Every gym-goer knows that pre-workout can give you the extra oomph you need to power through an intense workout session. But what are the active ingredients in these popular supplements, and what should you look for when selecting one?

If you’ve ever asked yourself these questions, then this blog post is for you! Let’s dive into the science behind pre-workouts and find out exactly how they work.

For our Buyers Guide on selecting the best pre-workout for your specific needs, simply click below on these helpful articles:

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How Pre-Workout Supplements Work

Most pre-workout supplements contain a combination of stimulant ingredients that help increase energy levels, improve focus, and enhance athletic performance. The most common active ingredients are caffeine, creatine, beta alanine, B vitamins, arginine, and tyrosine. Here’s a breakdown of how each ingredient works:


Caffeine is the most common active ingredient found in pre-workouts. It acts as a stimulant that gives you an energy boost and can help with performance, focus, and alertness. Most pre-workouts contain between 100 and 200 mg of caffeine per serving, but it is important to be aware of your individual tolerance levels before taking a supplement with this much caffeine.


Creatine is an amino acid that helps your muscles produce energy during hard work or high intensity exercise. It has been found to improve muscle strength and power output when taken regularly over time, so it is often included in pre-workout supplements. The recommended dosage of creatine is usually between 3-5 grams per day.

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BetaAlanine is an amino acid that helps increase muscle carnosine levels which can lead to improved athletic performance during high intensity training sessions. Studies have found that doses between 1.6 – 6 grams daily are effective for improving performance, so most pre-workout supplements will have around 2 grams per serving for optimal results.

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L-Citrulline is an amino acid that helps reduce fatigue during workouts by increasing blood flow to the muscles. It can also help improve endurance and reduce recovery time after intense exercise by reducing lactic acid buildup in the muscles. Pre-workout supplements usually contain 3 – 6 grams of L-Citrulline depending on the desired effect.

B Vitamins

B vitamins are essential for energy production in the body as they help convert food into fuel that your muscles can use for energy during exercise. They also play a role in helping with red blood cell production which can help increase oxygen delivery throughout your body when exercising.


Arginine is an amino acid that increases nitric oxide production in the body which helps with blood flow to your muscles during exercise and can help improve muscle pumps while working out.


Tyrosine is another amino acid that helps support cognitive function by aiding in neurotransmitter production which can help improve focus while exercising or competing in sports activities.

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When choosing a pre-workout supplement it’s important to check the label for these active ingredients as well as any potential allergens or other unwanted additives like sugar or artificial sweeteners.

You should also keep track of how much caffeine you are consuming each day since too much can lead to negative side effects such as headaches, anxiety, increased heart rate, or insomnia. With all this in mind, happy shopping gym goers!

Now that you know what goes into your pre workout drinks there’s nothing stopping you from getting a good pump before smashing those weights! For the best pre-workout supplements on the market, check out my blog: