Most people know that pre workout products are great for the days you struggle to go to the gym, but not many people understand that choosing the right pre workout product can have a significant impact on your training results in the long-term as well.
If you choose the right product, not only will you have more energy for your workout sessions, you’ll also receive better muscle pumps, faster muscle recovery, and other individual benefits.
Keep reading below to learn about the best pre workout product ingredients that you want in any pre workout product!
Although there are other stimulants out-there that you can find in pre workout products, caffeine is the most well-known, and probably the safest as well. Caffeine has many beneficial aspects when used before training, including improving focus, energy, and work capacity.
According to a study published in Medicine and Science in Sports,
“the enhanced endurance performance observed in the C Trial was likely the combined effects of caffeine on lipolysis and its positive influence on nerve impulse transmission.”
The main consideration when drinking caffeine before a workout is “how much” caffeine you should drink. Most pre workout products contain over 100 mg of caffeine, and many contain over 200 mg of caffeine per serving. Although these doses are safe and effective for many people, for others it is far too much.
Look for a product which contains the right amount of caffeine for you!
Creatine monohydrate is one of the most commonly known, but also most commonly mis-understood pre workout product ingredients. Regardless, it is one of the best pre workout ingredients.
Creatine monohydrate should be in every pre workout product you purchase because it helps improve your body composition and muscle strength long-term, while also providing you additional energy each workout.
According to a study published in the Journal of the American Dietic Association,
“One week of creatine supplementation (25 g/day) enhances muscular performance during repeated sets of bench press and jump squat exercise.”
Creatine monohydrate is most effective when you begin with a “loading phase” where you ingest ~25 grams of creatine per day for one week, and then maintain 5 grams of creatine per day for the course of 6-8 weeks. If you can get a pre workout product which contains 5 grams of creatine, that will be enough to maintain and improve the amount of creatine stored in your body, which will help you receive the benefits you are looking for!
Although citrulline malate is a relatively new supplement compared to caffeine and creatine monohydrate, you should not purchase a pre workout product without it!
According to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research,
“the use of Citrulline Malate (CM) might be useful to increase athletic performance in high-intensity anaerobic exercises with short rest times and to relieve post-exercise muscle soreness. Thus, athletes undergoing intensive preparation involving a high level of training or in competitive events might profit from CM.”
For most people, a dosage of 3-6 grams of citrulline malate before training is enough. Citrulline malate helps improve blood flow and circulation, which allows for better “muscle pumps” and better recovery from each training session. Citrulline malate is a unique ingredient because you will notice immediate effects, as well as lasting benefits.
You can also try drinking citrulline malate before bed or at other times as well, if you choose to purchase an individual citrulline malate supplement.
Similar to creatine monohydrate, Beta Alanine is another supplement which needs to undergo a “loading phase” before you notice the true benefits. In short, Beta Alanine helps you develop a buffer to lactic acid buildup, which keeps your muscles fresher and helps you train longer.
According to a research study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise,
“β-alanine supplementation seems to be a safe nutritional strategy capable of improving high-intensity anaerobic performance.”
The recommended dosage of Beta Alanine is around 3.2 grams per day, and it is best when takin in 3-4 dosages per day. You should look for a pre workout product which contains around 1 gram of beta alanine because the body cannot absorb more than that at a time.
Concluding Thoughts – The Best Pre Workout Product Ingredients
There are numerous other ingredients which can go into any pre workout product, but these are a few of the fundamental options that any product you spend your money on should have.
In fact, a product which contains only these ingredients is more than enough for most people!
If you make sure that the pre workout product you purchase next contains all of these ingredients, you will likely notice a significant improvement in your body composition, motivation for training each day, and how well you can achieve your goals!