Looking for the ultimate pre-workout stack? There are a couple of key ingredients that have been clinically proven to enhance muscle performance, increase anabolic activity, and enhance blood flow and recuperation. Recent studies have shown that creatine and beta-alanine can work better when combined as opposed to being taken separately. A previous study reported when subjects took beta-alanine and creatine they increased fat-free mass and had a three-fold increase in strength after ten weeks of resistance training compared to a placebo group. Interestingly, in the creatine-only group, they did not show any body composition changes.
The benefits of creatine and beta-alanine go further than just increasing muscle mass and strength. They also seem to increase performance in the gym as well as recuperation. A previous study compared creatine to a combination creatine/beta-alanine stack. Fifty-five subjects participated in the study, and it was revealed that individuals supplementing with the creatine/beta-alanine combination had greater improvements in stamina, strength, workout volume, and recuperation time. Another key ingredient for pre-workout pumps is beetroot, as it has been clinically proven to enhance muscle vasodilatation. Beetroot is probably the best natural source of organic nitrates, which directly fuel NO production
When British researchers gave healthy subjects several different amounts and types of beetroot, their blood pressure decreased significantly and blood flow increased. Last, leucine is a must for pre-workout supplements as it has anabolic properties. A series of cellular studies has now clearly shown that leucine directly activates a critical compound in muscle called the mTOR. mTOR is critical for protein synthesis to occur. A new study examined the effects of high dose leucine supplementation around a high-intensity resistance exercise workout. Subjects consumed leucine before and after squat exercises performed to exhaustion. There was less of a drop in force output with leucine supplementation. If you want one supplement that has all these active ingredients instead of spending money on buying all these ingredients separately, consider BPI’s PUMP-HD.
REFERENCE: Kirby TJ, Amino Acids, May 12, 2011; Hofman J, Ratamess N, Int J Sport Nutr