What you consume before a workout can make all the difference between a so-so effort and a mind-blowing training session. Not only do the right pre-workout supplements allow you to train at a higher intensity, but they can boost your strength, endurance, focus, and muscle pumps. Overall this means you can train longer, heavier and complete more reps than you normally would. Here, we present the best supplement ingredients to add to your workout arsenal for a long-lasting spark. While you can find numerous individual products in the market with these ingredients, your best bet is to stack them, that way you will get the exact recommended dosages for all of them and you will know exactly what goes into your body. At the bottom of this page, We put these supplements together into a pre-workout stack. Use the stack and you will be stronger and have more energy to spare from your first rep to your last.
Arginine is the most widely used Nitric Oxide (NO) booster around, which is why it is a must before workouts. Taken before a workout, it increases NO levels and blood flow to muscles to boost muscle pump during your workout. That’s because, in the body, arginine gets converted into Nitric Oxide. Nitric Oxide relaxes the muscles in the blood vessels, which widens them for more blood to flow through. The increased blood flow, in turn, supplies more oxygen, amino acids, glucose, anabolic hormones to the muscles during workouts, which boosts your energy levels and strength as you lift. The enhanced blood flow also delivers more fluid to create greater muscle pumps during your workouts. Arginine comes in various forms, some are absorbed better than others. For optimal results, stick with arginine-AKG or arginine HLC.
Caffeine is one the most popular pre-workout and pick-me-up supplements on the market today and for good reasons. Caffeine gives you a jolt of energy and provides you with more focus and drive during your workouts. It increases immediate strength and reduces muscle pain during exercise so you can train harder for a longer period to further stimulate growth. Although you can get your caffeine from regular coffee, it’s recommended to take caffeine in an anhydrous form such as pills or capsule which is proven to be more effective.
Whey is the pre-workout protein of choice for most lifters because it’s the fastest-digesting protein you can get. Whey protein provides a fast source of aminos that will be absorbed quickly and taken up by your muscles during your workout. This helps stop muscle breakdown during your workout and quickly kick-start protein synthesis to start muscle building process when your workout is over. Whey also contains small protein fragments that enhance blood vessel dilation. This means you get a bigger pump during workouts as well as an increased delivery of nutrients, oxygen, and hormones to the muscles.
Hands down, creatine is the most effective supplement for boosting muscle strength as well as size. Creatine increases size and strength by providing you with the quick form of energy required by your muscles during weight training to contract stronger and over a longer period, which means you can lift weights with more speed, power, and strength. Creatine also makes your muscles stronger and bigger by drawing in water into muscle cells, giving them greater volume.
BCAAs include leucine, isoleucine and valine, three aminos that are critical pre-workout supplements because they provide your muscles with energy. These aminos also stall fatigue by tricking the brain into thinking you’re still fresh and strong. Plus, taking BCAAs beforehand will help prevent muscle breakdown down because they blunt the catabolic hormone Cortisol, which increases muscle breakdown, and limit both testosterone production and function.
Beta-alanine is used to boost all aspects of muscular performance in endurance sports and strength training. During high-intensity weight training, the body uses beta-alanine to form carnosine. Carnosine helps to buffer acid buildup in fast-twitch muscle fibers to boost muscle endurance and strength and reduce muscle fatigue, which allows you to perform more reps, especially on your last sets. Beta-alanine is a great supplement to stack with creatine. This combo will help you lift weights with more speed, power, and strength. In other words, you get more reps per set, which is key to stimulating hypertrophy.
Taking taurine is another effective way to boost strength and endurance. Taurine levels usually drop during exercise, meaning your strength and endurance will follow suit. So supplementing with taurine is essential for maintaining strength and endurance as you train. Taurine does this by enhancing the ability of the muscles to contract faster and with greater force. in addition, taurine prevents muscle during exercise and aid recovery. Less fatigue means more reps, and more reps mean more muscle.