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Pre-workout vs creatine
Fitness

Pre-Workout Vs. Creatine: Which is Right for You?

You’re finally getting serious about your workouts, either upping your game or working out more consistently so that you can start seeing the differences in the appearance of your muscle and overall shape. There are many workout supplements on the market, making it almost impossible to know what you need or what will be effective for the changes that you want to make happen.

What are your specific fitness goals?

It’s first essential to determine just exactly what your goals are before taking any new supplements. For example, if your goal is to increase your cardiovascular strength and make sure that you’re getting all the nutrients you need in a day, you may want to consider adding a protein supplement along with a routine of vitamins and minerals that support heart health. If your goal is to build endurance, muscle strength, and building muscle, both pre-workout and creatine can be extremely effective workout formulas to help you move toward those goals.

The Benefits of Increasing Your Strength and Endurance As You Age

If you’ve been doing light workouts for mobility or have been stuck in a rut at the gym of doing the same thing, on the same treadmill, or lifting the same weights, in the same class…it may be time to make some changes! If you haven’t been focusing on strengthening your muscle, you are most likely missing out on some significant health benefits. Strength training and building muscle can contribute to better balance and may reduce your risk of falls as you age. Cultivating strong muscle can also protect your joints from injury.

As people age, the chemical signaling pathways in muscles become less potent, and it gets harder to build muscle and maintain strength. You may have dabbled in strength training, but if you haven’t been used to lifting weights or doing resistance training, you may find it challenging to get started or make the necessary changes. These aging milestones of life can benefit from supplementing in the places that our bodies may be lacking. This is when it’s time to consider adding some nutritional supplements to help encourage your efforts of strengthening and growing your muscle, increasing cardiovascular strength, and improving your balance.

The Benefits of Pre-Workout

Pre-workout Protein shake

Pre-workouts are dietary supplements taken before a training session and contain ingredients that directly and almost immediately benefit a workout performance. Product makers say that pre-workouts can give you energy and keep you focused, which are two main things that will improve your overall performance. Pre-workouts are usually mixed with a drink and taken 20 to 30 minutes before the beginning of a workout. Giving it enough time prior to your workout should provide the supplement enough time to hit your bloodstream and to begin feeling that extra burst of energy just before your workout session. Pre-workouts can include protein powders and other proprietary blends that are intended to increase your energy production and help your endurance during a challenging workout. 

Is there caffeine in pre-workout?

Caffeine can be the key ingredient in some pre-workout supplements, so reading ingredient labels is important, especially if you want to avoid caffeine. Not all pre-workouts contain caffeine, so you’ve got some excellent options for bringing that extra energy and focus into your workouts without relying on caffeine to do that. There are natural, stimulant-free pre-workout drinks that will improve mood, sharpen mental focus, increase strength and endurance, and reduce fatigue. So, whether you want an extra hit of caffeine or not, you’ve got great options!

The Benefits of Creatine

Chemical formula of Creatine

Think of creatine as more of your “long-game” supplement as opposed to something you’re taking for an immediate energy boost in a workout. Creatine will improve performance, but it works differently. Creatine increases the body’s ability to produce energy rapidly. Creatine exists naturally in our bodies and helps fuel our muscles. Your body makes creatine by way of your kidney and liver after eating protein. As with certain other nutrients found in our bodies, it’s almost impossible to eat an amount of food that will allow you to hit the creatine levels found in a supplement. Adding a creatine supplement can help you easily increase your levels to get the most benefit to your muscle and metabolism.

The basic benefits of creatine are as follows:

  • Helps muscle cells produce more energy
  • Supports many other functions in muscles
  • Improves high-intensity exercise performance
  • Speeds muscle growth

Creatine is thought to improve strength, increase lean muscles mass, and help the muscles recover more quickly during exercise. When you incorporate it into intense workouts, you’re likely to see greater gains and improved physical performance. Some studies show that there are other health benefits of creatine, including:

  • May help with Parkinson’s Disease
  • May fight other neurological diseases
  • May lower blood sugar levels and fight diabetes

Creatine supplements should be considered complementary to consuming protein, not a replacement for it. Creatine and protein don’t work in quite the same way. Creatine leads to more strength during your workout, while protein leads to more muscle repair after your workout.

Pre-Workout and Creatine Together

Pre-workout powder and supplements

Good news! You don’t have to choose between taking a pre-workout and creatine. Each of these supplements offers similar benefits to your overall goals of increasing your strength, endurance, muscle power, and recovery, which results in muscle growth. Pre-workout supplements are taken before training and have an immediate benefit with focus and energy. In contrast, a creatine supplement can improve performance as well but needs to be taken over a longer period. The short answer is, when used together, both pre-workout and creatine make an excellent supplement duo to maximize the benefit to your physique and muscle endurance.

Interested in trying out pre-workout or creatine? Here are our suggested products:

 

Read Next: 

Workout Apparel That Won’t Break the Bank

5-Minute High-Intensity Interval Training Workout for Home

18 Best Workout Apps for Women Over 50

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