Pre-Workout Supplements: Get the Most Out of Your Workouts

Some days, when we wake up early for a workout, we’re jazzed up and ready to go. Other times, we need some extra incentive to get out the door, like listening to our favourite workout playlist. But what if I told you that there is a magical powder that can make you equally stoked to exercise and keep you pumped up throughout your session? It’s no news that a lot of people claim that taking pre-workout supplements helps them achieve this level of motivation.

The pre-workout supplements available on the market generally contain a similar blend of substances: caffeine, some form of creatine and amino acid compounds. Taken together, these substances give more energy and increased endurance to finish your workout. That makes sense, given what these individual ingredients do to the body.

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Caffeine, for example, is a stimulant that targets the nervous system, muscles, heart, blood pressure and provides energy. Studies have shown that consuming caffeine supplements before a workout can improve stamina and speed as well as boost strength and power. But it’s not like drinking a cup of coffee, which contains about 95 mg of caffeine. Most caffeine pre workout contains 150-300 mg of caffeine per serving. And if you’re wondering are caffeine supplements safe, experts suggest that people should only consume 400 mg of caffeine per day. This means when taking a pre-workout supplement, monitor the amount of caffeine you consume to ensure it’s at a level that is toleratable for you.

Pre-workouts also contains creatine, which is a chemical found in muscle tissue, the brain and foods like red meat and seafood. Creatine provides energy for the muscles to work, helping to enhance an individual’s muscular performance during short periods of high-intensity exercises.

Finally, amino acids, the organic compounds that make up proteins, are another source of energy that you might find packed in a pre-workout supplement. Some pre-workouts will incorporate branched-chain amino acids, which are a special type of amino acid that helps to support lean muscle. The stress of exercise causes your muscle fibres to develop very tiny tears in them. The result of this is the soreness you experience the day or two after your workout. Amino acids and other ingredients found in pre-workouts help with overall recovery.

Benefits of Pre-Workout Supplements

The aim of pre-workout nutrition is to provide your muscles with the needed energy supplies and support for your workout. The proteins and simple carbs found in pre-workouts can be easily digested and put to good work. Energy supplies decline fast during exercise and pre-workout nutrition helps support your workout plan and goals.

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Increased Physical Performance

Protein is necessary for protein synthesis to take place. Protein synthesis must exceed or equal the rate of protein breakdown for muscle maintenance and growth. Protein needs to be a key nutrient to support muscle maintenance and growth so that you can make every repetition count. The creatine found in pre-workout supplements contributes to saturating your muscle creatine stores. 3g/d of creatine is necessary to increase physical performance during short-term, high-intensity exercise.

Prevent Premature Fatigue

As energy levels decrease during exercise, your muscles get tired and become exhausted prematurely. When you take pre-workout nutrition containing the right nutrients, you set your body up for optimum performance with high levels of energy. When your body has energy readily available to burn, your body can make every repetition count without tiring early.

Reduce Protein Breakdown

In order for you to gain and maintain muscle tissue, protein synthesis must at least be equal to the rate of protein breakdown. BCAAs are the building blocks of protein. You should also add extra amino acids through dietary protein sources. Maintaining protein levels high by saturating your muscles stores prevents your muscles from being broken down for energy.

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Important Considerations

With the range of sports supplements available on the market today, eating a meal before a workout isn’t the only option you have to help you dominate the iron. A reputable pre-workout will significantly increase energy, improve focus and reduce fatigue beyond that of a regular meal. However, it’s extremely important that you use the right sports supplements to achieve your needs. In the case of pre-workout supplements, you should stay away from products with questionable ingredients and an excessive list of artificial substances. Buy only products with scientifically proven ingredients and zero filters.

Stay clear of proprietary blends. With a proprietary blend of ingredients, you don’t know what you are getting. Rather than listing exactly what quantity of each ingredient is in the product, a proprietary blend lumps a large number of ingredients together and gives them a per-serving dosage. As you can suppose, the most effective of these ingredients are included in such low dosages that make a return on investment very low. A high-quality pre-workout will feature a vast array of performance nutrients in sufficient quantities.