For those of you that are looking for that extra boost when it comes to focusing, performance, and endurance for your next workout, sports nutrition and, specifically, pre-workout supplements are definitely the way to go and get amped for the next sweat session.
But with such a wide variety on the market and a plethora of ingredients, some of which most of us have never even heard of, it can become quite a challenge to pick the supplement that will work for your specific fitness goal and body type.
Table of Contents
- 1 The 13 Best Pre-Workout Supplements for 2023
- 1.1 1. Best Overall Pre-workout: Bulk Pre-workout – Transparent Labs
- 1.2 2. Strongest Pre-workout Without Banned Substances: Hooligan Pre-workout – Apollon Nutrition
- 1.3 3. Best Pre-workout for Beginners: Superhuman Sport – Alpha Lion
- 1.4 4. Best Pre-workout for Pumps: Pump Serum – Huge Supplements
- 1.5 5. Best Pre-workout for Muscle Growth: Pre-Kaged Pre-workout – Kaged
- 1.6 6. Best Pre-workout Without Caffeine: Bare Knuckle – Apollon Nutrition
- 1.7 7. Best Pre-workout for Men: Pre-Kaged Elite Pre-workout – Kaged
- 1.8 8. Best Pre-workout for Women: Pre-game Pre-workout – Cira Nutrition
- 1.9 9. Best Pre-workout Without Beta Alanine: Darkside Onslaught Pre-workout – Alpha Neon
- 1.10 10. Best Pre-workout for Weight Loss: Superhuman Burn – Alpha Lion
- 1.11 11. Best Hardcore Pre-workout: El Jefe Pre-workout – Asc Supplements
- 1.12 12. Best Pre-workout Without Creatine: Wrecked – Huge Supplements
- 1.13 13. Best Thermogenic Pre-workout: Black Tulip – Apollon Nutrition
- 2 Pre-Workout Benefits
- 3 How to Buy Pre-Workout Supplements
- 4 How to Use Pre-Workout Supplements
- 5 Conclusion
The 13 Best Pre-Workout Supplements for 2023
We have trialed and tested over a dozen of the top pre-workout supplements on the market and have listed their ingredients so that you can smash those intense workouts without suffering from muscle fatigue halfway through and achieve your peak workout performance.
- Best Overall Pre-workout: Bulk Pre-workout – Transparent Labs
- Strongest Pre-workout Without Banned Substances: Hooligan Pre-Workout – Apollon Nutrition
- Best Pre-workout for Beginners: Superhuman Sport – Alpha Lion
- Best Pre-workout for Pumps: Pump Serum – Huge Supplements
- Best Pre-workout for Muscle Growth: Pre-Kaged Pre-Workout – Kaged
- Best Pre-workout Without Caffeine: Bare Knuckle – Apollon Nutrition
- Best Pre-workout for Men: Pre-Kaged Elite Pre-Workout – Kaged
- Best Pre-workout for Women: Pre-Game Pre-Workout – Cira Nutrition
- Best Pre-workout Without Beta Alanine: Darkside Onslaught Pre-workout – Alpha Neon
- Best Pre-workout for Weight Loss: Superhuman Burn – Alpha Lion
- Best Hardcore Pre-workout: El Jefe Pre-Workout – Asc Supplements
- Best Pre-workout Without Creatine: Wrecked – Huge Supplements
- Best Thermogenic Pre-workout: Black Tulip – Apollon Nutrition
1. Best Overall Pre-workout: Bulk Pre-workout – Transparent Labs
With just over 200 mg of caffeine, BCAAs, Vitamin D3, and Zinc, BULK is a great choice if you're looking for a normal amount of caffeine + extra nutritional support.
When it comes to finding the pre-workout supplement that ticks most fitness goal boxes, a perfect balance of high-quality clinically dosed ingredients are definitely key.
Bulk from Transparent Labs is a well-balanced pre-workout that is easy to recommend to basically anyone and for any workout performance goal – and taste, for that matter. This powder comes in flavors such as blue raspberry, watermelon, and green apple, all the way to peach-mango.
