Nothing outranks energy as the most sorted in making a real difference at the gym. In fact, when in abundance, almost every other aspect of working out falls in place. Also, we cannot underestimate the need to stay focused and religiously adhere to the daily regimen of working out. It’s easy to lose the drive and enthusiasm from your normal exercise routine. This guide has got your back: it discusses the best ingredients and features the best energy supplements for working out.
Quick List: Energy Supplements for Working Out
The best energy supplements for working out combine key innovations to produce stimulant-free formulations for mind and body vitality. Read on for more, but first here is a quick list of top-rated energy-boosting formulas:
|#1. Performance Lab Energy – Clean, stimulant-free mitochondria booster, cell-energy supercharger, latest and greatest energy pill. Performance Lab Website|
|#2. NOW Sports Energy Extreme – Stimulant-incorporated with multiple caffeine sources for intense training plus multiple ginseng forms, CoQ10, and tyrosine for increased focus. NOW Sports Website|
|#3. MHP Super Caffeine – Caffeine, energy sources, and tyrosine for focus plus rhodiola for performance. MHP Super Website|
|#4. Olympian Labs Olympian Energy – Natural caffeine sources, energy vitamins, two forms of ginseng for energy boost. Olympian Energy Website|
|#5. VPX Bang Energy Drink – Super popular right now. Caffeinated energy drink plus CoQ10 and vitamins. VPX Bang Website|
Energy Supplements for Working Out Guide
Energy supplementation alone does not make all the difference. However, once you’ve got everything under control, targeted supplementation could be everything you need to improve your performance.
Before we dive into energy supplements for working out, let’s first focus on what we can gain from them.
- More muscle strength and energy to work out
An extra energy boost during workouts is obviously beneficial to attain desirable results. Thanks to caffeine, an active ingredient in energy supplements, you can stimulate and energize your muscles to get the most out of your training sessions. The effect of combining caffeine with l-arginine helps increase endurance, muscle pumps, and vasodilation, among other things.
- Increased performance
The whole point of incorporating supplements while training is to level up the ability to work out harder and improve efficiency. Both weight-loss and muscle-building plans (which energy supplements constitute) are highly effective in keeping you locked in while operating at peak efficiency. They provide stamina to help you dominate every workout session.
- Faster Weight Loss
Supplements indirectly cause weight loss since their ingredients promote metabolism. Again, caffeine is a proven ingredient in aiding fat loss. As soon the body ingests caffeine, it works to oxidize fat and raise body thermogenesis. In the process, metabolic rate increases. It also helps delay the onset of hunger. Even if the intention is not to lose weight, the indirect effect can help one stay lean and fit.
- Improved Recovery
Regardless one takes energy supplements before or during a workout, they are amazing in promoting recovery and muscle growth afterward. To get the most out of gym exercises, one needs to work out until failure. Nonetheless, you could experience poor recovery, especially when your calorie intake does not support intense exercise. Apart from caffeine, creatine monohydrate stands out as a muscle relaxer, reducing soreness, and pumping post-workout glucose levels to help you feel better faster.
- Better focus and concentration
To optimize the results of the time you spend at the gym, mental focus is a key aspect. Without it, it is impossible to stay locked in and maintain the drive to conquer your workouts. Manufacturers formulate bodybuilding supplements to ward off mental straining and generally improve alertness during and after working out. The takeaway: improved concentration is vital in helping improve the efficiency of your training sessions.
Best Ingredients: Energy Supplements for Working Out
Do the best energy supplements address fitness enthusiasts’ needs for their workouts? Let’s pay attention to the most needed and effective ingredients for workout energy supplementation.
Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10)
Coenzyme Q10 (or simply CoQ10) is a natural compound and the energy powerhouse of living cells. Ordinarily, healthy people have enough CoQ10. We acquire even more of the compound from most of the food we eat. However, regular exercising increases energy demands that deplete CoQ10 levels. It is beneficial to add more CoQ10 in the form of supplements to restore the cells’ Coenzyme Q10 capacity.
Perhaps the most important feature of Coenzyme Q10 is its antioxidant properties. Thus, it can protect muscles and cells from damage and oxidative stress. A 2012 study on the effect of CoQ10 on cardiorespiratory fitness of 20 athletes concluded a daily dose of 200 mg for six weeks enhances the performance of muscles and delays onset of exhaustion.
- Ubiquinol® is the best energy supplement to look for and a type of CoQ10 that aids the body’s antioxidant defense.
