Xtremis, formally ASC Cartel, is back with a reformulation of their daily driver pre-workout El Jefe Guerilla edition. This is the “baby brother” pre-workout of the OG El Jefe pre-workout.
This product features highly efficacious and clinically dosed ingredients, providing excellent performance inside and outside the gym. I recommend this for anyone looking for a daily pre-workout but has a higher caffeine tolerance, as it contains 462.5 mg.
Thank you, Jake from Nutricartel, for sending this full product for review!
I would recommend this particular product for those looking for a high stimulant (caffeine-driven) pre-workout without anything elicit or exotic that might have side effects.
LIFTVAULT = 15% off Nutri Cartel
Table of Contents
- 1 Where to Buy El Jefe Guerilla by Xtremis
- 2 Experience
- 3 Ingredients
- 3.1 L-Citrulline Malate 2:1 – 8 g
- 3.2 Beta-Alanine – 4 g
- 3.3 Arginine Nitrate (as NO3-T®) – 3 g
- 3.4 Betaine Anhydrous – 3 g
- 3.5 Taurine – 2 g
- 3.6 VasoDrive-AP (Casein Hydrolysate) – 508 mg
- 3.7 L-Tyrosine – 3 g
- 3.8 Alpha Glycerylphosphorylcholine (Alpha GPC) – 800 mg
- 3.9 Dimethylethanolamine (DMAE) – 750 mg
- 3.10 Theobromine – 400 mg
- 3.11 EnXtra (Alpinia galanga extract) – 300 mg
- 3.12 Caffeine Anhydrous – 300 mg
- 3.13 Infinergy™ (Dicaffeine Malate) – 150 mg
- 3.14 Caffeine Citrate – 100 mg
- 3.15 AstraGin – 50 mg
Where to Buy El Jefe Guerilla by Xtremis
You can buy El Jefe Guerilla from the following retailers:
Within the first eight minutes, I felt tingles throughout my ears, wrapping around my head. At 15 minutes, tingles ran across my entire head, ears, and shoulders, descending down my chest and brow line, and the focus and energy increased around a level of 4. Things look perfect for Xtremis, as the previous formulation initially didn’t hit as strong.
The paresthesias tingle from the beta-alanine lasted for 50 minutes at the heightened intensity before settling down to a level of 5. The improved muscle strength, endurance, and contraction control were excellent at an 8/10. Focus and intensity stayed around a 6 during training, and I didn’t lose any steam during the workouts.
This product gave me great endurance and helped me push past my stamina baseline. I felt more powerful with the product. The pumps were improved for me, but different from other Vasodrive-featured pre-workouts that I have used in the past. Overall, the energy and focus lasted several hours past the peak levels felt during training, which made it suitable for morning workouts since there was no midday crash.
I have compared this product closely to Sicario, which is under the same brand and closely formulated. Still, one last comparison is that the 3D Pump ingredient was slightly better with Sicario.
I didn’t experience any adverse effects while using this product.
I found that 12 ounces of water was adequate, as the directions suggest 8-14 ounces. I received the Blueberry Lemonade flavor, but it had a strong blueberry taste without the tartness that usually comes with this flavor. It wasn’t horrible, but I would drink quickly. Of course, the taste is always subjective and not a true negative.
The serving size is 28.2 grams for a whole two-scoop serving, which is a hefty serving size for a pre-workout and rivals that of a protein scoop size. The total serving amount per scoop is a heft-rounded scoop, which allows anyone to dose easily without overdosing. Since this isn’t a stimulant-based product, you will be safe to serve large, rounded scoops. After I find out the dosing sizes for these review photos, I just use my shaker cup on the scale and measure up to the amount I need or want.
I used the serving of two scoops, which hit precisely how I needed it. Xtremis gives a solid 40/20 serving split label on the container, which is currently market standard for most pre-workouts and pump products. If you compare the ingredients to others, the dosages are so good that it would be equivalent to about 30-40 servings on an equivalent. The mixability was pretty good, with a small amount of sediment toward the end of the shaker.
The new formulation dropped one gram of taurine, but the two-scoop dosage increased from 27.9 to 28.2 grams, possibly from anti-caking ingredients. The listing of ingredients below is for the suggested 2-scoop variant dosing. Although the caffeine content looks high in the 500s, it comes to around 462.5 mg based on ratios. I like the formula of El Jefe Guerilla, as it isn’t just a carbon copy of their other variants. It is unique in its approach and differs from Sicario or the other El Jefe’s, which I have enjoyed reviewing.
While this product was formulated to be more of a daily driver pre-workout, it still contains solid dosages of focus and energy ingredients (high caffeine for a daily). This product is more pump-centric than the other versions, where the true El Jefe is the focus. I wouldn’t change this formula on paper as it looks excellent; however, the Sicario pumps were much improved with the 3D pump vs. VasoDrive-AP, in my opinion.
