Welcome to the number one Pulse pre-workout review on the internet. Everything you could possibly need to know about this Legion Athletics manufactured supplement in order to decide whether it can take your training to the next level!
Fed up of marketing jargon, sales talk and supposedly independent product reviews which clearly have hidden agendas…? Can’t spend another hour trawling the internet researching pre-workout supplements only to be none the wiser as to which product is right for you?
Fear not, that’s where we, and this Legion Pulse pre-workout review comes in to play. A simple breakdown of the key active ingredients and their dosages in order to determine whether Pulse is all it’s hyped up to be. How much does it cost? Where can you buy it? And loads more!
So, whether you’re just starting out on your fitness journey or you’re a seasoned gym monkey and you’re interested in the potential of pre-workout supplements to boost your training performance, then this Legion Athletics Pulse pre-workout review is definitely for you!
About Mike Matthews and Legion Athletics
Mike matthews is a weight trainer and fitness instructor who has written a number of books aimed at helping people become healthier and stronger, including titles such as Bigger, Leaner, Stronger and The Shredded Chef.
Baffled by his own inability to improve his physique despite spending thousands of dollars on personal training sessions and supplements over a number of years, Matthews eventually took things into his own hands. By studying the latest scientific research available and talking to proven bodybuilders and their coaches, he was able to better understand how to make significant changes to his own body.
After reaching his own physical goals so successfully he was encouraged time and time again by friends and family to write a book to help others.
In addition Mike Matthews is also the owner of Legion Athletics, which he founded in order to “create healthy, high quality sports supplements based on sound science, and to sell them honestly at a fair price.”
A slightly strange decision given his self proclaimed belief that you don’t need supplements to build a great physique, but we won’t hold that against him when it comes to assessing the quality and dosing of ingredients in Pulse by Legion Athletics.
Ingredients in Pulse pre-workout
Before we take a closer look at the key ingredients and their dosages, it would be prudent of us to consider the most important question of any pre-workout review… Does the product include any PROPRIETARY BLENDS?
For the less experienced supplement users among you, a proprietary blend is a mixture of active ingredients where the total weight of the blend is disclosed but not the quantity of each individual ingredient. It makes it impossible to determine how much of everything you are consuming per serving, which really isn’t a great place to be when it comes to taking supplements.
Whatever a supplement manufacturer tries to tell you on their website about hiding their formulas from competitors, there is only one reason why they actually make use of proprietary blends. And that is to hide underdosed ingredients from YOU, the customer!
Fortunately for this Pulse pre-workout review, there isn’t a single proprietary blend in sight! Phew! I guess Mike wasn’t telling fibs when he claimed that Legion Athletics was founded to sell supplements “honestly”… an encouraging start!
Citrulline malate (8g)
Unquestionably one of the most exciting dietary supplements on the market when it comes to exercise performance, citrulline is increasingly finding its way into pre-workouts, and for good reason!
Dosed correctly, it has the capacity to increase blood levels of something called arginine, which in turn increases your production of nitric oxide which can help to improve circulation and deliver more oxygen to working muscles during exercise. Sounds pretty useful right…?!
Not only that, it also gives you an almighty pump! Yes please.
The majority of the scientific research suggests that 6-8g of citrulline malate 30-60 minutes before exercise is sufficient to produce the above effects. That means the 8g dose in Pulse pre-workout is bang on. A great start to the ingredients section of our Legion Pulse pre-workout review!
Beta alanine (4.8g)
With the exception perhaps of creatine monohydrate, beta alanine is the most widely researched and well regarded dietary supplement available on the market, with tangible performance benefits for exercise.
By helping to increase your muscle stores of something called carnosine, beta alanine supplementation helps your body to buffer lactic acid and in turn reduces muscle fatigue during intense anaerobic activity.
In order to achieve such benefits, the scientific research suggests that a daily dose of 4-6g for a period of at least 2 weeks is required. That means, once again, this Legion Athletics pre-workout gets its dosing spot on with 4.8g. This is by far the most impressive serving of beta alanine we have ever seen in a pre-workout supplement, and really does put Pulse way ahead of the game in this respect.
Caffeine (350 mg)
Even if you’ve never taken a pre-workout or a supplement more generally, the chances are you’ve heard about the potential benefits of caffeine to your workouts.
Proven to physically and mentally prepare you for training and even help to boost your metabolism and increase fat burning, caffeine is probably the most common ingredient found in pre-workout supplements.
The majority of research suggests that caffeine can be ergogenically effective at doses as low as 100 mg, and that it can be safely consumed at levels as high as 400 mg per day. This means that the 350 mg serving in this Legion Athletics pre-workout is seriously punchy and is guaranteed to give even the most hardened stimulant users a serious workout buzz!
Betaine (2.5g) and L-ornithine (2.2g)
We’ve grouped these 2 ingredients together simply because there is such limited scientific evidence to suggest that they are of tangible benefit to exercise performance.
