Why Pre-workouts Are Useful
Whenever you head to the gym, you want to have a productive session that helps you get that one step closer to your goals. For some, this may mean improving muscle mass. For others, improving fitness. And yet others want to lose weight to achieve their ideal figure. Ultimately, you hope to see your time spent in the gym translate into results. Luckily for you, with pre-workout supplements, you may be able to achieve your goals sooner thanks to the added boost you get with the right blend of ingredients.
How do these supplements work and how can they help you achieve your fitness goals?
Let’s dive into the science behind pre-workout supplements and discover what they can do for your body.
How Pre-workouts Work: An Introduction
Pre-workout supplements are designed to improve your performance and results during training sessions by helping you increase your energy levels, muscular endurance and strength, and overall focus for the session ahead.
Effective pre-workouts contain specific ingredients that aid you physically and mentally in your gym session. These ingredients include caffeine, carefully selected amino acids, nitric oxide boosters, vitamins, minerals, herbs and various extracts.
What pre-workout you select will depend on what goals you want to achieve.
It could be improving your endurance, getting stronger, increasing your energy, or even just going into the gym with a more positive mindset.
Once you have identified your fitness journey goals, you can then take a look at which ingredients will help you reach those goals.
Some ingredients can provide you with an energy boost, and increase your blood flow and heart rate. For example, HYDE Xtreme has been carefully designed to help you improve your focus, achieve maximum pump and help boost your metabolism to strip fat.
How Pre-workouts Work: What Happens in Your Body
Ultimately, pre-workouts come in a variety of blends, each designed to meet your specific training needs. You can think of these ingredients as building blocks. Each is scientifically studied to better your workout by increasing your energy levels, helping you push harder for longer, increasing your blood flow to get the maximum pump, increasing your metabolism to contribute to fat loss, and/or making sure you are laser-focused for your session ahead.
Each of these building blocks has various ingredients that “enable” your body for the brief period the full effects of your pre-workout are in force. Here is a rundown of these ingredients.
Gaining Energy Through Your Pre-workouts
For those that have tried a pre-workout before, you can probably recall just how energized you felt from only one serving. That’s the main reason why many choose to take pre-workout supplements.
The most popular ingredient that provides you with that boost of energy is caffeine. Just like that cup of coffee you reach for every morning, caffeine can kickstart your workout and give you that energy boost.
As one of the most intensely studied and tested substances in pre-workout supplements today, caffeine has been proven to be an active and effective stimulant that can increase your energy levels. In addition, caffeine also reduces your perception of any muscle pain, which increases your tolerance for tougher sessions while decreasing signs of fatigue.
Caffeine works by having a direct impact on your brain; it keeps your adenosine receptors, neurotransmitters that cause you to feel drowsy and calm, under control. Caffeine also accelerates the production of catecholamines, which enhance neural stimulation and reduce your perception of pain and discomfort. As a result, you find yourself more energized, more focused and more determined to exercise hard.
Pushing Through Your Workouts
An obvious sign of muscle strength? Improvement in weight lifting exercises. Weights that were previously too heavy or that you could only just manage now seem much easier to lift.
This means that your nervous system is developing and that your muscles have been growing as well. Pre-workouts enable you to accelerate the growth of your muscles, commonly through an amino acid called creatine.
Creatine is included in pre-workout products in order to increase your strength. Creatine has been scientifically proven to increase strength and well-tested to ensure its effectiveness and safety.
Creatine is a naturally occurring substance in the body that provides energy for your muscles. It helps to increase your adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels, which in turn give your muscles direct access to the energy they need to help you push weights harder for longer.
As a result, creatine provides you with more energy for intense training, as well as heavy lifting.
Pre-workout to Increase Blood Flow
Increasing your pumps is slightly different from gaining strength. It’s important for you to boost your pumps, in addition to increasing strength, because muscles require oxygen and other nutrients to work as efficiently as possible.
For this to happen, you need vasodilation. Vasodilation is the process of increasing the width of your blood vessels to get more of the oxygen and nutrients in your blood to travel to your muscles. Among the most effective vasodilating substances, we have citrulline malate, which is present in many pre-workout supplements.
Citrulline malate is an essential amino acid that can be converted into another substance called L-arginine in your kidneys. When this conversion happens, it triggers your body to accelerate the production of nitric oxide, a compound that facilitates vasodilation. As a result, you will see an increase in much-needed nutrients heading towards your muscles.
Losing Fat Through Your Pre-workouts
One of the reasons why many people hit the gym is to lose unwanted fat and lean out. Pre-workouts can help you reach your fat loss goals sooner, as long as you continue to work hard and eat healthy.
Earlier, we covered how caffeine and creatine can increase the intensity of your workout session, leading you to burn more calories and shed fat.
Interestingly, researchers have proven that caffeine also has properties that can aid in fat oxidation. As epinephrine levels rise, caffeine can increase fat-burning mechanisms in the body.
However, pre-workouts don’t just rely on caffeine to target fat loss.
A common fat loss ingredient included in pre-workouts is Yohimbe. Yohimbe is a naturally occurring ingredient that comes from the Yohimbe tree, which grows in parts of central and western Africa.
Yohimbe has grown in popularity in recent years thanks to its significant fat loss boosting benefits. Like caffeine, Yohimbe helps to increase your heart rate. A faster heart rate means you are able to burn more calories. Yohimbe also helps to supress your appetite, which aids in achieving a calorie deficit, and is great for increasing water loss. This is very beneficial for those who are looking to shed weight quickly as water weight can easily be stripped from your body. But the most important benefit of Yohimbe is its ability to improve your body’s efficiency at fat burning. This means you can work at the same intensity but burn more fat.
Increasing Concentration Through Your Pre-workouts
We have all been there. Fighting the mental battle that tells you to stay home from the gym or arriving at the gym only to not be able to get in the right mental zone. Thankfully, pre-workout supplements can help improve your focus and attention, thanks to an ingredient that is found in green tea.
The substance L-theanine keeps caffeine levels in check by converting caffeine into energy to make you more productive. L-theanine gives you a nootropic boost, pushing caffeine into the right places to help you stay focused in your exercise.
L-theanine and caffeine work hand in hand to create a combination called "smart caffeine."
Ever expierenced the jitters or irritability after one too many cups of coffee? This overstimulation not only leads to negative side effects but causes a lack of focus. As such, L-theanine helps raise the levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in your brain to counteract this effect. GABA allows you to stay focused, even if there’s an abundance of caffeine in your body, and prevents you from feeling anxious or irritable.
You now have a better understanding of how pre-workouts help you meet your fitness goals and what the main ingredients do in your body. Because there are so many pre-workout supplements available on the market today, you should still do your research on the many other scientifically proven ingredients before purchasing.
Look for pre-workouts that have been blended based on scientific research and are third-party tested, so you can be assured of quality.
At the end of the day, you need to stay goal-driven. That hard work and consistency still play a huge role in helping you achieve your goals. Just think of your pre-workout as a little boost to help you along your journey.