Pyrroloquinoline Quinone, PQQ
Despite boasting a myriad of health benefits, (pyrroquinoline) PQQ supplements don’t enjoy the popularity of other energy-boosting ingredients such as caffeine. However, that could soon change.
Pyrroloquinoline quinone is a compound that occurs naturally in body cells, soil, and certain foods. It’s responsible for the formation of new mitochondria cells which bring serious benefits in terms of enhancing energy production. By stimulating mitochondrial biogenesis, PQQ strengthens muscles and increases anabolism.
Multiple studies confirm that PQQ has the ability to reduce oxidative stress responsible for prolonged muscle fatigue. One such study on mice established that PQQ provides a mechanism to inhibit oxidative stress by regulating antioxidant capacity of cells.
Anyone working out cannot underestimate the need to give the body enough time to recover. Unlike other ingredients that render energy benefits alongside sleep deprivation, PQQ ensures a full night’s sleep and a refreshing feeling upon waking up.
Japanese researchers conducted a study in 2012 to determine the effect of pyrroloquinoline quinone supplementation on sleep and fatigue. The research findings showed that PQQ is effective in improving the quality of sleep by helping stay asleep longer.
- BioPQQ® is FDA approved and the best energy supplement standardized to 10% PQQ.
Having stood the test of time, caffeine is the go-to energy supplement ingredient of many bodybuilding enthusiasts. They trust it as the best energy-boosting ingredient on the market. Dieters and athletes rely on this energy booster to amp up exercise intensity and duration.
Guarana is a botanical source of caffeine popular among the Brazilian tribe Guarani. Manufacturers continuously include it in supplements and foods in other parts of the world. The Brazilian herb boasts of high caffeine content (about five percent per seed which is roughly the size of a coffee bean that only avails two percent). Therefore, guarana is highly effective in increasing alertness and decreasing fatigue. If you’re into fitness, this is the ingredient to increase endurance.
Although there’s been no human research on guarana as a single ingredient, research findings back up its use as a complement to caffeine to induce alertness and promote thermogenesis. However, one must maintain the dosage of guarana within the recommended amounts of less than 400 milligrams caffeine or less than 1000 milligrams of guarana per day. Also, refrain from mixing it with ephedrine, otherwise you might risk fatally irregular heartbeats when working out.
Also known as cola nut, kola is a natural stimulant used to clear fatigue symptoms and boost energy. Experts consider it safe for regular use in supplemental forms. Energy blends that list kola extract as a standardized ingredient contain up to 20 percent caffeine, while some may have 10 percent.
Kola nut is a natural source of theobromine, which boosts vasodilation of the blood vessels. As such, this caffeine source not only promotes better concentration while at the gym, but it also helps increase oxygen supply to muscles.
Consumers ingest yerba mate as a tea to provide similar cognitive benefits. It blocks adenosine receptors responsible for tiredness and sleeplessness, therefore increasing energy and improving mood. Fitness enthusiasts propose yerba mate for increased focus during training due to its psychoactive properties. Since yerba mate contains polyphenols like caffeic acid, their antioxidant qualities can shield muscles against stress-causing free radicals.
Acetyl L Carnitine (ALCAR)
You’re probably familiar with l-carnitine, a frequently-used pre-workout supplement. Well, acetyl l-carnitine (ALCAR) sits right next to it. ALCAR is a form of l-carnitine that is primarily responsible for the transportation of fat into mitochondria to provide pockets of energy through oxidation. This, in turn, helps reduce muscle damage and soreness, even with increased exercises.
Likewise, ALCAR aids in burning stored fat. By targeting complete fat burning, it makes it a perfect fit for bodybuilders who want to muscle up and lean out. Enough acetyl l-carnitine supplementation results in the burning or protein as well. These extended periods of continuous energy supply delay muscle fatigue and ensure you reach peak performance when training.
ALCAR can also easily penetrate the blood-brain barrier and enhance neurotransmission. More testosterone hormone can attach to receptors, thereby stimulating muscle growth and strength. As the brain produces more energy, oxidative stress levels dissipate. This creates room for cognitive responses such as alertness which help you during gym sessions.
Another powerful molecule ingredient many are unfamiliar with is r-lipoic acid. It’s the natural form of alpha-lipoic acid (which helps ramp up mitochondrial energy contribution in cells). R-lipoic acid has a unique characteristic: it is soluble both in water and fat.
Supplements that contain this premier antioxidant readily neutralize free radicals. Vigorous exercise induces oxidative damage. R-lipoic acid helps control this by synthesizing protein, therefore shortening exercise recovery time.
