What Are The Best Crossfitter
Pre-Workouts? 
Top 5 Reviews to CRUSH The WOD

It doesn’t matter if you are new to CrossFit workouts or if you are an elite CrossFit athlete...

The intensity of the workouts is always sky-high and requires non-stop strength and endurance to perform to your highest abilities.

woman using battle ropes in crossfit box

But on the flip side, you probably wake up with barely enough drive to hit the gym or fatigue easily just halfway through the WOD (Workout of the Day).

Not to worry.

One great way to make sure that you’re always ready to hit the box is to find the best pre-workout supplement for CrossFit. 

There are lots of options to pick from to give you that added boost - almost too many to choose from.

You are in luck.

To make things easier for you, we’ve reviewed them all and made a list of the best pre-workout drinks for CrossFit.

Image

Model

Features

Net Wt

Price

Rating

Musclepharm Creatine

5 grams of Creatine Monohydrate per serving

300g

$

Primaforce Citrulline Malate Powder

L-Citrulline DL-Malate

200g

$$

Optimum Nutrition Amino Energy with Green Tea and Green Coffee Extract

5 Grams of Free Form Amino Acids per serving

585g

$$$$

Cellucor C4 Pre Workout Supplements with Creatine, Nitric Oxide, Beta Alanine and Energy

NO3-T Creatine Nitrate

195g

$$$

Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Pre-Workout with Creatine, Beta-Alanine, and Caffeine for Energy

L-Citrulline Malate

300g

$$$

Key Questions to Consider

Why Should You Consider A CrossFit Pre-Workout?

You are probably still thinking twice about having a pre-WOD drink before hitting the box.

This can be as a result of things you’ve heard (usually misconceptions) about using pre-workout supps for a high-intensity program like CrossFit.

More on that later...

Why not know the facts before you use a pre-workout supplement first?

Taking a single dose before a workout can give you the energy, resistance, and focus needed to complete the intense workouts at the box.

Not just that, with the aid of stimulants like caffeine, you get that extra boost to hit the gym early in the morning or after a long day at work.

Now, to clear your mind...

Is It Bad To Do CrossFit Using A Pre-Workout?

It is definitely not a bad thing to use a pre-workout for CrossFit.

But there are times where you just have to cautious about the type of supplements you use so you don’t become dependent on them - and make sure to use the correct one depending on what type of training you are doing

Here are 3 reasons why pre-workouts can have ill effects:

  1. Proprietary Ingredients: Some may contain ingredients that might cause dehydration or are outright banned. The latter is especially important if you are an elite athlete.
  2. Caffeine Content: You can become dependent on supplements if not taken properly or at the right time of day. Be aware of high caffeine content and avoid consuming caffeine later in the day. Also, you can quickly build a caffeine tolerance which will lead you to take more quantity to see the same effects in the long run.
  3. Fast Heart Rate: Your heart rate can become very fast, a bit too fast when you use these supplements for some exercises. It is best used with strength workouts and unless it is needed for cardio.

Guidelines for Taking Pre-Workout Supplements for CrossFit

Once you’ve decided to try out pre-workout supplements, you’ll need to have these tips at the back of your mind.

#1 Use Caffeinated Pre-Workout Supplements for Morning Workouts

No doubt, the caffeine content in most pre-workouts will do its job and give you that extra energy you need in the gym.

But, the “boost effect” of caffeine can last for up to 6 hours depending on age, weight, and sensitivity to caffeine. 

Its negative effects on sleep can lead to accumulated fatigue over time, so you will want to stick with stim-free options if you workout later in the day.

#2 Don’t Mix & Match Your Drinks

Mixing pre-workouts with other caffeinated beverages is unnecessary and dangerous.

The most common and least harmful effects are probably nausea and having jitters. But it could get much worse...

So, stick to either a pre-workout OR coffee – not both at the same time.

cup of coffee on a saucer

#3 Helps With Muscle Gain, Not Weight Loss

Most pre-workout supplements contain creatine, in addition to other ingredients that fuel muscle gain more so than fat loss.

So if your goal is to maximize fat burning, avoid drinks with ingredients intended to not only give you energy but also to help you build mass.

#4 Avoid Pre-Workout Supps with Added Sugar & Shoddy Ingredients

Unfortunately, this means you have to avoid a lot of products on the market to stay out of trouble.

But we have compiled a list of the best pre-workout for crossfitters to ease you the stress of weeding out tons of products with unnatural, artificial ingredients and fillers.

Key Ingredients To Look For & Their Purpose

Now that you have a good grasp of using pre-workouts for CrossFit and how to avoid any negative effects, I’ll give you a short overview of top ingredients to keep an eye out for.

These ingredients will help you choose the right supplement that meets your needs.

Creatine

A creatine supplement provides you with strength and anaerobic power to perform both weightlifting and resistance workouts.

It enhances performance by restoring ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) during high-intensity programs.

What is Creatine

Caffeine

As previously mentioned, it is an almost inevitable component of pre-workout supplement whether you like it or not.

This stimulant affects the neuromuscular system to improve strength and alertness at the gym, as well as focus.

