What Are Pre-workouts?
Stimulant-based supplements contain ingredients like caffeine that stimulate brain activity and increase adrenaline production for better performance.
Non-stimulant-based pre-workouts contain ingredients like creatine and beta-alanine that maximize muscle growth, improve blood flow and increase energy levels.
The effects of pre-workout supplements can be felt approximately 30 minutes after consumption.
What Determines the Calories in a Pre-workout?
It's important to read the nutrition label and ingredient list carefully to determine the calorie content of a pre-workout supplement.
The Most Common Ingredients in a Pre-workout
- Caffeine: Caffeine is a stimulant that increases brain activity, alertness and focus. It promotes the circulation of chemicals like adrenaline and cortisol in the body. Caffeine can increase energy levels, reduce fatigue during exercise and increase metabolism.
- Creatine: Creatine is a compound produced naturally in the body that can help increase muscle strength, muscle growth, and promote recovery. This naturally occurring compound is stored mainly in the skeletal muscles. However, athletes often supplement further, and low doses can be found in pre-workout complexes.
- Nitric oxide precursors: Nitric oxide is another compound produced naturally by the body to enhance blood flow. L-arginine and L-citrulline in pre-workout supplements are used by the body to make nitric oxide which as a result relaxes the blood vessels making way for more blood (carrying nutrients) and oxygen to get pumped in to the muscles.
- Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs): BCAAs include three essential amino acids - leucine, isoleucine, and valine. These amino acids are not naturally made in the body and can only be obtained through food or supplements. Branched-chain amino acids can reduce muscle soreness, promote the building and repairing of muscle tissue, and delay fatigue during high-intensity exercise.
- Beta-alanine: Beta-alanine is a non-essential amino acid used in pre-workouts to improve athletic performance and delay the onset of muscle fatigue during workouts, which allows you to train harder for longer. This ingredient in pre-workouts increases the levels of carnosine in muscles which acts as a buffer to reduce acid build-up in muscles responsible for fatigue.
How Many Calories Does Pre Workout Have?
Some products are designed to be low-calorie, while others may be higher in calories due to added ingredients like carbohydrates or protein. The choice depends on your goals. For example, during weight loss, it is better to choose a low-calorie supplement, but during weight gain or if you have a hard, long workout, a few extra calories won't hurt or even be helpful.
It's important to read the nutrition label and serving size information carefully to determine the calorie content of a specific pre-workout supplement.
I'm a big fan of Cellular C4 Ultimate, it gives me everything I personally look for in a pre-workout.
I get the caffeine kick from 300mg, the beta-alanine to help me power through those last reps when my body is crying for me to stop, and I love the pump I get off the dual creatines after. Only 5 calories per serving make this product suitable for any purpose.
Plus, it's totally free from artificial dyes or flavours. Not a deal-breaker, but definitely a bonus.
Does Pre-workout Have Calories?
Is 400 Calories Good for a Pre-workout?
Good luck, and please feel free to comment or ask any questions below!
- Creatine Supplementation for Muscle Growth: A Scoping Review of Randomized Clinical Trials from 2012 to 2021 // Ncbi: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8949037/
- DIETARY NITRIC OXIDE PRECURSORS AND EXERCISE PERFORMANCE // Gssiweb: https://www.gssiweb.org/sports-science-exchange/article/sse-156-dietary-nitric-oxide-precursors-and-exercise-performance
- BRANCHED-CHAIN AMINO ACIDS (BCAA) // Ais: https://www.ais.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0013/1000417/36182_Supplements-fact-sheets_BCAA-v4.pdf
- Beta-Alanine — A Beginner's Guid // Healthline: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/beta-alanine-101
Oleksandr is a professional fitness nutritionist, certified by FPA (Fitness Professional Association). Oleksandr adheres to the principles of evidence-based dietetics and instills in his clients a healthy relationship with food - without strict prohibitions on favorite foods and regular disruptions. His main task – not only get a result for you, but also maintain it for many years, enjoying tasty and delicious food.