Another great benefit of r-lipoic acid is the positive impact it has on glucose and insulin metabolism. By maximizing the body’s glucose response, r-lipoic acid transports more energy sources to the muscle tissue. Meanwhile, the body releases insulin as a transport system for glucose and other nutrients to enter cells. As you pump your muscles, protein synthesis occurs to counter muscle breakdown. Muscle cells absorb these protein building blocks (or rather amino acids) by way of an enhanced and insulin-rendered channel system..
As you work out, you’re going to need more B Vitamins (which you can find in many leading multivitamins). Why? These micronutrients assist in energy metabolism. B Vitamins comprise eight distinct vitamins whose deficiencies have links to fatigue and mental problems. Regular exercising drains the supply of B vitamins in the body faster. Likewise, going low on meat and dairy products in an effort to maintain a healthy diet might cost you the chance of getting enough of B Vitamins.
So, you need to get B Vitamins to their normal levels in the body by taking energy supplements. This, in turn, will help take your workouts to the next level. More specifically, vitamin B2 (riboflavin) is responsible for breaking down all food sources into glucose, amino acids, and fatty acids to provide the body with fuel. However, vitamin B6 is beneficial in muscle contraction and stimulation of serotonin and melatonin hormones’ production for improved mood and sleep. Finally, vitamin B12 is essential in the repair and production of new cells and muscles.
People have revered ginseng for its invigorating properties for thousands of years. The secret: ginseng is a legendary energizer owing to its high content of ginsenosides . These active compounds contribute to ginseng’s ability to fire up cognitive function. Increased mental performance ensures you’re clear-headed and ready for an intense workout. Ginseng also boosts antioxidant activity by countering the negative effect of fatigue while increasing energy and endurance.
When it comes to resisting muscular stress, Rhodiola rosea is up to the task. The reputable Russian herb regulates the endocrine system to keep everything in balance and keep fatigue at bay.
Aside from evidence of rhodiola’s desirable effects on mental performance, its active ingredients (rosavins and salidrosides) help the body adapt to stress by limiting the symptoms of fatigue. Athletes can trust rhodiola supplements to support greater performance in training and sports.
What to Avoid in Energy Supplements for Working Out
A word of caution: many products flood the online supplement market, but offer little information regarding potential side effects that could impact negatively on long-term health. Watch out for the ones we listed here:
- Harmful and artificial ingredients: Bodybuilding supplement manufacturers disregard or show little concern for the downside of artificial food colorings and other fillers. Stick to supplements that have natural ingredients and resist disguised sweeteners and flavors. Among these are FD&C Red No. 40, caramel color, sucralose, Dimethylamylamine (DMM), and synephrine. In some instances, experts have linked them to high blood pressure.
- Overstimulation: Jitters are common for workout newbies. If you don’t use them in proper amounts, caffeine and other energy-boosting additives like yohimbe stimulate the central nervous system excessively. The result: uncomfortable tingly sensation, sleeplessness, and rapid increase of heart rate. In extreme cases, individuals have experienced panic and cardiovascular issues. When in doubt, start with half the recommended serving. Better yet, talk to your doctor about the right amount of caffeine you should consume for optimum results.
How Best 5 Supplements Rates and Ranks the Best Energy Supplements for Working Out
For general information on purchasing high-quality supplements, please check out the Best 5 How to Buy a Good Supplement guide. In terms of the best workout supplements for energy in particular, here are the criteria we used in our ratings:
- Combinations: Synergistic working of components deliver the best possible results.
- Healthy: The best workout energy supplements are incredible for long-term physical and mental health.
- Quality: Premium ingredient and delivery forms offer superior energy boost.
- Research: Human studies back workout energy supplements that are safe and beneficial.
- Service: An energy supplement is worth it when accompanied by excellent customer service.
- Value: We are concerned about workout formulas that give a fast energy return on your investment.
In this Best Workout Energy Supplements guide, we are also interested in manufacturers who have a good reputation and online presence. These companies are most likely to stand behind their products.
Best Energy Supplements for Working Out
#1: Performance Lab Energy
The most innovative enhancer of exercise performance, Performance Lab Energy enhances metabolism which targets mitochondrial and cellular energy for optimum performance of the body and brain. If you have second thoughts about caffeine, then this stimulant-free formulation supports daily vitality with no crash. While it fires up the brain, it also maintains the body’s healthy composition of maximum muscle hydration, increased nitric oxide levels, and muscle pumps.