Without any artificial sweeteners, coloring, or preservatives, this supplement convinces, thanks to what it contains. With ingredients such as 4 g of beta-alanine per serving, as well as citrulline malate, of which it contains 6 g per serving, this pre-workout goes beyond what most supplements can provide and will drastically improve your muscle endurance, strength, and aerobic performance!
2. Strongest Pre-workout Without Banned Substances: Hooligan Pre-workout – Apollon Nutrition
New v6 released in April 2022!
Hooligan is the strongest pre workout without banned substances, bar none. Hooligan is brimming with pump, energy, and focus ingredients to keep you going all day long.
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The fancy flavors stand in stark contrast to the logo and name of the brand: strawberry margarita, mango sunrise, turnpike tea, or mai tai will make your inner hooligan feel like a lady sipping cocktails at a bar, and we’re all here for it!
With a whopping 6 g of L-citrulline, your muscle endurance will reach new peaks.
On top of that, Hooligan is free of exotic stimulants like DMAA or DMHA, but contains a staggering 600 mg caffeine blend, together with heaps of pump and focus ingredients!
And the best yet – it comes as a budget option, which offers you 20% off your first order and 10% off every following package.
3. Best Pre-workout for Beginners: Superhuman Sport – Alpha Lion
Superhuman Sport is Alpha Lion's pre-workout supplement designed for athletes. It has a fully disclosed ingredient label without any banned or illegal substances.
At 100 mg of caffeine, it's great for those who want an effective pre-workout supplement without excessive caffeine.
Loaded with research-backed ingredients, Superhuman Sport delivers a beginner-friendly 100 mg caffeine dosage with 2.5 g betaine anhydrous to help power output and 2.5 d-ribose for fast energy.
Superhuman Sport comes without any artificial colors or banned substances and is therefore safe to use and definitely without any sketchy side effects you generally want to avoid. The transparency of the ingredients and the label is definitely a big plus for this pre-workout, specifically if you are just starting out on your sports nutrition journey.
When it comes to the best pre-workout supplements for beginners, Superhuman Sport is hard to top!
4. Best Pre-workout for Pumps: Pump Serum – Huge Supplements
This stimulant-free pre-workout is brimming with ingredients to increase nitric oxide production, such as 8 g of l-citrulline, vaso-drive ap, inositol arginine silicate, and muscle hydration (glycerol powder and Himalayan pink sea salt). This is why each serving comes in over 31 g, which will last you for 25 servings per package.
When it comes to the best pump pre-workout supplements, Pump Serum is right up there with the best of them.
Without the caffeine crash afterward, you can expect focussed pump capacity and muscle endurance for your next workout.
5. Best Pre-workout for Muscle Growth: Pre-Kaged Pre-workout – Kaged
Pre-Kaged is one of the best "all-around" pre-workouts on the market today. When it comes to delivering proven ingredients at effective dosages, Kaged is a brand that delivers time and time again.
Pre-Kaged supplies pump, energy, and focus without any banned or shady ingredients, making it a great choice for tested athletes or anyone that cares what they put into their body.
If you are looking for a way to boost your protein intake for more muscle growth, then Pre-Kaged Pre-Workout is the perfect supplement for you – it includes 6.5 g of BCAAs and 1.5 g of creatine HCL – which makes this supplement one of the best “all-in-one” pre-workouts you can currently get your hands on on the market.
On top of that, Pre-Kaged contains an impressive 6.5 grams of pure L-Citrulline in each serving, well above the minimum recommended amount of 4 grams. This amino acid will help you achieve a better pump during your workouts and boost nitric oxide output!
6. Best Pre-workout Without Caffeine: Bare Knuckle – Apollon Nutrition
Apollon’s Stimulant free pre-workout is full of Nitrates and maxes out your workout strength while supplying you with essential Vitamins such as B-12, B-3, -5, and -6!
This supplement includes an unmatched blend of pump ingredients and focuses on ingredients such as l-tyrosine, Alpha-GPC, and lion’s mane mushrooms to provide pumps and focus without caffeine. It’s recommended to use with caution and start with a half spoon with this potent pre-workout mix!
You can choose between exotic taste such as Strawberry Matcha Tea or Sour Apple, or if you want it a bit more manly – Root Beer!
