What will power me up for longer workout periods? How long can my pre-workouts last? If you have ever worked out or are a fitness enthusiast, then these types of questions have surely crossed your mind.
Taking a pre-workout could be an awesome way of improving workout performance. Many people don’t know the benefits of pre-workouts and how long they fuel you while you work out. If you don’t properly understand what a pre-workout is and how it can work to your advantage, it might be useless. I will show you what a pre-workout is, what types exist and how long it can fuel you to be able to achieve your fitness goals.
What is a pre-workout?
Pre-workouts are supplements that you take for extra energy before your workout session. These supplements help people to be able to improve their workout performance and eventually achieve their fitness goals.
In the past, pre-workouts were often limited to only fitness enthusiasts who wanted to lift weights and be more muscular. Now, you or anyone looking to gain energy and become more focused can take pre-workouts.
Pre-workouts are either stimulant-free products or products packed with stimulants. The most dominant stimulant in pre-workouts is caffeine. In most cases, pre-workouts come in powder form and are mixed with water or smoothies. You can also have them with food. The pre-workout powder is often packed with a lot of stimulants. Ensure that you carry out proper research to know which pre-workout will best suit your needs.
Types of pre-workout
You’d find most pre-workout sold as a powder. It is up to you to mix it to create your workout drink. For other pre-workouts, you can eat them in food or take them like a pill.
The most popular pre-workout product is pre-workout powder. With this, add a scoop of the powder to water and stirred until both mixes. You can as well mix the power with a smoothie. It all depends on your preference.
You should drink a pre-workout drink alongside food to avoid any unusual side effects. If you don’t have time to make a pre-workout drink yourself, you can order or buy a pre-made bottle.
A pre-workout meal will provide enough energy for you to work out. Pre-workout food often contains enough nutrients required for a complete workout. But, they might not give you the energy you get from caffeine-packed supplements.
If you want to eat a full meal before a workout, eat at least two hours before your workout. If you opt for a pre-workout snack or a lighter meal, you can work out after 30mins of eating. For energy and muscle building, go with a pre-workout meal or snack that has a lot of carbohydrates. One amazing example of a pre-workout snack is a nut protein bar.
Does pre-workout help?
A pre-workout can be extremely helpful and boost your workout performance. Here are just a few ways how:
Improves workout performance
Are you low on energy to work out? Drinking a pre-workout supplement is an amazing way of boosting your workout performance.
Most pre-workouts contain ingredients that provide energy that will promote workout performance. An ingredient like beta-alanine increases muscle growth and improves endurance during workout sessions.
Most pre-workout contain ingredients a lot of beneficial nutrients. Some contain minerals and vitamins too. You must consume all essential nutrients to improve and maintain your health. This means, when you drink a pre-workout, you are getting essential nutrients all at the same time.
It is quite easy to be distracted when you’re working out. Caffeine, a popular ingredient in pre-workouts, stimulates the brain for mental alertness. Pre-workouts make it possible for you to focus and work out for better results.
You will be able to maintain high-quality performance during your longer workout sessions. This is because most pre-workouts contain popular ingredients like creatine and beta-alanine. These ingredients promote endurance while you work out.
Increases your metabolism
Caffeine, one of the most dominant ingredients in a pre-workout, encourages weight loss. Caffeine helps you burn more calories. But, it is not advisable to drink caffeine every day so that you don’t develop a high tolerance to it. Try as much as possible to skip days when consuming products with high caffeine content.
What are pre-workout ingredients?
Most pre-workout ingredients differ from brand to brand. The most common or important pre-workout ingredients are amino acids, beta-alanine, and caffeine. Let’s explain some common ingredients you will see on a label.
Creatine also called creatine monohydrate is a supplement that promotes muscle building. You’d find it in muscle cells. Most pre-workouts contain creatine which aids in muscle building and repair during workouts. So if you’re involved in weightlifting and bodybuilding, your pre-workout should contain creatine.
This is the most popular pre-workout ingredient. Caffeine increases your energy levels. It helps you stay focus during your workout sessions. A certain amount of caffeine can enable you to workout for long periods.
Though caffeine will give you the energy you need, it is advisable to take caffeine in lesser amounts. Make sure you’re checking and reading labels to know exactly how much caffeine you’re taking with each serving.
