Pre-workout Supplements: What To Know

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Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Several people find it quite challenging to get active and stay active. The main reason behind this is because they lack the energy to do so. To address this issue, most people take pre-workout supplements.

With many supplements available in the market, each product might contain varying ingredients. Because of this, it might be confusing to know what to look for in a pre-workout supplement.

4 Best Pre-workout Supplements You Might Want To Try

The following are some of the pre-workout supplement ingredients that you might want to consider:

Creatine

Creatine is a molecule your body naturally produces. It is also a popular pre-workout supplement. In fact, most athletes and weightlifters use creatine powders as supplements to boost their workout performance.

Most experts consider creatine the number one supplement for increasing power and strength, especially during high-intensity exercises. According to research, taking creatine supplements can help increase muscle mass, exercise performance, and strength. Furthermore, studies about people taking creatine supplements have also shown that strength gains from training programs are about 5 to 10% higher.

These show that creatine plays a huge role in your cell’s energy production. If your muscles have enough energy during a workout, this means you can perform better. Not only that, but this also means you might experience more significant improvements in your exercises over time.

If you prefer to increase your muscular strength, taking creatine supplements is a great idea. It is recommended to start 20 grams of creatine supplements per day. These are usually split into many servings during a short loading phase if you start consuming the said supplement. After the loading phase, you can then take a maintenance dose that is 3 to 5 grams daily.

Caffeine

Caffeine can be found in tea, coffee, and other foods and beverages. It helps stimulate specific parts of your brain to make you feel less tired and more alert. Furthermore, caffeine is also a popular ingredient found in pre-workout supplements.

Caffeine is great in improving many aspects of your workout exercise. It can help boost your ability to produce force quickly or increase your power output. This typically applies to a variety of exercises, including cycling, sprinting, and weight training. Moreover, based on studies, it is recommended to take caffeine in about 3 to 6 mg per kg of your body weight.

Suppose you weigh 68 kg. This means you should take about 200 t0 400 mg of caffeine to improve your workout performance. It is vital to know that caffeine is considered safe at the mentioned doses. However, the suspected toxic dose is much higher, at 20 to 40 mg per kg of body weight.

A caffeine dose of 9 mg per kg of bodyweight might cause tremors, sweating, vomiting, and dizziness. Also, caffeine might be responsible for increasing restlessness and blood pressure. However, it does not cause arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat).

People normally respond to the effects of caffeine differently. Hence, it would be best to know how much you can tolerate. Moreover, it is recommended to start with a low dose to know how you respond.

Beta-Alanine

Beta-alanine is considered an amino acid. It helps you fight muscle fatigue. When the acid in your body starts to build up, beta-alanine helps fight the acid.

Taking beta-alanine supplements might improve your workout performance and increase the concentration in your body. Furthermore, a beta-alanine supplement might help improve your performance during high-intensity exercises that last about one and four minutes at a time. However, it might not be effective for boosting your exercise performance that usually lasts about a minute or less.

Experts recommend taking beta-alanine supplements in 4 to 6 grams daily. This dose is considered safe. Hence, there is no need to worry. However, you might feel a tingling feeling on your skin if you take higher doses of this supplement.

Citrulline

Just like beta-alanine, citrulline is also an amino acid. Your body naturally produces this type of amino acid. However, taking citrulline supplements or consuming them through food can help increase its levels in your body.

Citrulline has a huge role in increasing your blood flow to body tissues. When it comes to your exercises, this might help supply your muscles with the nutrients and oxygen they need to work well. In fact, a study showed that cyclists tend to bike about 12% longer before getting tired when taking this amino acid than a placebo.

It is essential to know that citrulline has two main forms. The dosage typically depends on which form you use. L-citrulline is mostly used for endurance exercises at a recommended dose of 6 grams daily. On the other hand, citrulline malate is used for weight training at a recommended dose of 8 grams per day. 

Is It Best To Buy Or Make Your Own Pre-workout Supplement?

You can choose to buy or make your own pre-workout supplements. Below are what you should know about each approach:

Buying A Pre-made Pre-workout  Supplement

If you choose to buy a pre-workout supplement, there are many products available in the market. You can also opt to read reviews regarding these products. Moreover, most pre-workout supplements typically contain many ingredients that help you improve your exercise performance.

It is vital to know that a variety of pre-workout supplements might list the same ingredients. However, they might be composed of different dosages each. On a negative note, these dosages are usually not based on any scientific research.

This doesn’t mean that you should not buy any pre-workout supplements. This information connotes that you should do your best to look at the ingredients and doses of these pre-workout supplements. Furthermore, some pre-workout supplements might contain proprietary blends, which typically hide the exact quantity of each ingredient in the product.

Making Your Own Pre-workout Supplement

You can choose to mix your own pre-workout supplement. This might be overwhelming, but it can ensure that you are taking the ingredient your body needs. To start your pre-workout supplement mix, buy all the ingredients you want.

If you make your own pre-workout supplement, you can easily manage the number of ingredients you want. Also, if you choose to buy in bulk, you might save a lot of cash in the long run. 

Conclusion

Most people take pre-workout supplements to boost their exercise performance. This is because these supplements can provide you with the energy you need to sustain a high-intensity workout. Moreover, it is vital to know that not all pre-workout products have the same ingredients. Hence, it is best to check the label. 

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