7. Best Pre-workout for Men: Pre-Kaged Elite Pre-workout – Kaged
Looking for a pre-workout supplement that will aid you in muscle gain while also increasing your strength levels and that is made specifically with the male body type in mind? Pre-Kaged Elite is the way to go for you, as it contains an incredible 10 g of L-citrulline and 3.2 g of beta-alanine per serving.
Kaged’s 9 patented ingredients and creatine blend was developed by elite athletes and can help increase strength (when supplemented daily) so that you can reach new workout goals faster. It will assist you with that extra pump power and increased focus to work out far beyond your usual limits!
8. Best Pre-workout for Women: Pre-game Pre-workout – Cira Nutrition
Jitter-free, with ingredients to enhance blood flow and boost energy. Flavors are above average. No crash, beginner-friendly.
If you’re looking for that harder, better, faster, stronger feeling without picking up bulk muscle gain but rather smash your next gym session or 10-mile run, don’t sweat it ’cause Cira Nutrition’s Pre-Game has got you covered. It was an easy pick for our best pre-workout for women.
They have removed beta-alanine in their V2 version (so no more tingling sensation – yay) and added Senactiv, which is a blend of adaptogenic extracts that may aid in recovery and even assist with cellular regeneration.
If an anti-aging pre-workout that promotes gut health doesn’t already sound appealing enough, their fun flavors like strawberry margarita, blue raspberry, blood orange, green apple, and fruit punch will definitely sway you off your feet!
9. Best Pre-workout Without Beta Alanine: Darkside Onslaught Pre-workout – Alpha Neon
Darkside Onslaught is an incredibly unique pre-workout.
First, it combines ingredients for fat-burning, focus, energy, and pumps.
Second, it doesn't contain beta-alanine, a traditionally popular but occasionally polarizing ingredient.
Third, it doesn't contain any illicit stimulants or other banned ingredients.
Last, it actually delivers 30 full servings at a time where you're lucky to get 25 servings from most quality pre-workouts.
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If you have experience with pre-workouts and are not a first-time user, then Darkside Onslaught is the right supplement for you.
It is a fully-stacked pre-workout that just so happens to not include beta-alanine, but does have other powerful ingredients such as lion’s mane. So if you hate the tingling feeling but still want an excellent pre-workout with an incredibly focused pump, Darkside Onslaught is a great choice!
It comes in funky tastes, too, such as purple fruit punch, rainbow candy, and blue raspberry.
10. Best Pre-workout for Weight Loss: Superhuman Burn – Alpha Lion
SuperHuman Burn is a 2 in 1 pre-workout and fat burner. It includes clinical doses of proven fat burning ingredients for increasing energy expenditure along with tried and true pre-workout ingredients.
Its well-balanced but potent ingredient profile makes it one of our favorite overall pre-workout supplements.
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When you’re looking to shed some excess pounds, Superhuman Burn will give you the energy levels you need to increase your training intensity but aid you in increasing your caloric expenditure at the same time.
Superhuman Burn stands alone when it comes to pre-workouts for weight loss.
This thermogenic pre-workout supplement includes trademarked ingredients like MitoBurn, CaloriaBurn, and ProGBB and therefore acts as a fully-dosed pre-workout and fat burner so you can sweat the fat away without any nasty side effects.
11. Best Hardcore Pre-workout: El Jefe Pre-workout – Asc Supplements
El Jefe is a powerful DMHA pre workout that delivers euphoric energy and long lasting focus.
One of my personal favorite pre workouts! Get the peach rings flavor if you can.
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This all-in-one pre-workout really makes you exceed your workout limits and boost energy levels like no other pre-workout supplements before!
El Jefe is the strongest pre-workout on the market and, in our opinion, the fanciest, as it includes the exotic stimulant DMHA. It also contains other powerful stimulants like eria jarensis and alpha yohimbine, which will give you the extra kick of focus and pump strength you need to kick your workout in the butt!
This is surely not for the faint of heart, but one of the best and most consistent hardcore pre-workouts over the last few years.
12. Best Pre-workout Without Creatine: Wrecked – Huge Supplements
Wrecked v2 released April 11, 2022!
Wrecked has a stacked label of stims + pump enhancers that make it a great choice for someone looking for a strong pre-workout without negative side effects.
v2 really takes things up to the next level. Hats off to Huge Supplements!
