Do your muscles pain when you exercise for a longer time? Do you suffer other workout-related problems due to a lack of strength? Go on and read the article to solve such problems.
Well, you must have noticed about Pre-Workout Supplement while scrolling through internet. But you must be wondering what exactly are these pre-workout supplements, right? In precise terms, pre-workout supplements could be the secret medicine to maximize your workouts.
This article will tell you about Pre-Workout supplements, their benefits, and how to consume them. So, get ready to do pre-workout preparations!
What is a Pre-Workout Supplement?
Pre-Workout Supplements (aka Pre-Workouts) do not have any proper definition. But it is an ergogenic, i.e., a performance-enhancing supplement that one should consume before doing a workout. Basically, they are meant to give you extra energy before you exercise to maximize your workouts.
Pre-workouts delay the onset of fatigue, due to which one can exercise for a longer time. Taking them every day will help you get stronger, faster, and improving muscle mass. But how?
It contains various ingredients that boosts both endurance and strength performance. So, let’s know the elements involved.
Ingredients in a Pre-Workout Supplements
There are many different ingredients combined in pre-workout supplements. However, some common ingredients found in all pre-workouts are following:
Caffeine is the critical ingredient in most pre-workouts. It helps in maximizing ergogenic effects through Pre-workouts. Other than this, it also enhances endurance performance and increases alertness level.
In team-based sports, caffeine is beneficial for accuracy, sprinting, and jumping skills. Technically, it causes vasodilation. In simple words, it widens your blood vessels, due to which more blood and oxygen gets delivered to your muscles.
Pre-workouts have 150mg-300mg of caffeine per consumption, which equals 3 cups of coffee (approx.). That’s a lot!
Note: If you are sensitive and allergic to caffeine, you should find natural ways to boost your performance during a workout.
Beta-Alanine is an amino acid that’s a precursor for an intracellular pH buffer. So, when you exercise, hydrogen ions get accumulated in your muscles which makes them acidic. As a pH buffer, beta-alanine helps prevent muscles from acid and allows them to work for a longer time.
It is mainly consumed before doing high-intensity exercises so that it helps in buffering muscles.
Creatine is highly beneficial in body mass gains during resistance training. It can enhance performance in high-intensity exercises such as the deadlift.
It is also an amino acid which when supplemented, increases the stores of phosphocreatine within muscles.
BCCAs (Branched-chain Amino Acids) are included in pre-workouts as they help in boosting muscle growth. It also helps in reducing damage to your muscles during hard exercises.
These all ingredients have their specific benefits. However, when they are combined, it gives wholesome energy. Therefore, pre-workouts are fast-recovering workout machines!
Benefits of Pre-Workout Supplement
Until now, you have been familiar that pre-workouts have numerous advantages. Depending on the workout training, pre-workouts enhance endurance, stamina, and muscle strength. So, let’s discuss all the benefits in detail.
As already told, half of the ingredients in pre-workouts are amino acids that benefit muscle gains. Most important is the concentration of BCCAs (Branched-chain amino acids). BCCA are crucial amino acids to gain muscle strength.
Besides BCCAs, pre-workouts also contain citrulline, an amino acid that enhances both oxygen level and blood flow to muscles and take extra nutrients to muscular system while doing workout.
A combination of both BCCA and citrulline amino acids works as a powerful supplement for muscle gain. Now, your muscles are ready for intense and productive workouts.
Pre-workout supplements can enhance strength in many ways. Well, one of the benefits is the increase in muscle. Other than this, pre-workouts also fortify your metabolism as you work out.
Creatine is an essential ingredient in pre-workouts that enhances strength. It increases the biochemical mechanisms that increase energy in your body. Overall, creatine is the primary source of power, muscle mass, and endurance.
When you exert yourself during a workout, nitrate in pre-workouts allows the body to carry nutrients to muscles, which increases the strength.
To boost endurance in your body, remove the mechanism that causes fatigue. Pre-workout supplements do this in two critical ways:
Caffeine in pre-workouts is the same as coffee or espresso you take to freshen yourself in the morning. Caffeine charges you with motivation and endurance during the workout.
Beta-alanine in pre-workouts eliminates the acids from your muscle that reduces the accumulation of acid in the body. As a result, you can do intense workouts for a longer time.
Apart from these, sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and L-theanine (chemical) are present in pre-workouts to boost endurance in your body.
Enhances Cognitive Processes
Surprisingly, the benefits of pre-workouts are not limited to physical health. The effects are mental as well, especially on cognitive processes. Cognitive processes such as alertness, focus, accuracy, reaction time, and positive vibes get enhanced during workouts.
If you are a fitness freak, then you would know that half of the success comes from mentality, i.e., if your head is in the right place, your body will follow.
Improve Body Composition
Long-term consumption of pre-workouts with intense exercises such as lifting can help to improve body composition as it increases lean muscle mass compared to placebo.
If you’re new to pre-workouts, then don’t worry! Keep your exercise and pre-workout regular to reduce fat mass and improve body composition.
So, these were all the advantages of pre-workout supplements. But to gain all these advantages, you should how and when you have to take them.
How To Take Pre-Workout Supplements?
The fitness industry is full with all types of pre-workout products. One can take pre-workout supplements in two forms that are available out in the shops:
Powder is the most popular form that can be mixed into water to make a Pre-workout drink. Most people prefer to drink; however, you can directly consume some powder and drink some water.
You can also mix the powder with smoothie ingredients to make Pre-workout smoothies. You can make your favorite flavor drink with the powder.
