As I’ve alluded to in the past I’m somewhat of a fitness buff, mostly to balance out my predominately sedentary lifestyle of IT work and computer games. Of course when these two worlds collide I end up applying the same kind of iterative process I would to any IT problem or challenge in a game to fitness and the past couple years have been no exception. I mentioned in the past that I was doing CrossFit and since then I’ve tried several other workouts to build muscle; meal plans and supplement regimes in order to maximise the benefits I get from exercising. 2 months ago I decided to give the PAGG stack from the 4 Hour Body a go after hitting another plateau in my training and I thought I’d share my experiences with it.
Here’s a little background on me so you can put this in perspective (this is at the start of using PAGG):
- Height: 187cm
- Weight: 89KG
- Body Fat: 18%
I took the PAGG stack as recommended: AGG 3 times a day, PAGG before bed and didn’t take it every Sunday. I wasn’t 100% with sticking to this, I’d say I was about 90% on time with it (meaning about 1 in every 10 times I’d miss taking it at the right time) but I believe that I was still close enough for it to be considered effective. I didn’t make any radical changes to my diet or exercise regime during this time either, so most changes can be ascribed to PAGG stack.
So as it stands right now I’ve gained approximately 2KGs whilst going down to 17%. Whilst it wasn’t the extreme fat burning I was expecting there was a definite downward trend when I was using PAGG. Since I’m trying to gain muscle at the moment its quiet possible that the supposed fat burning of PAGG is being muted somewhat as my caloric intake is somewhere around the 2800~3000 range every day. That being said since I didn’t change my diet during this time (and I’ve been on the same diet for a good 4 months prior) the additional 2KGs of muscle gain would appear to be attributable to taking PAGG.
Doing some extra research into the matter though it looks like the potential fat burning/muscle building effects that I experienced could be solely due to the EGCG in the stack. Indeed for the other components there is either no research showing efficacy (Policosanol, as 4HB even states), experimental evidence in certain models (ALA) or mixed experimental results (Allicin). Anecdotally the combination does appear to work, at least for me, but it’s entirely possible that EGCG is responsible for those changes alone. I’d do another round of anecdotal testing on myself to see how it goes, but I’ve got my eye on a new stack that I’m hoping will get close to ECA for efficacy.
Would I recommend PAGG for anyone? I would, at least for 2 months just to see if it works for you. If you buy the components individually it’s actually pretty cheap, on the order of about $30~$40/month, and you should be able to see benefits within a short enough time frame to know if its worth you continuing or not. Personally for me, whilst it did appear to work, I’ve decided to switch to some other supplements that have a bit more scientific backing on them and see how they turn out. If there’s one thing that I learnt from this is that EGCG is potentially quite powerful and should you not want to be downing 16+ pills a day then your best place to start would be with just that.