Pre workouts have long been used by fitness fanatics to help build their energy and endurance when training. However, it may seem intimidating to those who haven’t tried them before to understand what they are and how they work.
With the drive for fitness seeing a huge increase, pre workouts can be a great tool for those who may want to build their stamina on their fitness journey thanks to their ingredients that have been formulated to help boost endurance and fight fatigue so you can push your workouts further and really feel the benefits of regular exercise. Whether you like to do outdoor running or prefer the comforts of the gym, pre workouts can prove advantageous to any lifestyle and are a great way to encourage and push you in your workouts.
But which pre workout is the best? We’ve gathered the top 5 pre workouts that you should consider trying whether you are new to them or have been trying pre workouts for years. We’ve also curated an exclusive Buyers Guide and FAQ so you can have a fully understanding and deeper knowledge of why pre workouts can be hugely beneficial to your fitness and health journey.
Don’t have time to read the full guide? Find out our top recommendation here:
Our top pick is the C4 Original Pre Workout which is the number 1 selling pre workout brand sold in America since 2011 with over 2 billion servings sold that provide advanced energy support, endurance, force and pumps. This pre workout has been formulated with a super creatine compound which helps to support strength and performance.
Perfect for those who are starting their fitness journey as well as those who are striving for a new goal, this pre workout is designed to suit all abilities and exercises. What makes the C4 Original Pre Workout so reliable is the formula which contains CarnoSyn Beta-Alanine which is a premium clinically studied beta alanine that helps to support muscular endurance as well as fighting fatigue and can cause a harmless tingling sensation.
So what makes this our winner? The C4 Original Pre Workout formula is patented and helps the body to prolong its caffeine tolerance buildup which helps to provide more energy for both short and long workouts which makes it ideal for those who are on their fitness journey and are pushing themselves a bit more with every workout.
Simply take one serving of sugar free pre workout with 6 fl. Oz of water around 20 to 30 minutes before training to feel the benefits. With a variety of delicious flavors available, you’re guaranteed to find a pre workout that is going to suit your taste.
Best Pre Workout for Running
C4 Original Pre Workout
Our first recommendation is the C4 Original Pre Workout which has been formulated with a patented and clinically studied compound which helps the body prolong its caffeine tolerance buildup so you can push yourself further no matter what ability or exercise you are undertaking.
Formulated with CarnoSyn Beta Alanine, this protein powder supports your muscular endurance as well as fighting any fatigue that can be experienced when pre workout hasn’t been consumed. What makes C4’s Original Pre Workout the number 1 selling pre workout brand in America is that it has been proven to provide advanced energy support, endurance, force and pumps thanks to the quality ingredients.
With a wide variety of flavors available, C4 helps to eliminate the boring and muted taste that comes with regular protein powders. With no lingering aftertaste, you can choose a flavor that suits your taste which helps to make your pre workout consumption more enjoyable and less like a chore. Each flavor has been formulated with a super creatine compound to support strength and performance, you can enjoy this pre workout no matter where you are in your fitness journey. C4 can help to unlock your full potential.
- Helps the body prolong its caffeine tolerance buildup so you can push yourself further
- Formulated with CarnoSyn Beta Alanine, this protein powder supports your muscular endurance
- With no lingering aftertaste, you can choose a flavor that suits your taste which helps to make your pre workout consumption more enjoyable
- High price point
Beyond Raw LIT
Our second selection is the Beyond Raw LIT which is a clinically dosed pre workout powder that is perfect for all abilities and all exercises. Full of key ingredients such as caffeine, L Citrulline, Beta Alanine and Nitric Oxide, this protein powder helps to build up your energy and endurance for all exercises whilst also building up your caffeine tolerance so you can push yourself further with every workout.
With a variety of flavors available, you can find an option that is going to prevent any lingering aftertaste and make your pre workout consumption more enjoyable and easier to integrate into your regular exercise routine.
Beyond Raw are renowned for their incorporation of the finest ingredients that help to push you during any power intense activity by assisting with unrivalled mental alertness thanks to the fully dosed key ingredients. No matter where you are on your fitness journey, this protein powder has been created to be consumed on a long term basis so you can push yourself and experience all of the benefits that come with pre workouts.
- Full of key ingredients to help to build up your energy and endurance
- Variety of flavors available to prevent any lingering aftertaste
- Created to be consumed on a long term basis
- High price point
Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Pre-Workout
Our third choice is the Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Pre-Workout which contains a lot of Vitamin D which provides immune support. With 175mg of caffeine, each serving helps to fuel your mind and body so you can train with boosted energy and push yourself further each time.
It also has 3g creatine which helps to support overall performance and 1.5g of beta alanine which supports enhanced endurance which is perfect for those who are the start of their fitness journey and need to boost their stamina for their workouts.
Optimum Nutrition always incorporates the most advanced ingredients into their products and with 1.5g of citrulline malate which is a precursor to nitric oxide, you can be assured of the quality that it provides. It has been banned substance tested to ensure that you can trust what you are putting into your body and with a variety of flavors to choose from, you don’t have to worry about any lingering aftertastes that sometimes occur with other branded protein powders.
