Finding pre-workout supplements with l-leucine is about as rare as it gets. Well, Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE happens to be one of them. This virtuoso should help you achieve your pre-workout goals and a lot more. This review proves our point.
About Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is “a high-performing workout to help you get through your workout from start to finish,” per its official website. Formula notes:
- Six grams of l-citrulline per scoop. Powerful vasodilator for increased muscle pumps.
- Two grams of l-leucine per serving. The most anabolic amino acid.
- Inclusion of key adaptogens. Rhodiola rosea and ashwagandha extract will help increase mental focus.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE Supplement Facts (Fruit Fusion, 360 grams)
|Serving Size: About 1 Scoop (18 g)
Servings Per Container: 20
|Nutrient||Amount Per Serving||% Daily Value|
|Total Carbohydrate||2 g||1%*|
|Vitamin D (as Cholecalciferol)||20 mcg||100%|
|Thiamin (as Thiamin HCl)||1.8 mg||150%|
|Niacin (as Nicotinic Acid)||25 mg||156%|
|Vitamin B6 (as Pyridoxine HCl)||2.5 mg||147%|
|Vitamin B12 (as Cyanocobalamin)||7.5 mcg||313%|
|Pantothenic Acid (as D-Calcium Pantothenate)||11 mg||220%|
|Magnesium (as Magnesium Oxide)||230 mg||55%|
|Beta-Alanine (as CarnoSyn®)||3.2 g||**|
|Caffeine Anhydrous||300 mg||**|
|Rhodiola rosea L. Extract (root)||200 mg||**|
|Ashwagandha Extract (root)(KSM-66 ASHWAGANDHA®)||300 mg||**|
|Coffee Fruit Concentrate (NeuroFactor™)||100 mg||**|
|Trans-Resveratrol (ResVida®)||75 mg||**|
|Black Pepper Extract (fruit)(BioPerine®)||5 mg||**|
|N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine||1 g||**|
|Other Ingredients: Natural and Artificial Flavor, Citric Acid, Malic Acid, Calcium Silicate, Silicion Dioxide, Tartaric Acid, Sucralose, Red 40, Lecithin.|
|Directions: Mix 1 scoop with 5-6 fluid ounces of water and consume 15-30 minutes prior to workout. Shake well.|
Everything You Want In A Pre-Workout
One bodybuilding product which comes to mind is MusclePharm Wreckage. Its Intense Pump & Nutrient Absorption, Energy & Endurance, and Neuro Focus blends cover all the bases. This supplement will wreck lethargy any time of day.
Another one is Animal Fury, a pre-workout whose insane six grams of l-citrulline per scoop is sure to give you awesome muscle pumps. It may have several chinks, but it’s still a product worth trying.
Well, we’re eager to see if Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE will blow the competition away. Optimum Nutrition has an impressive supplement range (which includes the likes of Optimum Nutrition Performance Whey and Optimum Nutrition OPTI-MEN). We’re hoping it can continue its momentum.
The manufacturer dubs Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE as a “high-potency pre-workout” geared toward “Energy, Focus, Pump, and Endurance,” per its official website. These are everything you want in a pre-workout supplement. If a pre-workout delivers on all these fronts, the better.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE has 11 key ingredients. On average, pre-workouts have fewer components. It sure seems to us the folks at Optimum Nutrition want this product to be the most comprehensive of its kind.
First up are six grams of l-citrulline per 18-gram scoop. This non-essential amino acid is a precursor of the potent vasodilator, l-arginine. When you consume l-citrulline, you will improve your blood flow and nutrient uptake and increase your muscle pumps.
Six grams of l-citrulline per serving matches the serving size of Animal Fury, which is awesome. Think about it: a third of a scoop of Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is l-citrulline. You are sure to reap all of the benefits we mentioned.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE also has 3.2 grams of beta-alanine (as CarnoSyn) per serving. This naturally-occurring beta amino acid helps buffer muscle carnosine levels. When this happens, you’ll be able to delay the onset of exercise fatigue and increase your work capacity.
The good news: Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE will help you withstand the toughest workouts. We say this with confidence. The aforementioned MusclePharm Wreckage and Animal Fury each have two grams of beta-alanine per scoop. Optimum Nutrition has 1.2 grams more per serving. Think about it.
This product’s third component is 300 milligrams of caffeine anhydrous per scoop. Simply put, this is the pure, powdered version of caffeine. This is arguably the most popular pre-workout ingredient and stimulant. It has several impressive benefits:
- Increases energy levels
- Incinerates fat
- Improves physical performance
- Promotes healthy blood sugar levels
- Boosts liver function
- Keeps free radicals at bay
- Increases longevity
While these are good, caffeine is still a double-edged sword. It may cause a spike-crash effect, jitters, nervousness, and sleeplessness in some individuals.
Bear in mind Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE has 300 milligrams of caffeine per serving. This is equal to two to three cups of brewed coffee. Please consume at your own risk.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE’s fourth key ingredient is 200 milligrams of Rhodiola rosea leaf extract (root) per scoop. This is an adaptogen which fitness experts believe improves exercise performance and shortens recovery time.
Not only that, but Rhodiola rosea also helps ward off fatigue, boost heart health, improve well-being, increase antioxidant protection, quell anxiety, and protect muscle tissues. These are vital exercise benefits, if you ask us.
We say 200 milligrams per scoop will go a long way. We’re stoked Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE has has Rhodiola rosea.
Next up are 200 milligrams of l-theanine per serving. This is an amino acid and natural ingredient found in green tea. It helps quell anxiety and offset the stimulatory effects of caffeine.
On that note, we’re glad more pre-workout supplements (such as 4 Gauge) include l-theanine in their formulation. Why? Many customers gripe about pre-workouts which leave them wired well past bedtime. That’s a living nightmare. L-theanine helps put a stop to that. Two hundred milligrams per scoop should do the trick.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE’s sixth key ingredient is 300 milligrams of ashwagandha extract (root)(KSM-ASHWAGANDHA) per serving. This is an herbal supplement and adaptogen which helps enhance mood, increase aerobic endurance, keep soreness at bay, and ramp up strength.
This pre-workout supplement features KSM-ASHWAGANDHA, a highly-concentrated form of ashwagandha extract. The takeaway: you’ll reap the full benefits of this ingredient. We say that’s awesome.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE also has 100 milligrams of coffee fruit concentrate (NeuroFactor) per scoop. This “is an all-natural, patented product made from the whole fruit (including the bean) of the coffee plant, Coffea arabica,” per its official website.
NeuroFactor is the preserved and whole version of the coffee fruit. It is only this component which “goes beyond the bean and delivers support for naturally-declining neuroprotein levels in humans,” per the same source.
One type of neuroprotein is BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor). It helps produce and repair neurons (a cell which processes and transmits information) in the brain. Regular exercise and NeuroFactor consumption help ramp up your BDNF levels for better brain health.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is one of the few pre-workouts which has NeuroFactor. When you consume this ingredient, expect increased mental focus so you can conquer the toughest workouts. We’re stoked it’s in this pre-workout. Grab the opportunity.
The eighth key ingredient is 75 milligrams trans-resveratrol (ResVida) per scoop. Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant found naturally in red wine. Check out its health benefits:
- Ramps up energy levels
- Slows down the aging process
- Wards off inflammation
- Promotes healthy blood sugar levels
- Boosts heart health
- Keeps free radicals at bay
- Increases sperm production
These benefits are impressive, to say the least. What’s even more impressive is Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is one of the rare pre-workouts which has resveratrol. We say its inclusion was a stroke of genius. Kudos to the manufacturer.
This pre-workout also has five milligrams of black pepper extract (fruit)(BioPerine) per scoop. This ingredient helps improve nutrient bioavailability and absorption for better overall results. It’s an invaluable addition to any bodybuilding supplement.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE also has two grams of l-leucine per serving. This is the most anabolic amino acid which helps kickstart the muscle protein synthesis process.
