In the highly competitive world of supplement manufacturing, companies are constantly trying to outdo each other by releasing pre workouts with higher levels of stimulants. These high stim pre workouts can be popular with those who enjoy the intense energy and focus they provide, but for those who are stimulant sensitive, they can lead to unpleasant side effects like anxiety, jitters, and nausea.
In this post, we will cover everything you need to know about low-stim pre workouts and their benefits, but first, let’s talk a little about pre workouts.
What Are Pre Workouts?
Pre-workout supplements are designed to support fitness goals and can be consumed in the form of a drink by mixing the powder with water. These supplements typically contain a variety of ingredients intended to provide the body with nutrients and stimulants to enhance the effectiveness of a workout. Pre workouts are typically consumed about 30 minutes before exercising.
What are Stimulants In Pre Workouts?
Stimulants are a class of ingredients or drugs that stimulate the central nervous system, increasing alertness and energy. They work by speeding up communication between the brain and the body. Stimulants are commonly used in pre-workout supplements because they can improve athletic performance, increase focus and “mind-muscle connection,” and provide energy for workouts early in the morning or late in the evening.
Caffeine is one of the most well-known stimulants, but pre-workouts may also contain other stimulants such as DMHA, Higenamine, Hordenine, Synephrine, and Yohimbine. It is important to be mindful of the stimulant content in pre-workout supplements, as some people may be sensitive to stimulants and may experience negative side effects.
What Does It Mean To Be Stim Sensitive?
In the supplement industry, individuals who enjoy the effects of high stimulant pre workouts are referred to as stimheads, while those who are easily affected by caffeine and other stimulants are referred to as stim sensitive. So, being stimulant sensitive means that an individual is easily affected by caffeine and other stimulants.
People who are stimulant sensitive may experience anxiety, jitters, nausea, or other negative symptoms when they consume stimulants. This sensitivity can vary greatly from person to person and may be due to a variety of factors including genetics, previous caffeine consumption, and other individual characteristics.
What Is A Low Stim Preworkout?
Low stim pre workouts contain stimulants, but in lower doses compared to traditional pre workouts. They often use natural caffeine instead of more intense stimulants like DMHA or Yohimbine. Non-stim pre workouts, on the other hand, do not contain any stimulants and rely on ingredients like amino acids to increase blood flow and enhance athletic performance. This can make them a more suitable option for those who are stimulant sensitive.
What Are The Benefits Of Low Stim Pre Workouts?
Low stim pre workouts offer a number of benefits for those who are stimulant sensitive or have a lower tolerance for stimulants. Some of the potential benefits of low stim pre-workouts include:
- Improved Focus And Concentration: Low stim pre-workouts can help to improve focus and concentration during your workouts, allowing you to perform at your best.
- Low Caffeine: it is not necessary for a pre-workout to have a lot of caffeine in order to be effective. Natural ingredients such as huperzia serrata, cordyceps, arginine, rhodiola rosea, sodium bicarbonate, and essential amino acids and vitamins can provide similar benefits and support your training goals without relying on caffeine.
- Better Workout Performance: Pre-workouts in general can help to improve athletic performance by providing nutrients and stimulants that support energy, endurance, and muscle function.
- Increased Blood Flow: Many pre-workouts contain ingredients that promote increased blood flow, which can help to support muscle performance and recovery.
- Improved Mind-Muscle Connection: Low stim pre-workouts can help to improve the connection between your mind and muscles, allowing you to get more out of each workout.
- Energy Boost: Pre-workouts can help to provide an energy boost, making them a great option for those who need an extra boost of energy to get through their workouts.
What Is The Amount Of Caffeine That A Low Stim Preworkout Should Have?
While caffeine can be an effective pre-workout ingredient known for its potential benefits such as weight loss, improved cognitive function, and improved exercise performance, it is important to use it in moderation to avoid negative side effects. Not everyone reacts positively to caffeine, and some people may be hypersensitive or intolerant to it. For these individuals, caffeine-free pre-workout supplements can be a suitable alternative.
The amount of caffeine in a low stim pre workout will vary depending on an individual’s tolerance. Dietary guidelines have shown for a long time that most adults can safely consume around 400 milligrams of caffeine a day. In general, pre workouts with less than 300mg of caffeine can be considered low stim. As a reference, a typical diner-sized cup of coffee contains about 95mg of caffeine. If you can drink two cups of coffee without feeling jittery, you may be able to tolerate around 200mg of caffeine in a pre workout supplement.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that caffeine anhydrous, which is commonly found in supplements, can be more potent than natural caffeine found in coffee. Additionally, caffeine is not the only stimulant to consider, as some pre workouts may have low levels of caffeine but higher levels of other stimulants like DMHA, Higenamine, Hordenine, and more.
What Are The Benefits Of Moderate Caffeine Consumption?
Caffeine consumption, in moderation, may have various advantages.
- Caffeine is commonly used by students and professionals to enhance their cognitive performance since it increases their alertness, attention, and concentration.
- Caffeine boosts physical performance, especially in long-distance races. One of its benefits is a decrease in fatigue and an improvement in the strength and power of one’s muscles.
- Caffeine is often used by persons trying to lose weight because of its ability to boost metabolism and fat oxidation.
- Caffeine has been shown to elevate mood and lessen feelings of despair and anxiety.
- Some studies have found an inverse association between caffeine and the development of Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and some forms of cancer, suggesting that moderate caffeine consumption may reduce the risk of these and other diseases.
For those who are stimulant sensitive, finding a low stim pre workout can be a challenge. However, there are options available that use milder stimulants or rely on other ingredients to enhance athletic performance.
It is also important to remember that moderation is key when it comes to caffeine consumption. While caffeine can have some positive effects, consuming too much can lead to negative side effects such as anxiety, jitters, and insomnia. It is also important to consider the timing of caffeine consumption, as consuming it too close to bedtime can disrupt sleep, which is crucial for muscle recovery and growth.
It is recommended to consume caffeine in moderation, around the equivalent of 2-3 cups of coffee per day, and to be mindful of the timing of consumption. In addition, it can be helpful to have a variety of pre-workout supplements on hand, including both high stimulant and low or non-stimulant options, to suit different needs and preferences.
Rahul is a sports and performance consultant. Over the course of his 15-year career in the fitness sector, he has held positions as a strength and conditioning instructor, gym owner, and consultant.
He is deeply committed to assisting people in finding happiness and feeling good about themselves.
Rahul has a master’s degree in exercise science and is a certified NSCA CSCS and CISSN.