Overview of MN Sports Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre-Workout
MN Sports is a Chicago based nutrition company bringing the sports nutrition industry the first coffee based pre-workout supplement. Guaranteed to be made with real coffee and no fillers, MN Sports attempts to capture the coffee drinking fitness enthusiasts as their core customer.
On the surface a coffee based pre-workout seems brilliant. With people willing to pay $5 for a cup of Java, a coffee based pre-workout at a fair price might attract a lot of eyes, and this product does. Unfortunately, MN Sports Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre Workout doesn’t live up to the competition in the pre-workout space. The product utilizes a proprietary blend which indicates that key ingredients are under dosed. This product is more for a morning pick-me-up than for a good pre-workout supplement.
Testing Results and Ratings
We reviewed MN Sports Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre-Workout on five categories. We first start by looking at it’s ingredient profile. This portion of the review looks at the different ingredients used in the pre-workout, what their intention is and how effectively dosed are each ingredient.
We then look at effectiveness. An effective pre-workout will use high quality, proven ingredients, at clinically backed dosages. This is generally an extension of the profile section. The higher quality ingredients used at proper dosages, the more effective that product will be.
Then we move into the taste of the different flavors we’ve tried. We grade each flavor separately and average the scores for their overall taste rating. We were able to test out the following flavors: Java and Vanilla Latte.
Mixability refers to how well the powder mixes in 12oz of water. We use the shaker bottle test. This would be your typical Blender Bottle with the spiral chrome ball.
Finally, we talk about value. Value is the combination of profile, effectiveness, taste and mixability in relation to cost. Another part of value are the competitors and other versions of pre-workout products on the market.
MN Sports Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre Workout uses real coffee in the supplement. This is a plus. It uses instant coffee, albeit we are not sure at what amount. The issue we run into with this pre-workout supplement is the fact it utilizes a proprietary blend for the Focus Blend and the Performance Blend.
The Focus Blend consists of N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine, Phosphatidyl Serine and L-Taurine at a total of 390mg. According to Examine.com, L-Taurine should be dosed between 500-2,000mg for effectiveness. This right here tells you that the cognitive enhancing functionality of this product is under dosed. Collectively these ingredients improve cognitive functionality but not at the dosage in this product.
The Performance Blend is where you are going to find your real coffee. The Performance Blend contains 8,097mg of instant coffee powder, Beta Alanine, Creatine Monohydrate, L-Arginine Alpha Ketogluterate, L-Histidine HCl, and Caffeine Anhydrous. These are listed in order. This means that the highest concentration in this blend comes from the instant coffee powder. We’re not sure how much instant coffee is in this, your household packets of instant coffee are 2g, roughly but we have to assume this is a bit higher. Beta Alanine is properly dosed around 3-3.2g. Creatine Monohydrate is properly dosed around 5g. Between Beta Alanine and Creatine that would be 8g which would make up this whole proprietary blend. We are well aware that this blend is going to be under dosed as well.
The last area of concern for me is the use of non-dairy creamer. I am not a fan of this being used in any sports supplement. As with the proprietary blends, I am not sure how much is in this but we know between the two blends that is about 8.5g and the serving size is 12.5g so we have 4g to play with in terms of other things in this supplement.
When I think of a pre-workout supplement I am thinking of three things that make it highly effective: energy, pump and focus. This product is OK for energy as there is a little pick-me-up but not enough noticeable energy to make your strength output go up and crush the weights. I did not get any pump off of this product. I also didn’t get a lot of focus off of Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre Workout either.
Now the label doesn’t make any strong claims towards this, so that was refreshing. For a pre-workout supplement it is essentially non-effective for me. However, I will say this, if you just want something as a morning pick-me-up with some added benefit of Creatine, Beta Alanine, Taurine, etc than this would fit that bill.
I am not a huge fan of coffee, but I have always enjoyed a blended iced coffee (when I make it myself to limit the calories and sugars). The Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre Workout is not bad. I actually found that it was enjoyable on a weekend morning and used it to replace a morning amino drink or a cup of coffee. If you’re a fan of “other” coffee drink flavors like a frappuccino you will enjoy this.
Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre Workout from MN Sports mixes very well. In fact, it mixes better than most pre-workouts on the market. This is most likely due to the fact that it doesn’t use as many different ingredients as other pre-workouts. The serving size is also only 12.5g compared to some pre-workouts coming in at 30g.
Due to MN Sports putting Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre Workout into the pre-workout category we have to compare the value to other pre-workouts on the market. There are 35 servings per container. This retails for $35 a container. Other, more highly effective pre-workouts, retails for around the same price and includes 40 or 30 servings. Depends on the brand and the pre-workout. Take K-XR from VMI Sports for instance. This retails for $35 and has 30-servings but is a lot more effective than Roasted Iced Coffee + Pre Workout. In terms of the pre-workout category we don’t perceive there to be a lot of value here.
If you are just looking for a coffee replacement with some additional benefits than this product would be of more value, but at the end of the day you’re better off with just plain black coffee (NO CREAMER) and a 5g serving of Creatine Monohydrate.