Supplements with stimulants such as caffeine are usually best mixed without creatine; therefore, Wrecked is a great option when wanting to separate the two supplements and focus on your muscle gain and restoration post-workout instead.
Recently reformulated in 2022, Wrecked is quickly becoming a contender for overall best pre-workouts, delivering an overdosed “all around” label that blows most pre-workouts out of the water.
If for some reason Wrecked doesn’t check all of your boxes, we have some other excellent pre-workouts without creatine you can check out.
13. Best Thermogenic Pre-workout: Black Tulip – Apollon Nutrition
For those who want more stimulants in their pre-workout, but still want thermogenic effects, Apollon Nutrition has you covered.
Black Tulip is a version of their infamous Assassin pre-workout that focuses on amping up thermogenesis and calorie burning. Apollon is well-known by pre-workout fans for including massive doses of each ingredient and Black Tulip is no different.
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If you want to level it up and have something more intense than Superhuman Burn, then Black Tulip is the answer. More stimulants, more fat-burners, and more intensity. Apollon Nutrition never cuts corners, and Black Tulip is no exception.
Whether you are looking for a supplement that is beneficial for women or a pre-workout for men, this pre-workout formula does it for any body.
Thermogenic supplements will boost energy levels and assist you actively in burning excess weight by enhancing your metabolism. With ingredients such as caffeine anhydrous and di-caffeine malate will provide you with an excellent focus base for fat loss.
Suppose you are out to step up your workout game and want to enhance your physical and mental performance in the gym, on a run, or in a race. In that case, pre-workout supplements will bring you a lot of advantages over just hydrating yourself and eating an energy-packed meal prior to your next sweat session.
You should note, however, that just taking these supplements does not get you anywhere. You will also have to put in the extra work to gain results. By taking pre-workout supplements, you are taking energy-enhancing ingredients which are supposed to support you in achieving better goals in your workouts.
When taking pre-workout supplements, the main benefit should be that you can work out for longer, are capable of working out harder, and can take on more weights. But here is a closer look at what exact benefits you can reap from using pre-workout effectively:
Increased energy and motivation
Pre-workouts are blended with ingredients that will enhance your muscular endurance and help you focus while lifting weights or running your next 10 miles, which will help you improve your overall workout routine because it:
- Can help you workout longer
- Can help you avoid skipping workouts
- Can help you achieve your goals faster
We all know the effect of achieving our goals – it makes us proud and encourages us to keep going. Therefore, pre-workouts can be a great way of overcoming your inner couch potato and providing you with that extra bit of motivation to keep on broadening your horizon and setting yourself new workout and fitness goals every time.
Improved exercise performance
Because of active ingredients such as caffeine or beta-alanine, which will improve blood flow, your body will have more oxygen running through its veins and supply your muscles with more energy to increase their power outputs.
Extra focus through stimulants can aid people in pushing themselves harder to continue with their exercise, achieve more reps or miles, and thus have an improved endurance. Kicking your goals will also motivate you for your next workout and thus keep you in the workout game longer. It’s a positive upward spiral, basically.
Best ingredients for best performance
We have listed a lot of ingredients that will help pre-workout supplements work their magic to help you with your muscular endurance, improve blood flow and boost focus. But we have also listed some stim-free pre-workout supplements or focussed on introducing supplements without artificial flavors or other ingredients.
Generally, the best ingredients to boost performance most effectively are caffeine, beta-alanine, L-citrulline, betaine anhydrous, and L-tyrosine. But what effects do they actually have on your training sessions?
Always read up on the ingredients of each supplement – so you can shape your pre-workout boost according to your body and goals, rather than just dealing with some effects that you might find not desirable. This could be the tingling feeling from beta-alanine, or perhaps you cannot ingest caffeine because of some pre-existing conditions.
No matter what may be the case, in order for you to choose the pre-workout which will work best for you and your exercise performance, it is important to educate yourself on the ingredients (and more so the dose of each) that are going to help you get to where you want to be.
Ingredients of popular pre-workouts
There are a lot of ingredients on the back of pre-workouts these days. Some are even patented and therefore hard to decipher when trying to understand what they are made out of. But most brands use the same or similar blend of several key ingredients in their pre-workouts, as they have proven themselves to be the most effective.
