Pre-workout supplements are great for motivation with their ability to increase energy, pumps and muscular strength. In this article I will reveal the best pre workout supplement on the market, determined upon its ingredients which are proven for giving you greater intensity during your workouts, resulting in faster gains.
Perfect Pre Workout Formula
Creatine Monohydrate (20g) + Caffeine (35mg+) + Arginine (3g) = Insane Workout
Creatine is an amino acid that fills the muscles with water. This isn’t just normal water retention, the important aspect of creatine is that it pulls water inside the muscle cell, instead of outside. This then increases the muscles functional capability.
When supplementing with creatine the energy molecule ATP increases, resulting in additional energy output. Studies have also concluded that muscles take longer to fatigue during exercise with creatine is in their system, resulting in increased muscular strength and endurance.
There are several types of creatine, including monohydrate, ethyl-ester, micronized, buffered and more. Some of the latest types of creatine including Creatine ethyl ester have positive reviews online, however creatine monohydrate still remains the most popular due to its ability to be effective over a long period of time, and for a large amounts of users.
Dose and Cycle
Creatine monohydrate should be cycled. 1 month on, 2 weeks off is a standard cycle. Creatine should have a loading dose during the first 5 days, at 20g a day. This will saturate the muscles with water, resulting in weight gain, increased strength and bigger muscles. After this loading phase, 5 grams a day is suffice for maintenance.
Arginine is an amino acid that can be found in watermelon in small doses. Arginine increases blood flow throughout the body. This means bigger pumps and the ability to complete more reps.
The more efficient your blood flows throughout your body, the more oxygen that is transported to your muscles, meaning you will be able to lift a heavier weight and complete more reps before fatiguing.
Caffeine is one of the best substances for boosting energy and increasing the intensity of your workout. Caffeine increases energy levels dramatically by stimulating the nervous system. With an adequate dose of caffeine (35mg+), the nervous system will become aroused and your body will start producing adrenaline.
Adrenaline then causes blood to rush to the muscles whilst the nervous system moves into fight or flight mode. During fight or flight mode your mind is telling the body that there is potential danger (though in this case there actually isn’t any) and so the bodies defences become working at their maximum ability.
This environment is optimal for entering the gym in, as bigger lifts are then inevitable because your body HAS to lift the weight (as there is danger, remember).
What to Avoid in a Pre Workout
DMAA, short for dimethylamylamine, which is an ingredient used to elevate your heart rate and boost energy in some pre workout supplements. It has recently become controversial in the news and has been pointed to as a factor in the death of young London marathon runner, Claire Squires.
DMAA is thought to narrow blood vessels, making it harder for blood to pump throughout the body, consequently causing blood pressure to rise. DMAA is currently banned in the UK, but at the time of writing this article it is still included in pre workout supplements in the US and other countries.
No Xplode is a pre workout formula that is one of the most popular supplements for maximizing intensity during workouts.
It contains the three effective ingredients in caffeine, arginine and creatine, plus other natural substances all beneficial to your workout. Most importantly it is free from harmful substances, such as DMAA.
Note: If you experience anxiety, depression or insomnia – it’d be wise for you to avoid taking any pre workouts with stimulants in them (such as caffeine). Such ingredients are proven to rev up your nervous system, potentially exacerbating current mental health problems. An alternative would be to choose a stimulant-free pre workout. We made a post specifically on this here.
If you regularly consume caffeine (such as multiple cups of tea/coffee) every day, you’re unlikely to be sensitive to stimulating pre workouts, as your body’s already built up a tolerance to such ingredients. In this example, adverse side effects are unlikely.