Pre Workout Calories 2024 (All you should know)

Are you looking to maximize your workouts and achieve your fitness goals faster? If so, you may want to pay attention to your pre-workout nutrition. Specifically, the number of pre workout calories you consume before exercising can have a significant impact on your performance and results. In this article, I will discuss the importance of pre workout calories and how to determine the right amount for your body.

As someone passionate about fitness, I understand the importance of fueling my body properly before a workout.

Consuming the right amount of calories can help me power through my exercises, increase my endurance, and build muscle more effectively. On the other hand, not consuming enough calories can lead to fatigue, dizziness, and even injury.

But how many pre workout calories should you consume? And what types of foods are best for pre-workout fuel? These are the questions we will be exploring in this article.

When it comes to pre workout calories, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. The amount of calories you need will depend on various factors, including your body type, fitness goals, and the intensity of your workout. By understanding the science behind pre-workout nutrition and experimenting with different calorie amounts, you can find the sweet spot that works best for you. So, let’s dive in and learn more about pre workout calories!

Understanding Pre Workout Calories

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Should you take pre workout?

Pre-workout supplements are designed to provide a quick boost of energy, focus, and endurance to help you power through your workouts. These supplements come in various forms, including powders, capsules, and energy drinks. While the ingredients in pre-workout supplements vary, most of them contain calories in the form of carbohydrates, amino acids, and other nutrients.

Carbohydrates are the primary source of energy for your body, and they provide the fuel needed to power through intense workouts. Most pre-workout supplements contain carbohydrates in the form of sugars, which have 4 calories per gram. Some pre-workout supplements also contain complex carbohydrates, which provide a slower release of energy and help sustain your workout.

Amino acids, including branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs), are also common ingredients in pre-workout supplements. These amino acids help to build and repair muscle tissue, reduce muscle soreness, and improve recovery time. Like all proteins, amino acids have 4 calories per gram.

Not all pre-workout supplements contain calories. Some supplements are calorie-free and contain only stimulants like caffeine and beta-alanine. If you’re trying to lose weight or maintain a calorie deficit, a calorie-free pre-workout supplement may be a better option for you.

What Determines the Pre Workout Calories?

Regarding pre-workout nutrition, the number of calories you need to consume depends on several factors. It is especially interesting when you’re fasting. Cause this determines whether pre workout breaks a fast or not. Here are some of the main determinants of pre-workout calories:

1. Body Composition

Your body composition, including your weight, height, and body fat percentage, significantly determines your pre workout calorie needs. Generally speaking, the more muscle you have, the more calories you need to consume to fuel your workout.

2. Exercise Intensity

The intensity of your workout is another important factor to consider when determining your pre workout calories needs. High-intensity workouts require more energy, so you may need to consume more calories before these types of workouts.

fit man holding pre workout in gym
Decided about your pre workout calories having your fitness goals in mind. IG: gregogallagher

3. Exercise Duration

The workout duration is also a key determinant of pre workout calories needs. Longer workouts require more energy, so you may need to consume more calories before longer workouts.

4. Exercise Type

The type of exercise you plan to do also plays a role in determining your pre workout calories needs. For example, if you plan a cardio workout, you may need to consume more carbohydrates to fuel your workout. If you plan to do a strength training workout, you may need to consume more protein to support muscle growth and repair.

5. Personal Goals

If you are trying to lose weight, you may need to consume fewer calories before your workout. If you are trying to gain muscle, you may need to consume more calories before your workout.

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Composition of Pre-Workout Supplements

One of the most common ingredients in pre-workout supplements is caffeine. Caffeine is a stimulant that can help improve focus, alertness, and energy levels during exercise. Other common ingredients include beta-alanine, creatine, and nitric oxide boosters like arginine.

The quality and purity of the ingredients can vary depending on the brand and manufacturer. It’s important to do your research and choose a reputable brand that uses high-quality ingredients.

In addition to the ingredients themselves, the amount and timing of pre-workout supplements can also impact their effectiveness. It’s generally recommended to take pre-workout supplements 30–60 minutes before exercise to allow enough time for the ingredients to be absorbed and take effect. That is about the time it takes for pre workout to kick in.

But which ingredients contain pre workout calories? Here you see an overview of which ingredients to search for or avoid in pre workout:

Pre-Workout IngredientPre Workout Calories
Caffeine0 calories
Creatine0 calories
Beta-Alanine4 pre workout calories per gram
Citrulline4 pre workout calories per gram
Amino Acids4 pre workout calories per gram
Vitamins0 calories
Different amount of pre workout calories in the ingredients.

Key Ingredients in Pre-Workouts

Now that you know all the pre workout calories of the different ingredients, I will discuss some key ingredients in pre-workouts that can help you achieve your fitness goals.

  • Caffeine 🫘
  • Beta-alanine πŸ’₯
  • Creatine πŸ’¦
  • BCAAs πŸ’Š
  • L-Citrulline πŸ₯„

Caffeine and Its Effects 🫘

Caffeine is one of the most common ingredients in pre-workouts. It is a natural stimulant that can help increase your energy levels and improve your focus. Caffeine works by blocking the neurotransmitter adenosine, which makes you feel tired. By blocking adenosine, caffeine can help you stay alert and focused during your workout.

