The benefits of taking supplements after training are common knowledge, but what does pre workout do?
Here’s the thing.
With a major emphasis on what happens after you leave the gym, it’s easy to overlook what goes on before. I get why—the power of the protein shake is widely broadcasted around the fitness scene.
You agree, right?
My point is, this oversight could mean you are missing an opportunity. The top pre-workouts really kick your training up a notch—which means you fast forward results.
I’m about to reveal why.
Think of this as your pre workout explained—I’m going to let you in on the benefits and the drawbacks. There will be no assumptions, just proven research and fact.
What Is a Pre Workout?
To understand the question “what does pre workout do?” I want to explain this first.
The basic definition or pre workout meaning can be described as a dietary supplement formulated to be taken prior to exercise—hence why its called pre workout. Generally, you take them around 30 minutes before you exercise.
Gym fraternities, athletes, bodybuilders or literally anyone into sport uses them as an ergogenic aid to enhance performance during workouts.1
The theory being.
A pre workout makes it easier to train at a greater intensity for a longer period—you get the maximum out of every session. What’s more, you are not wasting time on half-hearted attempts, so the consistent super effort leads to bigger and faster gains.
But, don’t just take my word for it.
Experts have proven that anaerobic performance significantly improves when you take some form of pre workout supplement.2
To sum up, what does pre workout do?
Think of it as the kick start you need for an amazing workout.
What Does Pre Workout Do?
Increase Energy Levels
When you hit the gym, you always want to be on top form. The thing is, everyday life can suck the get-up-and-go out of you. All your good intentions of powering through that bench session are likely to fall by the wayside.
So, what does pre workout do?
It gives you that boost you need to charge through—so, no matter how drained you feel, a pre workout will keep you firing on all cylinders when it matters most.
Boost Muscle Pumps
Improving blood flow is one of the main functions of a pre workout—in turn, it contributes to a process known as exercise hyperemia. This reaction brings in extra nutrients, making it an ideal scenario to fuel muscle growth, strength, and power.3
But that’s not all.
In terms of aesthetics, with more of the red stuff rushing through your veins—including through your muscles—your mass swells up and increases in size—making you look like an impressive beast—if only for a short time.4
A pre workout sets the foundations for prime workout conditions and this continues throughout your session.
But what does pre workout do?
Increasing and maintaining energy levels, slowing down the buildup of lactic acid and lengthening the time to exhaustion all combine to reduce muscle fatigue.
Yet this is only half of the battle.
Studies suggest that mental fatigue can also affect your performance—in some cases by as much as 15 percent. Pre-workouts take care of that too—enhancing focus and alertness, and keeping your mind on fire.5 6
Lifting iron means you need raw strength to power through every set, rep and session
—the all-out effort to kick off the muscle damage—repair—build process is a must-have.
Pre-workouts drive up execution and strength to phenomenal lengths. Plus, alongside strength comes power and stamina—meaning you can put your muscles through their paces harder and longer for awesome results.
Best Pre Workout Ingredients
Now that the question, “What does pre workout do?” has been answered, you might be thinking about the best ingredients.
To satisfy your curiosity, I’ve put together the most beneficial pre workout ingredients to look for.
Often considered the #1 supplement out there, creatine is definitely a solid choice for the weight trainer. Predominantly, this is down to its fast-acting ability to replenish adenosine triphosphate (ATP)—the drive behind muscle contractions.
As a result, it promotes mind-blowing muscle power and all-important strength gains. Studies indicate you could improve lifting performance by as much as 14 percent.7
It’s also up there in terms of preventing muscle damage and speeding up recovery. In addition, when combined with a solid weight-training program, creatine can fast-forward mass gains.8
This is an awesome amino acid that helps fight muscle fatigue.
When you work out, your muscles accumulate lactic acid. As levels rise, the burn creeps in and that’s your training over. Beta-alanine acts as a buffer, by reducing this acidity—therefore, increasing endurance.9 10
You could say coffee is a homemade pre workout drink—the caffeine within is one of the most widely used ingredients in pre-workouts.
