Too Much Caffeine?

Caffeine Based Pre-Workout Supplements…Friend or Foe?
Written by Dave Lipson

If you have flipped through any popular fitness magazines you have probably seen advertisements for products like “N0-EXPLODE”, “Jacked-3D”, “Black Powder” “Hemo-Rage” and “Assault.” While these may sound like new band names on the “Warped Tour”, these are actually pre-workout supplements that you could find at your local vitamin/sport supplement store. They are coupled with tag lines like “Amazing Pumps!”, “Unleash Hell in Your Workout!”, and “Ignite Yourself!” These products claim to increase performance in workouts, providing more mental focus, energy, endurance and blood flow to extremities…but what do they really do? How do they work? And what are the real risks and benefits of consuming them?

Most of these supplements are based on caffeine, containing anywhere from 100-300 mg of caffeine in a serving. Just to compare, there is about 100 mg in an 8 ounce cup of coffee. When caffeine enters the body, systems start working harder to evacuate the substance from inside. There are events in the body like increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, the kidneys working harder causing frequent urination, and mental excitement. Make no mistake, caffeine is a powerful drug and has been associated with such silent killers as hypertension. Like many drugs, people tend to develop tolerances and are de-sensitized to the effects of caffeine, resorting to larger doses to achieve a mental high. Chronic and immoderate caffeine use can put undue stress on the adrenal glands and even lead to symptoms such as adrenal fatigue.

Having said that, there are also many advantages to using pre-workout supplements. I use pre-workout supplements from time to time, but I try to do it with an understanding and respect of their power, and a strategic application to my training. These products work. There is definitely a performance advantage when applied in the correct doses to the correct training. The University of Connecticut performed a study clearly showing an increase in bench press and grip strength for groups using pre-workout caffeine stimulants. Research has also confirmed the increased mental focus and acuity from the use of caffeine. For individuals who are trying to loose weight, caffeine can serve as an appetite suppressant and has been shown to increase both lipolysis (breakdown of fat) and thermogenesis (calorie burning).

In addition to caffeine, these pre-workout products are often stacked with other substances such as arginine (N.O.) a powerful vasodilator that is used to increase blood flow to the extremities – providing the “pump” to your arms. The intent is that the increased blood flow will increase performance.

Many of these products contain stimulants that are banned in significant doses for competitions by organizations like the USOC and the NCAA. I would recommend being careful and cross-referencing all the ingredients with a banned substance list in your sport. (Remember, even caffeine is banned in certain doses, so make sure you clear the substance with the appropriate organization.)

Due to the fact that these substances increase heart rate and blood pressure, I would not recommend them for activities where heart rate is already elevated, such as endurance events and metabolic (lactic) training. I have heard of many athletes that claim to feel like they are drowning due to overuse of caffeine in conditioning workouts and end up with nausea and vomiting.

To avoid becoming desensitized to the effects of these products I would recommend using them sparingly. I only use my pre-workout go-go-juice for a long and heavy strength training session to help with the mental fatigue that often accompanies such a stressor. Cycle these products on and off. Take a break after a few weeks and let your body normalize for a while with no or less caffeine. This will help you avoid many of the potential side effects of these pre-workout supplements. Remember, choosing the right supplements, like choosing the right diet, can assist you in your training, but in the end YOU are the determining factor in your training success.

Here is a quick overview of all the Pro’s and Con’s of pre workout stimulants:
Advantages

  • Increased Focus
  • Increased Energy
  • Increased Upper Body Strength
  • Fat Burning
  • Weight Loss

Disadvantages

  • Increased Blood Pressure
  • Adrenal Fatigue
  • Possible Drug Test Failure
  • Feeling of racing heart couple with nausea and vomiting

43
Leave a Reply

avatar
40 Comment threads
3 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
39 Comment authors
krik johnemmy hopperdrayШмуль ИстерманAlex Moen Recent comment authors
newest oldest most voted
trackback
Google

Google

Always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I enjoy but don’t get lots of link enjoy from.

trackback
Google

Google

Very handful of internet websites that take place to be in depth beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly properly really worth checking out.

krik john
Guest
krik john

awesome site!!
Avast Support Number

krik john
Guest
krik john
emmy hopper
Guest
emmy hopper

Awesome post.I am a regular visitor of your site and appreciate you taking the time to maintain the nice site.
Visit Here:https://www.officecommsetup.com

dray
Guest
dray

great site love it
http://www.offcce.com/setup

Шмуль Истерман
Guest
Шмуль Истерман

+++++++++++++++++++++
http://hotteens.topz.mobi

Alex Moen
Guest
Alex Moen

Thought that this link to a caffeinated protein shake might interest some of you guys and is relevant to the chat at hand: https://blog.matchmadecoffee.com/2017/03/08/the-caffeinated-protein-shake-take-your-workout-to-another-level/

Duplex Nkweni
Guest
Duplex Nkweni

So far, the disadvantages of pre-workout caffeine based supplements have not been officially proven yet. However, it is clear that the use of pre-workout supplements containing caffeine or other ingredients such as creatine have concrete result that we can notice by the change we see on our body such as increase energy, increase workout load, and increase in muscle mass. For those in search of these results, the use of pre-workout supplements is a great idea.

Nadia Bailey
Guest
Nadia Bailey

I dont like to take NoExplode anymore. I couldnt sleep and it made me so edgy! I was a mess. I now use the Dr Max Powers Anabolic Stack – and yes, it is alot of pills, but this stuff works better than NoExplode and I found it gives better pumps and I can last alot longer at the gym. Its a new brand – I never heard of it, but I love this stack !

Nicolas Nicoli
Guest
Nicolas Nicoli

I have heard that those products affect the liver, is it true? I always go natural lol, the only supplement I take is named alpharise and its for my prostate, It has no side effects.

Sarah Sobieski
Guest
Sarah Sobieski

I’m using sixstar pre workout explosion and I’ve noticed appetite supers sion in addition to the labeled uses such as increased physical performance. Normally I power walk but when taking this formula (pink lemonade) I jog vs. just walking…

MarcMorgan
Guest
MarcMorgan

They will always be a friend to me! Nothing can get me through a training session like this baby – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3HcCmRMj6Ls

LAB700
Guest
LAB700

Update // We just released an improved version of Amino Ignite. The original was awesome, but we made it even better. New label, still non-stimulant and naturally sweetened/flavored; non-GMO.

Mikey Bav
Guest
Mikey Bav

My favorite thing about Pre Workout Supplements has to be getting the tingles then killing a workout after!

Justas Splitas
Guest
Justas Splitas

What about fitness authority ? They think is friend or foe?

onlinestrength
Guest
onlinestrength

This is a great article! Its true that pre-workout supplements have both advantages and disadvantages. Using them properly is key.

Its sort of a workout ritual. Take your pre-workout and crush your workouts.

I actually just compiled a really thorough guide of Pre-workout supplements. I think you might find some of the information mentioned useful. Take a look if you get a chance: http://onlinestrength.com/pre-workout-supplements/top-10-best-pre-workout-supplements/.

JohnMathew
Guest
JohnMathew

Arnold Schwarzenegger Series Iron Pump gives the perfect energy

JohnMathew
Guest
JohnMathew

USPLabs Jack3d Micro helped me a lot in building perfect body

Xwerks
Guest
Xwerks

We are a little biased 🙂 But Invictus athlete ZA Anderson loves our pre-workout created specifically for Crossfit – http://xwerks.com