Pre-workout Supplements 101
The secret to getting the most out of your training sessions is choosing the right pre-workout supplements. Taking full advantage of your time in the gym requires extreme focus, energy and heightened motivation when you workout. Harder to push out your reps when mentally fatigued and physically tired. This is where pre-workout supplements take you to the next level!
Pre-workout Supplements are designed to increase:
- Physical Energy
- Mental Focus
- Overall Endurance
- Muscle Strength
Pre-workout Formulas vary in ingredients as well as serving amounts. Common formulations contain one or more of the following:
- Select amino acids
- Vasodilators (Nitric Oxide boosters)
Together these ingredients will maximize your Power, Stamina, Intensity, and Endurance . Use of pre-workout supplements will facilitate strength gains, enhance muscle recovery, improve fat loss, help build lean muscle mass. Let’s take a look at how each of these principle ingredients can help.
Whether you workout first thing in the morning, after a long eight hour day, or somewhere in between, often the number one impediment to a good workout is feeling tired. When you’d rather nap than hitting the weights you need something to supercharge your system.
This is where caffeine can be your best friend. Caffeine is a naturally occurring stimulant found in the leaves, seeds, or fruit of over 60 plants around the world. It’s used in common items we eat and drink everyday such as soda, coffee, and even chocolate. As a concentrated supplement it’s a fast, convenient product to Aid in Metabolism, Mental Focus, Fat Loss, and even Muscle/Joint Inflammation. Studies have shown that caffeine can even increase endurance by about 15 Percent.
Nitric Oxide is one of the newer and more exciting subjects in sports supplementation and physiology. NO controls blood flow at the tissue level and is Vital for Fuel and Hormone Delivery to Muscles, Tissue Oxygenation, General Energy Levels, and even Sexual Function.
Recent studies on the amino acid leucine have shown that when it is taken orally, protein synthesis increases and muscle growth occurs. This new research is leading to companies putting out some terrific BCAA supplements and a lot of companies are including them in their protein powders and pre-workout supplements.
The body makes nitric oxide from oxygen and the amino acid arginine. Many of the pre-workout supplements you’ll find here will have one or more variations of this powerful amino acid. The body also makes NO from a non-essential amino acid called citrulline, another ingredient in many of the top selling pre-workouts.
Creatine monohydrate, discovered in 1832, but only been popular as a sport supplement since the early 1990s. Made naturally in the liver, kidneys, and pancreas from 3 different amino acids. It builds Strength and Muscle Mass, but it also proven to Improve Physical Performance in short, repeated bursts of high intensity exercise.
There’s no evidence that creatine increases the risk of muscle strains, muscle cramps, heat injury or other side effects, and in one review scientist poured over 70 published studies on creatine and determined that creatine can be safely taken in doses as high as 5 grams per day indefinitely.
Common Questions About Pre-Workout Supplements
Q: Are pre-workout supplements safe for women?
A: Yes they are safe, though we recommend starting off with half the serving size to assess your tolerance. Don’t use any pre-workout supplement if you are pregnant or breast feeding
Q: Is it okay if I take my pre-workout product on an empty stomach?
A: Yes, taking a product on an empty stomach can aid in absorption. If you are sensitive to caffeine and you get an upset stomach, then eating a small snack before you take the supplement will help alleviate those problems.
Q: Should I take my pre-workout product on my off days?
A: You can, but we don’t recommend it. The purpose of a pre-workout supplement is to aid your energy levels, blood flow, and focus during a workout.
Q: Will I become dependent on Pre-workout supplements after prolonged use?
A: Yes, over time. Because of the stimulatory nature of most pre-workout products, your nervous system can develop a tolerance to the effects of a pre-workout. As a rule of thumb, we recommend taking a pre-workout no longer than 6 weeks at a time without a 1-2 week break before starting again.
Time to Get Started!
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