Are Pre-Workouts Good For You?

What are pre-workouts? They’re a convenient way to get calories and energy before a workout. It’s been known for quite some time that eating the right food an hour to three hours before a workout could provide the energy you need to improve your results. Combinations of carbs and protein before working out help provide the energy you need for your muscles, plus some protein to make you feel full so you don’t binge on a pizza after the workout and provides raw material for muscle building. A PB&J or fruit and yogurt smoothie are good pre-workout foods.

Pre-workouts are convenience products.

You don’t have to worry about the right combination of carbs to protein with pre-workouts. It’s ready for you to combine with water or simply open the can or bottle. They boost your energy level to help boost your performance. Some contain caffeine, which is known as a performance enhancer. Some drinks are packed with extra nutrients, such as B-vitamins, which helps your metabolism and boosts your energy.

The ingredients will vary, depending on the pre-workout you choose.

If you read about nutrition often or simply watch TV with commercials, you may have heard about the superfood beets and beet juice. What makes it so good for people about to exercise is that it boosts the body’s nitric acid levels. Nitric oxide then dilates the blood vessels to increase blood flow to all parts of the body, which increases your endurance and reduces the stress on the heart. Some drinks beets or beet juice, while others contain creatine, which is found in muscle tissue. It helps improve strength and builds muscle tissue, plus boosts your exercise performance.

Make sure the pre-workouts provide what they say.

No matter what the label says, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s true unless someone else certifies that. The FDA does most certifications for foods and drugs, but they don’t regulate pre-workouts. Some organizations, such as NSF or Informed-Choice are third party groups that certify the purity and quality of supplements. Check the label to ensure that it contains that certification.

  • Watch out for products that contain caffeine and creatine. Too much caffeine or creatine increases blood pressure and heart rate, can cause nausea, diarrhea and upset stomach. Both can cause dehydration.
  • A study in the International Journal of Exercise Science found that using pre-workouts only boosted strength by four to eight percent. What gave the biggest boost were supplements with caffeine.
  • If you’re eating a healthy snack an hour to three hours before a workout, you can supplement with a cup of coffee to get the same results as most pre-workouts provide. You’ll be more satisfied, too.
  • If you do opt for pre-workouts, always check the label and don’t overdo. Many of these drinks have sweeteners such as sugar, sugar alcohol or artificial sweeteners. Sugar adds calories, while alcohol sugars and artificial sweetener can cause gas, bloating and diarrhea.

For more information, contact us today at Skin Sport Fitness Center

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