Pre-workout nutrition: what are the benefits?

Pre-workout nutrition: what are the benefits?

Pre-workout nutrition is a pretty wide and much discussed topic in both athletic and non-athletic circles. The basic idea is that consuming a specially selected snack or supplement 30 minutes to 1 hour before a workout can increase the amount of energy available for your muscles during training, improving your results. Usually this snack/supplement consists of a mix of protein and amino acids along with easily digested carbohydrates. The main emphasis of pre-workout is energy expenditure and muscle building.
Exercise consumes a large amount of energy from our body stores. Supporting it with easily digestible and high-calorie substances can dramatically improve performance and put us one step closer to achieving our fitness goals. Let’s delve into some of the benefits we should expect while using pre-workout!

Pre-workout and muscle growth

Muscles are made of protein. Thus, a simple statement holds true: for muscles to grow more protein has to be made (synthesized), than is destroyed (breakdown). Taking this into account we have to think that consuming proteins just before exercising, which is a stimulus for muscle growth, is a good way for us to make sure that our muscles perform and grow at a fast rate.
Some pre-workout supplements also contain creatine, a substance essential for muscle energy stores. Research has documented significantly better performance and accelerated muscle growth with as little as 3-4 grams/day supplementation of creatine, showing just how little is needed to augment physical gains to the max!

Pre-workout combats fatigue

We’ve all been there – you’re at the gym, your workout is going well and suddenly you feel like your muscles just can’t do any more reps. This is called muscle fatigue and is caused by the depletion of muscular energy stores. Muscle fatigue can be fought with adequate pre-workout nutrition. If you have enough protein, carbs and carnitine to burn, you’re setting yourself up for a successful workout.

Pre-workout protects against muscle loss

A workout can be both beneficial and detrimental to your muscles. If your protein and energy stores are scarce, the body is prone to breaking down your muscles to produce more energy – this can lead to muscle loss. Pre-workout makes these resources readily available just as you start exercising, this means that the body no longer needs to break down muscle in order to produce energy.

Another important aspect is the type of proteins you are consuming. Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are the building blocks of muscular protein, these are usually deficient in normal diets. Pre-workouts usually contain larger quantities of BCAAs to augment muscle growth.

Overall, if you’re interested in seeing results, pre-workout should form a cornerstone for your workout routines.


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