L-Citrulline Malate 2:1 – 8 g
L-Citrulline Malate is one of the most common pre-workout ingredients. Extensive evidence supports its ability to increase nitric oxide production, power output, pumps, blood flow, and endurance.
The standard ratio is 2:1 malate acid. The clinically studied dosage would be 6-8 grams of L-Citrulline Malate in a 2:1 ratio, providing nearly 4-6 grams of L-Citrulline, which this product meets the clinical high-end.
Beta-Alanine – 4 g
Beta-alanine has been shown to support muscular endurance and act as a lactic acid buffer. Depending on the source of this ingredient, you may feel the paresthesias tingling effect. This feeling is often desirable in the sports community, as it makes you feel the intensity after ingestion. This may be negated by diet and intake of beta-alanine.
Beta-alanine requires regular intake to be effective, akin to creatine. Daily beta-alanine supplementation is recommended to become effective, with a three to five-week loading period. Three to four grams is the recommended daily dosage for beta-alanine, putting face/off in the standard clinical dose range.
When you consume beta-alanine, it combines with another amino acid called histidine to form carnosine. Carnosine is found in high muscle concentrations and is a buffer against lactic acid buildup during intense exercise. This buffering effect can delay the onset of muscle fatigue and improve exercise capacity.
By increasing carnosine levels in muscles, beta-alanine helps reduce the accumulation of hydrogen ions, contributing to muscle acidity and fatigue. This allows athletes to perform at a high intensity slightly longer before experiencing fatigue.
It is not abundantly found in typical dietary sources, so it’s challenging to obtain the required amounts solely through diet. However, it is naturally present in small amounts in certain animal products like meat and fish.
Arginine Nitrate (as NO3-T®) – 3 g
Nitrate (NO3–T) is a small molecule produced in the body in limited amounts (as a byproduct of nitric oxide). It is obtainable via vegetables, particularly beetroot, other low-calorie tuber vegetables such as turnips, and leafy green vegetables such as spinach or rocket.
According to Examine, noted benefits of nitrates are reduced blood pressure, improved blood flow and vasodilation, reduced oxygen cost of exercise (allowing you to go longer), and kidney protection. The typical range is 1,500-3,000 for efficient dosing, placing this on the high end.
Betaine Anhydrous – 3 g
Betaine is included to help increase your power output. However, research needs to be more consistent around this claim. The typical range for betaine is between 1.5 g and 5 g, but generally, 2.5 grams is on the high end for what is in the market. Per the clinical trials, daily supplementation is required to obtain the full benefits.
Betaine anhydrous, often called “betaine,” is a naturally occurring compound in various foods, including beets, spinach, and whole grains. It is also used as a dietary supplement for various purposes. Betaine serves several bodily functions and has been studied for its potential benefits.
Key points about betaine anhydrous include physical performance, enhanced muscular strength and power, cognitive function, and liver health with antioxidant effects. Betaine is naturally present in various foods: beets, spinach, quinoa, and whole grains.
Taurine – 2 g
L-Taurine is a common ingredient with many positive effects, such as enhanced physical performance, improved DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness), improved blood pressure via higher cardiac output, possible reduction of cholesterol and triglyceride levels, increased uptake of glycogen to mitochondria for energy utilization (Examine).
Taurine supplementation might block Beta-Alanine uptake as they are antagonistic, which wouldn’t be an issue if used aside from pre-workout. It is not commonly known that Beta-Alanine/Carnosine is a taurine-depleting antagonist (Examine). A 2 g Taurine dose is a highly efficient dose to what is typical in sports supplements (1-6 grams per day in studies).
Some key benefits include heart health, neurotransmitter regulation, antioxidant properties, eye health, exercise performance, and gastrointestinal health. It is naturally found in various animal-based foods, including meat, fish, poultry, and dairy products.
VasoDrive-AP (Casein Hydrolysate) – 508 mg
VasoDrive-AP is a patented dietary ingredient often used in dietary supplements for its potential cardiovascular and blood pressure-regulating effects. It is marketed as a natural alternative to supporting healthy blood pressure levels. It helps decrease blood pressure, increase nitric oxide production, increase blood flow, and enhance muscle pumps. Check out this video to learn more about it.
VasoDrive-AP is a proprietary blend of two peptides derived from casein, a protein found in milk. These peptides are Valyl-Prolyl-Proline (VPP) and Isoleucyl-Prolyl-Proline (IPP). Some key benefits include blood pressure regulation, endothelial function with vascular lining, and anti-inflammatory effects. 508 mg is the prescribed dosage set by the manufacturer of this ingredient.
L-Tyrosine – 3 g
L-tyrosine boosts cognitive performance in stressful environments. Pre-workouts include it as a focus ingredient and help achieve anti-stress effects. The typical dosage range is 500 mg to 2,000 mg for exercise, where the 3 grams we have here is a hefty, efficient dose.
