Since late 2019, Glaxon has been the hottest young supplement brand on the sports nutrition market. Aside from their incredibly strong formulas and unique branding, some of their success has been attributed to their excellent relationships with local retailers, who love having something new to show customers that actually works.
One of Glaxon’s best-selling initial SKUs was the Specimen pre workout supplement, which was recently upgraded to Specimen V2 (a supplement available in two different versions). For nearly all of us, these pre workouts were plenty powerful. But some retailers somehow wanted more stimulants.
Glaxon’s answer to those retailers? G.F.Y. Which of course stands for Good For You.
In 2021, Glaxon is debuting their “Season 2” supplement launches, and the incredibly strong G.F.Y. has been upgraded and rebranded as Specimen G.F.Y.
This extreme-level pre workout is lower on pumps but insane on the energy, bringing 400mg caffeine in two scoops with plenty of other stimulants like synephrine, hordenine, yerba santa and the “Yo-Yo” blend of rauwolfia combined with yohimbe, all in a fully disclosed blend. Too strong for most of us, but for those of you who always want more… Specimen G.F.Y. is it.
It’s available from local retailers only, so if you like what you see below, give your store a ring and let them know you want to G.F.Y!
Before heading into the label, you can also see if it’s online anywhere and sign up for our Glaxon news alerts, because the Glaxon “Goons” are always up to something interesting:
It’s definitely smart to start with one scoop (maybe 1.5 if you already have a strong tolerance), but each two scoop (14g) serving of Specimen G.F.Y. will get you the following:
Beta Alanine – 3.2g
Most supplement users know and understand the effects of beta alanine at this point, a common pre-workout endurance booster. Beta alanine combines with the essential amino acid L-histidine to generate more carnosine, a molecule that fights fatigue by buffering lactic acid in the muscle.
There are several positive studies showing beta alanine’s effects on endurance, and they usually use this dose (3.2g) spread throughout the day. Focusing on the meta analyses that cover these studies, researchers consistently note that beta alanine supplementation increases carnosine stores in muscle tissue.[1,2]
Further, the combined research shows that beta alanine’s endurance-boosting effects work best in exercises ranging from 1-4 minutes long,[1,2] but more research published in 2016 credited beta alanine for working best in exercises ranging from 30 seconds to 10 minutes long!
The totality of this research is why you’ll see beta alanine in the majority of pre workout supplements. In this case, if you can handle a full scoop of Specimen G.F.Y., you’ll get that clinical 3.2g daily dose all in one shot.
Betaine Anhydrous – 2.5g
Betaine anhydrous, also known as trimethylglycine, is the sole “muscle building” ingredient, and one of the few ingredients that can help provide a pump in Specimen G.F.Y. Here we get another clinical dose of it in the full two-scoop serving.
Betaine is an ingredient that acts as a methyl donor and an osmolyte, helping with cellular hydration and distribution. The multifaceted ingredient can balance oxygen saturation in muscle cells during times of activity, decreasing them after the activity is done.
With these effects in mind, researchers tested betaine in the gym and found that subjects using it were able to increase repetition count and total volume load by 6.5% compared to their baseline.
Further, a 2013 double-blind, placebo-controlled showed that 2.5g betaine (the dose we have here) led to significant increases in squat and bench press training volume, and better muscle growth in the arm with improved body composition. Other research has also shown increased power and force on the bench press, squat, and vertical jump.
When used with enough water, we’ve consistently found that this dose of betaine (along with taurine listed below) can provide a pump through its osmotic effect, so drink up!
Astrolyte Electrolyte Blend (Fructooligosaccharides, Sodium Chloride, Potassium Citrate, Magnesium Citrate) – 1g
Astrolyte is a blend of fructooligosaccharides (FOS) alongside three electrolytes: magnesium citrate, sodium chloride, and potassium citrate. FOS are unique carbohydrate structures made from oligosaccharides and a small number of monosaccharides linked together, and they can be found in several plants like bananas, onions, artichokes, and asparagus.
The fructooligosaccharides are added because they help enhance mineral absorption, and potassium, sodium, and magnesium are of course electrolyte minerals that are added here for performance. These electrolytes help you maintain top performance, promote hydration, and avoid muscle cramping.
All in all, two full scoops of Glaxon Specimen G.F.Y. yields:
4% DV magnesium
7% DV chloride
4% DV sodium
1% DV potassium
Along with the betaine above and taurine below, when you drink enough water with the pre workout, you’ll see sustained hydration and may notice a refreshing endurance effect.
Taurine – 1g
Alongside betaine and Astrolyte, taurine finishes out our hydration / “cellular volumization” trifecta. This is another osmolyte that helps maintain water balance between cells, and supplementing it helps prevent deficiency.