Performance Lab Energy Summary
|Ingredients: Acetyl-L-Carnitine 750 mg, R-Lipoic Acid (as Microencapsulated Bio-Enhanced®) 150 mg, Coenzyme Q10 (as MicroActive® Q10) 100 mg, PQQ (as BioPQQ®) 10 mg, Black Pepper Extract (as BioPerine®) 2.5 mg.|
|Clean Label: Yes. Performance Lab Energy has no synthetic ingredients.|
|Advanced Delivery: Yes. Vegan Plantcaps® which improve bioavailability for better overall results.
Stimulant-Free: Yes. Caffeine-free.
|Price: $50 for one box (60 Plantcaps; 30 servings).|
|Any Deals? Yes. $95 for two boxes, $135 for three boxes.|
|Service: 24/7 customer support, get a reply in 30 minutes, 30-day money-back guarantee.|
|Official Website: https://www.performancelab.com/supplements/energy/|
#2: NOW Sports Energy Extreme
NOW Sports Energy Extreme provides extended benefits of 22 different nutrients to promote sustained energy production. The manufacturer complements this product’s B Vitamin lineup with are with chromium and magnesium as the essential energy deliveries in the cell. In addition, the supplement blends herbal adaptogens that enable the body to cope with intense activity. You’re sure to increase your vigor and focus in your training with natural NOW Sports Energy Extreme’s caffeine formulation (which also supports thermogenesis).
Full ingredient list: Thiamin (Vitamin B-1 from Thiamin HCl) 10 mg, Riboflavin (Vitamin B-2) 10 mg, Vitamin B-3 (as Niacinamide) 20 mg, Vitamin B-6 (from Pyridoxine HCl) 10 mg, Folate (as Folic Acid) 400 mcg, Vitamin B-12 (as Methylcobalamin) 1,000 mcg, Pantothenic Acid (from Calcium Pantothenate) 20 mg, Iodine (from Potassium Iodide) 150 mcg, Magnesium (from Magnesium Malate) 15 mg, Chromium (from Chromium Chelavite®) 200 mcg, Natural Caffeine Powder 100 mg, Guarana Extract (Seed) 80 mg, Green Tea Extract (Leaf) 50 mg, Yerba Mate Extract (Leaf) 50 mg, Rhodiola Extract (Rhodiola rosea) 50 mg, Eleuthero Root 50 mg, Panax Ginseng Root 50 mg, Taurine (Free-Form) 250 mg, L-Tyrosine (Free-Form) 250 mg, L-Carnitine (Carnipure™) 250 mg, L-Citrulline (Free-Form) 100 mg, CoQ10 (Coenzyme Q10) 30 mg.
NOW Sports Energy Extreme Summary
|Clean Label: Yes. But not vegan.|
|Advanced Delivery: No. Only plain capsule available.|
|Stimulant-Free: No. Contains caffeine.|
|Price: $16.07 on Amazon.|
|Any Deals? No.|
|Service: The manufacturer doesn’t sell NOW Sports Extreme Energy directly from its official website, so customer service depends on the retailer.|
|Official Website: https://www.nowfoods.com/sports-nutrition/sports-energy-extreme-capsules|
|Read our in-depth NOW Sports Energy Extreme review|
#3: MHP Super Caffeine +
Though relatively new in the market, MHP Super Caffeine + is already establishing itself as a go-to workout energy supplement. Generous amounts of rhodiola, vitamins, and green tea feature potent doses of intensely-energizing mood boosts. Caffeine is arguably the perfect energy choice for pre-workout and pick-up performance needs. Observing the daily recommended portions of caffeine can steer you past the jittery and sleeplessness effects to powerful and peak performances (which the four B vitamins in the formula enhance). If you’re looking to torch some fat to achieve that desirable look, caffeine provides that benefit, too. It can only be fair to say that so far, MHP Super Caffeine + has lived up to the expectation as an energy booster and pre-workout supplement.
Full ingredient list: Niacin (as Niacinamide) 4 mg, Vitamin B6 (as Pyridoxine HCl) 1.7 mg, Folate 166.67 mcg (100 mcg Folic Acid), Vitamin B12 (as Cyanocobalamin) 2.4 mcg, Caffeine Anhydrous 100 mg, Rhodiola Root Powder (Rhodiola rosea) 100 mg, Tyrosine 100 mg, D-Ribose 100 mg, Green Tea Leaf Extract (50% Caffeine) 60 mg, Guarana Seed Extract (40% Caffeine) 50 mg.
