If you are in the market for a pre-workout supplement, you are going to come across several common ingredients in these supplements. The purpose of this article is to go through some of these ingredients and explain their role in the pre-workout supplement. When you know more about the ingredients that make up these powders or capsules, you can make better decisions on which one to purchase. Pre-workout supplements can be a great advantage in the gym and many weightlifters swear by them. As it is with anything you consume, you want to know exactly what it is that you are putting into your body. Hopefully this article will supply you with valuable information to make more informed decisions.
The use of caffeine in pre-workout supplements is widespread. The reason for this is also obvious. For the same reason that people drink coffee in the morning, weightlifters take supplements that contain caffeine before a workout. Caffeine boosts focus and energy during a workout because it stimulates your nervous system. You remain energetic and dialed in to your present task. The problem with caffeine as a workout supplement is that if you take it too close to bedtime, it will keep you up at night.
Branched-Chain Amino Acids
Branched-chain amino acids are used in pre-workout supplements because they boost anabolism. That is, they build up molecules rather than break them down. We get branched-chain amino acids from the food we eat already (meat, dairy, nuts, etc.) but these supplement merely compound the process. They are called “branched” because these amino acids come in chain-like structures. Branched chain amino acids step in here to inhibit muscle loss and or breakdown. Simply put, branched chain amino acids stimulate protein building in muscle, thus the use of them in bodybuilding supplements. For those of you looking to stimulate muscle growth, this is a vital ingredient because it stimulates protein synthesis, the foundation of muscle building.
Creatine has been around for a while so it is probably familiar to most of you. Lots of the big weightlifters rely on creatine for those huge reps. Creatine floods your muscles with energy to power through huge lifts. Users of creatine supplements almost unequivocally report stronger lifts and increased muscle size. With this stuff, you can even take it on non-workout days to keep your muscles primed for the next workout. For those of you who aren’t as interested in the high-intensity workout, creatine isn’t necessary for you.
Many pre-workout supplements include vasodilator ingredients in their formula. Vasodilators widen blood vessels. This improves blood flow and increases pump and vascularity. This isn’t just for looks. Better blood results in a better workout and healthier circulation for the muscles. That being said, it is probably the least important ingredient in a pre-workout supplement because it doesn’t contribute much to the actual workout. When using a pre-workout supplement, it is best to take it about thirty minutes before starting your workout so all the ingredients can metabolize before you start lifting. Because some supplements list their ingredients in a proprietary blend, it can be difficult to tell how much of each ingredient there is. It often requires a bit of trial and error to find the best supplement for you.