Limitless or Limited? In the days before the current nootropic and stimulant market explosion of choice, the (legal) go-to products for increased brain-wattage were limited to a double shot espresso and if you were daring, hardcore or a trucker on a double-shift, No-Doz tablets. You could procure some ephedrine or Ultimate Orange if you were lucky, but after a string of abuse related deaths and it’s linked potential to the mephatemine market, the various world-wide FDA buzz-kills closed the ephedrine gravy train down for most. In recent years we’ve seen DMAA come and go taking with it many people’s daily energy fix in a bottle.
Modafinil has been the recent darling of the nootropics scene attracting rave reviews from people comparing it to the drug from the movie Limitless. Modafinil is prescribed for narcoleptics to promote wakefulness and vigilance and has been used in the military for similar effect. It should be noted that Modafinil isn’t touted as packing the same stimulant buzz as something like a strong espresso or preworkout. Many recreational users discovered its potential for increasing their brain’s focus and concentration with some users raving about its ability to positively enhance any activity from working out to sex.
Hearing about the potential benefits based on Modafinil’s stellar reviews I knew I had to try it. Being a strong responder to stims in the past I was anticipating great things, so I searched high and low in Thailand for a source. Despite being the country that spawned the original Red Bull energy drink Thailand, has a dim view on anything stimulant related, therefore it’s hard to locate preworkout stims, dexies or modafanil. Even a doctor isn’t at liberty to prescribe it and I wasn’t quite wanting to go the online order route considering mail seems to travel at the speed of reverse here. I finally located a supply from Alpha Pharma whose catalogue features goodies such as high grade UGL steroids, GH and men’s health related medications. Strangely, a search of the Alpha Pharma site doesn’t show a Modafinil product in their range and in the land of Lady Boys and imitation Rolexes it’s not too hard to imagine that this was counterfeit or fake Modafinil – but I was willing to run a test all the same. The first day I took a full dose at 200mg and got to work on the computer waiting for the magic to happen. Thirty mins, an hour, then two hours passed. Nothing. I normally feel a palpable kick complete with Requiem for a Dream like pupil dilation when I take a stim of choice as I feel my brain literally go through the gear shift to the next level. I decided to help this stuff along thinking there might be some kind of synergistic effect if I take some caffeine and other stims with it. I popped a Diablo tab and within an hour the gear shift occurred -the problem was I was now firmly stuck in reverse being visited by that all too familiar bitch, Brain fog.
I’ve been sold some bunk shit I thought. The next 20 or so hours was an awful unfolding of Mr Magoo like bumbling and fumbling through my day. Simple tasks became magnitudes harder whereby I had to apply extreme concentration to things like remembering which floor my apartment was on, simple math like totaling the amount of weight I had on the bar together at the gym became an exercise in frustration and to top it off I left my phone in a cab never to see it again. I became ultra quiet and folded into myself not wanting to interact with anyone. The girl I was with said that my energy was different/off compared to normal and I found myself doing stupid things like stepping into oncoming traffic without thinking. When I’ve used dexamphetamine in the past I’ve reached levels of unstoppable confidence and social extroversion. With this I felt almost autistic, wanting to shut the world out with definitely no confidence boosting effect. The wakefulness effect of Modafinil (what it was designed to do) is subtle but strong – not like a dexamphetamine or preworkout stimulant buzz, but enhancement enough so that sleep becomes an impossibility and only eventuated with the aid of a Dostinex sleeping tablet. My appetite was definitely suppressed throughout the experience and I felt no increased energy or focus during my workouts like some other people have noted. Splitting the Dose On subsequent trials with Modfanil I experimented with using half a tablet and noticed a better overall effect in terms of cognitive focus. Some of the feelings of vision clarity and heightened sense of colour were more acute during these next few trials. I didn’t feel my brain ramp up in terms of cognitive function, but when I sat down to concentrate on a task, I didn’t feel the need to “task-hop” as much as I normally do. The sleeplessness and appetite suppression was still very pronounced at this dose For me personally I can’t recommend the use of Modafinil as an effective tool to increase cognitive ability compared with other more easily accessible stimulants/nootropics available to many already on the market. For clear, focused, increased cognitive horsepower something like dexamphetamine (Ritalin, Adderall) is the gold standard prescription item; the closest over the counter legal stack would include Biotest Spike or DMAA containing pre-workout (amazingly enough they can still be found if you look hard enough) used in conjunction with No-Pept and nicotine gum. Modafinil might be useful for when you have to apply laser-like ultra focus to getting a particular task complete and I’m wondering how it would stack with something like Ritalin/Adderall, but for bodybuilding purposes the undesirable appetite suppression together with the inevitable insomnia doesn’t help for achieving one’s physique goals. What I’ve realised however is that individual response varies tremendously – so only personal experimentation will tell with Modafinil holds limited or limitless potential for the user. This legal stack = infinitely more productive than Modafinil