Pre-workouts, love them or hate them, they’ve been the talk of many fitness enthusiasts everywhere for years.
Most pre-workouts that I looked at, over 30, didn’t include this information. They were more intent on showing the buyer the ingredients, likely because they include a whole bunch of micronutrients that you know are healthy.
When choosing a pre-workout, you need to think about your goals and how it ties into what you need from your workout. Some pre-workouts build strength or power, others increase your endurance. For the pre-workout food comparison, visit my Instagram @nutrition_byamy.
Understanding which ingredients are best for which exercise will help you find your correct fit.
Creatine – Most consider creatine as the best supplement for increasing strength and power. It can safely increase muscle mass, strength and performance. Recommended dose of 20g per day when you first start and then drop it to 5g per day for maintenance.
Caffeine – It increases power output and the ability to produce force quickly. Think sprinting, weight training and cycling, or long distance, or intermittent sports. The recommended dose is about 240mg.
Beta-Alanine – Helps to combat acid build up in the body. It’s used for performance during HIIT mostly. Recommended dose is 1 tsp per day.
Citrulline- Increases your body’s levels so may improve performance. It can also reduce post-workout soreness. A recommended dose of 6g.
Sodium Bicarbonate – May help fight fatigue during exercise or reduce that “burning” feeling during a workout. Benefits running, cycling and sprinting. Recommended 300mg per kg of body weight.
BCAAs – May improve endurance running performance, but has many benefits for all sorts of exercise. It can also reduce mental and physical fatigue. Recommended dose of 1 – 4 tsp per day.
Nitrate – Can be converted into nitric oxide which increases blood flow so can be seen as beneficial to performance. Recommended 6 – 13mg per kg of body weight.
Sadly, the dosages currently found on pre-workouts aren’t science based. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy one. It just means you should be aware of your choice and make an educated one.
Making your own pre-workout is an option. Just buy the ingredients you want.