You have a fitness goal and you fully intend to reach it.
There is just one problem.
Dang, girl, you are too tired to workout!
Whether it is getting up before work to fit in some exercise, or coming home after a long day at school or the office, or taking care of kids all day (the most exhausting job IMO), you need a boost!
Can you find the motivation Genie lurking in a bottle of pills? Is there an energy generator in that tub of powder?
It’s not to say you should always rely on an energy drink to harness the motivation you need to workout every day, but truthfully, sometimes it REALLY helps!
We are going to talk pre-workouts today.
What the are, if or why you should take one, what the best pre workout supplement for women are, are they safe, can they benefit you, and how the best pre-workout drink for women is different from a man’s.
- Your Guide to Pre-Workouts for Women and How They May Help
- What You Should Pay Attention to Before Choosing Your Pre-workout
- 13 Best Pre-Workout Supplements for Women 2019
- Optimum Nutrition Amino Energy Pre workout
- Ora Organic Pre Workout Energy Powder
- Metabolic Nutrition Physique Enhancing Pre Workout
- Red Leaf Pre-Workout Energizer Powder
- Cellucor C4 Original Pre Workout Powder
- Sheer Strength Labs Premium Pre Workout for Women
- The KICK - All Natural Woman's Pre-workout Powder
- CLEAN + LEAN Ultra Clean All-In-One Workout Catalyst
- Prefine Women’s PreWorkout Supplement for Women
- IdealLean Pre Workout For Women
- Garden of Life Sport Organic Pre Workout
- P2N Peak Performance Nutrition P2N Intensity Pre-Workout
- Fitmiss Ignite Women's Pre-Workout & Energy Booster
Your Guide to Pre-Workouts for Women and How They May Help
What is a “Pre Workout”?
Maybe you have heard this term “pre workout” thrown around, but you are a little fuzzy on what it is. Is it a protein shake? A hydrating drink like Gatorade?
Or is it some exotic gym cocktail filled with who knows what that will make huge muscles?
Keeping it simple:
A pre workout can also contain other stimulating, motivating, muscle building, endurance and even fat loss ingredients.
They can be all natural or made with artificial ingredients. It is these fine details that make one pre workout different from another.
In my list below of the 13 best pre workout fat burner for women, I call out some special ingredients so you can see that not all pre workouts are created equally. Be sure to check out my reviews at the end.
Should I take pre workout and what are the benefits of pre workout for women?
Yes! If you need a boost of:
- Fat burning
Maybe you do not need to take it every time you work out, but think of the pre workout as a tool, something you use when you are running low.
Exercise is important, and if a pre workout helps make your workout happen, then why not?
Are pre-workouts safe and healthy for women?
There are some misconceptions that surround pre workouts.
It is no wonder.
Most pre workouts are geared toward men and have aggressive marketing, labels with huge jacked up guys on the front, and some even have ingredients you may never have heard of.
If you believe pre workouts are designed to build huge muscles, your confusion is justified.
Despite the marketing, most pre workouts are actually designed to give the energy and motivation needed to complete a workout, something both me and women will benefit from.
Most pre-workouts do not contain large amounts of muscle building substances, There are other supplements for that.
Most pre workouts for women are safe if taken according to the directions on the package.
Pre-workout pitfalls to avoid
As I said, most pre workouts are safe, but there are a few things you should know before you begin slipping away.
- Be Careful about the timing! Most pre workouts contain caffeine, so if you can not sleep after taking caffeine, it is best to avoid it too late in the day. Think of it as coffee, because it will affect you in a similar way.
- Don’t take a pre workout if you are pregnant or nursing a baby. Most are safe, but not studies in pregnant women so the effects to the baby are not known. Better safe than sorry in this department.
- Read the label! Some (but not all) pre workouts specifically state that if you are taking an MAOI or similar, do not drink that pre workout. Be careful that your medication is compatible with the pre workout you are taking.
- Start with half a serving or half a scoop. You want to assess how the pre-workout is going to affect you before diving right in. You can always take the second half if you don’t feel much after 45 minutes.
What are the differences between pre-workouts designed for women vs. those designed for men?
It’s no secret that the fitness goals of men and women are sometimes different.
Big and Bulky
Most women do not want to bulk up, and most men who take pre workout drinks do want to gain muscle.
Common muscle building ingredients found in Pre workouts for men include:
Creatine. If you do not know much about creatine, check out our definitive guide to creatine here.
Creatine aids in muscle growth. I personally believe women can benefit from creatine supplementation without gaining huge muscles.
L-Citrulline – this ingredient is a vasodilator, meaning it makes veins more visible. Sexy? I guess if you are a muscle bound guy it can be, but most women are not after bulging veins.
Beta-Alanine – been shown to increase lean muscle mass.
(Theoretical)Test Boosters – I am not saying they work, or not, but these ingredients are added because there is some belief that they increase testosterone, which aids the male in many ways, including building muscle.
D-aspartic acid, tribulus terrestris, fenugreek, DHEA and ashwagandha.
On the other hand, a common fitness goal for women is fat loss. This is sometimes also the case for guys, but it is more prevalent for women.
Common ingredients added to pre workouts designed for women to induce fat loss:
- Tyrosine – precursor to dopamine, may decrease appetite and increase motivation.
- Velvet Bean – Contains L-dopa, another precursor to dopamine, may decrease appetite and increase motivation.
- Evodiamine – an extract proven to reduce fat uptake.
- Sceletium tortuosum – known to relieve stress, anxiety and reduce appetite. A triple threat.
- Garcinia cambogia – Commonly thought to be an anti-obesity agent
- Raspberry ketones – Thought to assist in weight loss since it is related to the stimulant synephrine.
- Green Tea Extract – Lowers fasting blood sugar, acts as an antioxidant
What You Should Pay Attention to Before Choosing Your Pre-workout
Caffeine Buzz Factor
The vast majority of Pre workouts have at least some Caffeine. We did find a few that don’t, and I point those out below in my reviews.
The pre workouts I mention below cover quite a wide range of caffeine levels.
- No Caffeine 0 mg
- Low 40 mg to 80 mg per serving
- Moderate 80 mgo 100 g
- High 100 to 175
Just for reference, common Caffeine containing beverages have:
- Green Tea: 25 to 35 mg
- Black Tea: 40-50 mg
- 16 oz of Classic coke: 43 mg
- Red Bull Energy Drink: 80 mg
- Brewed black coffee: 160 mg
- Rock Star Energy Drink: 160 mg
So if you have experience with any of these drinks it will be easier to gauge how the caffeine content of the pre workout you choose might affect you.
Enquiring minds want to know – does this pre-workout have other stimulating ingredients
You should know that many pre workouts also have other stimulating ingredients besides caffeine including:
- Tyrosine – precursor to norepinephrine, a stimulating neurotransmitter.
- Theobromine – similar but milder than caffeine.
- Theacrine – also similar to caffeine. Who knew Caffeine had so many cousins?
- Green Tea EGCG – inhibits the breakdown of norepinephrine, a naturally occurring neurotransmitter
- Evodiamine – increases energy and reuptake of serotonin.
- Alma Berry, aka Indian Goose berry – here is an interesting ingredient, found in garden of life’s pre-workout listed below. It is an ayurvedic medicine said to increase energy and get rid of fatigue.
Does the pre-workout have any other Magic going on? – Other Novel ingredients
Whey Protein Isolate:
A few of the pre-workouts I saw include Whey protein or whey isolate, which means if you are looking to increase protein in your diet you can have your pre workout and protein drink in one. How convenient!
Vitamins and antioxidants:
The majority of pre-workouts contain B vitamins as they are involved in the process the body uses to create energy.
Many also contain oxidation fighting antioxidants.
This substance really gets your blood flowing. It helps increase blood flow which may help performance.
Interestingly it also blocks NDMA receptor, so it could increase the effect of other neurotransmitters in the brain.
OK, I need to be real with you here.
There is an inverse relationship between how a pre workout drink tastes and how natural it is.
In other words, the more natural, or organic, or vegan, the more likely it is to taste like…. Well, just bad, OK?
Sadly, that turns many off to natural products, and it is a choice you need to make for yourself. How important is taste vs. using a natural product?
I personally prefer the natural product, but I have a high tolerance for yuck.
Especially if the natural product works, and the ones in my list do work, so at least there is that, right?
So, I do not want to keep you waiting any longer.
Without further ado, I present to you my list of the:
13 Best Pre-Workout Supplements for Women 2019
Do you want to know what I would choose as the best pre workout supplement for women for me personally?
I really like Ora Organics because
- It’s organic and natural,
- It has a decent amount of caffeine, without being over the top, and
- it has a gang of really cool balancing adaptogens like ginseng, ashwaganda, Maca, rhodiola root and, eleuthero root.
So there you have it. I hope that you find your goldilocks pre workout on this list.
Be sure to leave a message below in the comments, I want to hear about your pre workout drink experiences.
Until next time!