Ola Ipaye doing the ab rollout workout in the gym
Fitness, Pre Workout 1 comment

Is Taking Pre-Workout Bad for You?

If you’re a gym-goer, then chances are that at some point or another you have asked yourself is pre-workout bad for me?

In this blog post, I will discuss whether pre-workout is bad for you, the benefits of pre-workout, ingredients to look out for and some side effects too.

I will also give you 21 options to choose from when it comes to the best pre-workout supplements on the market under $20.

Let’s dive in!

Pre Chu Chewable Pre-workout supplement on the ground
Photo by CHU Gummies on Unsplash

Is Pre-Workout Bad For You?

Taking pre-workout supplements is not bad for you but be careful when choosing the right product.

If you’re considering taking pre-workout, make sure you read the label carefully for instructions on the package before purchasing it.

As much as there’re some benefits to taking pre-workout, watch out for harmful ingredients that causes side effects.

Related: 6 Pre-Workout Ingredients To Look Out For & What They Do For You

What are Pre-workout Supplements?

Pre-workout supplements are products that are taken before a workout to give you energy and help you perform better.

They can come in the form of powders, drinks, or capsules. But regardless of what form they come in, studies suggest they provide some benefits.

Pre-workout is typically used before working out. It’s best taken 1 hour before exercise for optimal benefits to kick in.

Benefits of Pre-workout Supplements

There are many benefits to taking pre-workout supplements, including:

  • Increases your energy: Pre-workouts generally contain beta-alanine, caffeine, and creatine.

These ingredients are all known to boost energy levels in the body.

When taken together, this can help you power through your workout at high-intensity levels with less fatigue than normal.

  • Improves focus: Pre-workout is usually taken about an hour before hitting the gym.

It can improve focus for this reason, especially if you are feeling tired or uninterested in working out that day.

You will probably be more motivated to get down to work because of improved energy levels and mental clarity which leads to better workouts!

  • Increase blood flow to muscles: Pre-workouts are designed to do one or more of the following: increase energy, improve focus, endurance, and strength.

The main benefit of a pre-workout supplement is that it can help increase blood flow to muscles.

This increased blood flow can help provide the muscles with the nutrients they need to perform optimally.

  • Improves endurance while training: Pre-workout supplements are designed to help improve endurance, focus, and performance.

Most pre-workouts contain a stimulant called caffeine.

Caffeine is known to improve alertness and reduce fatigue. It can also help you work out harder for longer periods.

Pre-workout supplements usually also contain some form of carbohydrate.

This carbohydrate is used as an energy source to help fuel your workouts.

Pre-workout supplements also contain a variety of vitamins and nutrients that are designed to improve both endurance and performance, such as BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids) or creatine.

While not proven by science, some gym-goers believe pre-workout puts them “in the zone” and helps them achieve better results.

  • Delays fatigue while training: Pre-workout supps are designed to give you a boost in energy and focus, which can help you push through your workout routine.

Most pre-workouts contain caffeine, amino acids, and B vitamins.

Caffeine is known to delay fatigue by blocking adenosine receptors in the brain.

This allows for more blood flow to the brain and muscles, which means anyone who takes pre-workout shouldn’t fatigue anytime soon.

  • Increased strength during your workouts: Pre-workout is a supplement containing caffeine, creatine and other ingredients which increase energy levels.

It works by increasing the body’s ability to produce more power whilst exercising – making it easier to undertake intense workouts for longer periods without fatiguing.

  • Improves exercise performance: Pre-workouts are beneficial for workout performance because they increase concentration and energy, allowing the body to stay focused on tasks.

It also makes it easier to push harder during high-intensity interval training (HIIT) or weight lifting sessions.

Side Effects of Taking Pre-workout Supplements

Although pre-workout supplements come with many benefits, they also have some side effects.

These include:

  • Nausea and vomiting: Pre-workout causes nausea and vomiting because it has a stimulant effect on the brain.

This makes you feel sick if your body cannot handle this amount of stimulation in general or when combined with drinking caffeine (commonly found in coffee).

The best thing to do is start slowly by assessing your tolerance level.

Take less than the stated dosage, and gradually increase the amount as your body gets used to it.

If you are still experiencing nausea and vomiting, try a different pre-workout supplement that doesn’t have caffeine or talk to your doctor about other possible solutions.

  • Diarrhea: One of the most common side effects of pre-workout is diarrhea. So what causes it?

Pre-workout supplements usually contain caffeine, along with other ingredients like creatine, beta alanine and arginine.

They can also have varying other ingredients depending on the brand you choose to go with.

Caffeine is a gastrointestinal stimulant that stimulates bowel movement in your body which leads to diarrhea because it makes stomach fluid move too quickly through your intestines.

This causes an imbalance of fluids in the intestine which can lead to loose stools and diarrhea.

If you are experiencing diarrhea after taking pre-workout supplements, it is best to discontinue use and speak with a doctor.

Although caffeine is the most common ingredient in these supplements that can cause diarrhea, other ingredients could also be culprits.

If you have any allergies or sensitivities to any of the ingredients in pre-workout supplements, that could also be the cause of your diarrhea.

  • Headaches: Pre-workouts are meant to give you a boost in energy and focus, but for some people, they can have the opposite effect.

One of the most common side effects of pre-workout is headaches.

So what’s the deal? Why do these supplements cause headaches in some people?

There are a few reasons pre-workout supps give you a headache. The most common reasons are dehydration and caffeine sensitivity.

