Best Pre-Workout 2023: 7 Top Products To Get Pumping

Reviewed by Dr. Drew Sutton, MD

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As you continue your fitness journey, you may be looking for something to give some added sustenance and endurance to your workout. Perhaps you’ve exhausted the different protein powders, smoothies, and green juices the market offers. If this is the case, you may want to look into a pre-workout supplement. These products are intended to be used before working out and usually consist of various healthful ingredients, like B vitamins, caffeine, or electrolytes. In this review, we’ll discuss the best pre-workout supplement for you.

Best Pre-Workout Supplements In 2023

Who Should Take Pre-Workout Supplements?

Overall, almost anyone who is looking to enhance their exercise regimen and experience could take a pre-workout supplement. However, the results may vary for each individual. Athletes are more likely to use these products, but anyone engaging in physical workouts could explore the potential benefits of powders, pills, or other pre-workout supplements. One pertinent factor to consider is whether you have conditions like higher blood pressure, diabetes, cardiac complications, or insomnia.

Best Pre-Workout Supplements In 2023

Transparent Labs BULK

With a special formula focused on building lean muscle mass, TransparentLabs BULK[1] may be the perfect lean pre-workout product for you. The pleasant flavor and easy scooping will make this product effortless to use and helpful with maximizing energy, performance, and recovery.

  • Anabolic hormone support
  • Nootropic
  • Strawberry flavor
  • Does not contain creatine
  • Higher exposure to nut allergens
  • Unavailable in some countries

TransparentLabs Bulk is packed with vitamins and minerals to support muscles and has an extra focus on nutrients to boost the production of anabolic hormones. As a result, there may be a boost in testosterone production[2], which could make this a great pre workout for men to use. TransparentLabs also provides nootropics[3] to support your focus, and you’ll see improved sharpness and mental acuity, as this alertness will help to sustain your workout.

One interesting point is that this product does not contain creatine. It wasn’t included as higher amounts of caffeine would counteract the ergogenic effects[4] of creatine. Creatine is a common ingredient for muscle support, but instead, there was beta-alanine and citrulline included for muscle support and strength.

According to customer reviews, this pre-workout is great for energy and focus. Most customers did not experience the jitters or feelings of anxiousness often seen in caffeine use. There was no crash or drop-off after use. The good taste and easy mixture also make this product a great purchase. While this product is vegan-friendly and doesn’t contain allergens, there may be exposure to nuts as nut-containing products are processed in the same lab.

Blackwolf Pre-Workout

The Blackwolf pre-workout[5] just might be a great option for a perfect combination of enhanced performance and flavor. However, this may not be the product for you if you have nut allergies.

  • Balanced focus and energy
  • Sweet tasting
  • Vegan-friendly
  • Tree nut allergen

This vegan-friendly product can be beneficial for effectiveness without the crash. It was designed to sustain energy as well as to sharpen your focus. The tyrosine contained in the formula can alleviate stress, which can give you an extra boost. Tyrosine, which influences neurotransmitters[6] like dopamine and adrenaline, can delay the depletion of these neurotransmitters, ultimately allowing you to maintain your focus and reaction time. This also supports your endurance even when your body is stressed.

Another component is dynamine, which acts as a natural stimulant and provides clean, jitter-free energy. This compound interferes with the accumulation of adenosine, a molecule that can lead to sluggishness and fatigue. If you’re looking for an option that may be more suitable for exercising at night, Blackwolf offers a fruit punch-flavored caffeine free pre-workout. This caffeine-free version can be helpful at later hours, as you won’t be wide awake or wired before bed.

Many users experienced optimized energy and a sustained ability to continue a workout even under stressful conditions. Despite this, it is important to note the disadvantageous effects of Blackwolf. You may experience skin tingling due to beta-alanine. Additionally, this may be detrimental for individuals with liver or heart problems.

Kaged Pre-Kaged Pre-Workout

If you’re looking for a way to lift heavier and push for longer, the Pre-Kaged[7] pre-workout may be a good investment. 

