Getting to the gym to accomplish your fitness goals is a great idea. But it can be hard when you cannot push yourself within. In that case, a pre-workout supplement works well to make you ready for your next workout session! Many times, individuals find it difficult to feel energetic enough for a workout and feel fatigued. Hence, a pre-workout powder can be a secret medicine to maximize your performance.
As the name says, a pre-workout supplement is a health supplement that is consumed before a workout session. The robust ingredients in a pre-workout offer an extra boost and mental focus to maximize your physical performance. Whether you are a bodybuilder or an athlete, this supplement is widely used to reduce early fatigue during workouts.
What is a Pre-Workout?
A pre-workout is a performance-enhancing supplement commonly used in a powder form. It contains important ingredients like caffeine, amino acids, and vitamins. A combination of these ingredients is known to increase strength and maximize endurance.
Effecting in delaying early workout fatigue, bodybuilders and athletes can train for a longer time. As a result of intense workouts, you can achieve stronger muscle mass. In short, a pre-workout is designed to enhance your fitness journey by increasing your efficiency of lifting.
What Are Pre-Workout Benefits?
Most pre-workout fuels contain beta-alanine, caffeine, taurine, citrulline, tyrosine, and B vitamins. From enhanced focus to improved endurance, these ingredients provide many benefits to your fitness journey. Let’s find out the top 5 benefits of consuming a pre-workout supplement:
- Keep You Stronger For a Long Time
When performing resistance exercises, you may not be able to lift heavy weights to their full potential. A pre-workout supplement can help you delay early muscle fatigue and allow you to perform more reps. Thus, the caffeine content in a pre-workout is responsible for it.
- Can Boost Power
Physical exercises such as sprinting require more power. A pre-workout supplement has been shown to offer more power to cope with sudden bursts of activity. Thus, this powder has been shown to increase the distance amount of sprinting covered in 25 seconds of maximal effort. In other words, a 100m new sprint personal best can be achieved by consuming a pre-workout!
- Could Improve Endurance
Although not much research is done on the effects of pre-workout, it is known to improve endurance for desired results. According to a study, participants who used a pre workout before a treadmill exercise were able to run for 12.5% longer than usual days. Moreover, if you want to increase your body endurance, you can consume a pre workout supplement.
- Enhances Mental Focus
Not only physical effects, a pre-workout has mental effects too! Thus, it can enhance cognitive processes like focus, alertness, reaction time, positive vibes, and perception of energy. If you are into regular exercise, you must know that mental focus plays a vital role in enhancing performance.
- Could Improve Body Composition
If you consume a pre-workout for a longer time for a resistance training program, it can lead you to increased lean muscle mass. In addition, if you are new to physical training, a pre workout fuel could help you lose more fat mass than a workout alone!
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Caffeine alone is the most common and important ingredient in any pre-workout to offers several ergogenic effects. As a stimulant, it can enhance endurance, increase alertness, and provide accuracy to several sports like golf! In addition, you should consume a pre workout supplement especially if you are indulging in team sport, as it can improve passing accuracy, jumping, and sprinting.
Equally important, caffeine causes vasodilation, which means it widens your blood vessels for more blood and oxygen delivery to your muscles. It also plays an important role in muscle cognition and contraction.
Other Pre-Workout Supplements
Except for caffeine, there are other pre workout supplements you should know:
A precursor for carnosine, Beta-alanine is an important amino acid that works well as a pre workout. When you do a workout, there’s an accumulation of hydrogen ions in muscles, which makes them more acidic. Moreover, it is associated with early muscle fatigue. As a pH buffer, carnosine prevents muscle acidity and allows them to keep working well for a longer workout.
A precursor to nitric oxide, L-citrulline is an amino acid that acts as a vasodilator. Therefore, it helps increase blood flow and oxygen delivery to your muscles. This way, it provides more energy for movements and enhances your workout performance.
A common and robust amino acid, creatine is a popular supplement that increases stores of phosphocreatine within muscles. Creatine is the main energy source for sudden bursts of vigorous workouts like deadlifts. In addition, creatine monohydrate enhances performance and promotes muscle recovery. For individuals seeking lean body mass gains, creatine helps achieve them!
A conditional essential amino acid (EAA), glutamine is naturally produced in the body. However, excess physical stress, injury, or intensive workouts can demand more glutamine. Consuming glutamine plays a vital role in reducing muscle inflammation and damage caused by physical activity.
Branched-chain amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein are often included in a pre-workout supplement. It helps boost muscle-building rates while reducing the breakdown of muscles. In addition, BCAAs can reduce exercise-induced muscle damage.
When To Take Pre-workout
Usually, a pre-workout supplement is consumed before 30-60 minutes of starting your workout session. This lets ingredients have enough time to take effect. Caffeine, a main active ingredient takes about 30 minutes to reach peak levels in the blood. Note that you should avoid consuming a pre-workout powder at least 6 hours before bedtime as it may cause sleeplessness.
Pre-Workout Side Effects
Pre-workout supplements are generally safe to consume. But, the effects depend on person to person. Always follow the recommended dosage to avoid overdose. Do not buy a caffeine-induced pre-workout supplement if you are intolerant to stimulants. Moreover, some common side effects of consuming a pre-workout include nausea, headaches, and increased heart rate.
Before starting any supplementation including pre-workout, always consult a healthcare professional. It is important especially if you have an existing medical condition or taking any medication. If you are new to pre-workout supplements, start with a smaller dose to assess tolerance.