Beta-Alanine and Performance πŸ’₯

Beta-alanine is known for improving athletic performance by reducing fatigue and increasing endurance. Beta-alanine works by increasing the carnosine levels in your muscles, which helps to buffer lactic acid. This can help you push through the burn and perform at a higher level for longer. But it is also known for giving you the pre workout itch.

Creatine for Strength πŸ’¦

Creatine is a naturally occurring compound that is found in muscle cells. It is known for its ability to increase strength and power output. Creatine in pre workout increases the amount of ATP (adenosine triphosphate) available to your muscles. This can help you perform more reps, lift heavier weights, and recover faster between sets.

Amino Acids and Their Benefits πŸ’Š

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, and they play a crucial role in muscle growth and repair. Many pre-workout supplements contain amino acids such as BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids) and glutamine. BCAAs are known for their ability to reduce muscle breakdown and improve recovery, while glutamine is known for boosting the immune system and improving gut health.

L-Citrulline and Nitric Oxide Production πŸ₯„

L-citrulline in pre workout is an amino acid that is often included in pre-workout supplements. It is known for its ability to increase nitric oxide production in the body. Nitric oxide is a vasodilator, which means it can help to widen your blood vessels and improve blood flow. This can help to increase the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to your muscles, which can improve performance and reduce fatigue.

key ingredients of pre workout in pills for training better
Different ingredients have different amount of pre workout calories.

Alternatives to Pre-Workout Supplements

Sometimes I’m sick and tired of pre workout supplements. Here are some of my favorite pre-workout alternatives that give me the energy boost I need:

Coffee

For those who are caffeine lovers like me, a cup of coffee can be a great alternative to pre-workout supplements. Not only does it provide a quick energy boost, but it also helps to improve focus and alertness during exercise. Just be careful not to overdo it with the caffeine, as too much can lead to jitters and anxiety. In general: overdosing on pre workout can have severe side effects.

Snack

Eating a small snack before a workout can also be a great way to fuel your body without relying on supplements. Some great pre-workout snack options include bananas, apples, or a handful of nuts. These foods are rich in carbohydrates and provide a quick energy boost to help you power through your workout. Often they are also a bit cheaper than a pre workout supplement.

Natural Ingredients

There are plenty of options for a more natural pre workout supplement available. Green tea extract is a popular ingredient known to boost energy levels and improve focus. Other natural ingredients to look for include beetroot powder, which is rich in nitrates that help to improve blood flow and oxygen delivery to the muscles. Honey and Salt as pre workout got popular in the fitness community as well.

ingredients of pre workout laying on kitchen table ready to eat and consume
Pre workouts with natural ingredients are a good alternative.

Our Experience with Pre Workout

I have tried several pre-workout supplements in the past. I have found that pre-workout supplements can be a great way to boost energy levels and improve performance during exercise.

However, it’s important to note that not all pre-workout supplements are created equal. Some can be loaded with sugar and pre workout calories, while others may contain questionable ingredients not approved by the FDA. These I tend to avoid. 🚫

When it comes to pre-workout supplements, it’s essential to do your research and choose a safe and effective supplement. Look for supplements that are backed by scientific research and have been approved by the FDA.

In terms of pre workout calories, it’s important to consider your overall calorie intake for the day. Pre-workout supplements can contain anywhere from 5 to 200 calories per serving. Find the exact number on the package before buying and decide according to your fitness goal.

Personally, I have found that pre-workout supplements with a moderate amount of calories (around 50-100 calories per serving) work best for me. This gives me the energy boost I need without adding too many extra calories to my diet.

Frequently Asked Questions about Pre Workout Calories

Does Pre-workout Have Calories?

Yes, pre-workout can contain calories. However, the type and amount of calories depend on your pre-workout kind and brand. Some pre-workouts contain ingredients, such as dextrose and maltodextrin, which are sugars that serve as a quick energy source during training. These sugars can add up to a significant amount of calories.

Does Pre-workout Count as Calories?

Yes, pre-workout does count as calories. If you are counting your daily calorie intake, you should include the calories from your pre-workout supplement. However, keep in mind that the number of calories in your pre-workout can vary depending on the brand and type.

How Many Calories Should a Pre-workout Snack Be?

The number of calories in your pre-workout snack will depend on your fitness goals and the intensity of your workout. A good rule of thumb is to aim for a snack that is between 100 and 300 calories.

Does Pre-workout Count as Food?

No, pre-workout does not count as food. Pre-workout supplements are designed to provide your body with the energy it needs to power through your workout. While they may contain calories, they are not a substitute for a healthy, balanced diet.


What is your experience with pre workout calories? Let me know in the comments below. And if you’ve read until here, you might also be interested in: when does pre workout expire? or how Andrew Huberman pre workout looks like.

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