  • Targeted for better pumps
  • Antioxidant blend
  • Emphasis on clinically effective doses
  • Divisive taste

Kaged pre-workout is made to trigger better pumps and support higher-intensity activities. Citrulline drives these pumps and improves power performance. Another positive is the inclusion of antioxidants. They have added twenty-nine fruits and vegetables that contain antioxidants and work on cellular activity. This is an effective guard against the free radicals that are generated from intensive physical work and stress.

You may also benefit from taurine and its positive influence on electrolyte balance and creatine to fuel the muscles. Many customers described bigger pumps and the ability to perform a longer workout. For many, using this product in the morning led to waking earlier and starting exercise routines early in the morning. Even when starting bright and early, the likelihood of experiencing the typical crash and jitters were reduced.

Another plus of this product is that the branched-chain amino acids are derived from plant-based sources. According to the proprietors, most BCAAs used in supplements are made from animal fur and human hair. This makes this option a particularly great buy for vegan users. One point of divisiveness was the taste, as this product is available in many flavors, but some users deemed it too bitter and untasteful.

C4 Ripped Pre-Workout

C4 Ripped pre-workout could be the supplement for you if you desire to gain energy while losing fat. It would be in your best interest to consider any downsides, but ultimately you would determine if the benefits outweigh the risks.

  • Fat burning
  • Weight management
  • Hydration support
  • Noted side effects

Many pre-workout products are aimed at bolstering energy and making endurance last. Cellucor C4 Ripped[8] pre-workout was made to encourage fat-burning and weight loss. It contains conjugated linoleic acid which blocks fat-gaining enzymes. In addition to this, lean muscle mass is conserved.

The formula enables you to keep up hydration during your workout, and many users attest to maintaining energy for cardio workouts and weight lifting. The supplement is described as fast-acting and long-lasting. The effects can be sustained during a long workout session, which could make it an effective selection. Stamina is maintained long enough that high-intensity workouts could be completed, and you’d still have the energy to carry out other tasks during the day.

C4 has a pleasant taste and mixes easily, allowing it to be taken without hassle. Beta-alanine provides the push needed to curb fatigue. Though it’s considered harmless, beta-alanine may result in a tingling sensation. Also, consider that the mixture of ingredients could lead to various side effects, such as nausea, headaches, impaired vision, and gastrointestinal disturbances.

Legion Athletics Pulse Pre-Workout

Legion Athletics Pulse

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Legion Athletics Pulse pre-workout claims to be the all-natural answer to your fitness dreams! When choosing this product, decide whether this amount of caffeine is right for you.

  • Clinically effective dose
  • Natural sweeteners
  • Contains no chemicals or additives
  • Caffeine may be excessive

This pre-workout drink[9] was developed according to clinically effective doses. The ingredients used, as well as the dosing, are according to clinical trials, allowing for optimum results. The product is also labeled pure and potent. There are no artificial or chemical ingredients, as all ingredients are naturally sourced. Plant-based flavors are used and have been well-received by many consumers.

The goal is to provide greater energy and strength while eliminating the excitable feeling that is usually experienced once a workout is finished. The use of theanine in this product cuts down on the crashes that can be associated with caffeine. Even considering this, we must look at the caffeine included, as 350 milligrams (mg) may be too much for some men and women. The serving size for this product is two scoops, but you may decide to start with just one to examine your tolerance.

Many users found that their energy was maintained during the workout, and there weren’t many negative reactions observed. Also, the anxious and uneasy jitters were reduced, which made for a better post-workout period. Overall, when taken carefully, this supplement can allow you to engage in more rigorous exercises for a longer time.

Jacked Factory Nitrosurge Pre-Workout

This powerhouse product intends to enhance your performance and your body composition. If you’re interested in the benefits of this product, even considering the absence of creatine, this may be the one you opt for.

  • Nitric oxide
  • Surges of energy
  • Increased focus
  • Large doses of beta-alanine

One noticeable characteristic of Nitrosurge[10] is the lack of creatine. Interestingly, betaine anhydrous was included as a way to provide the strength benefits of creatine without actually including it as an ingredient. Another fascinating aspect to consider was the easiness of tolerance. Several users explained that they had to upgrade the dosage because their bodies had gotten used to the product. Even considering this, they still were able to achieve the jolt they needed to see increased energy and performance.