Taurine is most often used for its endurance effect, with a recent meta-analysis covering several studies and showing that 1g and greater doses promote endurance upon first use!
In addition, taurine helps reduce oxidative stress, improves calcium signaling needed for muscle contraction, boosts cognition, and more, which is why it’s considered a “conditionally essential” amino acid.[10-12] Your body can generate it, but it’s almost always better to get some more.
In terms of focus, restoring taurine levels boosts GABA receptor functionality, and can decrease neuroinflammation and stress in the brain while stimulating synapt and mitochondrial function.
Taurine isn’t often noted as a nitric oxide booster, and there’s no direct NO booster in Specimen G.F.Y., but research has shown that taurine may be able to indirectly boost NO levels by activating nitric oxide synthase and boosting NO bioavailability, although we don’t think that’s the primary effect of the ingredient.
Caffeine Anhydrous – 400mg
The first stimulant on the label, Glaxon comes out firing with 400mg caffeine in a full two-scoop serving of Specimen G.F.Y. This should give you bearings as to how much of this pre workout you want to take, and is why we suggest just a scoop (maybe 1.5) for starters.
Caffeine is the highly-researched ingredient scientifically known as trimethylxanthine that enhances performance after it crosses the blood brain barrier and inhibits adenosine and phosphodiesterase, waking you up!
When caffeine inhibits adenosine, neural activity gets upregulated and you get less fatigue. Fat oxidation is increased, providing you with more free fatty acids that you can use for energy when training.[15-17]
The strength and power boost
But at this dose – if you can handle it – we also need to talk about caffeine’s ability to increase strength and power! It all depends on the bodyweight: researchers have found that 5-6mg caffeine per kg of bodyweight can significantly boost strength.[18-20] A 400mg dose is not far from those levels with many consumers… but again, we don’t think most users will be able to handle a full two scoops with everything that’s coming below.
Yerba Santa (Eriodyctyon californicum) [aerial parts] Extract (as SantEnergy Nu) – 400mg
Glaxon was one of the first (if not the first) sports supplement companies to include Yerba Santa in its pre workouts.
Also known as Mountain Balm, Bear’s Weed, and Holy Herb, this small evergreen shrub grows in Southern California and Northern Mexico, where natives chewed its leaves to help with breathing. It’s traditionally used to fight several types of bronchial congestion and respiratory ailments as well as asthma and hayfever, and if you’ve followed supplements long enough, you know a few other stimulants in that vein that are fantastic workout ingredients.
The ingredient may even improve taste! Yerba Santa has long been known to mask bitter ingredients (such as caffeine but even more bitter pharmaceuticals), and several studies have been conducted to figure out why. Much of this is attributed to its constituents homoeriodictyol, eriodictyol, and sterubin, so you may get a taste boost from the ingredient as well.
However, we believe that Glaxon included the ingredient thanks to its bronchodilation qualities, which may increase breathing, oxygenation, and overall energy. Similar ingredients — some stimulatory, some not — have always fared well in pre workout supplements.
CholinACE (Vitacholine (as Choline L+Bitartrate), Alpha-GPC, Citicoline) – 300mg
Now it’s time to get some focus, with Glaxon’s favorite choline source, their very own CholinACE blend. Choline is an essential nutrient that’s critical for organ health and cell membrane structural integrity. But it’s also used as a substrate to create other molecules, and in this case, we love it for its ability to create more acetylcholine, also known as “the learning neurotransmitter”.
Found in heavy concentration in neuromuscular junctions, acetylcholine helps facilitate muscle contraction (improving the “mind-muscle connection” in the gym), coordination, balance, and can help with memory, learning, and alertness.[28,29]
With CholinACE, you get a blend of three forms of choline, each bound to different ingredients and providing different bioavailabilities and slightly different mechanisms:
It’s important to note that Vitacholine uses the L-isomer — choline L-bitartrate, which has a far more profound effect since it’s the bioactive form.
Alpha-GPC is unique since it can cross the blood brain barrier and synthesize acetylcholine after its conversion to phosphorylcholine.
Citicoline brings a unique effect since it can also boost norepinephrine and dopamine levels on top of improving dopamine receptor density.
All combined, these are three incredible forms of choline that can have a great impact on workout focus, and have become staple in Glaxon’s pre workout supplements.
English Ivy (Hedera helix) [Leaf] Extract – 200mg
Alongside Yerba Santa, English Ivy is another herbal ingredient added to provide respiratory benefits that we believe will lead to performance enhancement. However, before we get into the respiratory benefits, there’s something even more important: its ability to function as a serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine reuptake inhibitor.
