I’m often asked, pre workout pills vs powder—is there a difference?
Let’s face it.
You want to make every single workout as rewarding as possible, pushing your body to the absolute limit to make the most impressive gains.
I’m right, yeah?
And that means taking the best pre-workout available.
The thing is, not only are there numerous brands of these supplements in the market—they’re also in different forms—pills and powders. Thus, making the choice even more freakin’ difficult.
Well, I’m going to lay it on the line for you.
In this article, I’ll bring you the staggering facts behind these two pre-workout types. Bringing you the insane truth, I’ll explain that there’s a major difference between these two supplement forms and tell you the most powerful pre-workouts for phenomenal gains.
Ready to have your eyes opened? Let’s crack on.
Pre Workout Pills VS Powder
Ok, let me start with the damn obvious when comparing pre workout pills vs powder.
Pre workout pills you swallow—powders you mix into a drink.
If that was the only difference, this would be an incredibly short article. Luckily it’s not.
Here are the main distinctions between the two forms.
As a kid, I hated swallowing pills.
Now, as an adult, I haven’t changed much. The thing is, I often have to knock back a tablet. My go-to testosterone boosters are all in capsule form—so, where needs must. That being said, given the choice, I’d rather have a drink.
Many other people are the same.
What’s more, the best pre-workout powders are usually available in a variety of flavors—making them not only beneficial as training supplements but also very pleasant to drink.
The days of bodybuilding powders tasting awful and being gritty are long gone—confined to history as a remnant of 1980s protein drinks.
If there was one area when comparing pre workout pills vs powder that pills come out on top—it’s convenience.
Just having a small, easily portable, bottle of pre workout pills in the pocket is much simpler than a large tub or shaker.
Taking pills is quicker and requires no planning. With pre-workout powders, you need access to water or another drink, they require mixing, and are awkward to transport if you want to take to the gym.
Probably more than any other bodybuilding supplement, pre-workouts are most effective when the dose can be altered to suit an individual’s needs.
Let me explain.
Some of the main ingredients in pre-workouts are stimulants—whether caffeine, Senegalia or other compounds. The issue is, not everyone reacts the same to them.
The way that we respond to stimulants such as caffeine can depend on both our sex and the genes we’ve inherited from our parents. Hence, one particular dose will have no energy-boosting effects on one person—while it may cause side effects in another.3 4
Being able to create a bespoke dosage means we can reap the maximum benefits from our pre-workouts—but trying to do this with a pill is almost impossible. Even the largest of pills is hard enough to split into two—never mind more accurate adjustments.
When we put pre workout pills vs powder side-by-side, pre-workout powders are much more versatile. They allow you to create the perfect dose for your needs—thus enabling you to have the most effective, side-effect-free supplement.
Do you ever watch sci-fi movies?
Stick with me here.
I do, and I love them. Often in these flicks, you’ll see some futuristic, space-age protagonist swallowing a pill instead of a full meal. That one tiny capsule contains all the minerals, vitamins, fiber, and nutrients they need.
Problem is—they’re still just that, science fiction.
Sadly, we haven’t the technology or technical ability to make this possible. Trust me, if it could be done—the issue of worldwide famine would be consigned to history.
Here’s the relevance.
The same (almost) applies to pre-workout pills.
While they do have some advantages, when you compare pre workout pills vs powder, the tablet form just doesn’t have the capacity to hold enough ingredients. No pre workout pill can contain the same dosage as the powders.
This is important.
Ingredients are what make an effective and powerful pre-workout. We’re talking about caffeine for energy, creatine to increase stamina, citrulline for shirt-busting pumps, and fatigue destroying carnitine.5 6 7 8
In some pre-workouts—just these four ingredients alone can amount to almost eight grams—and that’s without the many other compounds they contain. That’s 24 times larger than your average 325-mg Tylenol tablet!
It would be impossible to swallow.
Admittedly, you could instead take smaller tablets—but 24?
To be fair, supplement companies have tried to work around this by creating larger pills—but they still don’t come close to the strength of powders. More often than not, the larger ingredients (creatine and citrulline) are dropped—leaving basically a stimulant pill, not an all-around pre workout.
This is the same difference between BCAA powder and pills—they cannot contain the same volume of active ingredients.
This is why bodybuilders, when considering pre workout pills vs powder, almost always choose the powder drink.
Let me stress this one more time—it’s important.
Ingredients are the pre workout. They determine whether you will be powering through like a beast, or just getting a tiny buzz. And, the only way to ensure that you’re receiving the right ingredients, is to choose the right product.
Hence, in the next part of this pre workout pills vs powder article, I’ll show you the best pre-workouts available today.
What Are the Best Pre Workouts?
Down to the real meat!
Here are the best pre-workouts available for superhuman-like training sessions.
1. 4 Gauge
Without a doubt, the most potent supplement in this Pre Workout Pills vs Powder article—and definitely the #1 best pre workout shake on the market.
Let me tell you why.
This formula packs in an almighty dose of 6 grams of l-citrulline—giving you the most phenomenal, jaw-dropping pumps you’ve ever experienced. We’re talking extremes that mean serious selfie-city.
By ramping up your nitric oxide levels—l-citrulline opens up the vascular system, flooding your muscles with blood. Not only does this lead to astounding pumps—it will take endurance to another damn level.9
It doesn’t end there.
A hefty dose of creatine means that your muscle-powering adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels are constantly replenished. Leading to the end of muscle fatigue—you’ll just keep powering through every darn rep.10
And there’s still more.
