Pre-workout supplements help to improve your performance while training. They give you energy and stamina and reduce muscle fatigue. However, you need to be careful which supplement you will choose because some of them could damage your health or could just not work at all. With that said, how does one make a homemade, pre-workout supplement that tastes great, helps the body, and is effective?
Follow our tips on how to make your own supplements and you could end up with not only a cheaper pre workout but also a more effective one.
How to Choose the Best Product?
There is a huge variety of pre-workout supplements on the market which makes it pretty difficult to choose the one which will work the best for you. Do not pay too much attention to what the company claims the supplements can do for you, but instead have a look at the label and the ingredients. Also, check the amount of each of these ingredients the product contains because not only are the ingredients important but the dosage of those ingredients is what really makes the product effective.
Pre-workout Supplement Ingredients
Your homemade preworkout supplement can contain some of these ingredients:
– Citrulline Malate
– Creatine Monohydrate
Beta-alanine increases your endurance. After you take it, the body converts it into carnosine, which is stored in your muscular cells. The carnosine is released when your pH drops and your muscles become acidic. This mechanism helps relieve the muscle tension and you are able to complete more repetitions with less rest between sets.
You need approximately 3-6 grams of beta-alanine per day. You can split the dosing and take a few smaller doses throughout the day if you want to avoid the tingling feeling in your body which this ingredient provokes. Have in mind that it takes a few weeks before you start feeling the effect of beta-alanine on your body. Also, you do not need to take it right before the workout; it will be effective no matter when you choose to take it through the day.
Citrulline malate is used in pre-workout supplements to reduce the muscle fatigue and to stimulate the muscle recovery.
Take 6-8 grams of it before you start your workout. This ingredient is relatively expensive, so even if a pre-workout supplement contains it, it will probably be in a lower dosage than the one you actually need.
This ingredient has a pretty sour taste which limits the choice of flavors which you can add to it. Fruity flavourings are suitable to combine with Citrulline malate.
Tyrosine is an important amino acid which participates in the synthesis of structural proteins. L-tyrosine can help the body relieve from the fatigue after an intensive workout.
Caffeine is a stimulant and so is widely used in various preworkout supplements. It gives the body energy and keeps you alert. It is also helps to burn fat. It is relatively cheap, but at the same time – effective. You need around 50-300mg of caffeine before you start your workout. It is up to you to find out what dosage of caffeine is the best for you. Be careful with high dosages because it will make you feel nervous and you may building up a tolerance to caffeine and it will become less effective. High doses of caffeine can cause heart palpitations an dysrhythmias that can be harmful to your heart so be very cautious with caffeine.
As caffeine is the most important ingredient in a pre workout, some strong coffee is often recommended to be consumed instead of a pre workout supplement whilst still giving similar effects and being much nicer on your wallet.
If you care about the taste of your pre workout drink, artificial flavors can make it taste better. They, however, will not affect in any way your performance, so you may find out that you do not need them at all.
The following ingredients are optional in that whilst they do provide a benefit they do not have to be taken in a pre workout and in fact can be taken separately and at your convenience.
L-Carnitine has many medical uses, but it is also used for gaining muscle mass and reducing fat. This ingredient helps the body in the process of producing energy for the functioning of heart and brain, for muscle movement and other important body processes.
Consult with your doctor or pharmacist about the possible side-effects that the L-Carnitine might have on your health because it is safe in most of the cases, but it might not be suitable for you if you have a medical problem.
Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) increase your endurance and stimulate post-training recovery. Take this ingredient with a recovery drink mixed with a low dose of carbohydrate before the training session or after it. BCAAs are the amino acids that your body needs in order to build muscle through effective recovery. If you are looking to gain bulk (hypertrophy) in your muscles, you will want a higher dose of BCAAs.
Creatine is effective for improving explosive energy for the body. Take creatine monohydrate around your training session or prior to high-intensity training that contains explosive movements. You need approximately 3-5 grams of it per day in order to achieve noticeable results. You can take it with sugar which will make your body absorb it faster, but this is not really necessary.
How To Make Your Own Pre Workout Drink
It might be too difficult for you to find a ready made pre workout supplement that contains the right ingredients for you in the required dosages. So, the best thing to do is to prepare your own supplement. Buy the ingredients that you want to use and mix them together. Experiment and find the right dosages of the ingredient that will work the best for you. Pay attention to your performance and how it changes with or without the supplement and when you make changes in the ingredients.
Here is a simple recipe for a homemade preworkout supplement drink which might fit your needs and preferences:
Mix the following in water
- 200 mg caffeine
- Beta-Alanine 4 grams
- Citrulline Malate 6 grams
- Flavouring of your choice for better taste.
Making your own pre-workout supplement might not be only more effective but it will also be cheaper. You can bulk buy only the ingredients you need rather than having to pay for ingredients that you would rather not have. You also don’t need to pay a premium price simply because there is a brand name on the label. You will also have the opportunity to change the dosage of individual ingredients if you need to in order to make the drink more effective.
Do not forget to listen to your body because it will let you know exactly what it needs. Also, have in mind that some of these ingredients might have side effects, so consult your doctor or pharmacist if you notice something that bothers you. Exercise is meant to improve your health, not destroy it, so do not take supplements that make you feel ill even if they improve your physical performance significantly.
Price Comparison Between Our Homemade Pre Workout & Popular UK Brands
Myprotein’s bestselling pre workout, MYPRE, currently retails for £24.99 and contains 31 servings which works out to be approximately £0.80 per serving. As mentioned before a simple cup of coffee can be enough to give you a kickstart to your workout at a fraction of the cost (unless the only coffee you drink is from Starbucks). However, if you want some of those extra ingredients to give you that extra edge then look no further than the Fitness Discount Codes pre workout supplement which contains only the essential ingredients in amounts that are actually effective:-
Caffeine: 500g costs £15.99 or £0.01 per 200mg serving from Myprotein.
Beta-Alanine:- 1kg costs £34.29 or £0.14 per serving from Myprotein.
Citrulline Malate:- 500g costs £24.99 or £0.30 per serving from Myprotein.
There you have it, you can make your own pre workout drink for just £0.45 per serving which is close to half the price of a branded one. When you also consider the customization benefits to suit your own individuals needs you should maybe think twice before your next purchase and consider if you should make your own.