Best pre workouts 2018 – Your ultimate guide to the top supplements

We rate the best pre workout supplements available to you right now. We bring you everything you need to know in our definitive list of the most effective products

Best Pre Workout supplements
Our pick of the best pre workout supplements on the market Photo: The Sport Review

There are so many health and fitness supplements on sale these days that sometimes it can be easy to forget about the most important part of getting into the shape of your life: hitting the gym hard. And that’s where the best pre workout comes into play.

UPDATE: We’ve updated this guide with the latest information and products for 2018. 4 Gauge is currently our top-rated pre workout supplement on the market right now. We’ll be reviewing and updating this article with the very latest information throughout 2018.

You won’t be able to get the ripped, toned physique you’ve always wanted unless you’re training well, regularly and consistently.

A quality pre workout supplement will help you to get the very best out of your time at the gym.

You don’t need to waste your time doing the research as our team of experts has done all of the hard work for you.

We’ve examined the studies into the latest ingredients, check out real customer reviews and tried vast numbers of supplements to find the best pre workouts in the UK and worldwide on the market right now.

Current Top Rated Pre Workout Supplements

Rating Summary Website
4 Gauge 4 Gauge ★★★★★ • Best Formula • Strong Reviews • Natural Ingredients Buy Now
Lean Pre Workout PreSeries Lean Pre Workout ★★★★☆ • Good Formula • Strong Reviews • Made for Cutting Buy Now
Elevate Elevate ★★★☆☆ • Decent Formula • Cheaper Product • UK/Europe Only Buy Now
Mypre 2.0 Mypre 2.0 ★★★☆☆ • Popular Product • High Stimulants • Mixed Reviews Buy Now
Thermopro Thermopro ★★★☆☆ • Burns Fat • Capsule Form • UK/Europe Only Buy Now

Why pre workouts?

Those of us who train regularly know all too well about the big difference between the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ days you can have at the gym.

We’ve all had those workouts which seem to fly by. You were in the zone from start to finish and felt like you could keep going forever. You literally didn’t want to leave the gym.

In contrast, we’ve all experienced those ‘off days’. Sessions where you’re physically present but seem to find yourself just going through the motions. You have to keep telling yourself to focus on each set. Simply put, you’re just not in the game.

pre workout energy

A pre workout will banish fatigue and get you firing in the gym Photo: Adobe Stock

The purpose of the best pre workouts is to make sure that those great sessions at the gym become the norm for you.

Think about it like this, using a pre workout supplement is like taking out a small insurance policy to guarantee you’ll be getting the best out of your session – no matter how you’re feeling before the gym.

What we looked for…

There’s a lot of nonsense out there when it comes to health and fitness supplements these days, so we’ll spare you the fluff.

Here’s exactly what we looked for when picking the best supplements:

• Effectiveness – Does the supplement actually do what it claims to? We turned away from the marketing hype and instead took a look at real customer reviews on social media, blogs and review websites.

• Safety and side effects – We only considered products which don’t contain any harmful or risky ingredients. We researched the potentially risky ingredients found in some pre workout supplements and we didn’t include any products which overdo it on stimulants such as caffeine.

We also checked to see if any customers had reported serious side-effects while taking the products, and made sure that none of them could cause issues such as jitters or heart palpitations.

• Company reputation – Does the manufacturer have a positive reputation in the health and fitness industry? We looked into the companies behind the products and researched the other supplemtns they offer to see if they are effective, as well as if they treat customers fairly or not.

• Multi-action ingredients – The best pre workouts do more than just give you a boost of energy. They:

• Improve focus – You’ll feel in the zone
• Boost energy – Without too many stimulants
• Build muscle, burn fat – Train harder, get better results
• Increase motivation – Make every gym session count

If a pre workout supplement is actually going to work, you’ll need to make sure that you’re giving yourself the best chance of success by addressing the issue from multiple angles.

We only chose products that combined a variety of ingredients to ensure maximum effectiveness.

The best pre workout supplements

We’ve got a new, separate guide to the best pre workouts for women on sale right now.

So, with the introductions out of the way, let’s get right down to it and bring you our definitive list of the best pre workouts on sale in the UK, USA and worldwide right now:

1) 4 Gauge

Product website: www.4gauge.com

4 gauge

This is our top pick for the best pre workout supplement currently on sale.

4 Gauge is made by specialist supplement company Roar Ambition. If you’ve done any research for yourself, you’ve probably already come across 4 Gauge, and we seemed to find references to it everywhere while doing out research.

We constantly found it rated as the number one pre workout supplement on countless review websites so we did some digging to find out just why 4 Gauge is so popular.

The main points

• Turbo-charge your workouts – Make every gym session count.

• Boost your energy levels, safely – Many pre workouts are packed full of too much caffeine. 4 Gauge contains a sensible 150mg per serving and doesn’t contain any artificial sweeteners.

• Safe, effective, legal – It doesn’t contain any dodgy or potentially harmful ingredients. It’s made from a 100% natural formula and is completely safe.