Here are the most common pre-workout ingredients with their effects on your physical and mental performance:
Caffeine is probably one of the most common ingredients in a pre-workout and has been used for thousands of years as a successful stimulant throughout every life situation. Drinking a coffee can therefore be seen as a natural pre-workout on its own.
While it increases your focus and eliminates the feeling of drowsiness when working out or just working, it also stimulates your brain to release powerful neurotransmitters such as norepinephrine and dopamine, which are responsible for pleasure as well. This means you will feel elated and satisfied during your workout – sounds great to us!
The amount of caffeine per serving is a personal choice, but most folks probably want at least 150 mg of caffeine. Most pre-workouts top out around 300 to 350 mg of caffeine per serving, but some will go even higher.
More is not necessarily better, according to recent studies, and you should always aim to use the minimally effective dosage. In other words, there’s no real benefit to taking more if you’re happy at 100 mg of caffeine.
Caffeine can either come in the form of natural caffeine in your pre-workout or can be listed as caffeine anhydrous (most common in tablets or pre-workout pills), di-caffeine malate, or caffeine citrate (quickest effect in your body).
Some athletes or even your average gym-goers might not enjoy using caffeine in their pre-workouts and therefore rather opt for caffeine-free supplements, as they do not enjoy the “caffeine crash” which can sometimes follow a large amount of caffeine intake.
Taurine is a sulfur-containing amino acid in our muscle and nervous system and is said to aid in nerve and muscle growth as a supplement in your pre-workout.
On top of that, the intake of taurine can aid you in your fat-loss journey, as taurine enhances lipolysis and therefore aids your body in burning fat quicker, or actually preventing it from generating fat from sugar.
Taurine is also a great recovery aid, as it acts as an anti-inflammatory and may therefore assist you with less of that sore-muscle feeling after an extensive workout.
You usually want at least 1,000 mg of taurine per serving in a pre-workout.
Betaine is aimed at improving your muscle endurance for repetitive exercises such as squats or pumps and is therefore a key ingredient in any pre-workout. It does so by regulating the fluids in your muscles and increasing their mass through increasing water mass inside your muscles.
It has been proven in studies that clinically dosed ingredients such as betaine have a long-term positive effect on many kinds of athletic performance, not just repetitive ones. Therefore it is a popular supplement taken by most athletes.
Regular daily intake over the course of several days is recommended for maximum effects and benefits, and you should look for at least 2.5 grams per serving.
If you are looking to improve your performance in high-intensity and resistance training, then beta-alanine is one of the amino acids you should definitely not leave out of your pre-workout pills or pre-workout drinks.
Beta-Alanine is responsible for increasing muscle carnosine, which reduces the production of lactic acid during workouts (lactic acid is responsible for your sore muscles and muscle fatigue after a hefty workout).
If you do not mind the tingling sensation, which is a marginal side-effect you mustn’t really worry about, you should look for supplements with at least 3.2 grams per serving. Also note that similar to taking creatine, the cumulative effect of beta-alanine requires daily supplementation to achieve the endurance benefits you are looking for.
In order to supply your body and specifically your muscles with enough oxygen to improve your performance during high-intensity exercise, you should know that every good pre-workout supplement should contain L-Citrulline.
L-Citrulline, or just citrulline, increases the blood flow in your body and enriches it with oxygen.
Your pre-workout supplement should have anything between 3-5 g of this amino acid in order to have any noticeable effects on your body during a workout session.
The best pre-workout formulas have at least 4 grams of pure L-citrulline or 6 grams of citrulline malate in a 2:1 ratio.
You should beware of manufacturers that do not disclose their ratio of citrulline to malate, as they may be hiding a low citrulline ratio and not putting at least 4 grams of L-Citrulline in each dosage, making your pre-workout products less effective.
Electrolytes such as magnesium, potassium, and sodium are essential when it comes to workout endurance and recovery.
Drastic changes in your electrolyte levels caused by extensive physical performance can cause your body to have a lower performance during your training sessions. This is surely nothing anybody would want when trying to lift heavier weights or run more miles.
Simply hydrating yourself with water before, during, or after your workout is not enough in order to really reach your fitness goals and will most likely harm your body in the process. Worst-case scenario, you can cause yourself to suffer from dehydration.