Whilst betaine has been purported to have benefits for both strength training and body composition improvements, there are limited studies which actually demonstrate such an effect. L-ornithine is suggested to reduce fatigue and improve strength, power and speed but again the research supporting these claims is limited at best.
As a result, our Pulse pre-workout review considers their inclusion largely inconsequential, and it shall remain that way until more scientific research supporting their benefits for exercise performance is published!
As with any pre-workout supplement, Pulse has some potential side effects which you should be aware of.
The most likely ingredient dose to cause you any problems here is without doubt caffeine.
350 mg is a seriously potent dose and can cause minor side effects including diarrhea, vomiting, the jitters and even anxiety. If you are new to pre-workouts or have even a remotely low tolerance to caffeine we would suggest starting with a half dose of this product before slowly increasing your serving as your resistance increases.
The only other potential side effect from taking Pulse is related to its serving of beta alanine. This ingredient causes a tingling sensation on the surface of your skin which normally subsides after approximately 20 minutes. The good news is it’s completely harmless and at least means you know you’re taking a solid dose of beta alanine and not something else of zero benefit!
Pros and cons of Pulse pre-workout
At $40 on the official Legion Athletics website, Pulse pre-workout comes in at a whopping $1.90 per serving, which puts it very much at the more expensive end of the pre-workout market.
Having said that, it contains some of the most impressive doses of citrulline, beta alanine and caffeine we have ever seen in a pre-workout, which makes it almost certainly worth the price tag. You really do get what you pay for in this world!
Where to buy Pulse pre-workout?
As mentioned above you can purchase Pulse at the official Legion Athletics website.
It is also available on sites such as Amazon and Bodybuilding.com which means it may be worth shopping around for the best price. Having said that, if you have any doubts about the legitimacy of where you’re buying a pre-workout product from, our advice is always to source it directly from the manufacturer!
Pulse vs Pulse Stim Free (What’s the difference?)
There are a few major differences to note when comparing the stimulant and non stimulant versions of Pulse pre-workout.
The most significant change is obviously the removal of a whopping 350 mg of caffeine (the safest and most commonly used stimulant on the market). This is obviously going to have a pretty significant impact on the products impact, but if you’re looking for a pre-workout free of stimulants then this is the price you pay!
Other than this obvious difference, the dose of beta alanine per serving is also 1.2g lower. Now this is a real disappointment given that the optimal 4.8g included in the stimulant version of Pulse is one of the biggest positives of the product. Having said that, 3.6g is a reasonable serving and is still higher than most other pre-workouts available.
The final major difference, is that the stim free version of Pulse is only available in one flavor, which might cause a few problems for those customers who are particularly fussy about the way their pre-workout tastes!
The stimulant version of Pulse is available in 8 flavors, including 3 new options: pink lemonade, cherry limeade and tropical punch. This means there should be plenty of choice for even the fussiest of customers.
Unfortunately, the stim free option is currently only available in one flavor, fruit punch.
All in all, this Legion Pulse pre-workout review has to be one of the most positive we’ve ever done.
No proprietary blends, 3 hugely effective ingredients in citrulline, beta alanine and caffeine dosed optimally, and 8 flavor options. Other than the inclusion of a few ingredients with limited scientific research to support their use for exercise performance, there is very little to complain about!
Yes the price makes Pulse one of the more expensive pre-workouts on the market, but you get what you pay for in this world, and products which contain such effective dosages of truly impactful ingredients really are few and far between.
Regardless of whether founder Mike Matthews really believes that you need supplements to build a great physique, his company has produced a pre-workout product which is guaranteed to help boost your training performance!
Pérez-Guisado, J., & Jakeman, P. M. (2010). Citrulline malate enhances athletic anaerobic performance and relieves muscle soreness. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 24(5), 1215-1222.
 beta-Alanine supplementation augments muscle carnosine content and attenuates fatigue during repeated isokinetic contraction bouts in trained sprinters- J Appl Physiol (1985). 2007 Nov;103(5
 Stellingwerff T, Anwander H, Egger A, Buehler T, Kreis R, Decombaz J, et al. Effect of two beta-alanine dosing protocols on muscle carnosine synthesis and washout. Amino Acids. 2012;42(6):2461–72. doi: 10.1007/s00726-011-1054-4 and Harris RC, Jones GA, Kim HJ, Kim CK, Price KA, Wise JA. Changes in muscle carnosine of subjects with 4 weeks of supplementation with a controlled relase formulation of beta-alanine (CarnoSyn), and for 6 weeks post (Abstract) FASEB J. 2009;23:599.4.
 Fat burners: nutrition supplements that increase fat metabolism- Obesity Reviews 2011
 Fat burners: nutrition supplements that increase fat metabolism- Obesity Reviews 2011