When I first started reading up on OptygenHP, several of the main ingredients made me wonder whether the product would actually perform or whether the First Endurance marketing team was working hard to turn me into the next Himalayan Sherpa. Rhodiola?! Chordyceps CS-4?! Beta-Alanine?! Normally, I have a policy of not putting food or supplements in my body if I can’t pronounce them. After carefully reviewing the professional athlete testimonials and the Certificate of Analysis they publish however, my trepidation with this product subsided enough to test it over the course of a month.
The So-Called Benefits
According to First Endurance, OptygenHP will (1) improve oxygen utilization (2) reduce lactic acid (3) delay muscular fatigue and (4) increase the body’s ability to adapt to high levels of physical stress. Selfishly, I was also looking for a product that would carry me through my training for the ‘A’ races I have planned this summer – the Black Hills 100K and the Leanhorse 100.
The Perceived Benefits
I use the Perceived Exertion Scale to really assess and gauge my intensity during my runs. Prior to using OptygenHP, I would say that the average run placed me at an 11 or 12 (if I’m being perfectly honest). I wasn’t interested in running fast, but running comfortably (e.g., I could easily have a conversation with you while running).
After 2 weeks of taking the recommended dosage (4 caplets a day), I began to feel a change in my overall ability to push just a little bit harder, make larger jumps in mileage and still be refreshed enough to execute on back-to-back runs of increasing mileage. My exertion level was not changing yet I was beginning to recognize the benefits of increased speed, greater lung capacity and higher lactic threshold.
Over the next 2 weeks, it was clear that the product was transforming my athleticism and runs. I was running faster (distances from 5 to 16 miles, both road and trail). I was not suffering from lactic acid buildup after long runs. I was recovering faster. I was able to actually grind up many of the trails I had struggled with previously. More than anything, I continued to stay motivated and healthy – allowing me to keep on schedule with my training.
So anecdotally speaking, I would have to say that there is no doubt in my mind that the four main benefits touted by First Endurance are for real. I’ve never felt better before, during and after a run while using OptygenHP.
The Measurable Benefits
As an engineer however, I started questioning the anecdotal nature of my observations and began looking for real data on whether my performance had actually improved. I ran a report from my Garmin data to compare the 30-days prior to using OptygenHP against the 30 days while I was taking the supplement. The summary is below:
While I’m not surprised, I am relieved that it does help to reaffirm the ‘feel’ of my perceived benefits. Here are a few key things this data tells me:
- With basically the same number of activities and mileage, my average heart rate is lower when using OptygenHP.
- The total time to do the same number of miles is also lower with OptygenHP.
- OptygenHP has increased my speed and pace.
I could probably write another page talking about the benefits but I think you get the idea.
There is a problem though. As supplements go, this one is expensive. Retail, First Endurance wants to charge you $75 for a 30-day supply. You might be able to find it for $60-$65 on Amazon but still, that stings the wallet a bit.
I personally am making the investment to continue using this product despite the cost. If you’re looking to boost your overall performance for your next race or perhaps seeking a PR, you could definitely grab a bottle and recognize many of the benefits – either short-term or long-term. I think you’ll be impressed.
If you’d like complete details from the folks at First Endurance, check out this video specifically on OptygenHP.
(This review is completely unsolicited by First Endurance and the owners of the Trail Running Club. In no way was I compensated for this review.)