MHP Super Caffeine + Summary
|Clean Label: Yes. MHP Super Caffeine + has no shady proprietary blends.|
|Advanced Delivery: No. Only plain capsule available.|
|Stimulant-Free: No. Contains 100 milligrams of caffeine anhydrous.|
|Price: $13.99 for 30-capsule bottle (30-Day Supply).|
|Any Deals? Yes. Free shipping on orders over $50.|
|Service: 24/7 customer support.|
|Official Website: https://mhpstrong.com/product/super-caffeine/|
|Read our in-depth MHP Super Caffeine review|
#4: Olympian Labs Olympian Energy
Olympian Energy by Olympian Labs, Inc. is not an ordinary energy supplement. Why? It’s a specialty formula with a combination of herbs and B-Vitamins for healthy energy and improved cognition. B vitamins ramp up energy levels to take you through the entire stressful exercise. On the other hand, herbs such as guarana and kola nut speed up metabolism (which helps improve blood circulation, oxygen, nutrient delivery to muscles). Therefore, this fortified combo supports quick muscle recovery, mental alertness, and sustainable stamina. It doesn’t stop there: the supplement features the rare Siberian and Korean ginsengs (the former is the secret behind Russian athletes’ excellent athletic performance in the Olympics).
Full ingredient list: Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) 4 mg, Niacin B3 35 mg, Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine HCL) 4 mg, Vitamin B12 (Methylcobalamin) 12 mcg, Eleutherococcus senticosus (root) 200 mg, Gotu Kola 4:1 (Centella asiatica) 200 mg, Guarana 22% (Paullinia cupana) 200 mg, Kola Nut (Cola nitida) 200 mg, Korean Ginseng 6% Ginsenosides 200 mg, Cayenne (Capsicum annum) 20 mg, Parsley (Petroselinum crispum) 10 mg.
Olympian Labs Olympian Energy Summary
|Clean Label: Yes. Olympian Labs Olympian Energy has no shady proprietary blends.|
|Advanced Delivery: No. Only plain capsule available.|
|Stimulant-Free: No. Fifty milligrams of caffeine per serving.|
|Price: $21.37 for vegetable capsule bottle (50-Day Supply).|
|Any Deals? No.|
|Service: 24/7 customer support.|
|Official Website: https://olympianlabs.com/olympian-energy.html|
|Read our in-depth Olympian Labs Olympian Energy review|
#5: VPX Bang Energy Drink
According to the manufacturers, VPX Bang Energy Drink will surpass customers’ expectations. No wonder this energy drink contains intense caffeine concentrations to meet every bodybuilder needs. Coupled with the advantage of body and mind stimulation, VPX Bang unveils pleasant characteristics of amino acids, creatine, and CoQ10 to lower oxidative stress and allow growth of muscles. The zero-calorie Purple Haze flavor has won the hearts of people who are watching their weight.
Full ingredient list: Carbonated Water, Citric Acid Anhydrous, Natural And Artificial Flavors, Caffeine Anhydrous, Sodium Benzoate (Preserves Freshness), Potassium Citrate Monohydrate, Sucralean® Brand Sucralose, L-Leucine, Potassium Phosphate Dibasic, Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid), Calcium Chloride, Acesulfame Potassium, Potassium Sorbate (Preserves Freshness), Calcium Disodium EDTA, Magnesium Chloride, L-Isoleucine, L-Valine, Covalex (Covalently Bonded Creatine Glutamine Complex), Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide), CoQ10 (Coenzyme Q10), Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine Hydrochloride), And Vitamin B12 (Methylcobalamin).
VPX Bang Summary
|Clean Label: Yes. A few artificial flavors and preservatives, though.|
|Advanced Delivery: Yes. Delicious energy drink.|
|Stimulant-Free: No. Fifty milligrams of caffeine per serving.|
|Price: $39.99, 12-pack.|
|Any Deals? No. Unless third-party retailers give offers.|
|Service: 30-day money-back guarantee.|
|Official Website: https://vpxsports.com/bang/|
|Read our in-depth VPX BANG review|
Best Energy Supplements for Working Out Conclusion
Achieving peak performance while training is the most fulfilling experience. Ordinarily, it is extremely challenging to achieve this while exercising vigorously. . Conversely, workout energy supplements are superior in defying the odds. The next time you hit the gym, they will help ramp up your mental and physical performance consistently.
To fully understand which ingredients best suit your workout energy needs, read our full reviews of these energy supplements. It doesn’t end there: re-visit the Best 5 Supplements page for up-to-date information, rankings and more.