Review - Project E2 Nutrition - Endurance Specific Nutrition Products

Project E2 Nutrition is a new player in the sports nutrition market, but one that has set itself apart from the masses through a unique focus on endurance sports nutrition. I have been testing their products over the last few months, with some positive results and feedback.

About the Brand

Project E2 Nutrition is a fresh off-shoot of globally renowned brand CNP Nutrition. Using the knowledge and experience gained from years of producing industry-leading sports nutrition, CNP have created Project E2 Nutrition with a specific focus of fuel and recovery for endurance athletes.

The Range

The Project E2 collection is composed of a comprehensive range of pre, during, and post exercise products:
  • PRE Workout Drink Powder
  • HYDRO Drink Powder
  • ENERGY Drink Powder
  • RECOVER Drink Powder
  • ENERGY GEL
  • ENERGY GEL+
  • HYDRO GEL
  • HYDRO GEL+
  • ENERGY BAR


The Drinks

The drinks range from Project E2 is designed to give endurance athletes a complete pre, during, and post workout/race hydration strategy.

PRE Workout Drink Mix

The PRE Workout Drink Powder is an endurance specific pre-workout formula containing amino acids, polyphenols, caffeine and carbohydrates. Specifically, a serving contains 1600mg Carnosyn™ (Beta Alanine), 100mg Natural Caffeine, 520mg Vinitrox™ (polyphenols), and 2000mg Arginine.

The idea behind the pre-workout drink is that it provides your body with fuel and stimulation before intense physical exercise. The mix of maltodextrin and dextrose provides the fuel element, while the Carnosyn™, ViNitrox™, L-Arginine and Natural Caffeine all work to stimulate and prepare the body's energy system.

Many of these ingredients were familiar to me before I started testing the product, but the unique addition was Vinitrox, a clinically studied source of polyphenols that is meant to offset the fatigue barrier and increase Nitric Oxide production.

The PRE Workout formula did have a notable effect during testing, with increased energy levels and higher heart rates seen throughout test rides. This is likely down to the increase in blood glucose, the caffeine, and a contribution from the BCAA's that can help to increase blood oxygen levels.

HYDRO Drink Powder

Project E2 HYDRO is a hydration focussed drink mix, which contains CocoMineral™, a high-quality form of Coconut Water powder; delivering Magnesium, Potassium and Calcium. In addition, the drink mix provides your body with Sodium Chloride, Trisodium Citrate and Sodium Bicarbonate - key electrolytes to avoid cramping and muscle fatigue.

There is a small amount of carbohydrate in the HYDRO Drink Powder, but the idea is that this is more about hydration and less about energy; allowing you to use it to fully hydrate pre, during, and post exercise.

The subtle flavour and gentle low acid nature of this drink mix agreed well with me (not something I can say of all drink mixes). It also seemed to do a stellar job of warding off cramps, on even long hot training rides.

ENERGY Drink Powder

Project E2 ENERGY Drink Powder is a dual carbohydrate blend, with electrolytes and (slightly bizarrely) Cordyceps (a.k.a mushrooms).

Dextrose and Cluster Dextrin™ provide the carbohydrate; both of them are easily absorbed, and Cluster Dextrin has a slower release rate to provide more sustained energy.

Peak02™ is an organic-certified combination of six Ayurvedic mushrooms that act as powerful adaptogens within the body. Peak02™ contains beta-glucans and L-Ergothioneine that fight damage from oxidative stress in the body, promoting longer training, and faster recovery.

I found the Project E2 ENERGY Powder Drink had a stronger flavour than the HYDRO mix, but that it still felt gentle on the stomach, and delivered a notable boost in energy when used instead of water in your bottles. I plan to use this product for an upcoming stage race in Switzerland.

RECOVER Drink Powder

The final part of the collection is Project E2 RECOVER Drink Powder. This is a protein and carbohydrate blend, with added Electrolytes, Vitamin C and Enzymes; designed to replenish depleted energy stores, and provide protein to your muscles for recovery. Electrolytes help with rehydration, and Vitamin C helps to support a run-down immune system.

This is one of the nicest tasting protein recovery shakes that I have tried to date, and mixed with ice cold water it makes a refreshing and effective post-ride refuelling drink. I noticed reduced muscle soreness, and extra energy the following day, when using it after a hard training session.



Project E2 Gels and Bars

To accompany the range of drinks, there is also a range of gels and bars to provide added energy supply.

The ENERGY GEL and ENERGY GEL+ provide fast acting dual carbohydrate fuel, with the PLUS version containing caffeine for added stimulation.

The HYDRO GEL and HYDRO GEL+ provide a similar 22 grams of carbohydrate, but with the addition of coconut water to make them easier to take on without needing to drink to wash down the solution.

I am not a huge energy gel user, but I found these Project E2 products to be easy on the stomach and nicely flavoured. The Pineapple and Apple were particular favourites.

The final product was a real winner for me: the Project E2 ENERGY BAR. This is a soft and easy to eat oat flapjack, with added B Vitamins to help reduce fatigue and support a strong metabolism. I used three of these during my Scott H12 MTB Race podium finish, and they were super easy and tasty to consume, even when bouncing around on the Danish trails.



Summary

To sum up, the Project E2 Nutrition range is a comprehensive and highly effective range for endurance athletes.

The PRE Workout Drink Powder has a notable benefit through increasing workout energy levels. The HYDRO and ENERGY Drink mixes provide effective hydration, reduced fatigue, and sustained energy levels. Combine them with the ENERGY GEL and ENERGY BAR, and you have a complete fuelling system that is kind on the stomach, even for 12-hour races. Finally, the RECOVER drink mix is great at avoiding burnt-out muscles and night-time cramps after a hard race or training session.

I have thoroughly tested the complete range, and my favourites are definitely the RECOVER drink and ENERGY BAR (I must try the Banana Bread flavour, as the chocolate one is incredible).

I am set to be using the range for one of my biggest races of the season: the TorTour Summer Cyclocross Stage Race next month. Hopefully the results there will speak for themselves…

>> View the range at projecte2.co.uk <<



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