6 Pre-Workout Side Effects To Avoid

pre-workout side effects

Pre-workout side effects is one the hot topics among athletes. Everyone wants to make the most of their training time, and “pre-workout” supplements promise to accomplish just that. Before going to the gym or going for a run, it could be tempting to try one of these pills in the hopes of boosting your energy levels, strength, or endurance. (1)

A growing number of people are turning to dietary supplements to improve their exercise performance, especially athletes and fitness fans. Multi-ingredient pre-workout supplements are a subset of dietary supplements that have drawn interest from daily exercisers. These products frequently include a combination of substances that are said to enhance immediate exercise performance after consumption. Research has shown their ability to increase performance for short period but little exists showing their ability to maintain this increase in performance over long period. If used over a longer length of time while participating in a structured training program, these compounds may also increase training adaptations. (2)

Main ingredients in pre-workout supplements usually include caffeine, beta-alanine, creatine, vasodilators, BCAA and vitamins.


The central nervous system is stimulated by caffeine. The most obvious result once it hits your brain is alertness. It’s a typical component in drugs to cure or control sleepiness, headaches, and migraines since it makes you feel more alert and less sleepy. Time to tiredness was greatly improved by caffeine by 12%. After consuming caffeine, a substantial reduction in perceived weariness was seen. When compared to the placebo condition, the caffeine condition had reduced perceived effort and greater thigh muscle surface electromyographic* signal amplitude. (3)

  • *Electromyography (EMG) is a diagnostic procedure to assess the health of muscles and the nerve cells that control them.


One of the relatively few amino acids that humans naturally produce is b-alanine. Because it is a key component of the dipeptide carnosine and can increase the synthesis of intramuscular carnosine, which is an efficient buffer to stop muscle cells from becoming acidic and thus decrease tiredness during exercise, it is commonly used as a supplement for muscle growth.


Vasodilators are drugs that allow blood arteries to dilate. They have an impact on the muscles that line the arteries and veins, preventing tightness and narrowing of the walls.

Why is pre-workout not good for you?

We always ask ourselves, does pre workout have side effects? Typically, taking a pre-workout supplement for the first time will result in a huge energy boost. You can feel the alleged advantages of taking a supplement depending on the particular one. When it comes to your workout, you practically start to depend on these pills, and you anticipate getting the same high when you take pre-workout supplements. For some folks, it almost reaches the point where you would think it’s a bad product if you don’t get the same energy, tingling sensation, or mental focus. You can go for a stronger substance, almost like a narcotic, to have the same effects as the first time you took a pre-workout pill.

Pre-workout pills do, unfortunately, have some disadvantages that individuals who use them frequently may discover. We must make clear that not everyone should take pre-workout supplements. You don’t even need to use them to get results from your workouts. And to make matters worse, improper use of pre-workout drugs might have negative side effects on your general health. Below are some the common pre workout side effects.

pre-workout side effects

1. Insomnia

Insomnia is one the common pre workout side effects. Main ingredient of any pre-workout is caffeine and if you take this supplement late in the evening, you will be having a difficult time to sleep. Caffeine can last anywhere from 3-5 hours so better plan your sleep before taking pre-workout.

Side Effects Of Pre Workout Supplements

Now you might be asking how to get rid of pre workout side effects. Since everyone metabolizes caffeine differently, you might be able to use pre-workout pills the latest 7pm. However, you can still be experiencing the stimulant’s side effects from a noon workout if you have a very sluggish metabolism. Additionally, you might reduce the dosage or serving size of your pre-workout vitamins to make the effects less severe than a full serving, which might help it leave your system more quickly.

2. Diarrhea

Diarrhea is another common pre workout side effects. There are many reasons why this might occur, but most people will notice that there are two main sources of problems.
The first area might be the particular substances present in the products, which, if you have a sensitive stomach, may have a laxative effect and cause you to visit the bathroom soon after consumption. High doses of the following substances are included in this mixture: sodium bicarbonate, magnesium, taurine, arginine, yohimbe, creatine, and caffeine. But in most cases, it depends on how you use the product.

Pre-workout supplements can occasionally be made by persons who have little to no understanding of how the body functions or how they are absorbed, which is a concern in the supplement market.

Ways to reduce side effects effects of pre-workout supplement diarrhea, drink more water. Increasing the water. Insufficient water can result in a paste-like substance building up in your digestive tract and giving you diarrhea. Use additional water the following time you take pre-workout vitamins as a quick cure for the aforementioned issue. Additionally, hydrate yourself while working out. If you drink water all day, you might not even exhibit symptoms of stomach problems.

3. Dehydration


Dehydration is a common pre workout side effects that can result from using these substances that draw water from the body and excrete it. Some ingredients are added with the intention of doing this. Headaches might happen as well and they are also related to dehydration. When you exercise, your body pulls water from other parts of the body to support your working muscles in addition to sweating and losing water through perspiration. This is especially true if creatine is included in the pre-workout supplements. Depending on the amount of the supplement used and the intensity of the workout, this may result in dehydration.

Even if you’re not thirsty, keep drinking water throughout the day. If you notice that you are using the restroom more frequently than usual after taking any pre-workout supplements, be sure to replenish what was lost by grabbing some water.

4. Headaches

The brain is surrounded by water, which forms a barrier. Dehydration causes the fluid that surrounds the brain to become thinner, which can lead to the brain banging against the skull. This alone may give you a headache. Several pre-workout pills contain substances that support vasodilation. Numerous variations of arginine, citrulline malate, or beta-alanine make up these components. Your body’s blood vessels, including those in your brain, dilate when vasodilation takes place. This growth may give you headaches.

If you frequently have headaches, you can either avoid pre-workout supplements that contain vasodilators in order to reduce the impact. You could see if anything changes if you reduce the volume or serving size you are using.

5. High Blood Pressure

high blood pressure

This is one of the pre workout side effects that could be dangerous as high blood pressure can lead to heart diseases. High-intensity workouts are frequently combined with pre workout. High-intensity weight exercise will raise your blood pressure. The majority of people may return to normal blood pressure levels after working out, however even without pre-workout supplements, your blood pressure may rise during that period.

If in general your blood pressure is high, it is best to avoid taking pre workout supplements or to reduce the danger, you can decrease your blood level by having a low GI diet to help you have lower blood pressure and prevent any danger in the future.

6. Tingly Sensations

A tingling or prickly sensation all over your body is one of the typical pre workout side effects. Everyone is unique, and it depends on how sensitive you are to particular pre-workout pill elements. You’re more likely to experience pre workout side effects tingling if the supplement contains chemicals like niacin, beta-alanine, or vitamin B3.

Niacin is commonly seen in larger doses in pre-workout supplements which is main reason for tingly feeling. High doses of niacin may also cause the skin to flush, turning it red, blotchy, and even itching.

The sensation is just the result of a nervous system reaction. It is advised that you avoid pre-workout supplements that include these chemicals if you are not interested in this specific negative effect or find a product without niacin if you don’t like the way it makes you feel. 

In conclusion, taking pre workout supplements lead to significant improvements in strength and stamina, however you need to take in pre workout side effects in count as well. Pre workout side effects mentioned above are some of the common ones and now you need to decide would want to continue taking them or stop.

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