- Contains a lot of Vitamin D which provides immune support
- Has been banned substance tested to ensure that you can trust what you are putting into your body
- Variety of flavors to choose from
- Not suitable for those who are doing longer or more intense workouts
Myprotein® Impact Whey Protein Powder
Our fourth recommendation is the Myprotein® Impact Whey Protein Powder which is a premium whey packed with 21g of protein per serving which is ideal for daily use. It is vegetarian and gluten free making it accessible for the majority of diets.
It has been ranked Grade A by the independent tester Labdoor for both quality and value and has been officially certified as one of the best protein powders on the market and is one of the most popular brands for protein powder because of this. It provides your body with convenient, high quality protein which also contributes to the growth and maintenance of muscle mass and makes sure you are getting the protein you need every day.
What makes Myprotein such a great choice is that their protein powder contains 3.6g of glutamine and all of the essential amino acids including 4.5g of BCAAS which naturally occur in protein and help to build and repair new muscles. This helps to push you further during your workouts and gives you that extra energy. This protein powder also has a lot of extra health benefits as it boasts just 1.9g of fat, 1g of carbs and just 103 calories per serving making it great for those who are on a calorie based diet.
- Been ranked Grade A by the independent tester Labdoor for both quality and value
- Contains 3.6g of glutamine and all of the essential amino acids including 4.5g of BCAAS
- Contains 1.9g of fat, 1g of carbs and just 103 calories per serving
- Can leave an aftertaste
SCIENCE IN SPORT Energy Caffeine Gels
Our final selection is the SCIENCE IN SPORT Energy Caffeine Gels which is the World’s first isotonic gel that effectively delivers an easily digestible and quick supply of glucose for energy during exercise. Whether you are cycling, running or any form of exercise, these gels are great for all abilities.
Great for those who don’t have to spend time making protein shakes, these gels are designed to be consumed without water which minimizes the risk of being bloated which can happen with over drinking before a workout. Cutting out water also reduces digestive distress such as vomiting or cramps.
The gels are filled with caffeine which acts as a stimulant on the brain which lowers your perception of effort and allows you to push and stretch yourself that extra bit further. What makes these gels great is that they don’t have a thick, sticky texture and actually have a light and drinkable consistency which gives you the boost without any lingering aftertaste that can come with a lot of pre workouts. These gels are vegan, gluten free and kosher which is great for all lifestyles and dietary requirements.
- Designed to be consumed without water which minimizes the risk of being bloated
- Have a light and drinkable consistency which gives you the boost without any lingering aftertaste
- Vegan, gluten free and kosher
- High price point
When you are doing further research into which pre workout is best for you, then there are multiple factors you should consider to find which one is going to be best for you. Not only is this going to reduce the chances of disappointment, it will also help you to get the most of the benefits that pre workouts provide.
Always think about how often you workout, the type of pre workout you are looking for, your dietary requirements and your budget. Once you’ve thought about all of these aspects, you’ll be in a position where you can make a decision that you fully understand and will prevent any disappointment.
How often you workout
The first thing you should think about is how often you workout. The reason why this is so important is that it will help you to determine how much you will need.
If you exercise a couple of times a week then you won’t need to buy a huge amount at one time whereas for those who exercise daily and like to consume pre workout each time, you’ll have to invest in a larger tub that is sold in bulk so you’re sure not to run out frequently.
Type of pre workout
When we say type of pre workout, we mean the form that the pre workout comes in. The majority of pre workouts come as a powdered protein that you mix together to make a smoothie. However, you can also buy pre workouts in other forms such as gels or shots. Knowing what type of pre workout is going to be best for you is dependent on your lifestyle.
Making protein shakes can be time consuming so if you lead a hectic lifestyle and want to have a quick pre workout before doing your exercise then having gels or shots can be an easy way to incorporate those pre workouts into your exercise regime.
As pre workouts are consumed, it’s always important to think about your dietary requirements before making any decisions. A lot of pre workout powders contain whey which is not a vegan ingredient so if you are vegan, always be sure that the pre workout you are looking at is vegan before purchasing.
There are also a lot of flavored pre-workouts available so if you have any allergies, be sure to double check the ingredient list to reduce any risk of harm before purchasing.
Lastly, think about the budget you are willing to spend. Pre workouts vary greatly in price depending on their form and how much they contain. You want to make sure you are getting the right solution for you without breaking your bank.
If you’re trying pre workout for the first time, be sure to purchase a smaller amount so you’re not committing to a larger bulk and can see whether it is the right pre workout for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should you take a pre-workout?
Whether you take a pre workout is completely up to you but the benefits of doing so cannot be understated. You’ll feel much more energetic, have an increased endurance and may even have increased fat burning.
However, pre workouts are not for everyone, especially if you are caffeine sensitive or may be on certain medications. If you are in doubt then always seek the advice of a doctor or health professional who can point you in the right direction.
How long does pre-workout last?
Pre workouts usually take around 30 to 45 minutes to kick in and then the benefits will last anywhere between 3 to 6 hours making them great for those who are doing longer workouts such as marathon training that take a lot of endurance.
If you haven’t tried pre workouts before then it is best to try it before a shorter workout so you can see if it is best for you.