Ingredients YOU SHOULD look for in an effective Pre-Workout

in Sportsfuel Articles and Blog
Ingredients YOU SHOULD look for in an effective Pre-Workout

Want to have an explosive workout?
Set some new PB’s, good lifts and new times? If so you have probably tried pre-works before, if not then you are here to find out a little bit more… In this post we are going to give you the lowdown of that is in your pre-workout formulas, what they do and how they can benefit your workout.

Pre-Workout: Let’s start with Stimulants

The whole reason you get a pre-workout is usually for the stimulating effect. Caffeine in an effective dose is usually around 200-300mg per serving. Responsible for giving you energy as well as increasing concentration and mental alertness it is a must-have ingredient in any effective pre-workout.

Theacrine is also stimulant similar to caffeine however it can last a bit longer and your body builds up very little tolerance to it in comparison to caffeine.

Performance enhancing components in Pre-Workouts

An effective pre-workout will contain a mixture of performance enhancing components as well as stimulants. 

L-citrulline/Citrulline Malate - In an effective dose of 4g-8g for pure citrulline and 6g-10g for citrulline malate will aid in enhancing your performance. Citrulline is one of the most common and effective nitric oxide boosting ingredients, it is a precursor to l-arganine however it is actually more effective due to how they are converted in the liver. It increases nitric oxide, dilates blood vessels giving you increased blood flow for better pumps, more endurance and more nutrients delivered to the working muscles

Beta Alanine - Clinical dose 3.2g - beta alanine buffers the buildup of lactic acid in the muscles allowing you to go longer before needing to stop, it is the best endurance ingredient for everything from weight training to cycling or marathon running. It also has a harmless side effect known as paresthesia which causes a tingling feeling that some people love however if you don't like that feeling you will be happy to know that your body builds up a tolerance to the paresthesia effect with regular usage (start at a low manageable dose and raise it slowly till you are comfortable with a full dose).

For getting that PUMP!

L citrulline - As mentioned above is one of the best pump ingredients for increasing blood flow, in body building and weight lifting it increases energy and improves athletic performance. It can also help delay fatigue and muscle weakness.

Glycerol - For the purpose of this i will talk about the trademarked versions of glycerol such as Hydromax, Glycerpump, Glycersize these are standardised to yield 65% glycerol (whereas the standard glycerol monostearate yields 10-20%) the effective dose for this is 1-2g.

Glycerol is a muscle hydrator and a rare pump ingredient due to its cost, it works by hyper-hydrating the muscles drawing water into them and forcing the size of the muscle and muscle cells to expand for a short period of time. It gives you a different type of muscle pump than nitric oxide booster as it gives you those full skin tightening pumps and works amazing in combination with citrulline.

Agmatine - Effective dose of 1g-2g this is commonly called nitric oxide booster however it does not increase nitric oxide in its own right. It actually inhibits the enzyme that breaks down nitrix oxide allowing nitric oxide levels to build up higher and stay around for much longer, helping promote better pumps and noticeably longer lasting pumps.

Muscle power ingredients in Pre-Workouts

Another goal of a pre-workout is to enhance muscle power so ultimately your workout is more effective!

Creatine - Creatine hydrates muscle cells and allows your body to produce ATP faster, common effects are increased strength and a slight boost in endurance and recovery between sets, there are 2 main types:

Creatine monohydrate - The cheapest and most studied form of creatine it has poor absorption, water solubility and should be cycled to do poor absorption causing some conversion into byproduct, however it has tons of studies showing safety and effectiveness and works well for 95% of people the effective dose if 5g.

Creatine HCL - A high grade and very easily absorbed creatine, this is an advanced for of creatine usually used by people who don't respond to monohydrate or have digestion issues/ bloating with monohydrate. It is easily absorbed and doesn't have conversion into byproduct so the dose is 1.5g per day and does not need to be cycled

The Top pre-workouts

Below we have compiled lists of the top pre-workouts based on what you might need them for…

High Energy

Sparta Nutrition Kraken

  • High Energy
  • Strong Pumps
  • Good endurance

ANS Prophecy
One of the most complete pre-workouts on the market

  • High energy
  • Great pumps
  • Good endurance
  • Great mental focus
  • Great muscle power

Medium Strength

Muscletech Vapor Max
One of the best endurance pre workouts around

  • Good Energy
  • Great endurance
  • Good pumps

Muscletech Peak Series Pre Workout:

A slightly stronger version of vapor max with a bit more energy and pumps

Ghost Legend (based on 1 scoop)

  • Good energy
  • Strong pumps
  • Decent endurance

Pumped Sports Loaded

  • Good energy
  • Excellent pumps comparable to Kraken
  • Good endurance
  • Good focus

BSN EndoRush

  • Excellent price point
  • Decent energy
  • Great mood

NON Stimulant 

ATP Science Infrared

  • Solid endurance
  • Good pumps
  • Good focus
  • Good muscle power
  • Uses carbs which provides a good boost to energy and endurance
  • Contains electrolytes
  • No artificial colours of flavours
  • Whole food based if you are looking for a natural option to increase performance
  • Can also be used during a workout or endurance exercise

Thinking about trying a pre-workout? Ensure you carefully read the instructions so you know exactly what you are putting into your body. Remember your goal and hopefully using the info we have provided above you are now in a position to make an informed choice in regards to which will most suit your needs.

To find the best one for you, check out our great range of Pre-Workout Supplements here!

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published