Many experts suggest eating a complete meal 2-3 hours before doing exercises. But it isn’t possible then try to have a small meal 30 minutes before doing exercises.
Pre-workout food will boost your energy and will include caffeine, carbohydrates, and proteins.
When to Take it?
Whether powder, drink, or food, pre-workouts is best when taken 30-60 minutes before working out. The logic is that caffeine (the main ingredient) takes at least 30 minutes to reach peak levels in the blood.
And other ingredients like Creatine and Beta-Alanine are effective when they had time to build up your muscles.
Overall, taking them too soon allows pre-workouts to metabolize with no good; if you wait too long, then also you will receive no benefit.
So, we recommend you to take pre-workouts 30-60 minutes before doing the workout.
Experts have suggested the essential dosage should be between 20-30 grams.
However, keep in mind, every pre-workout supplement product is different. Pre-workouts vary in concentrations of the ingredients, and you should follow the dosage given on the label of the pre-workouts you choose.
How Do Pre-Workout Supplements Work?
Pre-workouts works to lay out physiological effects from all sorts of angles at the constant time.
First of all, pre-workout supplements enhances the nerves in your body. It helps you in increasing your energy level and enhancing your motivation. Obviously, without motivation, one cannot do intense workouts.
After stimulating the nervous system, pre-workout will increase the blood flow and flow of nutrients and oxygen. Oxygen provides stamina and nutrients and increases metabolism, allowing your body to work through an intense and productive workout.
Then ingredients mentioned above and others do their specific job to make pre-workout a treasure of maximizing workout performance.
Pre-Workout Supplements: Side Effects
There are no documented side effects; however, pre-workouts are a source of debate since they had introduced. Many questions get raised by people about whether they are safe or not. Well, the only answer is that pre-workout effects depend on the product’s ingredient, dosage, and your body.
Every person is different from the outside and inside. But some of the prevalent side effects of pre-workouts are the following:
- Feeling overstimulated or jittery/ Anxiety: If you feel anxious after drinking a coffee, it’s better to ensure how much caffeine has been included in your pre-workouts.
- Unstable stomach
- Numbness and tingling in the body: It is common due to allergies to ingredients in pre-workouts.
- Reddening of skin: If you are allergic to niacin, you can experience reddening in your skin.
If you have any side effects, then stop taking pre-workouts immediately and go to a doctor for a remedy.
Note: FDA (Food and Drug Administration) does not regulate Pre-workout supplements.
Tips for Taking Pre-Workout Supplements
Keeping in mind the side effects and risks associated with Pre-workout supplements, here are some tips for taking pre-workouts:
- Consult a doctor: If you suffer from health problems for which you take medicines, then before taking pre-workouts, consult with your doctor.
- Take on recommended time and dosage: As stated above, take pre-workouts 30-60 minutes before exercising, and take only 20-30 grams.
- Take pre-workout every day: To gain all the benefits, you should take pre-workout supplements consistently before doing a workout.
- Don’t Take too much: Consuming excessive pre-workouts can cause most of the side effects mentioned above—upset stomach, headache, rise in blood pressure, and blood sugar.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is Pre-workouts Safe?
Yes, pre-workouts are safe. However, suppose you are sensitive to caffeine or allergic to any ingredients mentioned on the cover of pre-workout you choose.In that case, you can suffer some side effects such as anxiety, reddening of skin, headache, etc. So, you better take advice from a doctor before using pre-workout supplements.
Which one is the best Pre-workout Supplement?
There are thousand of pre-workout available on the market. Choosing the best pre-workout supplements is very difficult as everyone has a different favorite. Everyone should read the label and ingredients carefully before buying them.
However, NF Sports Pre-workout is considered as one of the best pre-workouts as it contains the essential ingredients such as creatine, beta-alanine, and BCCA.
How do you know if the supplement is working?
To know whether the pre-workout supplement is working, you will notice the following key things:
- A sudden boost of energy level in your body
- You will become intensely focused and accurate during your workout.
- You will be able to increase the amount of weight during weight lifting.
- Your strength will increase, and you will notice that you are doing exercise for a longer time.
- Beta-alanine ingredient in pre-workouts can cause tingling sensations, and you can feel it.
With lots of misconceptions and talk surrounding pre-workout supplements, it is challenging to find the truth. This article lays out the basics for all those out there who want to try pre-workouts.
The good news is that pre-supplement does work, and all the benefits are legitimate. They can help you do hard and productive exercises. However, make sure not to take pre-workouts in excess amount.
If you are a committed athlete and want to go further in sports, you should buy pre-workout supplements.
Whether you want to gain muscle sustainably, lose weight, or do both—Mirganshi is the person you reach out to! She has a B.Sc in Nutrition and Dietetics from Lovely Professional University (LPU) and certification from Gold’s Gym Fitness Institute (GGFI). She grew up and completed her schooling in Jaipur, Rajasthan back in the early 2000s. Currently, she helps hundreds of individuals in correcting their diets, lifestyle habits, and physical health.
She currently lives with her husband in Navi Mumbai, and they have been happily married since 2017. She is also a fitness freak herself and has completed several marathons like TATA Mumbai Marathon, Pinkathon, and more! In her free time, she likes to listen to music while writing her journal. Discipline is her best friend, and she ensures to impart this virtue in her clientele as well.
Due to her impeccable grip on body nutrition and well-being, Mirganshi understands precisely what is right for your body and recommends/reviews products she only truly has faith in. Mirganshi is also a champion for mental health advocacy and understands how keeping your brain fit and mind sane is an essential part of well-being.