Ivy contains a constituent named hederagenin, which has the powerful ability to inhibit the reuptake of extracellular monoamines including serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine — a “three in one” reuptake inhibitor! This will make the euphoria and energy generated by G.F.Y. stronger and keep it active for a longer period of time as well.
It bears mentioning as a serotonin reuptake inhibitor, ivy extract should not be used alongside pharmaceutical or recreational drugs, especially SSRIs or any similar types of compounds.
Regarding its other effects, ivy may not be popular in the sports nutrition world (yet), but there’s quite a bit of literature also demonstrating the plant family’s ability to help with numerous respiratory issues.[34-36]
Also known as hedera helix (hence the bioactive hederagenin), ivy is generally extracted for two main bioactives: flavonoids and triterpenoid saponins. These are often credited for the plant’s anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antimicrobial, antiarthritic, and antioxidant effects. There are several research studies and trials supporting its use in treating bronchitis, and it works by reducing airway restriction.[34-36]
What does this have to do with a pre workout? Simply put, better breathing means better performance and more oxygenation, which we find increases perceived energy levels. But the dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin reuptake inhibition takes its effects to the next level.
Finally, ivy leaf supplements have been shown to decrease rhinitis (runny nose), cough, and mucus production. If you’re sick, we don’t recommend going to a public indoor gym, but this is a pre workout that may have some beneficial effects for those who train at home or enjoy running when they have a small case of a head cold — be smart about that though.
Other research shows that ivy may serve as an expectorant and clear mucus more efficiently, but note that the data is confounded with supplemental thyme, which is not in Specimen G.F.Y.
Overall, however, you may liken the Yerba Santa + English Ivy combination to certain over-the-counter performance enhancing combinations that are sold behind the desk at your local pharmacy, depending on your state. Combine it with the “yo-yo” yohimbe stack and caffeine below, as well as the beta agonists in synephrine and halostachine, and we have a very serious pre workout supplement.
Velvet Bean (Mucuna pruriens) [Seed] Extract – 125mg
Velvet bean is also known as Mucuna pruriens, and is a unique plant that grows in parts of the Caribbean Islands, India, and Africa, where it’s long been used for its antioxidant properties and therapeutic effects. It’s the velvet bean seeds that we’re interested in here, because they contain several bioactive compounds including levodopa, or L-dopa, which are here to “take the edge off” of the insane stimulant profile in Specimen G.F.Y. yet provide a bit of euphoria.
L-dopa is a non-protein amino acid that’s a precursor to dopamine, and when supplemented, it raises dopamine levels with incredible efficiency since it can cross the blood-brain barrier.
Several studies have successfully tested higher doses of L-dopa to attenuate symptoms of major cognitive disorders, so there may be an additional focus effect to go along with it.
Being honest, given the stimulant profile of this pre workout, we’re not sure how much velvet bean is going to “smooth” things out — with or without L-dopa, you’re in for a wild ride here. Let this ingredient increase the euphoria while everything else brings the intensity.
Halostachys caspica [Aerial Parts] Extract [Std. to 80% Halostachine] – 100mg
Next up come two beta adrenergic receptor agonists, starting with Halostachine at a high 80mg dose in two scoops (accounting for the 80% standardization).
Beta agonists such as this one activate the beta-2 adrenoceptor, which increases intracellular signalling by inducing cyclic AMP (cAMP). This leads to various effects, generally explained as kicking off the fight or flight response, mobilizing fatty acids for use while also relaxing airway muscles and increasing bronchodilation for better breathing. In short, we often get intense energy that contributes to fat burning potential from these types of ingredients.
There’s less available research on this one than there is the next one (synephrine), but we know that it is a mild sympathomimetic agent that can act as a partial adrenergic binding agent. Research notes that halostachine is roughly 19% as effective as epinephrine in stimulating the beta-2 receptor.
Because of this, the following effects are anecdotally felt from the ingredient:
Enhanced lipolysis (fat burning)
However, it’s the next beta-3 adrenoceptor agonist that gets more attention, and it’s once again a very high dose:
Synephrine Hydrochloride – 100mg
Synephrine is another beta agonist that will kick off the aforementioned fight-or-flight process, and this one has a bit more research. But more important is the dose – if 400mg caffeine didn’t set off alarms, 100mg synephrine definitely should. This is 2-3x the synephrine dose we generally see, so Specimen G.F.Y. is to be taken very seriously!
Synephrine differs from halostachine in that it targets the beta-3 adrenoceptor more than beta-2, so you have quite a powerful stack when combining them together.