Another amino acid that is responsible for the production of dopamine is L-tyrosine. The following improved cognitive function, such as focus and a feeling of elevation, is what most people go for when taking this as a pre-workout supplement.
This ingredient goes way beyond just pre-workout supplements and can be found in many vitamins or other energy drinks.
Note that in order to prolong your tolerance during extensive exercise sessions, you will have to take dosages of at least 500 to 2,000 mg. Your exercise performance will most likely not only be extended, but you will be able to perform the exercise better under extreme conditions such as heat.
The best pre-workout supplements will have a dosage of around 1,000 mg to get the most reliable cognitive benefit of a combination of heightened focus and pleasure.
Any additional ingredients such as stimulants, vasodilators, or focus-enhancing supplements are typically what make up the other products in your pre-workout formulas. Don’t be afraid to look them up or read a review of the product that explains what the ingredients are. Knowledge is power, specifically when it comes to pre-workout supplements.
How to Buy Pre-Workout Supplements
Now that you have educated yourself on the list of beneficial ingredients to have in a pre-workout supplement, it is important which ingredients to look out for that are not necessarily desired as blended into your pre-workout powder.
Here is a guide on how you can buy the best pre-workout supplement for you without falling victim to a mediocre pre-workout formula.
First of all, buying your pre-workout supplement in specialized sports nutrition shops or websites might be a good place to start, as these have lots of other potentially useful tips and supplements you might be interested in.
Reading the reviews of the supplement you are interested in will also give you a great idea of what to expect from the formula you are looking at.
Perhaps you can even ask friends or acquaintances at the gym who you know are taking pre-workouts; surely they can give you useful advice as well.
Once you have narrowed your choices down, here are some of the most important points to look out for and to consider when trying to choose the best pre-workout supplements for your personal exercise performance goal:
You should always ensure that your pre-workout supplement contains a blend of the above-stated beneficial ingredients such as betaine anhydrous, beta-alanine, l-tyrosine, caffeine, and l-citrulline or citrulline malate in the ratio of 2:1.
Note that you can decide whether a certain ingredient should be in your supplement or not. If you want stimulant-free supplements, then choose a caffeine-free pre-workout. If you don’t like your skin to tingle, no beta-alanine for you. Luckily, there are so many formulas to choose from!
In addition to that, electrolytes or BCAAs may also be desirable for some individuals, especially those who train fastest.
Never buy a pre-workout supplement that does not fully disclose what ingredients are in its formula. You should also stay away from proprietary blends, which can mask how much of each ingredient you are actually getting.
This can lead to negative side effects or to you not reaching your fitness goal after all because you are lacking vital amino acids, for instance.
Some brands, such as Transparent Labs and Kaged, go through third-party testing to make sure their products are compliant and their labels are honest.
- Transparent Labs posts their certificates of composition and certificates of analysis.
- Kaged is part of the Informed-Sport certification program, a third-party testing program that ensures products are free of banned ingredients.
This may be worth considering if you are especially skeptical of the supplement industry. After all, you are what you eat, and if you care especially for what goes into your body – as most athletes do, transparency about ingredients should be of high regard to you!
Controversies of pre-workout
Most of the pre-workout ingredients of pre-workout supplements mentioned in this article are absolutely safe to ingest when taken in the correct dosage. As mentioned for instance in the case of beta-alanine, some people experience side effects, which are generally harmless.
When trying to avoid side effects overall, most people choose to go for zero caffeine or beta-alanine-free pre-workout powders, so this is generally not an issue.
What can become an issue, however, is if a pre-workout supplement has other poor qualities, which you should be aware of.
Poor qualities to look out for when buying pre-workout formula
If a brand tries to sell you proprietary blends and doesn’t want to disclose all of the ingredients or dosages – avoid it! People with pre-existing conditions or allergies should stay away from pre-workout supplements such as this.
The same goes for ingredients that you are not comfortable with or know what exactly their effects are. Always make sure that you are in charge of what goes into your body, especially when working out.
Another undesirable pre-workout supplement is one that has underdosed ingredients. Just like you wouldn’t want to drink a coffee that is too weak, you would not want to go through the trouble of paying for an expensive pre-workout supplement only to find that it actually doesn’t do the trick.
