Whether it’s that added edge in the gym you’re looking for, or to get the most out of your cardio routine, pre-workout supplements can help you achieve your goals. However, just like protein supplements, not every pre-workout supplement is the same and finding out which one is for you can be a perplexing and time-consuming task.

There’s that list of confusing and sciency sounding ingredients! And even if you know your way around supplements like Creatine Monohydrate and Beta Alanine, you need to think about your goals and the specific type of exercise you’re involved in when choosing your pre-workout supplement. For example, some formulations have ingredients that will work more to increase strength and power, while others may boost your endurance – so knowing which ingredients are best for certain types of exercise will help you find the formulation that suits you best. Understanding ingredients will help you feel confident in choosing the right pre-workout supplement to reach your fitness goals. But more on that in a minute.

Changes in supplement regulation in Australia
Firstly, there’s been big changes to the supplements category in Australia after the Federal Government moved to reclassify pre workout, weight loss and recovery supplements as medicines.

The new restrictions were introduced at the end of last month following advice from the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) after an 18-month investigation into the supplements market. The TGA found 19 per cent of supplement products across the categories mentioned above and sold in Australia contained substances banned in sport. One study showed 16 per cent of sampled products included substances banned under the World Anti-Doping Code and that weren’t declared on the label. The changes mean supplements with ingredients deemed to be ‘high risk’ are now subject to strict regulations, including how they’re packaged and advertised. All of which reinforces the importance of choosing a quality and properly formulated pre-workout supplement which includes well researched ingredients and is backed by a recognised quality assurance program.

So, let’s talk about those ingredients
A few of the key ingredients you should look for include: Creatine Monohydrate: you’ve probably heard about this one because it’s the ingredient that’s going to help most with your lower-rep workouts, considered the number one supplement for increasing strength and power. A molecule found naturally in your body, Creatine is an important part of the energy production systems inside your cells. Science has shown that when used in conjunction with resistance training it can safely increase muscle mass, strength and exercise performance.

Beta Alanine: another staple ingredient in pre-workouts, Beta Alanine increases muscular endurance by delaying fatigue from lactic acid build-up, basically helping you bust out a few more reps from every set. Research has shown it’s most effective at improving performance during short bursts of intense exercise lasting between one and four minutes. Caffeine: a popular training partner, caffeine provides that quick energy you can use for both for shorter, high intensity exercise such as lifting or sprints and also endurance exercise. Studies have found caffeine – a natural molecule found in coffee, tea and other foods and drinks – can increase alertness, sharpen focus and increase power output.

Citrulline: an amino acid produced naturally in your body, one of the benefits of Citrulline is increasing blood flow to body tissues. In the context of exercise that means it may help the body to supply exercising muscles with the oxygen and nutrients they need to perform at their best. Citrulline malate (L-citrulline which has had malic acid or ‘malate’ added) has been found to increase endurance during a workout and even decrease muscle soreness.

Informed Sports Certified
With as many as one-in-10 supplements contaminated with ingredients and compounds prohibited in sport, you need to be able to have full confidence in the products you choose.
Informed Sport is a supplement testing and certification program and the global gold standard in sports nutrition quality control. Products carrying the Informed Sport logo have been tested rigorously for banned substances by LGC’s world leading anti-doping lab, using ISO 17025 accredited methods. This means every single batch of certified product has been screened for banned substances to part-per-billion levels. Not only that, all of the manufacturing processes must meet the strictest standards of quality control.

Certification by Informed Sport, the global standard in sports nutrition quality control, provides a vital mark of reassurance for elite and amateur athletes, as well as coaches and nutritionists.

INC Sports Nutrition Pre-workout Plus
An advanced pre-workout formula for beginner or advanced athletes who want to maximise their workout performance, INC’s Pre-workout Plus formula has been designed to support intensive training sessions demanding explosive energy, power and strength training. With Creatine, Beta Alanine and Citrulline malate to support muscle growth, recovery and performance and caffeine to support focused training, it comes in a great tasting and easy-to-mix formula that can be added to cold water, juice or other drinks.

Best of all, it’s Informed Sports Certified – meaning that you can train knowing that you are using a product which has passed a rigorous certification process. At INC, an Australian-owned company, we understand the link between training and nutrition in helping to achieve your optimal fitness goals and it’s our mission to make the highest quality sports supplements affordable to all.

BY INC Sports Nutrition