By binding to ꞵ-3 adrenergic receptors in adipose tissue, synephrine activates the cAMP-PKA axis and boosts the ability to oxidize fat. What’s interesting is that this mechanism doesn’t influence heart rate or blood pressure as much. Synephrine has been shown to increase basal metabolic rate while suppressing appetite, so you can see another energetic path to a strong workout.
This has been demonstrated alongside exercise as well – a 2016 double-blind, placebo-controlled study on 18 healthy volunteers showed that synephrine yielded significant increases in the rate of fat oxidation during exercise when compared against placebo.
Another study published in 2015 showed that the combination of synephrine and caffeine (both of which are heavily dosed here) boosted fat oxidation during physical training.
Again, the story here is the dose – 100mg is the largest we’ve seen in a pre workout supplement to date, and further reinforces our view that you should start at one scoop.
Theobromine Hydrochloride – 90mg
Our 400mg caffeine dose is paired with 90mg theobromine, which is a related molecule often used in fat burners and pre workout supplements thanks to its ability to boost energy and suppress appetite.[49,50] (If you haven’t noticed by now, Specimen G.F.Y. will double up as a very strong fat burning powder.)
The mechanism is similar to caffeine’s — it’s a phosphodiesterase and adenosine inhibitor. However, given its longer half-life, it lasts longer and takes more time to metabolize, and may prolong the energy boost.
We always like to point out one interesting study that compared caffeine and theobromine and showed that theobromine significantly increased “feel”. Retailers who asked Glaxon for stronger pre workout supplements have customers who want to feel it… so here you are – one more experiential ingredient to add to the list.
Now it’s time to close things off with the famous “Yo Yo” blend:
Rauwolfia (Rauwolfia vomitoria) [Leaf] Extract – 3mg
As if Specimen G.F.Y. wasn’t intense enough, we now have the Yo Yo Blend fronted by 3mg of rauwolfia, nearly certainly standardized for rauwolscine, also known as alpha yohimbine or “alpha yo”.
We consider this to be a stronger form of yohimbine (the next ingredient), and a stimulatory metabolic enhancer that is a force to be reckoned with. While halostachine and synephrine work by activating beta-2 and beta-3 adrenoceptors, both ingredients in the Yo Yo Blend here help block the alpha-2 receptors, effectively helping to block fat storage and to keep energy levels high.
This may be a make-it-or-break-it ingredient for many – some love the feel, others get anxious. But if you can handle it, there are serious energy-enhancing and fat-loss effects that will come along with you on your ride to the moon.
Yohimbe (Pausinystalia johimbe) [Root Bark] Extract – 2mg
Closing things off, we have a 2mg dose of yohimbe extract, which we’re confident is strongly standardized for yohimbine HCl. As mentioned above, it’s an alpha-2 antagonist, and we feel is a bit less intense than alpha-yohimbine discussed above.
Glaxon popularized this blend in their Specimen pre workout series, but it’s obviously no joke, so they provide both a yohimbe-based and yohimbe-free version in Specimen V2. There’s no such option when it comes to Specimen G.F.Y. — you take this pre workout and you’re on the Yo Yo rocket, no questions asked.
At this point, we trust that users know if they want this blend or not. If you’re not sure, you’re not ready for this pre workout, plain and simple.
As mentioned before, Specimen G.F.Y. also doubles up as a potent fat-burning pre workout.
Mentioned above, there are no nitric oxide boosters in Specimen G.F.Y. (we don’t count taurine as one). That’s perfectly fine, as Glaxon also has Plasm Surge and Plasm Caps, two different stimulant-free nitric oxide boosters that can be stacked in — Plasm Surge is a powder, Plasm Caps are capsules.
Additionally, for those in the muscle-building game, the betaine in G.F.Y. will pair great with Dr. Creatine, Glaxon’s creatine capsules that are in Delayed Release (DR) Caps. Muscle builders may also be interested in Flight Regenerate, and it never hurts to train with extra amino acids like Xeno Amino.
When retailers ask for stronger pre workouts, this is how Glaxon responds: G.F.Y. This is about as far as you’re going to push the limits while keeping things reasonably compliant.
We hope we’ve made it abundantly clear, but in case we haven’t, let’s state this one more time: DO NOT START WITH TWO FULL SCOOPS. This pre workout supplement does not mess around, and one scoop should be plenty for starters… maybe 1.5 scoops for experts.
With the additions of Yerba Santa and English Ivy, Glaxon brings something very unique to the table here, and we are 100% convinced that you will feel this supplement. If not, we quite honestly don’t know what to do for you.
Stay tuned to our future Glaxon news on PricePlow, they’re always cooking something crazy up: