If you have a sneak peek at the fridge in any local gym, you will see these bottles full of mysterious supplements. You might have seen your friends guzzle some of this stuff, as they walk in or out of the gym. If you are a novice to the world of fitness, you might not be aware of what is that stuff inside those bottles. Over the last few decades, our markets have become saturated with health supplements of all sorts. The fitness freaks have formulas of their own, which are crucial for alerting the body for a long gym session, as well as building some core strength. Among these, the two popular supplements are pre-workouts and post-workouts.
What is Pre-workout?
If you are new to the gym routine, you might be too familiar with the effort that goes into preparing yourself for a long session at the gym, both mentally and physically. There might have been days, where you simply did not want to go to the gym anymore. And that is where pre-workouts help you! A pre-workout formula is designed with an intent to warm up your body, wake you fully and most importantly, sharpening your physical and mental focus! Sounds mouthful but yes, it does all of that! You can guzzle down a pre-workout 40 or 50 minutes before hitting the gym. The effects of a pre-workout are going to stay in your body for at least five or six hours!
Ingredients in Pre-workout
To understand how pre-workout works, it is important to know the basic ingredients of any standard pre-workout. These elements are essential in a quality product.
It is the key ingredient of any good pre-workout supplement. Summarizing the benefits of caffeine is easier for anyone who drinks coffee early morning. It improves your clarity, focuses and keeps you alert all the time.
Remember the tingling we talked about earlier? Well, that is BETA-ALANINE doing that. It makes your fingertips tickle and tingles just a wee bit. However, this amino acid allows muscles to contract and relax for a longer period. Hence, you can put an enhanced effort in your workout.
For building core strength, creatine has proven to be an effective ingredient. The creatine nitrate used in the pre-workout supplements is a much more soluble form, which helps in achieving lean muscles as well.
The velvet beans used in pre-workout supplements are full of L-dopa, which is converted to dopamine once it crosses the BBB. For mental and physical sharpness, dopamine’s role is quite crucial.
The function of L-tyrosine is to enhance the production of noradrenaline. This has an indirect effect on increasing the ability to focus and concentrate better. The N-ACETYL-L-TYROSINE used in the majority of pre-workout supplements is simply a more soluble form of the conventional L-tyrosine.
It will take another discussion to fully explain the benefits you get from guzzling down a pre-workout. However, we can paint a picture of the feelings for you. The first feeling that you get after drinking a pre-workout is the sudden euphoria, which is followed by a surge of power. This is usually the first sign that indicates that your pre-workout is of good quality. The time that is taken by pre-workouts to show their effect can vary. Nevertheless, on average, it usually takes 40- 45 minutes. It is then that you can hit the gym hard, and for a good number of hours too!
What is Post-workout?
Done with the pre-workouts, now let us have a look at the post-workouts. As the name indicates this something that you should ideally take after a long session at the gym. The idea behind taking a post-workout is quite simple. After a long session at the gym, your muscles get all fatigued up. Something is needed to rejuvenate them. That is where a post-workout can benefit you enormously. It is deemed an ideal formula for muscle recovery. We will discuss the other benefits associated with guzzling down a post-workout in upcoming passages.
Like pre-workouts, the post-workouts also have some special ingredients. These are the elements, which are unique to post workouts only. The most important of which is perhaps, glutamine.
This is an amino acid, which has been traditionally hailed as a magical cure for the aching muscles. After a long session at the gym lifting all those heavyweights, your muscles need a recovery tonic. Glutamine serves as a magical ingredient. Because of glutamine, your muscles will not ache anymore.
Apart from glutamine, there are other key ingredients as well. These usually include BCAAs and proteins of various sorts. An important protein is casein. By BCAA, we mean the branched-chain amino acids.
Apart from muscle recovery, there is another benefit associated with post-workout supplements. These formulas allow you to add more mass. Hence, these supplements can come in handy if you are looking to build more muscles. The post-workouts with whey proteins are the ones that are most effective in this regard. Whey proteins also digest faster, as compared to some other proteins. They will make you feel full, and keep it that way for a while!
Pre-workouts V Post-workouts
So, at this point, a quick recap is in order. Pre-workouts are most helpful in alerting your body so that you can hit the gym hard. Once you have tired yourself out, it is time for post-workouts to come in action. These supplements can not only recover the aching muscles but also add more to your muscular build.
Well, it is time to wrap up this discussion. However, we will like to sign off with a warning. While both pre-workouts and post-workouts are quite beneficial to the gym freaks and geeks, caution must be exercised nevertheless. Too much of everything is bad, especially the supplements which affect your sleep cycle. It is best to ask your local gym trainer as to which product you should use. Not only that, but he or she can also help you plan a schedule or routine, which will help you achieve the maximum result in the due course!