Looking for better focus at the gym? Pre-workout supplements are a great place to start!
The trouble is, if you’re totally new to the world of supplements, it can be insanely difficult to sort through the mountain of options, labels, and ingredients.
As you search, you will likely scratch your head as you come across citrulline-this, creatine-that, and beta-ala-what? To make the issue worse, those ingredients are often blended into crazy combos with flashy names like “Ultra-Hard Super Pump” and “Explosive Blood-Rush Blend.”
With all the hard-to-pronounce compounds and extreme marketing efforts, it can feel like you’re drowning -- and all you wanted was a solid edge to improve your focus at the gym. Don’t worry, we got you!
In this article, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about tracking down the best pre-workout energy drinks to help improve your focus -- starting with the ingredients you should always avoid.
Are you ready? Let’s dive in!
What is Pre-Workout?
First things first, what exactly is pre-workout, anyway?
In a nutshell, pre-workout is often a mix of ingredients that can potentially enhance energy, mood, blood flow, and cognitive function to provide the trainee the perception that they’re more physically and mentally ready for exercise.
These ingredients may include popular components, like creatine, beta-alanine, caffeine, and branched-chain amino acids. Oftentimes, however, these popular workout formulas may include other ( potentially harmful) ingredients that claim to boost performance, recovery, strength, and focus without much science to back them up.
These questionable blends typically come in a “proprietary blend,” which allows brands to avoid divulging the amounts of said ingredients and thereby may be significantly low on a given ingredient or dosage without the consumer’s knowledge (more on this below).
What To Avoid in Pre-Workouts
With that in mind, below are a few deceitful practices that consumers fall victim to every day from some of the largest and most well-known brands.
If you see any of these in your pre-workout, consider a different option.
With very minimal federal regulation on formula transparency, pre-workout brands are not required to disclose actual ingredient dosages (crazy, right?), allowing these brands to hide under-dosed ingredients with “proprietary blends.”
Dishonest brands will label without much cause, meaning they might include quality or fancy ingredients, but do so at minimal, ineffective amounts.
In all reality, there is absolutely no reason for a company to use a proprietary blend other than to deceive customers. And the concept of “trade secrets” is pretty silly. With all of the available clinical research available on the web as well as public knowledge, the world already knows what works and what doesn’t in terms of ingredient doses and effectiveness.
The fact of the matter is simple -- if a company isn’t willing to tell you exactly what’s in their pre-workout supplement, it’s because they simply don’t want you to know. But as a consumer, you have the right to demand transparency, especially when your hard-earned cash is being used to support their product.
“Everything But the Kitchen Sink”
Many pre-workout brands add dozens of needless and ineffective ingredients in small doses to make long, seemingly impressive, supplement fact panels.
When you’re reading the ingredient label on the back of your pre-workout, more is not always better. Look for energy from sources like Proper Wild’s Clean All-Day Energy Shots, made with only a few familiar ingredients rather than a list of questionable ones.
Artificial Sweeteners and Food Dyes
With more and more clinical studies providing real evidence of the various harmful side effects that come from food dyes and artificial sweeteners, there is absolutely no reason to consume them -- especially when healthier alternatives are easily available.
Check your pre-workout -- if it includes aspartame, acesulfame potassium, sucralose, or food dyes such as FD&C Blue Lake #1, FD&C Red Lake #40, or FD&C Yellow #5, it’s crucial that you understand that there are better ingredients out there.
Fillers and Unnecessary Ingredients
Using substantial amounts of “filler” ingredients like maltodextrin to increase serving size, or even excessive amounts of caffeine for the wow effect is another common practice that consumers fall victim to.
These cheap tactics give the unknowing consumer that false appearance of a better product, when in reality, the product is overpriced, cheaply made, and in many cases, ineffective.
Stay away from pre-workout supplements made with fillers, and keep in mind that the recommended daily dose of caffeine a day is 400mg. Anything more is unnecessary and potentially dangerous.
What To Look For in a Pre-Workout
Now that you understand what some of the deceitful practices are that many consumers fall victim to and have a good understanding as to what ingredients are best to avoid, let’s talk about all the good things to look for in a pre-workout.
Zero Added Sugar
Your pre-workout does not need a whole lot of sugar. In fact, if you ask us, it needs zero grams of added sugar.
Sure, sugar might be great to provide an initial burst of energy, but that burst is often short-lived and followed by a hard crash.
Caffeine is a molecule found in tea, coffee, and other foods and beverages. It stimulates certain parts of the brain to increase alertness, making you feel less tired. Caffeine is a very popular ingredient in pre-workout supplements.
However, the truth is that not all caffeine is created equal. When looking for a great pre-workout supplement, consider something like Proper Wild that uses organic caffeine from green tea. With 2x more caffeine than a shot of espresso, organic caffeine from green tea provides clean, long-lasting energy.
If you want to unleash the true powers of organic caffeine, you need to take it with L-Theanine.
Multiple studies support that using caffeine and L-Theanine together can reduce jitters and heighten concentration and cognitive alertness while also boosting your mood. It’s this powerful combination that will help you immensely to improve your focus and power-through a tough workout at the gym.
Proper Wild’s Clean All Day Energy Shots contain 15x more L-theanine than a cup of green tea for focus and productivity, without the crash or jitters.
When it comes to pre-workout, nothing beats the powerful combination of clean caffeine and L-Theanine.
A Final Word
So, what’s the best pre-workout energy shots for high focus, you ask?
The best pre-workout supplements are the ones that don’t contain sketchy proprietary blends. They are not made with questionable ingredients or loaded with unnecessary fillers.
The best pre-workout energy shots for high focus are the ones made with clean ingredients and absolutely nothing artificial -- like the ones at Proper Wild.
Here at Proper Wild, we take pride in crafting tasty energy shots made with only the best of the best ingredients. We use organic caffeine for sustainable energy and 15x more L-Theanine than a cup of green tea for focus and productivity, without the notorious crash or jitters.
Try Proper Wild today and see the difference clean energy can make on your workout!