It’s a warm, sunny day here on Long Island, and I write this to you from my parents’ home. Every Tuesday and Friday, I visit my hometown of Port Washington, and work with my grandmother on rehab from hip replacement surgery last summer, and my dad on improving his strength, tone and overall cardiovascular health.
For whatever the reason, some of the celebrity fit pros I follow have really been pushing their supplements on social media lately, so I figured I’d write about which pre-workout is best to use today! A lot of people (myself included early in my journey) believe that supplements are an essential part of boosting human performance. We can’t POSSIBLY get all the vital macro and micronutrients we need, and thus, we need to invest in pricey products that will allegedly put us over the top.
One of the most popular supplement types on the market today is a pre-workout. I’ll admit that I tried a few in the past, and even used one for over a year during my 100 lb weight loss journey! The positive of using one is that if you’re feeling sluggish prior to a workout, one scoop of the stuff mixed in cold water won’t only wake you up, but can make you feel more motivated… Hell, your skin may even crawl with how much stimulation you get from it!!
While this is obviously helpful in getting you up and ready for your upcoming workout, I’d advise you to look at the back of the pre-workout to see if this is a truly healthy product. Sadly, often, it’s not…
Artificial sweeteners, food colorings (which are ILLEGAL in the EU and much of the civilized world, but not in the US), and harmful preservatives are just some of the many negative ingredients you’ll find. Plus, the supplement industry is NOT regulated by a governing body here in the United States! Any supplement company can make extravagant claims about both the ingredients of the product and the positive effects it will have on your health, and yet they don’t have to prove any of those claims to ANYBODY!!
Now, don’t get me wrong: Some supplement companies are truly seeking to do the right thing, and go to independent labs to help verify the claims that they make. That being said, ALWAYS take a study’s results on a particular supplement with a grain of salt…
Like in the food industry, many supplement companies will indirectly assist an ‘independent’ lab in gaining notoriety, or will give them a little somethin’ somethin’ under the table for yielding positive results on the tests done. Most labs need the financial assistance, so any stimulation in business or in revenue can be more than enough incentive to bend their standards for testing just a little bit on something that’s questionable at best in terms of healthiness.
The good news is that there’s a HEALTHY way to fuel yourself prior to a workout. I’ll often combine coffee with either a fruit or a handful or two of nuts prior to my workout. Since I always have low-glycemic fruits available and organic, raw nuts on hand, this is easy! Coffee I can always get from the Speedway (gas station similar to 7-11) down the street, so I have no excuses for getting a hold of this if I’m struggling to go into a workout head on.
If I’m going to be working out hard for under 60 minutes, I’ll have a cup of black iced coffee and an organic apple. If I’m going to be going for longer (like in a softball game), then I’ll switch out the apple with some organic, raw nuts. I tend to stick with one of either almonds, Brazil nuts, or pecans.
Like with a pre-workout supplement, I’ll ingest my pre-workout concoction 45 minutes or so before exercising, and often see BETTER benefits than I did when I used a supplement! My skin doesn’t crawl after ingesting some coffee and either a fruit or some nuts, and if I work hard or long enough, the caffeine won’t effect my sleep – Even if it’s late in the day!
Do yourself a favor, save some money, and try this out next time you’re feeling some struggle heading into a workout!! I’m looking forward to hearing how this works for you 🙂
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