On the other hand, to find leucine in a pre-workout supplement is amazing. Not only will you ramp up your energy levels, pumps, focus, and endurance, but you’ll also grow muscle mass with Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE.
This product’s final key ingredient is one gram of n-acetyl l-tyrosine per serving. Simply known as NALT, this ingredient is a combination of acetic acid and the amino acid l-tyrosine. It has several important benefits:
- Increases physical and mental energy levels
- Regulates thyroid function
- Quells anxiety and keeps stress levels in check
- Boosts memory
When you pair up NALT with NeuroFactor, you get a powerful one-two combination which helps improve your mental focus. We won’t be surprised one bit if you establish new personal records at the gym when you take Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE.
Not only that, but this pre-workout has impressive amounts of B vitamins, vitamin D, and magnesium. You won’t only achieve your pre-workout goals, you’ll also improve your long-term health.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE may not be a perfect product (it has several fillers), but it will live up to its billing. It’s one of the most impressive pre-workout supplements we’ve seen in a while. That’s saying something. Get yours and reap its benefits today.
Let’s check out the formula ingredients:
- Calories, 10: At a measly 10 calories per scoop, Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is a low-calorie pre-workout which won’t compromise your nutrition and fitness goals.
- Total carbohydrate, 2 g: Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is not a significant source of carbs at just one percent of the daily value. On that note, it should complement any low-carb nutrition plan perfectly.
- Vitamin D (as cholecalciferol), 20 mcg: A vitamin which helps strengthen bones, boost heart health, and keep free radicals at bay. A solid 100 percent of the daily value should go a long way.
- Thiamin (as thiamin HCl), 1.8 mg: Simply known as vitamin B1, this component helps ramp up energy levels and boost heart health. A solid 150 percent of the daily value should help you reap these two benefits.
- Niacin (as nicotinic acid), 25 mg: Vitamin B3 helps promote proper nerve function, regulate digestion, convert nutrients into energy, and promote healthy blood pressure and blood sugar levels. An impressive 156 percent of the daily value is a sure bet.
- Vitamin B6 (as pyridoxine HCl), 2.5 mg: This B vitamin helps keep homocysteine levels (a non-protein amino acid detrimental to heart health) in check for better cardiovascular function. One hundred forty-seven percent of the daily value should do the trick.
- Folate, 850 mcg: Also known as vitamin B9, this ingredient helps regulate hemoglobin levels, ward off free radicals, boost heart health, quell anxiety, and grow muscle mass. We say 213 percent of the daily value will help you reap these impressive benefits.
- Vitamin B12 (as cyanocobalamin), 7.5 mcg: Vitamin B12 helps ramp up energy levels and improve cardiovascular function. This is Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE’s most abundant B vitamin at a solid 313 percent of the daily value.
- Pantothenic acid (as d-calcium pantothenate), 11 mg: Simply known as vitamin B5, this ingredient helps keep stress levels in check, regulate the immune system, increase stamina, and improve cardiovascular function. An awesome 220 percent of the daily value should go a long way.
- Calcium, 40 mg: Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is not a significant source of calcium at a paltry three percent of the daily value (a value of five percent or less is low).
- Iron, 0.6 mg: This pre-workout supplement also isn’t a significant source of iron at just three percent of the daily value.
- Magnesium (as magnesium oxide), 230 mg: This versatile mineral helps increase energy and testosterone levels, quell anxiety, improve sleep quality, regulate digestion, and boost heart health.
- L-citrulline, 6 g: A non-essential amino acid which acts as a precursor of the powerful vasodilator, l-arginine. L-citrulline helps improve blood flow, facilitate nutrient uptake, increase muscle pumps, and promote healthy blood pressure levels. Six grams of l-citrulline per serving is one of the highest amounts among pre-workout supplements.
- Beta-alanine (as CarnoSyn), 3.2 g: This is a naturally-occurring beta amino acid which buffers muscle carnosine levels. The result: the abilities to delay the onset of exercise fatigue and increase work capacity. This much easily trumps the amounts of other leading pre-workout brands.