We all can agree that a lack of transparency does not make any brand very popular or trustworthy for that matter. Therefore, if you cannot find any information about the brand online, then you shouldn’t buy this pre-workout supplement.
Many people also try to stray away from artificial sweeteners or flavors based on their adverse effects on the human body.
How to Use Pre-Workout Supplements
In order for you to consume and use pre-workout supplements safely and in such a way that it enhances your whole workout experience, here is how to use them:
- Take your supplement between 15 and 30 minutes before working out
- Don’t take it on an empty stomach. Taking your pre-workout supplement on an empty stomach may help you feel the effects faster, but may also increase the likelihood of having an upset stomach.
- Make sure to stay hydrated throughout the workout, either with water or specialized hydration supplements with electrolytes such as Gatorade.
- Be careful not to take too much caffeine too late in the day, as it may make it more difficult to fall asleep. Consider a caffeine-free pre-workout for evening workouts if this becomes an issue.
Precautions and prerequisites when using pre-workout
Since we have already hinted at the potential side effects of taking a pre-workout supplement, it goes without saying that there are certain things to consider when taking these supplements. Some effects might not be bigger muscle mass, but potentially some adverse effects if not taken correctly or if you haven’t taken any precautions with your pre-workout.
Even the best pre-workout supplements can cause potential harm if not taken correctly or if you have pre-existing conditions such as allergies or are taking any other medication.
Here is what you need to know and how to prepare yourself for taking pre-workout supplements in the right way:
As just mentioned, it is likely that some of the ingredients in your pre-workout supplement may interact with a certain medication you are currently taking. If you are on any medication, you should definitely consult with your MD in order to understand the potential effects of the pre-workout in conjunction with your meds.
On top of that, should you have any other health conditions, especially heart conditions, you should consult with your medical professional. As stated earlier, most pre-workout formulas increase your blood flow and therefore lead to high blood pressure. If you have issues with that or are suffering from diabetes, you should avoid pre-workouts with those ingredients.
Furthermore, high-stimulant formulas can have adverse effects on people suffering from anxiety or even have a negative effect on your sleep pattern, depending on the amount of caffeine you are taking in and the time of the day you are taking your supplement. In severe cases, if too much caffeine is taken too late, you can suffer from insomnia.
To avoid this, try working out earlier in the day or choose zero-caffeine supplements instead, or lower your doses to a point where you feel comfortable.
In short, doing your research and consulting your medical professional based on any medical history or condition you might have is always a great way to avoid getting undesired side effects from your pre-workout supplement.
Of course, there is another useful way for people who want to avoid using pre-workouts in general, which is solely based on your diet. Through ingesting amino acids such as creatine and beta-alanine through certain foods, you may even enhance your exercise performance significantly.
There is an incredible range of pre-workouts to choose from these days, and in this article, we have provided you with the best pre-workout supplements for basically any situation and goal while also taking a look at the necessity to know the ingredients as well as effects of each of these formulas.
After having taken all of this into account, it is safe to say that the best pre-workout supplement by far on the market is Bulk Pre-Workout by Transparent Labs. Not only do they disclose all of their pre-workouts’ ingredients, but this pre-workout powder definitely has the best balance when it comes to all the desirable ingredients you need.
Providing you with an impressive 6g of citrulline malate as well as 4g of beta-alanine, this pre-workout powder gives you more than most pre-workouts out there.
Another runner-up for the best pre-workout supplements is Darkside Onslaught pre-workout from Alpha Neon as it comes without beta-alanine and, therefore, without the tingly feeling we have been mentioning so much in this article. Many athletes have stated that they do not necessarily enjoy this side-effect, so we think it’s a great choice!
Darkside Onslaught is however directly followed by Alpha Lion because it is a beginner-friendly option that has great reviews, starts low on caffeine, and has wonderful effects to enhance your workout routine if you are starting to use pre-workouts.
Whatever your goal may be, there are definitely pre-workouts on the market that can help you achieve it. The only important things to consider are pre-workout ingredients and which effects each ingredient can have on your performance, your goal, and your overall health – but don’t sweat it; this article should have you covered!