There seems to be a supplement for everything these days. A pre-workout supplement, a post-workout supplement, a fat burner, supplements for heart health, for digestive health… It’s overwhelming! We want to be healthy and feel good, but which of the millions of supplements out there do we really need?
Pre-workout drinks are nothing new. Men have been taking them regularly for many years. (I’m sure we’ve all seen the guys walking around with their neon pink or orange water jugs, right?) It is more recently that women have been taking interest in these workout enhancers as well. But do we really need them? And are they even safe?
What’s in Your Pre Workout Drink?
That is the big question. What the heck are you guzzling down before you crush your workout each day? Have you read the label? Do you know what half that stuff even is?
Look, I get it. Sometimes we hit a plateau or need that extra boost and downing 8 ounces of miracle juice known as a pre workout drink might sound like a good idea. But do you have any idea what you are putting in to your body? Most pre-workout drinks on the market will contain the staple ingredients, like creatine and caffeine. Sure, these will help boost your strength and energy during a workout, but what about the 20 other ingredients in there?
Do Women Need a Pre Workout Supplement?
In my opinion, probably not. Unless you are working out at an extremely high level where endurance, cramping and fatigue are becoming a major setback in your goals, you probably don’t need whatever GNC is trying to sell you. Properly fueling your body before and after your workouts with the right nutrition and hydration can significantly help in your performance output. And if you feel like you are really just in a slump or have hit a wall, something as simple as drinking a cup of coffee for the caffeine boost could be all you need.
Safe Pre Workout Supplements For Women
For those of you who are working out at a very high level of intensity, maybe even twice a day for your specific training goals, you can consider a couple safe products that I really love to help get you through it. (Please don’t just wander in to GNC and buy whatever they sell you!)
The first is L-Arginine Complete. This is not technically a pre-workout powder, but works great as one. This is a fantastic product that can be taken daily for its many cardiovascular benefits. The combination of L-Arginine and L-Citrulline aid in the production of nitric oxide in the body, which reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke, improves circulation and helps reduce high blood pressure. Aside from these amazing benefits, if taken just prior to your workout, the production of nitric oxide dilates the blood vessels, increasing circulation, which increases your work output. Pretty amazing stuff! And it’s not full of a bunch of unknown filler ingredients like your typical pre-workout drinks are.
The other is Endura, which is a glucose electrolyte solution that helps keep you hydrated, rebalances your electrolytes and avoids cramping and fatigue. This is something you’d want to drink throughout your workout to keep you properly hydrated and to replace the electrolytes you are losing via sweat. This is great for outdoor summer workouts, long bike rides or any high intensity workouts that are lasting an hour or more.
So, as is the case with most supplements, if you are properly nourishing and hydrating your body before and after your workouts, you probably don’t need another supplement in your cabinet. If your workouts are unusually intense or long, consider the products I mentioned above, but otherwise, most women don’t need to buy in to all that hype about downing some neon liquid that will have them lifting cars and sprinting through their workouts. A little caffeine boost or the proper snack just before your workout is likely all you’ll need to get what you want out of your workout.