What is pre-workout? If you’re into fitness, you’ve probably heard the term floating around. Here’s a quick guide to what it is and if you need it.
If you’re a fitness newbie, you’ve probably heard of post-workout nutrition or what to eat after exercising. You might also know how important it is for enhancing recovery, increasing muscle growth, etc.
But have you ever come across pre-workout supplements or just pre-workouts? If you have gym buddies who talk about them a lot, you might be wondering, “What is pre-workout, anyway, and does it even work?”
To help you decide if you should buy into the hype of pre-workouts, let’s talk about them in detail. Here, we’ll discuss what they are, how they work, and when it may not be a good idea to take them.
First Things First: What Is Pre-Workout?
Do you find that when you eat something like half a banana or a slice of bread before a workout, your performance is better?
This pre-workout meal works the same as pre-workout supplements. However, some exercisers find pre-workouts a more appealing option. That’s because these products contain ingredients that are supposedly performance-enhancing.
These include caffeine, creatine monohydrate, B vitamins, and so on. Taken like protein shakes, pre-workouts are claimed to be fast-acting. Faster muscle recovery accelerated fat burning, and more are also included in the benefits of a pre-training shake or drink.
How Do Pre-Workouts Work?
If you get two different brands of pre-workout supplements and compare them, don’t be surprised if they don’t have the same ingredients. Each brand will have its own pre-workout formula. But they all claim to boost energy levels so it’s easier to power through even the toughest exercise routines.
Now some pre-workout ingredients have studies backing them up so it’s not like manufacturers are making up their claims. For example, research shows that taking caffeine before training can help increase alertness and focus. Plus, it may help the muscles burn more fat.
Meanwhile, creatine monohydrate, especially in high doses can help build muscle mass, as well as increase strength. As for B vitamins, they help promote energy levels and support muscle tone, in addition to their effects on brain function and cell metabolism.
Of course, you have to keep in mind that just because these ingredients are supported by studies, it doesn’t mean they’re safe in high doses. Since the FDA doesn’t regulate supplements, you need to research which products are worth trying and which ones to stay away from.
Who Shouldn’t Take Pre-Workout Supplements?
Pre-workouts aren’t for everybody. If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding or under 18, you could experience adverse effects because of the high level of stimulants.
Likewise, if you have a heart condition or diabetes or if caffeine makes you jittery, you’re better off skipping pre-workout supplements. A better alternative would be something light like a fruit smoothie or apple slices with peanut butter.
Need More Fitness Tips and Advice?
Now that you know the answer to “What is pre-workout?” are you interested in giving it a try?
If you still need more information on pre-workout supplements, don’t hesitate to do further research. You can also check out our other posts for more fitness tips and advice.