As mentioned previously, the larger doses of beta-alanine are related to paresthesia. This is a relatively harmless tingling sensation. It is important to consult a physician if the sensation becomes more complicated. To start, you could utilize one scoop about twenty minutes before your workout. If you find that you have to increase dosing, move on to two scoops.

When you need a great exercise session, this product would be one to use for maintaining energy throughout the day. There is no affiliated crash, and you aren’t likely to suffer from itching as a side effect. The flavor is favorable, the concentration was sharpened, and there were better pumps. The lack of creatine may be overcompensated by other benefits.

Wrecked Pre-Workout

This flavorful pre-workout supplement could be the key to advancing you to greater muscle pumps and more intense workouts. Based on the hit-or-miss reviews, it may help or be ineffective, so you’d want to weigh the costs and benefits before buying.

  • Supports intensity
  • Prevents drop-off and plateaus
  • Enhanced recovery
  • Allergen exposure

Many Wrecked[11] users enjoyed the pump and drive that they attained with this supplement. The caffeine did not cause slumps after the workout, and it did not interrupt sleep at night. Notable ingredients, such as green tea extract, turmeric, and the addition of broccoli, and kale, give the turbo boost and make this beneficial for intense workouts. Not only was energy boosted, but it stayed consistent as the day went on and didn’t drop off. Wrecked products can also be paired with the Pump Serum and Magnify to amplify the workout intensity while avoiding plateaus.

Some customer testimonies rendered this product ineffective, save for the gastrointestinal distress it caused. Many users described feeling sick midway through the workout. Other users noticed that they didn’t see any improvements in energy or focus and thought the taste was unpleasant. Also, this product is made in a facility that processes common allergens like soy, eggs, nuts, and shellfish.

What Is A Pre-Workout Supplement? 

We’ve discussed different products, but we must also address the objective of these pre workouts. Often, it is suggested to take the supplement[12], whether a pill, powder, or liquid capsule, at least twenty minutes before you begin exercising. Taking these supplements before engaging in your exercise can give you the extra push you’re looking for. You’ll see improvements in your stamina and endurance, with an ability to better execute your workouts. These supplements are packed with nutrients and vitamins that give support to your system.

What Does A Pre-Workout Supplement Do? 

Pre-workout supplements promote a synergistic effect[13] of better endurance during your sessions and improved recovery afterward. You will be able to better sustain your energy during a performance, and you’ll have an easier time recharging and recovering. We also must consider that each product can be made with different benefits in mind. Some supplements are made for muscle support, and others may be made for injury prevention.

The pre-workout ingredients[14] can also dictate the benefits of the supplements. Some typical ingredients include caffeine, creatine, beta-alanine, and betaine. Many vitamins and amino acids are incorporated into the formulas to address high-intensity training, improved focus, and even a balanced mood. One example is the amino acids, L-citrulline, and L-arginine, which support nitric oxide production. This can enhance blood flow as well as circulation. 

Benefits Of Pre-Workout Supplements

Improves Performance

Many pre-workout supplements contain caffeine. Caffeine is included as an energy booster[15]. Not only is energy increased, but you will see better concentration as well. This will enhance your reflexes, as having better focus can sharpen your reaction time. The jolt of energy usually noted with caffeine consumption provides some of the force behind the burst of power and endurance when doing resistance exercises or intense workouts.

Muscular Endurance

One component, creatine, helps to supply the muscles with energy. Additionally, amino acids, like beta-alanine, are useful for greater muscular endurance, as they are the building blocks of proteins and have roles in building muscles. One example, beta-alanine is used to produce carnosine in your skeletal muscles[16]. Carnosine can diminish the accumulation of lactic acid, which results in curbing tiredness.

