Pre-workout vs Coffee: What Are The Effects?
While many sit and argue about which to consume before a workout or how each reacts in your body, we do believe the question between pre-workout vs coffee goes much deeper than that. Along with what the effects of the ingredients are for both, we never truly come down to the real discussion we, especially women, should be having. What does caffeine really do to our bodies?
It's promising that you’re reading this as someone who pops out of bed in the morning and grabs a nice mug of warm coffee. It also may be promising that you are someone who is or is considering taking some sort of pre-workout to boost your weight sessions in the gym. We can talk about the boosted energy levels; some of the health benefits both can bring and how it can elevate your workouts immensely, but at the end of the day, caffeine is a stimulant that over 70% of Americans are addicted to. That’s something we must discuss.
Let's break this down.
What Does Caffeine Do To Our Bodies?
Caffeine is very normally ingrained in society, though it is seen as a stimulant and said to be the most commonly used drug on earth. Its wakefulness, energy-boosting qualities, and ability to improve our concentration and keep us focused make millions of us every day consume it in all its forms. What it does to our bodies is a mixed bag of really valuable benefits and really harmful side effects; sometimes it just depends on who you’re asking. If we were to ask, let’s say, author of Caffeine Blues Stephen Cherniske, his answers may be darker than you’d expect. For instance, as a drug, it takes anywhere from three weeks to two months to detect any difference in our response to caffeine. Therefore when many studies merely have individuals come off of caffeine for less than three weeks, the research becomes flawed. Furthermore, the book even goes on to describe that caffeine triggers your flight or fight response, which essentially places you in a stressed state. So much so, that it has been shown to increase your adrenaline by more than 200%. Now if you are solely thinking about your workout and stamina, then sure you’re going to have a pretty intense workout with that kind of adrenaline in you. However, in the long term, the effects of this increase in stress (not energy, stress) can do some serious damage to your health. If we actually just wanted to nail this down, caffeine also would increase your emotional stress, causes aging, increases chances of ulcers and IBS, disrupts sleep, causes malnutrition and depression, reduces iron absorption, increases calcium loss, depletes thiamine and b vitamins, also magnesium and zinc and even heightens your risk of osteoporosis. This is all coming from a Clinical Nutritionist.
What Is In A General Pre-workout Supplement?
This, just like asking if caffeine is good for you, really depends on what you’re looking at. It's interesting to know that the global pre-workout supplements market is ginormous. Sitting at about 12.6 billion in 2019 and expected to grow by 8.3% by 2027. Meaning that in a market where many can profit, sometimes the ingredients are thrown in whether or not they are good for you. This folds over into regulation, as the FDA doesn’t regulate a pre-workout supplement. Hence, knowing your ingredients and trusting the brand you’re purchasing from is crucial. Especially when it comes to caffeine.
To keep this part short, the ingredients that are very typical in a pre-workout are creatine, b-vitamins, beta-alanine, l-arginine and AKG, L- Citrulline HCL and Malate Extract as well as caffeine obviously. The ingredients you should be looking out for are:
- Artificial Colors: listed artificial colors, artificial colors added, blue No. 2, green No. 3, orange B, caramel color, etc.
- Proprietary blend (or mix, blend and matrix) which insinuates, although one word, a list of ingredients that do not have to be listed.
- Yohimbe: a tropical West African tree prescribed to men for erectile dysfunction. Dosages are very dependent on specific details and cause a drop in blood pressure, dizziness and nausea.
- DMAA: 3-dimethylamylamine, methylhexanamine or geranium extract. Found illegally in products, seen as amphetamine, and causes elevated blood pressure, shortness of breath and cardiovascular problems.
- The AMOUNT of caffeine in your pre-workout! Most are anywhere from 150 mg to 300 mg which amounts to THREE cups of coffee.
It’s important to know what ingredients to look at that can give you a strong workout without putting any harm to your body.
Now to answer the important question.
Pre-workout vs Coffee: Which One Should I Take?
If you are someone who plans to stay on the bandwagon of caffeinated pre-workouts then at the end of the day, you must choose one OR the other. As stated above, pre-workout already has a large amount of caffeine added to it. Throw in the added ingredients that are also placed there to deliver you that big boost of energy before a workout. Having both will cause some long term damage and can begin to mess with parts of your day outside of the gym i.e. focus and sleep.
Natural Pre-Workout Pulse
Deciding what the best pre-workout to purchase is? Or even wondering “is pre-workout good for you?” The answer is, that it can be if you’re buying from people you can trust. Here at Vybez Nutrition, we have created a clean, all-natural, sugar and artificial free, caffeine free, stimulant free pre-workout capsule to provide you with the same boost of energy without all the junk or fluff. You will still gain high energy and focus, be able to perform at an elevated level and continue good blood flow and circulation within your muscles. With easy to take capsules, our Natural Pre-workout Pulse will give you the confidence in what you are putting into your body and give you peace of mind that your workout is still going to be epic!