Lately I’ve been playing around with using three simple products as a pre-workout formulation, and noticed it has increased my energy and fat burning potential triple-fold! About 20 minutes before training, I take a caffeine pill, 3 grams of taurine (in my bcaa drink), and 1500 mg of l-carnitine. If you’re unfamiliar with these products or why use them, here’s the explanation:
- Caffeine: Caffeine has been used as an ergogenic aid for many years, but many people think there’s no difference between having a cup of coffee and actually taking a caffeine pill. But there is. Its the anhydrous form of coffee, in a caffeine pill (usually in 200 mg dose), that is most beneficial for improving performance and aiding in fat burning potential. Research recommends 3-5 mg/kg bodyweight for attaining the ergogenic effects. So if you weigh 150 lbs, you would take between 200-340 mg or 1 – 1 1/2 pills, but I find just one seems to do the trick. If you’re sensitive to coffee in general, then this is not a protocol you’d want to try. There are other things that can help boost your energy, like Siberian ginseng.
- l-carnitine: found in high amounts in red meat, followed by pork/seafood/chicken/dairy, to much lower degrees. It aids in high intensity exercise, boosts athletic performance, helps with recovery, & transports your fat into the cells to be used as fuel, which is the major perk of taking this before your workout. There are many more benefits, but these are the top three in regards to importance as an ergogenic aid and fat burner.
- Taurine: lessens the stress response which is great for when you’re training and putting your body through physical (and sometimes mental) stress, but also great for alleviating anxiety and stress in general, from day to day life; is required for l-carnitine to work at its best. Taurine initiates the fat burning process, but l-carnitine causes the fat to burn during exercise; boosts natural testosterone production; aids metabolism and lessens feelings of hunger.
Combined these three supplements can greatly impact your efforts in the gym. I like to use taurine in powder form and put that in my bcaa drink (amino acids that feed my muscles while training, they do not cause an insulin response despite tasting like juice!), and I take the caffeine and carnotite in pill form.
Try this out and let me know what you think! No need to buy those expensive pre-workout formulas when all you need sometimes is a simple mix.