Better Recovery

The various amino acids that are included in the blend can be very integral for recovering after exercise time. They are also effective in muscle repair and can alleviate muscle soreness. The branched-chain amino acids may boost muscle protein synthesis, ultimately reducing any insult to the muscles during a workout. Taurine, another type of amino acid, prevents the buildup of lactate, allowing it to safeguard against muscle fatigue.

Are Pre-Workout Supplements Safe?

Though pre-workout supplements are generally safe, it may behoove you to consult with a physician if you have any concerns. Some supplements may contain artificial sweeteners and additives. Additionally, you would also have to consider if you are allergic or sensitive to any of the ingredients. It is important to note that side effects have been seen in individuals who are sensitive to caffeine or have a history of hypertension-related conditions. If this is the case, you may want to opt for a stimulant-free pre-workout supplement. 

A stim-free pre-workout could be a more suitable option for reducing the likelihood of jitters, anxiety, and sleep problems usually seen in caffeine and stimulant sensitivity. Digestive complications and acid reflux are other possible side effects related to caffeine. We also must beware of other adverse effects, like heart abnormalities, changes in the skin, and nausea. Neurological responses, such as tingling in the neck and face, can be seen as a result of high amounts of beta-alanine. Skin reactions often result from excess niacin, while excessive creatine may lead to bloating and altered blood pressure.

What To Consider Before Buying A Pre-Workout Supplement

As discussed previously, you should consider any condition that you may have and also consider your lifestyle. If night workouts are more feasible, you may need to choose a caffeine-free supplement. This could reduce having magnified energy boosts right before going to bed. You could also factor in whether you drink coffee or tea or take in other stimulants because you may want to opt for a product that has a lower caffeine dosage.

Also, determine what type of supplement you would want. If powders or pills are preferable, look at how the products are made as well as their ingredients. Pay close attention to serving size and dosage while keeping track of any reactions you may start to have. This will help you gauge whether the dose needs to be altered.

Final Thoughts

When weighing all options, Kaged[17] and Legion Athletics Pulse[18] seem to be the most beneficial choices. There may be better pumps, flexible doses, fewer disadvantages, and many flavor options, which could maximize the intended benefits of this product.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can powders be taken without water?

Avoid dry scooping as the quicker processing of caffeine can be harmful to the heart, and inhaling powder may be a choking hazard and can be detrimental to the lungs.

 Could the ingredients list be concerning?

Steer clear of lists that only state “proprietary blend.” You want to know what is contained and at precise amounts.

What are some effective pre-workout foods?

Helpful pre-workout foods include oats, fruits, yogurt, or turkey. You want your food item to provide carbs for fuel, protein for muscle fuel, and fat for satiety.

+ 18 sources

MIDSS adheres to strict procurement guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutes, and medical associations. We work mainly with peer-reviewed studies to ensure the accuracy of the information. We avoid the use of tertiary references. You can read about how we ensure the accuracy and timeliness of our content in our editorial process.

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Christine VanDoren, Nutritionist
Personal Trainer, Nutritionist, Health & Wellness Writer
Christine VanDoren created Edge of Longevity, an online personal training company, which helps people all over the world engage in a healthier lifestyle. After becoming an NSCA certified personal trainer and ACE nutritionist, she started spending her time training in the gym and online and creating content for Edge of Longevity, all of which is about how she has worked to better herself, and in turn, hopes to help others better themselves too. She believes the healthier one is, the happier one can be, and through Edge of Longevity, she hopes to spread that happiness to people in every country, every lifestyle, of every age and gender, and ethnicity. She warmly welcomes you to this community of people trying to make a change. In addition to sharing knowledge through her personal training and nutrition services, she enjoys writing articles and blog content over any health and wellness-related topic!


Drew is a retired ENT doctor who now lives in the Southeastern US. He was a member of the American Academy of Otolaryngology and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. He has a bachelor’s degree in Biology and Psychology and an MD degree. He completed his internship in General Surgery and Residency in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and practiced for almost 30 years in all aspects of ENT, including a specialization in disorders of the ear and skull base. Drew is passionate about communicating his clinical experiences and making his knowledge more accessible to the general public by medical writing.

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