Not all pre-workout products contain the same amount of caffeine. So you might need to avoid drinking a serving at a go. If you only work out at night, you may have to completely avoid caffeine because of insomnia.
Branched-chain amino acids is another ingredient that plays an important part in pre-workouts.
Branched-chain Amino Acid aid in the control of how your body uses protein. It helps reduce damages and promotes muscle building. BCAAs contain 40% of all essential amino acids your body needs.
Vitamin B-6 is known for being an energy provider that aids in the breakdown of muscle glycogen. It aids in weight loss too, so ensure your pre-workout contains it.
This is also an amino acid that contributes to providing you with energy. It helps break fats into energy. So it’ll be an awesome ingredient choice if you are trying to lose a couple of pounds.
Consuming nitric acid in your pre-workout will help promote blood flow in your body. Nitric acid makes it easier for oxygen and nutrients to get to your blood vessels. This is another ingredient you should ensure is in your pre-workout.
This amino acid aids in the production of adrenaline and norepinephrine. These are responsible for activating the body when you’re stressed. Some studies show that L-tyrosine helps with stress relief. It improves workout performance when you’re stressed.
This ingredient is very common in caffeine-free pre-workouts. You’d find it in tea. It’s a great alternative if you don’t like caffeine. Studies suggest that it boost your alertness and attention.
Another common ingredient in most pre-workouts is beta-alanine. Beta-alanine helps control burning sensations you may experience while carrying out intensive workouts.
The only downside of this is that you may experience a tingling sensation. If you find this feeling uncomfortable, you should take beta-alanine in small quantities or avoid it as a whole.
How much caffeine is in pre-workout?
The amount of caffeine in any pre-workout often depends on the particular brand. Caffeine is most pre-workouts range from 150mg to 300mg per serving.
Is pre-workout with caffeine bad?
YES and NO! Caffeine is a pre-workout ingredient that is awesome. It will provide you with enough energy to work out. At the same time, caffeine can cause a lot of problems in the long run. Caffeine can cause depression, anxiety, and high blood pressure (HBP). You must be cautious and have a limit to how much caffeine you consume.
Does caffeine give better performance?
Yes! Caffeine is an awesome energy booster. It is excellent for those morning workouts when you feel reluctant or weak to work out. Caffeine goes a long way in kick-starting your body.
Do all pre-workouts contain caffeine?
Not all pre-workouts contain caffeine. For those who avoid caffeine altogether, there are caffeine-free pre-workouts. Certain brands try to create pre-workouts that can energize you without ingesting caffeine.
Caffeine vs coffee
Caffeine is a stimulant found in most products like coffee and beverages. Coffee is a beverage that contains caffeine. Caffeine stimulates the brain and promotes energy. A safe amount to consume every day is about 400mg which is about 4 cups of coffee. It all depends on how much you take in in a day. Moderation is the keyword.
How much caffeine is enough for pre-workouts?
The amount of caffeine that’s enough per person varies. But, the common recommended dose per workout ranges from 200-400mg.
When to take pre-workouts
The most favorable time to take a pre-workout is before your workout sessions. The main goal of taking pre-workouts is for energy.
For morning workouts, taking pre-workout will be to your advantage. This is because it will give you the energy to work out and function throughout the day. Take pre-workouts about 30-60 minutes before you work out. This will give your body enough time to process and use the ingredients in a way that will be beneficial to you.
If you love working out at night, you may have to reconsider taking pre-workout. This is because pre-workouts can disrupt your sleep. If you must take it before your evening workout, make sure it is a couple of hours before bedtime.
To know how to use any pre-workout you buy, refer to the packaging or container it came with. Always read instructions before consumption!
How to take pre-workout
First things first, follow the instructions on the label.
Pour the suggested amount of the pre-workout supplement into water. In most cases, the suggested amount is between 150mg to 300mg.
Shake and stir it until it is properly mixed. One serving is often half a scoop of the pre-workout.
Add a serving to 150ml – 250ml of cold water.
If you don’t like the taste, you can try making a pre-workout smoothie by blending your pre-workout with fresh fruits. You can as well mix it in a small meal and take it before your workout. It does not matter if you are drinking or chewing it. The most important thing is you get the required amount needed to fuel your body.
How long does pre-workout take to kick in?
How long does it take for pre-workout to kick in? It is advisable to take your pre-workouts about 30 minutes before you work out. The average time it takes for nutrients to go from your stomach to your cells and bloodstream is 30 minutes. Like every other thing you consume, your pre-workout will likely take this time to get to the cells.