Dehydration is quite simple to explain, the pre-workout ingredients don’t necessarily cause any harm, but if they aren’t paired with enough water then it can lead to headaches.

Caffeine sensitivity is also pretty straightforward.

If you’re not used to taking caffeine then a pre-workout supplement with too much caffeine can give you a headache.

  • Muscle tremors and shakes: Some pre-workouts contain too much caffeine and other stimulants which can cause muscle tremors and shakes.

If you’re experiencing these side effects, it might be time to cut back on the pre-workout or try a different supplement.

  • Restlessness: The caffeine and other stimulants in most pre-workout supplements can cause restlessness in some people.

However, there are several ways to avoid this problem:

Avoid using pre-workout too late in the day, limit the amount of pre-workouts you take, and be sure that your gym routine is challenging enough before taking a pre-workout supplements (without them).

If you experience any of these side effects, make sure to decrease your dosage immediately.

Pre-workout is best when taken 30 minutes before a workout.

It is not recommended to take after the gym because it will negate its benefits by doing so.

Also, some studies warn against taking more than one type of supplement at once, as this could increase your chances of experiencing negative side effects such as nausea or vomiting.

Related: Are Calories Most Important Factor in Weight Loss?

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Ola Ipaye doing the ab rollout workout in the gym
Ola ipaye doing an abs exercise in the gym

When to take Pre-workout?

Pre-workout is best when taken 30 minutes before a workout.

It is not recommended to take after the gym because it will negate its benefits by doing so.

Some people have been known to take pre-workout daily and is not recommended if you do so.

It is best to cycle your supplements at a maximum of two weeks on followed by one week off for the most effective results.

If you are going through any medical conditions it is best to consult with a doctor before taking any new supplements.

How to take Pre-workout Supplements

Before taking any supplements make sure you read the label carefully for instructions on the package.

It should tell you the dosage amount and how best to take the supplements whether with water, milk or by dry scooping.

Most high-quality pre-workouts usually contain caffeine, creatine, and BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids). Here’re 6 pre-workout ingredients to look out for when shopping for the perfect product.

When deciding how much to take, always start with the recommended dosage on the label.

Then cycle on and off initially for 2 weeks to access your tolerance level.

The main ingredient in pre-workout is caffeine so if you are someone who is sensitive to caffeine or doesn’t drink coffee then it is best to avoid pre-workouts.

Always read the label carefully before taking a new supplement!

Is Dry Scooping Pre-workout Safe?

Yes, it is safe to dry scoop pre-workout as long as you are following the dosage instructions on the label.

When taking any new supplement, it is always best to read the label carefully before consuming it.

As I’ve said before pre-workout supplements come in many different forms so always consult the instructions on the label before taking it.

If you’re not completely comfortable with dry scooping pre-workout, you can try and take it in the form of capsules instead.

CHU Gummies Pre Workout Supplements is a good example of a pre-workout supplement that is available in capsule form.

Just be sure to drink plenty of water when taking pre-workout, regardless of the form it comes in.

Dehydration can occur quickly when taking any type of supplement, so make sure you’re drinking enough fluids before, during, and after your workout.

Related: How To Lose Weight Fast: 3 Steps You Don’t Know About

Gym trainer doing Squats in the gym
Photo by LOGAN WEAVER on Unsplash

Will Pre-workout Help You Lose Weight?

Pre-workout supplements have become popular in the weight loss community in recent years.

Some people believe that taking a pre-workout supplement will help them lose more weight and tone their bodies faster.

However, there is little scientific evidence to support this claim.

Some research suggests that taking pre-workout supplements may have the opposite effect.

One study found that people who took pre-workout supplements gained more weight and body fat over six weeks than those who did not take them.

This is likely due to the substance called creatine that’s present in most pre-workouts.

Creatine monohydrate can cause your body to retain more water and this can lead to slight weight gain.

So, should you take a pre-workout supplement to help you lose weight?

The answer is no – at least not until there is more scientific evidence to support this claim.

In the meantime, stick to healthy eating and exercise regularly to help you reach your weight loss goals.

And if you want a weight loss meal plan, get my 6 weeks weight loss meal plan.

Conclusion

As a gym newbie though, you don’t need to take pre-workout supplements to lose weight or build muscle.

However, if you find it hard to stay focused while working out or you’d like to experience the benefits of pre-workouts, then you can try any of these pre-workout supplements under $20.

And if you choose not to take supplements, once your body gets used to the exercises and training sessions at the gym, it will need more energy and fuel than before.

So analyse what works best for you by using different products and finding out which gives you the best results.

Are you already taking a pre-workout supps? Would you recommend it?

Tell me in the comments below!

FAQ: Everything You Need To Know About Pre-Workouts

Is it bad to take pre-workout everyday?

Some people find that taking pre-workout every day helps them feel more energized and motivated to work out, while it makes others feel a little too restless or anxious.

If you are someone who feels better when you take pre-workout every day, then go for it! Just make sure you don’t exceed the recommended dosage per serving.

Do pre-workouts burn fat?

Taking pre-workout won’t directly help you burn body fat because that’s not what it’s for.

But the benefits you get from taking pre-workout such as increased energy levels and performance may lead to more fat loss.

Does creatine make you fat?

The answer is no – creatine does not make you gain fat. The slight weight gain you get from taking creatine orally is just water weight because creatine causes your body to retain more water.

Can pre workout cause headaches?

One of the most common side effects of pre-workout is headaches.

There are a few reasons pre-workout supps give you a headache. The most common reasons are dehydration and caffeine sensitivity.

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