Hit a Wall in Your Training?

Study Shows ARA Breaks Plateau

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  • Arachidonic Acid supplementation shown to break training plateau

The news pretty much changes our whole understanding of how and when we grow. It begins with the word plateau, something every weightlifter knows well. Also known as “hitting the wall”, it is that dreaded point in your training where muscle and strength gains have stagnated. You continue to put the effort in. But as the weeks go on, you only maintain your physique. Our normal reaction is to blame the program. Are you lifting hard enough, or consuming enough protein and calories? While these are common issues, they are not always the reason. According to a new study, something completely different could be at work. Your ability to continue gaining size and strength could hinge on the availability of a specific nutrient in your muscles: arachidonic acid (ARA).

Arachidonic acid is a fatty acid from the omega-6 family. It is found throughout our bodies, though is richly stored in our muscle cells. As emerging research explains, it is not here by chance. It is needed for muscle growth. Its activity begins when our muscle membranes are disturbed from training. This liberates ARA, which is then used to form signaling molecules called prostaglandins. These turn on protein synthesis, and facilitates local tissue repair (growth). Other anabolic hormones come in later to also support the process, including testosterone and insulin. But the research makes clear ARA is still central to it. This begs the obvious question. What if we supplemented ARA? What if our muscles had a little more? This is the question asked of our latest study.


Researchers at Auburn University and the University of Tampa recently examined the potential anabolic effects of ARA. As part of the investigation, they gave a group of experienced weightlifters the patented arachidonic acid supplement ARASYN™, which is found in X-FACTOR™. The men took 6 capsules per day (1,500mg) or an identical-looking placebo, and underwent a monitored weightlifting program. The program was designed to mimic real world conditions of plateau for experienced lifters, where training has become more routine, and gains incremental. Measures were taken of body composition, strength, and muscle power at the start of the study, as well as its conclusion after 8 weeks.

The results of this study were concise and clear. The experienced weightlifters taking placebo remained in a training plateau. Their progress was minor, and largely insignificant. The subjects taking arachidonic acid, on the other hand, broke through the training stagnation. They were the only group to report significant progress on measures of Lean Body Mass (LBM), Upper Body (Bench Press) Strength, and Peak Anaerobic Power. The men actually gained about 4 pounds of solid muscle, nearly a half a pound per week. These results were striking, and also unique among sport supplements. No other natural supplement has been shown to break plateau in experienced lifters like this.

The full text of the PLOS ONE paper can be accessed here.

Comparative Results (Placebo vs. ARA)

Media Coverage

As one could imagine, this study is big news inside the sport supplement industry. It has also caught the attention of major fitness outlets, including FLEX, Muscle & Fitness, Muscular Development, and TRAIN Magazine. Each has reviewed the study results, and commented on its far-reaching implications for those involved in bodybuilding or other athletic pursuits. A highlight of some of their comments is presented below.

Muscle & Fitness called it one of the “10 Best New Advances In Bodybuilding”

Muscular Development declared, “Stop Wasting Your Time With Useless Products … X-Factor Is King!”

FLEX also chimed in, “If You Thought Essential Fatty Acids Were A Settled Subject, Think Again.”

Bodybuilding.com stated it had, “…Great Potential To Be A Potent New Tool In The Modern Athlete’s Nutritional Arsenal.”

Break YOUR Plateau

If you are stuck in a plateau yourself, listen up. Now is an excellent opportunity to break it. Molecular Nutrition is offering Buy One Get One 50% Off to Anabolic.org readers for a limited time. Molecular is the original developer and patent holder of ARASYN™ Arachidonic Acid, and manufacturer of the supplement used in the Auburn/Tampa study.

Just visit the site here and add 2 bottles of X-FACTOR™ Advanced to your cart. That is enough to run the product at a dose of 4 capsules per day, for a full 50 day cycle. Make sure you enter coupon code ANABOLIC during checkout to receive your second bottle 50% off. This will provide you with a deep discount on a full cycle of what is one of the most interesting supplements to come out of sports nutrition for a long time, especially of you are a more experienced lifter. So give ARA a try yourself, and please post up your results here!


By | 2017-04-07T01:10:19+00:00 September 14th, 2016|Categories: Topics: Supplements|0 Comments

About the Author:

Tim Zakowski is Anabolic.org's emerging news reporter. He has long been a part of the team at Molecular Nutrition, and is an avid bodybuilder himself.

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