When I was an aspiring trainer in the early 2000s, Maximuscle Cyclone was the answer to too many questions.

Wanna gain size? Start using Maximuscle Cyclone.

Wanna get stronger? Get on Cyclone.

Wanna get 3 weeks of protein powder for the price of 12? Cyclone.

But how good is it?

Does it still stack up as the best “all in one” supplement for gaining muscle size and strength in 2021 the same way it did back in 2001? Today it faces my deliberately harsh supplement rating system to see how it compares against other industry-leading protein powders. Remember, no product has ever received a 5 star review (yet), so let’s see what happens.

maximuscle vs maxinutrition


The first thing we must do is address the damn name.

If you’re old-school, you’ll know this company as Maximuscle.

If you’ve discovered the brand in the last 5 years, though, you’ll call them Maxi Nutrition.

What gives? Is it the same company? Are there different versions of products aimed at different people?

Actually, no. Back in 2011 original Maximuscle founder Zef Eisenberg sold the company to GlaxoSmithKline for £162 million, and at the time they were Europe’s top-selling supplement brand. The new owners wanted to grow even bigger, so they took the bold step to re-brand as Maxi Nutrition.

(You know, cuz muscle is scary and apparently frightens female customers.)

Alongside the new Maxi Nutrition name, the company also introduced budget supplements under the name Maxi Raw and supplements aimed specifically at ladies under the name Maxi Tone.

It was confusing as f**k.

Worse still, it completely failed! GlaxoSmithKline had literally broken something that didn’t need to be fixed, and they gradually lost their spot as Europe’s biggest sports nutrition company.

GSK decided to cut their losses in 2018, selling to German food giants Kruga, and the new owners quickly returned to the Maximuscle name and looked to build on the familiarity and solid reputation they’d established before it all went crazy.

Interestingly, the new owners also decided to keep the old product names (Cyclone, Promax, etc) and simply update the formulas in order to (again) cash in on product familiarity while also bringing each item into the new decade. Early reports also indicate they’ve managed to keep that trademark Maximuscle taste which made them so popular in the first place.

So now you’re up to date! No matter whether you previously knew them as Maximuscle or Maxi Nutrtion, the fact is they’re BACK and they’re on a mission to reclaim their spot as Europe’s #1 supplement company.

Maximuscle Cyclone review


Cyclone is an “all-in-one” shake, aimed at those who want maximum size and strength gains with minimal fuss.

Every serving provides:

  • 31g protein
  • 12g carbs
  • 1g fat
  • 10g glutamine
  • 5g creatine monohydrate
  • 1.5g HMB
  • 2.5mg zinc
  • 1.4mg vitamin B6

There’s a lot to unpack here, and most of it is GREAT!

If you used the original Cyclone back in the day then you’ll notice that the new version contains more protein, less carbs, and less fat. Awesome start! They’ve also revamped the protein blend to ensure a higher quality of ingredients (more on that in a sec!).

31 grams of protein is tremendous because it lands near the top end of the “sweet spot” for building muscle. A 2009 trial published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition discovered that 20 grams of protein can create a similar anabolic response to a serving twice as large, and Maximuscle go slightly above this baseline figure in order to ensure you’re getting maximum bang for your buck. (1)

how much protein per day to build muscle

Of course, I’m always telling you to look for protein supplements which provide at least 75% protein-per-serving (because you’re likely buying it to boost your protein intake, so you want as much of your scoop to be “P” as possible), but I’m going to give Maximuscle Cyclone a free pass on its 51% protein-per-serving ratio, seeing as it’s an all-in-one post workout supplement and the sole purpose isn’t just to give you protein.

But that’s the only free pass it’ll get.

Now let’s look at the protein blend itself…

Maximuscle deserve a high five regarding how much they’ve improved the Cyclone blend, because the old product was made up of mostly whey protein concentrate (the cheapest form of protein around!). This version contains 16.7 grams of whey protein isolate, 13.3 grams of whey protein concentrate and 1 gram of whey protein hydrolysate.

If I wanted to be extra harsh (and you know I do!), I’d suggest they could have improved this blend even more by replacing whey protein concentrate with a slower release option like egg or casein, or perhaps even gone ‘all in’ with whey protein isolate as the sole protein source (at £40 for a 1.2kg tub, the profit margin certainly allows for it).

However, the new formula is certainly a big improvement!

Up next we have 5 grams of creatine monohydrate.

This is another area where Maximuscle Cyclone gets it dead right!

Lots of supplement brands have fallen into the trap of using fancy creatine blends (like creatine HCL, creatine ethyl-esther, or kre-alkylyn) which are more expensive and no more productive, so it’s GREAT to see Maximuscle have opted for a full clinical dose of the most proven form of creatine – creatine monohydrate.

If you’re a long-time reader of mine you’ll already know I’m a big fan of this ingredient! It’s one of the very few bodybuilding supplements that is genuinely proven to work, and has over 30 years of research to back it up. The benefits of include more explosive strength and being able to perform more reps to failure – both of which mean more muscle growth! There was a brilliant meta-analysis on creatine relating to weight training published back in 2012 in which researchers compiled the data of 22 separate studies spanning almost three decades and noted that (on average) trainees see a strength increase of about 8% and can perform around 14% more reps per set. Wowza! (5)

Offer any seasoned weight lifter those kind of improvements for something as simple as adding creatine to your protein shake and they’d gladly snap your hands off!

