Pre-Workout Supplements: What Do They Do for Your Body
Any supplement is meant to fill in the gaps when you are lacking, hence the name supplement. Your body needs to break down nutrients you get from your diet to produce energy and to carry out normal bodily functions and processes. If you are unable to get what you need from your diet alone, it is recommended that you take supplements to help your body get what it is lacking.
Now, this is all true for supplements as a whole. When we talk about workout supplements, they aren’t necessarily built to fill in gaps in your diet; yes, some of them will give you vitamins and proteins you might not be getting elsewhere, but that's not their sole purpose. Workout supplements are meant to give your body a little bit extra, something like a boost to help it perform better than usual. This goes for all types of workout supplements, from pre-workout supplements, energy-boosting supplements to supplements that help with recovery.
Out of all the workout-specific supplements, the most commonly taken one by gym-goers is a pre-workout supplement. These types of supplements are meant to enhance your workout and build your endurance, but let’s find out what they are actually doing and how they’re doing it:
The main reason why people opt for pre-workout supplements is that they are looking for a boost of energy for their workouts. More energy means that you can spend more time in the gym, and you can put in more power into your workout without getting tired as quickly. An energy boost also acts as motivation; when your body has extra energy, it will look for a way to use it up, and what better way than hitting the gym?
This energy comes from substances in the pre-workout supplements such as caffeine, taurine, or other ingredients to give you this boost. With the jolt you get from the energy booster, you can get a lot more out of your workout. Some pre-workout supplements formulate their energy boosts in a way that they give you a steady stream of energy rather than one mass amount in one go.
Many pre-workout supplements are packed full of vitamins that help provide energy to the body for it to function at its best for longer. Vitamin C, B12, and B3 are some of the best of these ingredients to help with endurance.
Vitamin C is a necessary component in the metabolization of carbs to produce energy for your workouts. It also helps with the absorption of iron, which leads to an increase in blood flow to your muscles for a better workout.
Vitamin B12 helps create pathways for communication between the muscles and the brain for better performance. It is also essential for the creation of red blood cells to produce more energy in the body and better blood flow.
Vitamin B3 helps with brain function, which can help you stay alert in the gym. Proper brain function is essential for the gym as well as everyday life.
There are a few pre-workout supplements that also aid with the recovery once you leave the gym. If you see that the supplement you choose is rich in BCAAs, you’re golden with your recovery. BCAAs are essential amino acid branched chains that are present in the body used to generate muscle. These unique branded chains are the only amino acids that break down in the muscles instead of in the liver, and they make up about 40% of all amino acids present in the body. They are used by the body to create muscle protein, hence helping your body recover from a workout.
BCAAs also help with muscle fatigue because they limit the production of serotonin in the brain.
Supplements usually have ingredients that help boost strength, as well as help build your strength quicker than you would without them. These sought out effects are possible because the consumer has that extra boost to push out more reps. The first of those ingredients is caffeine. Caffeine reduces muscle fatigue and results in increased muscle strength during your workout, which results in an increase in strength over time.
The second of these ingredients is BCAA. These amino acids not only enhance your performance at the gym, but they also promote muscle growth. These amino acids are essential in the body since they break down in the muscles rather than the liver; they act as building blocks that work with proteins to help you build muscle and strength.
What You Should Be Wary Of
When you are picking a pre-workout supplement for yourself, be very cautious of what you are putting in your body. Make sure the company you are buying from is transparent with its ingredients, so you are not putting any unknown substances in your body that could be potentially harmful. Some of these ingredients are not only unsafe, but they are also illegal and not FDA approved.
Educate yourself on safe and unsafe ingredients used in supplements so you can get a clearer idea of what to look out for on labels. Be most wary of products that forgo the ingredients label all-together. Transparency of ingredients, especially in supplements is extremely important because this is the least policed facet of the pharmaceutical industry.
What Supplement to Take
If you’re looking for a great pre-workout supplement to add to your workout routine, we recommend the Alliance Nutrition Preworkout +BCAA Formula. It is made in an FDA approved facility and is completely transparent with the ingredients in use. It has tons of vitamins and minerals to help you work out harder, better, faster, and stronger for longer. It has caffeine and taurine to keep your energy levels up throughout your workout, and it is packed full of vitamin B12, B3, and vitamin C to get your body recovering faster and ready for its next go at the gym!