And for good reason.
It’s a phenomenal stimulant for burning fat, accelerating energy and increasing metabolism. What’s more, caffeine has cognitive benefits—improving mental alertness, concentration and reaction times.11
Citrulline and Arginine
These two amino acids have a close relationship—when ingested, citrulline converts into arginine. They increase the production of nitric oxide, which widens blood vessels and boosts circulation—leading to mental muscle pumps.
The upgrade in vascular activity also channels immense endurance levels, through better muscle oxygenation.12
Most of us would associate BCAAs with post workout, yet research has revealed using them beforehand is far more beneficial.13
Here’s the kicker.
When taken pre workout, they can reduce the severity of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and muscle damage—curbing fatigue and reducing recovery times during sets.14
Check out out article top 20 pre workout supplements on the market.
Pre Workout Side Effects
You might be wondering.
In terms of adverse reactions, what does pre workout do?
The simple truth is:
There is a potential for pre workout side effects, however, in most cases, they could be considered more of a minor inconvenience than a major concern.
- Muscle cramps.
- Gastro issues.
- Trouble sleeping/insomnia.
- Tingling sensation (paraesthesia).
- Bloating/water retention.
- Excessive urination.
- Jittery feelings.
So now we’ve answered the question, ”What does pre workout do?”—it’s clear there is plenty to gain from a pre workout.
However, be sure to do your research first, and choose one with the ingredients backed by science.
But here’s the kicker:
Taking a pre workout won’t turn you into Superman or Wonder Woman overnight, you still have to train hard—it just makes your efforts easier to transform into amazing results.
What Does Pre Workout Do FAQs
“What’s the Best Pre Workout for Men?”
Transparent Labs Bulk pre-workout is by far the #1 pre workout for men. It also doubles as a testosterone booster, which is essential for guys looking to achieve mass gains.
“What’s the Best Pre Workout for Women?”
For the ladies, it has to be the Pre Workout fat burner from Battle Ready Fuel. It combines natural energy enhancers and thermogenic fat burners to form a potent pre workout.
“What Are the Main Benefits of Pre Workout?”
Bigger muscle pumps, supercharged energy levels, and razor-sharp focus. Endless endurance and stamina, phenomenal workouts—and faster results.
“When to Use Pre Workout?”
Ideally, you should consume pre-workout supplements around 30 minutes before you hit your session.
“How Much Pre Workout Can You Use in One Day?”
This will depend on what supplement you are using—and the caffeine content.
“What Does Pre Workout Do Your Heart?
Pre workout supplements can temporarily affect blood pressure and heart rate, which may put excess strain on the muscle during intense activity. Generally speaking, serious cardiac side effects are not the norm. However, those with cardiovascular issues should exercise caution.19
“Are Pre Workouts Dangerous?”
There are potential pre workout side effects to think about, but they aren’t what you would call life threatening, unless you have any pre-existing health conditions. Providing you follow the directions accordingly, they shouldn’t cause any harm.
“What Does Pre Workout Do?”
Pre workout maximizes strength and power, enhances endurance and stamina, supercharges energy levels and optimizes focus—all to keep you pushing harder during workouts. Basically, it’s formulated so that you attain the results you want, faster than by diet and exercise alone.
“Is Pre Workout Bad for Your Kidneys?”
There were reports of kidney damage from using certain pre workout ingredients, namely creatine. However, experts have concluded that providing excessive levels are avoided, it’s safe for healthy adults.20
“What Ingredients Should You Stay Away From in a Pre Workout?”
If you are sensitive to stimulants you might want to give theacrine, synephrine, and caffeine a side step.
Where to Buy Pre Workout?
The top pre workout supplements are widely available online—search pre workout Walmart, Amazon, eBay, and many other major internet retailers.