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Understanding Pre-Workout Supplements

Pre-workout supplements are often designed to support energy, focus, and endurance during your training. Typically found in powder form, pre-workouts are a convenient way to add caffeine and other functional ingredients to make the most of your workout. Read below about some of the common ingredients found in pre-workouts.

COMMON INGREDIENTS

Caffeine. Caffeine is a key ingredient in most pre-workout supplements used to support energy. Caffeine may also support focus, mood, and endurance. Depending on the pre-workout supplement, the amount of caffeine can range from 100-400mg or more. Keep in mind more is not always better and too much caffeine may cause nervousness, irritability, sleeplessness, and occasionally rapid heartbeat.

Beta Alanine. Beta Alanine is a non-essential amino acid that can be produced by the body and is also found in meat, poultry, and fish. Beta Alanine is a precursor to carnosine, a molecule that supports buffering acid in muscles in response to physical activity. Beta Alanine can support endurance, carnosine synthesis, and may help you train harder and longer when taken over time. Beta-alanine taken in large doses or by sensitive individuals may cause a temporary, harmless, tingling feeling called paresthesia.

Creatine. Creatine is one of the most well-researched and tested sports nutrition supplements. Creatine can support energy production by supporting ATP regeneration. Creatine may support strength, power, performance, recovery, and muscle building when taken over time with regular resistance exercise.

B Vitamins. B Vitamins (B1 - Thiamin, B2 - Riboflavin, B3 - Niacin, B5 - Pantothenic Acid, B6 - Pyridoxal, B7 - Biotin, B9 - Folate, and B12 – Cobalamin) may be found in your pre-workout because B vitamins help convert the food you eat into cellular energy and support the breakdown and transport of nutrients.

Electrolytes. Electrolytes are essential minerals (Sodium, Potassium, Magnesium, and Chloride, just to name a few) that can support hydration when taken with at least 10 fl oz of water. Electrolytes may be found in your pre-workout to help replenish the minerals lost in sweat during prolonged physical activity.

TIMING

Pre-workouts are typically consumed 15-60 minutes before exercise. Be sure to read and follow the instructions carefully.