Beta-Alanine

If you quickly get sore muscles and fatigue easily from the intensity of WODs, this can be as a result of a build-up of hydrogen ions.

This is where beta-alanine comes in.

It helps your body store carnosine which in turn gets rid of the extra hydrogen ions. This increases your training volume.

BCAAs

Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are the guys that help you recover quickly after tearing up your muscles at the gym.

Leucine is the most dominant of the three types and uses protein synthesis to aid muscle gain, reduce soreness and fatigue.

Top 5 Pre-WOD Supplements

Effective workouts are possible without a supplement, but adding one of the best pre-workouts for Crossfit to your routine before working out is a great way to attain the following benefits:

  • Up your strength
  • Protect your muscles from damage
  • Reduce fatigue to recover faster
  • Grow bigger & stronger muscles
  • Get more done during your workout!

All it takes is the right supplement.

There are so many different choices on the market, and I know that it can be hard to figure out which one is right to use as the best pre-workout supplement.

1. Musclepharm Creatine

Musclepharm Creatine is the first pre workout supplement to take into consideration for your CrossFit needs today.

Musclepharm Creatine

This supplement has many active ingredients that will improve your performance levels, but the main thing it provides for you is creatine, which can give you the explosive energy that you need to get through a tough crossfit day. 

Creatine has been a controversial ingredient in the past, but CrossFit athletes regularly use creatine to see the performance that they know they are capable of achieving.

This product is easy to use at is has no taste, and you’ll see the effects it has on building lean muscle for you body in no time. I did find that this product caused some bloat in the first week of use but have not had this problem since then.

2. Primaforce Citrulline Malate Powder

Primaforce Citrulline Malate Powder

Next up is the Primaforce Citrulline Malate Powder. Products with Citrulline malate are meant to be used for versatile training purposes, which matches up great with the needs of any crossfit athlete.

This supplement helps your body keep up the energy in a slow, maintained way that is more beneficial than caffeine based boosts for someone who needs to keep working out with any crashing. It also helps your body process nutrients more effectively while under high stress so that your muscles do not become deprived during a workout.

The main reasons to use a citrulline malate supplement are to fight off any chance of exercise fatigue while also increasing workout endurance, and this product definitely achieves that!

3. Optimum Nutrition Amino Energy with Green Tea and Green Coffee Extract

Optimum Nutrition Amino Energy with Green Tea and Green Coffee Extract

Optimum Nutrition Amino Energy with Green Tea and Green Coffee Extract is another one of the best pre workouts for crossfit athletes who want to work out long and strong.

This type of pre workout supplement is made to boost three aspects of your workout:

  • Your Focus

  • Your Energy

  • Your Strength Levels

Some ingredients worth mentioning include citrulline malate, BCAAs, beta alanine, taurine, boron, vitamin d3, zinc.

With these nutrients backing you, you’ll be able to show off more power and strength during your crossfit workouts than ever before. Bonus: there are no harmful additives in this supplement!

4. Cellucor C4 Pre Workout Supplements with Creatine, Nitric Oxide, Beta Alanine and Energy

Cellucor C4 Pre Workout Supplements with Creatine, Nitric Oxide, Beta Alanine and Energy

Another contender for the title of best crossfit pre workout supplement is the Cellucor C4 Pre Workout Supplements with Creatine, Nitric Oxide, Beta Alanine and Energy supplement.

This is easily one of the most popular supplements on the market, and crossfitters are some of the most energetic buyers of C4’s products.

While this product does contain some caffeine, it’s a moderate dosage that does a great job of boosting your energy level without causing jittery feelings or a crash later in your workout. What I love about this preworkout is that it gives you an all around performance boost for energy, motivation, and endurance, which is a necessity when you are a crossfit athlete.

5. Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Pre-Workout with Creatine, Beta-Alanine, and Caffeine for Energy

Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Pre-Workout with Creatine, Beta-Alanine, and Caffeine for Energy

The final option I’ll be briefly reviewing today is the Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Pre-Workout with Creatine, Beta-Alanine, and Caffeine for Energy.

This supplement provides three important nutrients for your workout: creatine, beta-alanine, and caffeine. All three of these will give you a boost while also helping your muscles work more efficiently without causing any damage.

Crossfitters need these supplements to have their best workout ever, and the Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard can give you the best boost around.

Choose The Right One For YOU

No matter which supplement you decide to try from this list, you’re sure to see a marked difference in your performance the next time you start a CrossFit workout.

To give you that extra push to complete your WOD at the top, we recommend using MusclePharm Creatine. It’s great for both athletes and non-athletes and doesn’t get you bloated like most products on the market.

Remember that even the best pre-workout for CrossFit will not give you the result you desire if you don’t work out efficiently or give your muscles proper recovery time. While supplements can up endurance and lower recovery times, you still need to be smart during your workout.

We know the ladies out there are crazy about CrossFit too, which is why we've compiled the top picks specifically tailored for women right here on this page at Health Listed.

Which type of supplement do you prefer before doing CrossFit? Let me know in the comments if you like these supplements as much as I do, and get to your workout with the extra energy you’ve been looking for!

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