intestinal wall environment
It works by increasing the number of transporter proteins present to carry nutrients to the intestinal wall, which are then absorbed by the body. Studies show that it significantly increases the absorption of amino acids, primarily arginine. In fact, it has studies both in vitro and in vivo that support this finding. It also has data supporting the absorption of histidine, lysine, glucose, folate, creatine, agmatine, beta-alanine, choline, citrulline, BCAAs, and carnitine. And it also activates the MTOR pathway which promotes muscle protein synthesis. To keep it simple, it makes your entire formula more effective and bioavailable.
Apollon Nutrition Hooligan Flavors
- Mai Tai
- Blackberry Lime
- Mango Sunrise
- Strawberry Margarita
Apollon Nutrition Hooligan Price
Hooligan is available for $59.95 on Apollon's website (linked below) for 40/20 servings. However, athlete codes are available to save 15%!
Use code INFORMANT to save 15%
Hooligan is loaded to the gills and is one of the most premium high stimulant pre-workout formulas available on the planet. I was able to try out the Mai Tai flavor and was a fan. I had a fantastic workout session with lots, and I mean lots of energy. I lifted for over 90 minutes and easily felt I could lift another 90. With that did come a slight crash, which is to be expected in a formula featuring 670mg active caffeine. Overall, I had a great experience with Hooligan and would recommend for those seeking a higher stimulant formula that stays away from gray area stimulants.
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