L-tyrosine is a naturally occurring amino acid and a precursor to several important neurotransmitters and hormones in the body. It plays a significant role in producing dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine, which regulate mood, stress response, physical performance, and cognitive function.
Alpha Glycerylphosphorylcholine (Alpha GPC) – 800 mg
Alpha GPC is a cholinergic compound that is produced within the body. It is used for enhancing cognition and increasing power output. Based on several studies, Alpha GPC dosages should be between 300 and 600 mg. At 800 mg, this is above the top end of the efficient dosage range.
Some key benefits include choline source, cognitive enhancement, acetylcholine precursor, neuroprotective properties, and athletic performance.
When alpha-gpc is combined with other nootropic compounds, it can enhance the cognitive effects. Common combinations include racetams (like piracetam) and other brain-boosting supplements.
Dimethylethanolamine (DMAE) – 750 mg
DMAE is a choline molecule used to treat cognitive decline in elderly patients. It is included in pre-workouts to promote focus and feelings of well-being. Dosing guidance for performance enhancement needs to be better understood.
Theobromine – 400 mg
Theobromine is a “caffeine light” stimulant ingredient found in chocolate, some tea plants, and the kola nut. Its name means “Food of the Gods.” Greek “theo” means gods, and “broma” means food.
Some anecdotal evidence suggests that theobromine can affect mood elevation, focus, and stimulation. Most doses range from 100 to 400 mg, leaving ephedra shred on the lower end. It is a bitter alkaloid compound naturally found in various plants, most notably in cocoa beans used to make chocolate products. It is a chemical relative of caffeine and is classified as a xanthine alkaloid.
It is known for its stimulant effects, although its impact is generally milder than caffeine. It stimulates the central nervous system and has diuretic effects, which means it can increase urine production. It also relaxes smooth muscles, which can lead to bronchodilation and relaxation of blood vessels.
Theobromine has been studied for its potential health benefits. Some research suggests that it positively affects cardiovascular health by improving blood flow and reducing blood pressure. It has also been explored for its potential role in cognitive function and mood enhancement.
EnXtra (Alpinia galanga extract) – 300 mg
EnXtra is an exciting ingredient I haven’t seen in many pre-workouts outside El Jefe. EnXtra is a proprietary extract of Alpinia galanga shown in multiple human studies to significantly increase alertness for several hours. This ingredient has little dosage information, but typical doses are 200 and 400 mg, putting guerilla in the middle.
Caffeine Anhydrous – 300 mg
Caffeine anhydrous is the standard form for increasing energy, alertness, motivation, and mood. The caffeine content varies for each product. The 350-450 range is the typical dosage for sports supplements and around 200 mg for fat burners. Some products may contain other caffeine or stimulants, which give you less need for more such as below.
Less is more, as your dependency will lead to diminishing returns as you increase your intake. The overall combination of many factors, such as sleep, caffeine timing, diet, and nutrition, affects how much you will need. The dosage doesn’t always indicate how strong a product is, so look for other stimulants below.
Infinergy™ (Dicaffeine Malate) – 150 mg
Di-caffeine malate is the extended-release version of caffeine, which usually slowly releases and adds to energy/focus later in the workout, delaying or preventing a crash depending on the formulation of stimulants in the pre-workout. Typically, 75% caffeine anhydrous and 25% malic acid, meaning 150 mg, would yield 112.5 mg of actual caffeine.
Infinergy™ represents a precise combination of Caffeine and Malic Acid into an ionic bonded compound. By combining the well-established properties of Caffeine and Malic Acid, Infinergy™ offers a multi-dimensional ingredient that not only optimizes energy levels but also stimulates thermogenesis while promoting mental focus.
Caffeine Citrate – 100 mg
Caffeine citrate is a faster-acting version of caffeine when compared to caffeine anhydrous. It’s not very common in supplements. Some popular pre-workouts, like Wrecked Extreme and M2, include this ingredient.
Caffeine Citrate is usually 50% Caffeine and 50% Citric Acid, meaning the 100 mg included yields 50 mg of actual caffeine. This brings the total caffeine content to 462.5 mg.
AstraGin – 50 mg
Astragin is a patented ingredient that increases the bioavailability of nutritional supplements. In other words, it helps your body absorb more of the ingredients in the product, which helps the effectiveness of the ingredients. As the serving size increases, so does the need for a digestion aid.
El Jefe Guerilla Pre-Workout Review
I recommend this product for those looking for a high stimulant (caffeine-driven) pre-workout without anything elicit or exotic that might have side effects. This is a pure daily driver approach product. While the caffeine might be on the higher end (462.5 mg), it is a great product to use without feeling abused.
- Improved endurance
- Great focus
- Clinically and efficiently dosed
- Head buzz-like feelings
- Slightly euphoric
- Unique, comprehensive formula with patented ingredients
- Good daily driver formulation
- No banned ingredients
- Veteran-owned and supported
- GMP Certified
- Flavor is a slight miss