- Caffeine anhydrous, 300 mg: The pure, powdered form of caffeine which helps increase energy levels and fat loss, boost liver function, ward off free radicals, and regulate blood sugar levels. However, caffeine may also induce sleeplessness, nervousness, and palpitations. This much is roughly equal to two to three cups of brewed coffee.
- Rhodiola rosea L. extract (root), 200 mg: An adaptogen which helps improve exercise performance, shorten recovery time, keep fatigue at bay, improve cardiovascular function, ward off free radicals, induce relaxation, and protect muscle tissues.
- L-theanine, 200 mg: An amino acid and natural ingredient found in green tea which helps promote relaxation and neutralize the stimulatory effects of caffeine. L-theanine helps you reap the benefits of caffeine and minimize its side effects.
- Ashwagandha extract (root)(KSM-66 ASHWAGANDHA), 300 mg: Another adaptogen which helps enhance mood, ramp up cardiovascular endurance, ward off soreness, and increase strength.
- Coffee fruit concentrate (NeuroFactor), 100 mg: The preserved whole coffee fruit which helps increase neuroprotein levels for better brain health and increased mental focus.
- Trans-resveratrol (ResVida), 75 mg: A natural ingredient found in red wine and powerful antioxidant which helps keep free radicals at bay, increase energy levels, slow down the aging process, stifle inflammatory activity, regulate blood sugar levels, improve cardiovascular function, and ramp up sperm production.
- Black pepper extract (fruit)(BioPerine), 5 mg: Black pepper extract helps improve ingredient bioavailability for better overall results. It’s always a great inclusion in any bodybuilding supplement.
- L-leucine, 2 g: The most anabolic amino acid which helps kickstart the muscle protein synthesis process. Two grams per serving will make a huge difference in any pre-workout supplement.
- N-acetyl l-tyrosine, 1 g: Simply known as NALT, this is a compound which combines acetic acid and l-tyrosine. It helps ramp up physical and mental energy, regulate thyroid function, keep anxiety levels in check, and boost memory.
The manufacturer claims Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is a “high-potency pre-workout” and “a high-performing pre-workout to help you get through your workout from start to finish,” per its official website.
After a thorough analysis, we say those claims are legitimate. In fact, Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is one of the best and most impressive pre-workouts we’ve sized up recently. That’s saying a lot.
You can start with the solid B vitamin levels. In general, these help boost heart health and increase energy levels. None of Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE’s B vitamins are lower than 150 percent of the daily value. That’s impressive, to say the least.
These B vitamins are just the tip of the iceberg. When you throw in the other components, you get one of the most well-rounded pre-workouts on the market today.
You simply can’t go wrong with ample amounts of l-citrulline, beta-alanine, Rhodiola rosea, l-theanine, ashwagandha extract, trans-resvertarol, l-leucine, and n-acetyl l-tyrosine.
These will help increase your muscle pumps, muscle mass, and work capacity; improve exercise performance, quell anxiety, increase antioxidant protection, ramp up strength, and boost cardiovascular function, among other things.
It bears repeating: Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE has one of the highest amounts of l-citrulline and beta-alanine among pre-workout supplements. We’re talking about time-tested bodybuilding ingredients here. We’re positive they’ll help you conquer your workouts.
The inclusion of two grams of l-leucine per scoop was a stroke of genius. Like we said, a pre-workout which has l-leucine is rare. Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE takes the high road. Not only will you achieve your pre-workout goals, but you’ll also ramp up muscle mass.
We said it before, we’ll say it again: smart pre-workout formulations cover the physical and mental aspects. With the key inclusions of Rhodiola rosea, ashwagandha extract, and n-acetyl l-tyrosine, Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE covers both, and then some.
This pre-workout’s smart formulation and precise ingredient dosages will also make a tremendous impact on your long-term health. The inclusion of trans-resveratrol (a powerful antioxidant) serves as hard evidence.
