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Should You Reach for an Energy Drink for Your Pre-Workout?

Posted by Your Sports Nutritionist on Jun 29, 2016, 9:30:00 AM

Energy drinks aren't a good substitute for a balanced preworkout supplementYou want to get the most of your workout, and doing that actually starts before you exercise. Taking the right pre-workout energy supplements can give you greater focus, and increase your energy and endurance levels for better results. Many people reach for an energy drink for that quick boost, but should you drink an energy drink, or opt for pre-workout supplements instead? Here are some details about both to help you decide.

Energy Drinks

Most of us are familiar with energy drinks. They are said to boost our alertness, help with physical recovery, and just give a little extra jolt during the day.

Caffeine is one of the primary ingredients in energy drinks that supposedly gives you that energy boost, and, in moderation, caffeine can be a helpful addition to your daily routine. However, the high levels of caffeine in energy drinks can have very detrimental effects to your health. In most cases, caffeine makes you crash once the effects wear off, forcing you to drink more of it, causing acute dehydration. This dehydration can lead to headaches, muscle soreness, and even nausea. What’s more, caffeine can negatively affect your sleep patterns, which can cause your body to get insufficient rest, and insufficient rest can have severely negative impacts on your workout and overall wellness.

In addition to caffeine, energy drinks are also chock-full of artificial sweeteners and flavors that don’t add much benefit to your workouts. Although sweeteners can give you a rush at the start, they can also cause you to crash during your exercise. Artificial sweeteners can also promote weight gain. They are typically deemed “good” for active people (and people with diabetes) because they have little to no carbs or calories. Unfortunately, just because they are a low-calorie food, does not mean that they will help you lose weight. They actually cause metabolic confusion that will trick your body into storing fat.

Finally, consuming energy drinks long-term has the potential of increasing your levels of irritability and nervousness. If you do like energy drinks before your workout, consume smaller amounts and take breaks from it on a regular basis.

Pre-workout Supplements

If you are looking for an alternative to an energy drink, consider a pre-workout concoction. Make your own drink with combinations of ingredients like

Or grab a meal replacement like Quest Bars or a Best Bar Ever. These supplements are scientifically proven to be better for your overall health than slamming a giant can of Red Bull. They optimize your workouts by promoting muscle growth, enhancing endurance, heightening focus, boosting performance, and they can even aid in immune function and physical recovery.

Some pre-workout supplements also contain caffeine, but at much lower levels than energy drinks, thereby allowing you to reap the benefits of caffeine without the intense negative side effects of high dosages of it. Certain supplements may also contain additional vitamins, and, depending on the vitamins, these additions can more specifically help you achieve your fitness goals.

Check the ingredients to find the pre-workout supplement that meets your supplement needs, as no two athlete’s fitness levels and fitness goals are ever identical.

Pump It Up

Getting an extra boost before you start your workout can certainly enhance your time at the gym. And there’s nothing more satisfying than seeing your hard-earned results. If you need help planning your nutritional strategies to get the most out of your workouts, or have questions about healthy energy drink alternatives, contact Jax Nutrition, or visit one of our locations today.

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Topics: Health, Protein, energy, Preworkout

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