Next we have 1.5 grams of HMB (betahydroxybetamethylbutyrate). This is a metabolite of leucine (the amino acid which plays a key role in the muscle building process).

It has grown in popularity as a bodybuilding supplement in recent years as research began to link it with increased muscle growth when taken as a standalone supplement, but new studies have since shown that HMB is no more effective than leucine (which you’re already getting thanks to the BCAAs in Cyclone). (6. 7)

However, there is one useful aspect of HMB which rarely gets discussed and that’s its anti-catabolic effect. You see, while it’s not superior to leucine in terms of protein synthesis, research suggests it may be upto 20x more effective at preventing muscle breakdown. (8)

Holy f**k!

Let me put that into perspective; if you are an athlete trying to maximize hypertrophy on a high volume training program, adding HMB to your supplement stack could make it significantly easier for you to hang on to your lean mass as you power through your workouts! BOOM!

The formula also contains zinc (2.5mg), and its billing as a “muscle building” ingredient relates to its role in the support of optimal testosterone levels (zinc is lost via sweat, so many athletes can be low on zinc without knowing, and this can lead to drops in testosterone production or maybe even depression).

However, in the contect of Maximuscle Cyclone, zinc is little more than a “filler” ingredient.

You see, research indicates a correct dose of zinc would be between 5-45mg per day, but Cyclone provides just 2.5mg per serving, which is about as effective as the 2016 Ghostbusters remake. (9)

If you genuinely want to increase your zinc intake, you’d be better off just grabbing a zinc supplement. They’re cheap enough.

And finally, the elephant in the scoop.

Coming in at a whopping 10 grams, Maximuscle have decided to go BIG on glutamine.

Glutamine is an amino acid long famous for its links to hypertrophy, power, and particularly RECOVERY – but despite the huge potential of this ingredient, there’s one big problem. Supplement expert Sol Orwell from explains:

“The more glutamine we can get into our muscle cells, the more they will grow! It’s a great muscle builder! Except – that’s not how it works in real life. Your intestines are going to hoard it, so it’s great for gut health, but it won’t reach the muscle cells and therefore it won’t make your muscles bigger, which is often the reason we bought it.”

To confirm; if you have a glutamine deficiency (vegans, vegetarians, low dairy diet) then you can certainly benefit from glutamine supplementation. But if you don’t, then you have no need for it. (2, 3, 4)

Maximuscle Cyclone review 2021


Everyone loves a comeback!

Maximuscle Cyclone was the “go to” protein shake for anyone looking to pack on size and strength in the early-to-mid 2000s. This company dominated the UK & Europe thanks to clever sponsorships with rugby and UK athletics, positioning themselves as a ‘premium brand’ which customers didn’t mind paying more for.

Then it all went to s**t… but it looks like they mean business second time around!

The formula has been greatly improved versus the original Cyclone, and the trademark Maximuscle taste is still intact.

Now let’s talk about the price

A 1.26kg tub of Cyclone will set you back £40, and seeing as it’s meant to be used once per day (after training) your tub will last three weeks, despite looking f**king tiny at first.

Of course, if you’re the type of person who regularly struggles to hit your daily protein target then you’ll probably want to pick up an additional whey protein supplement (one which doesn’t contain creatine, HMB and glutamine), and this can drive your cost up a little more, so if you are training on a tight budget you could essentially create the same effect as Cyclone for less by buying each key ingredient separately (whey protein, creatine, HMB, zinc).

(Example: 4 months of Cyclone is 5 tubs, which costs £240. You can get the individual ingredients for about £110, it just wouldn’t taste as awesome.)

However, Maximuscle deserve serious credit for rising like a Phoenix to reclaim their spot among the UK’s leading supplement manufacturers. Cyclone is their flagship product, so I’m delighted to see it’s regained the cutting edge that made it so popular all those years ago.

It gets a solid 3 stars! Click here to get it.


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  1. Moore D. R., et al. Ingested protein dose response of muscle and albumin protein synthesis after resistance exercise in young men. Am J Clin Nutr (2009).
  2. D. G., et al. Effect of glutamine supplementation combined with resistance training in young adults. Eur J Appl Physiol (2001).
  3. Bassini-Cameron A., et al. Glutamine protects against increases in blood ammonia in football players in an exercise intensity-dependent way. Br J Sports Med (2008)
  4. D. G., et al. Effect of glutamine supplementation combined with resistance training in young adults. Eur J Appl Physiol (2001).
  5. Rawson E. S., et al. Effects of creatine supplementation and resistance training on muscle strength and weightlifting performance. J Strength Cond Res (2003).
  6. Dunsmore K. A., et al. Effects of 12 weeks of beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate free acid gel supplementation on muscle mass, strength, and power in resistance trained individuals. J Int Soc Sports Nutr (2012).
  7. Kreider R. B., et al. Effects of Calcium β-HMB Supplementation During Training on Markers of Catabolism, Body Composition, Strength and Sprint Performance. J Exercise Physiol (2000).
  8. Gallagher P. M., et al. Beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate Ingestion, Part I: Effects on Strength and Fat Free Mass. Med Sci Sports Exerc (2000).
  9. Kilic M. Effect of Fatiguing Bicycle Exercise on Thyroid Hormone and Testosterone Levels in Sedentary Males Supplemented With Oral Zinc. Neuro Endocrinol Lett (2007).

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