Customers have also been raving about this pre-workout – they swear by it. They claim they experience an incredible surge of energy without the crash. We’ll take that any time of day.
We also love the manufacturer’s transparency – it reveals all of the ingredient amounts. You won’t find any shady proprietary blends here. That is awesome.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is a tremendous pre-workout supplement, but it has a few chinks. The first is the inclusion of fillers such as sucralose and FD&C Red No. 40. It would’ve been better if the manufacturer did away with those.
This product also has a combined 400 milligrams of caffeine from caffeine anhydrous and coffee fruit concentrate (equal to three to four cups of brewed coffee). This much may induce sleeplessness, jitters and a spike-crash effect in some consumers.
Finally, customers have given this product’s taste mixed results. We say it’s good. It’s not the best we’ve tried, but it’ll do.
All in all, Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is a top-notch supplement which covers all the pre-workout bases. You’ll feel an increase in physical and mental energy, for sure. Your workouts will never be the same. Buy it, and you’ll see what we mean.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE Benefits
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE helps increase energy levels, muscle pumps, and strength. It also helps ramp up mental energy with the inclusion of key adaptogens Rhodiola rosea and ashwagandha extract. Key ingredients such as magnesium, B vitamins, and trans-resveratrol help boost long-term health.
Who Takes It?
The manufacturer intended Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE for individuals who are at least 18 years of age who want to increase energy levels, focus, and muscle pumps; improve exercise performance, and boost their long-term health.
Any Side Effects?
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE has 156 percent of the daily value of vitamin B3 (niacin), an ingredient which may cause a “niacin flush” (a burning or tingling sensation in the face and chest regions).
This pre-workout’s beta-alanine component may also produce the so-called “beta-alanine itch,” a tingling and itching sensation in the shoulders, arms, and neck.
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE also has a total of 400 milligrams of caffeine (from caffeine anhydrous and coffee fruit concentrate), a component which may cause sleeplessness, jitters, and palpitations in some individuals.
This supplement also contains the fillers sucralose (an artificial sweetener which may increase weight gain) and FD&C Red No. 40 (an artificial food coloring which experts have linked to carcinogenicity).
If these, or any other ingredient, make you feel doubtful, please consult your physician before buying Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE.
The manufacturer also issues a warning:
Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE Review Summary
- Impressive ingredients. Quite simply, one of the most impressive pre-workout formulas in recent memory.
- B vitamins. Help increase energy levels and boost heart health.
- Six grams of l-citrulline per scoop. Optimal amount for pre-workout supplements.
- Beta-alanine. This supplement’s 3.2 grams per scoop easily trumps the beta-alanine amount of competitors.
- Two grams of l-leucine per serving. Rare pre-workout which has l-leucine, the most anabolic amino acid.
- Key adaptogens. Rhodiola rosea and ashwagandha extract help boost mental energy and increase focus.
- Long-term health. Vitamin D, magnesium, and trans-resveratrol inclusions help boost long-term health.
- Great reputation. Customers have given this product high marks online.
- Excellent transparency. Manufacturer divulges all of the ingredient amounts. Thumbs up.
- Four flavors. Comes in Fruit Fusion, Grape Candy, Juicy Watermelon, and Strawberry Burst varieties. You choose.
- Fillers. Contains sucralose (a.k.a. Splenda) and FD&C Red No. 40. Thumbs down.
- Caffeine content. Has a combined 400 milligrams of caffeine per serving – a double-edged sword.
- Taste. Consumers have given its taste mixed reviews.
Pricing & Where to Buy
- 1 360-gram Container (20-Day Supply): $32.99
- Available online and in retail
Final Word on Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE
It sure seems to us the manufacturer has come up with another top-notch bodybuilding supplement in Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE. Long story short, it covers just about all the pre-workout bases. Expect to conquer your workouts at the gym, and then some.
While Optimum Nutrition PRO PRE is by no means a perfect supplement, it still is one of the better pre-workouts on the market. We recommend you buy it and reap its many benefits.