You can as well take it at about an hour before eating to make sure it serves its purpose. Make sure to time your pre-workout so that you work out when you can enjoy its benefits. If you miss your active window then getting pre-workout was a waste of your money and time.
How long does a pre-workout last?
Every pre-workout has a different period they last. It all depends on how much caffeine is in it. Most last for 30-60 minutes.
Some will last for as much as 6 hours depending on the caffeine level. Caffeine will last in your system for about 3 to 7 hours. Within 24 hours max, your body would have used all the ingredients in your pre-workout. The body then excretes anything not absorbed within this time.
There are several factors responsible for how long pre-workouts last, such as:
- Your caffeine tolerance.
- The supplement type.
- Your water intake and daily diet.
- Your muscle mass, age, and weight.
Pre-workouts will help to improve your performance and achieve your goals. Nonetheless, if taken in the wrong dosage or at the wrong time, it could be detrimental to your health.
How to make your pre-workout?
Pre-workouts are quite awesome but sometimes can be expensive or hard to get. To curb this, you can make your homemade pre-workout.
Making your pre-workout at home gives you the opportunity to be aware of what goes into your pre-workout. To save money, you can follow this simple guide below to make your pre-workout from the comfort of your home.
The best ingredients to use to make your pre-workout are:
- 200mg of caffeine.
- 3-4 grams of beta-alanine.
- Flavoring. This is optional and depends on you and your needs.
- 6-8 grams of L-citrulline.
- Fresh fruits like a banana if you want a smoothie.
You can blend all these and be sure to get a delicious pre-workout drink. If you cannot get these items, you can as well opt for a pre-workout meal. Meals like a yogurt fruit bowl will provide you with enough energy.
What are the possible risks of pre-workouts?
Pre-workouts are an amazing addition to your fitness journey. But they can be detrimental to you in the long run. A few of these cons are:
Immunity and addiction
Don’t take pre-workouts before every workout! You need to moderate your consumption like everything else. If you consume pre-workouts with much caffeine, you risk becoming an addict or immune to it.
Studies show that caffeine is addictive. So, you mustn’t consume it every day and in large amounts. To moderate, you can keep your pre-workouts for emergencies only. For instant when you are going for an early morning workout and you lack energy or when you lack energy. This does not also mean that you push yourself to the extreme when you are exhausted or burned out. Enough rest can make an amazing difference.
You will experience a lot of jitters when you take pre-workouts often. You might find this unsettling if you are a new user. This is because most pre-workouts are packed with caffeine.
When you ingest them in great amounts, you might experience a lot of jitters. This is so because caffeine helps stimulate your nervous system. This does not happen with everyone. Consider reducing the amount of pre-workout per serving if feel uncomfortable after drinking them.
Do you have heart problems or suffer serious health complications? You should consult with your doctor before consuming any pre-workout. This is to make sure what you are taking in does not end up being detrimental to your health.
Pre-workouts can cause insomnia
Caffeine in most cases causes insomnia if taken over long periods. It is advisable to limit how much caffeine you consume in a week. Don’t take pre-workouts every day if they contain caffeine.
In some cases, pre-workouts can cause diarrhea. Some contain ingredients like sodium bicarbonate. Such ingredients act as a laxative in certain situations.
Artificial additives or ingredients
Most pre-workouts contain the same kind of ingredients in them. Some contain certain artificial ingredients which may be bad for workouts or your health.
It is important to read labels and carry out proper research before getting a pre-workout. It is not enough that it gives you energy, be aware of exactly what you are putting into your body.
Where can I buy pre-workout?
You can always get pre-workouts from your fitness stores, supermarkets, or online stores. A quick Google search will provide all you need. It all depends on what is convenient.
Why does pre-workout make me itchy?
One reason you may have an itching sensation after taking a pre-workout is because of paraesthesia. Paraesthesia is skin tingling. There are several reasons for paraesthesia.
When it has to do with fitness, it has to do with either beta-alanine or niacin. Most people think the tingling sensation is a result of a stimulant from any pre-workout product.
Most pre-workout come with Beta-alanine to create skin tingling. In other cases, the companies use niacin as a substitute. Most pre-workout brands use these to give the impression that their product is so powerful it makes you tingle. Yet, skin tingling is not a bad thing.