A powerful dosage of caffeine is packed in—improving mental focus, elevating mood, and taking energy to the extreme. What’s more, it’s designed to prevent delivering a too large hit—that would otherwise cause side effects and “crashing.”
Simply one of the best pre workout supplements I’ve ever seen.
- A huge dosage of citrulline.
- The best pre workout shake.
- No hidden ingredients in proprietary blends.
- An ideal supplement for pure lean muscle.
- The best pre workout 2019
- Long four-hour working duration.
- Can only be purchased from the official 4 Gauge website.
2. Transparent Labs Bulk Pre Workout
Coming in a close second in this pre workout pills vs powder article is this excellent supplement by Transparent Labs.
Like 4 Gauge, this pre-workout includes six grams of citrulline—boosting oxygen and nutrient delivery to the muscles, allowing them to work harder and build faster.
It’s designed for the bodybuilder who not only wants to skyrocket their training performance—but also create massive bulk.
It does this in two ways.
Firstly, this supplement is formulated to elevate testosterone levels. This is done through the inclusion of the proven T-boosters of zinc, boron, and vitamin D3. Testosterone is essential for muscle growth. Studies have indicated that heightening testosterone can improve the rate of muscle protein synthesis.11 12 13
Secondly, this pre-workout includes branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) in the ratio 2:1:1 (leucine, valine, and isoleucine). These BCAAs both stimulate and promote muscle growth—while leucine has additionally been shown to boost strength during training.14 15
- One of the best pre-workouts for bulking.
- Includes beta-alanine, citrulline, and BCAAs.
- Available in four flavors—one of the best pre workout energy drink.
- BCAAs inclusion may be superfluous to those already taking whey protein.
- Premium price—not a cheap pre workout.
- Only available on their official website.
3. C4 Ultimate
A good supplement for those people who both need a serious energy boost and require intensive focus.
I’ll tell you why.
This pre-workout includes a large dose of caffeine (300 mg), providing fast-acting rejuvenation to allow you to power through your workouts like a machine. Additionally, it includes tyrosine and zembrin for increased mental clarity and concentration.16 17
For endurance—C4 Ultimate contains the lactic acid-killing beta-alanine—meaning that your sessions will not be curtailed through muscle acidosis. Plus, a serving of 6 grams of citrulline to promote impressive pumps. 18
This is an ingredient-heavy formulation—with over 20 different compounds. However, at least seven of those are included in the proprietary Ultimate Energy and Focus blend—meaning that their dose and therefore efficacy cannot be judged.
- Ideal for people who require a stim-heavy pre-workout and demand increased mental focus.
- Includes endurance-building ingredients of beta-alanine and creatine.
- May provide side effects in those susceptible to the adverse effects of caffeine.
- Many ingredients are hidden in a proprietary blend.
- With 22 active compounds—may not appeal to those looking for a back-to-basics pre-workout.
- Not the best pre workout energy drink.
Pre Workout Benefits
Taking the best pre-workouts as listed above can take your training to incredible degrees. Remember, as we have seen in this pre workout pills vs powder battle—the powder form is superior. Hence, for the following benefits—always use a pre-workout drink.
Here’s what you can expect from the best pre-workouts:
Pre Workout Supplements Boost Energy Levels
Despite going to the gym with the best intentions, work, family, and personal commitments can often take their toll, leaving you feeling lethargic and therefore unable to make the most of your training sessions.
The best pre-workouts contain stimulants that can elevate your energy levels—fast. Meaning that you’re able to hit the weights as hard as possible.
Increase Vascularization and Muscle Pumps
Powerful ingredients, such as arginine and citrulline, open up the blood vessels—flooding them with oxygen-rich blood.
Not only does this create some major pumps and serious vascularization, but also improves your explosive power—enabling you to work out like a total beast.
Raise Mental Focus
Bodybuilding isn’t just about the body—the mind is equally as important.
Without intense concentration and determination, you’re unlikely to squeeze out those final two muscle-building reps. The best pre-workouts include ingredients that are proven to enhance mental focus—ensuring that every workout is completed to the max.
You know the score.
To create a mind-blowing bulked physique, you need to lift heavy. Those muscles have to be pushed past their normal limits to force them to rebuild larger.
The best pre-workouts contain ingredients such as betaine—proven to increase strength and therefore push your body to insane extremes. 19
Pre Workout Side Effects
No pre workout pills vs powder article would be complete without looking at the side effects.
Here’s the good news.
They have hardly any adverse health effects at all.
While no pre workout can be considered totally side effect free—where they do occur, it’s most often down to the inclusion of caffeine.
As I mentioned earlier in this pre workout pills vs powder article—everyone differs in their susceptibility to caffeine. Some guys will exhibit symptoms, others not.
The side effects most commonly associated with caffeine are:
There’s just one more side effect common to taking pre-workouts—and that’s a “tingling” or itchy feeling. This is a common reaction to the endurance-boosting ingredient, beta-alanine.22
It’s perfectly harmless and passes after a couple of hours or so.
Pre Workout Pills Vs Powder Summary
As we have seen in this pre workout pills vs powder article—pre-workout supplements are a potent and effective way of taking each training session to the limit.
By enhancing your workouts, muscle and mass can increase at a phenomenal rate.
It’s important to ensure that your pre-workout delivers everything you need to achieve these goals. And that means two things—using a pre-workout powder, and selecting one that contains ingredients scientifically proven to supercharge workout sessions.
Here’s my advice.
Don’t go for an unknown and cheap pre workout.
For the ultimate in training performance, choose 4 Gauge—undoubtedly the best pre workout 2019. This phenomenal supplement contains everything you require to train like a machine.