• Fully dosed serving – 4 Gauge contains our pick of the best pre workout ingredients in the correct doses.

The ingredients

We found that 4 Gauge contains the best selection of our favorite pre workout ingredients. The ones you need to know about are:

• Caffeine Anhydrous – One of the purest forms of caffeine, 4 Gauge contains 150mg per serving, to give you the energy boost you need without causing side effects such as jitters.

• L-Theanine – An amino acid found in tea leaves which combines with caffeine to give you a sense of calm and focus during your workouts.

• Creatine Monohydrate – You already know about creatine’s muscle-building benefits, but it’s included in 4 Gauge because it’s known to combat fatigue and improve hydration.

• Red Beet – Extract from beetroot, Red Beet increases Nitric Oxide levels, which dilates the blood vessels and improves muscle pumps.

Here is the full list of ingredients in 4 Gauge, together with their individual doses:

4 gauge ingredients

As you can see for yourself, 4 Gauge contains a great selection of the top pre workout ingredients such as Rhodiola Rosea, L-Carnitine and Coconut Water Powder.

Six grams of L-Citrulline DL-Malate per serving also helps to increase blood flow and muscle pumps by boosting your body’s Nitric Oxide levels.

What about artificial sweeteners?

As we mentioned above, unlike so many pre workout supplements on sale these days, 4 Gauge doesn’t contain any artificial sweeteners such as Sucralose. Instead, it uses a blend of natural plant sweeteners and each serving comes in at just 5 calories.

How to take it

Each tub of 4 Gauge contains 20 servings of two scoops.

It varies a bit from person to person, but you’re advised to take 4 Gauge anywhere between 15 and 45 minutes before starting your workout. It’s worth experimenting to see when it ‘kicks in’ for you.

What are people saying about it?

As we mentioned above, we found huge numbers of positive reviews of 4 Gauge online.

There were lots of testimonials from real customers who reported that they experienced big positive changes to their workouts after having started taking 4 Gauge.

4 gauge

Of course, we did find some people who didn’t like the product. All of the supplements we reviewed had at least some negative reviews. It’s hard to say if these people are using it correctly and combining it with a healthy diet and lifestyle, as well as a proper training regime.

You can see all of the customer testimonials with pictures by clicking here.

Price, shipping and where to buy

The price for one tub of 4 Gauge is $45 / £30 / €35. They have a deal on where you buy two tubs and the third is half price, which includes free shipping to the US and UK. That works out at around $37.50 / £25 / €29 per tub.

You won’t find this product in the shops. It’s only available to buy directly on the official website at the moment.

Roar Ambition’s supplements are made in the USA and UK in cGMP and FDA approved facilities. They ship from both the UK and USA, so you can expect to get your order in 1 to 4 days if you live in one of those countries. They also have fast worldwide shipping.

Any negatives?

• You can only buy it directly on the official website, meaning you won’t find it in the shops or on other sites such as Amazon.

• Premium price-tag. There’s not getting around it, 4 Gauge is a premium product and may not fit into everyone’s budget. The best ingredients come at a price. At least they do offer a discount with the three-tub deal.

• It currently only comes in one flavor, called fruit blast.

The bottom line

If you’re ready to take your workouts to the next level and don’t mind paying for a premium-quality product, then 4 Gauge is the pre workout supplement for you.

It contains the best safe and natural ingredients to give you everything you need to turbo-charge your gym sessions without overdoing it on the stimulants.

It doesn’t contain any risky ingredients so you don’t have to worry about unwanted side effects.

The main drawbacks are the premium price-tag and the fact that you can only buy it directly from the company right now.

We recommend it as the best pre workout on the market right now.

2) Lean Pre Workout

Product website: www.transparentlabs.com

Transparent Labs Lean Pre Workout

Lean Pre Workout is a supplement made by US-based company Transparent Labs.

The good thing about their products is that they never use proprietary blends, meaning that you’ll know exactly what is in the supplement you’re taking along with the exact dose.

We always recommend staying clear of any supplements that use proprietary blends, and you’ll see that all of the products on this list clearly state their full list of ingredients for us to see.

The ingredients

Lean Pre Workout has been designed specifically for people who are looking to maximise their workouts while also cutting fat at the same time.

It uses some of the best pre workout ingredients, including 6 grams of Citrulline Malate per serving.

It also uses Branched Chain Amino Acids to help prevent muscle breakdown.

Like 4 Gauge, Lean Pre Workout also stacks Caffeine with L-Theanine to deliver calm, focused energy.

The main thing we don’t like in the ingredients stack is the use of Synephrine HCl, because this has been known to cause side effects when combined with Caffeine.

Here’s the ingredients list in full:

Lean Pre Workout ingredients

What are people saying about it?

It’s got very strong reviews on the official website but that’s probably no surprise.

One person reported that it gave them the energy they needed without a crash.

Someone else said they had been using it for more than a month and that they now swear by it.

There were some negative reviews too, though. One person said that it gave them an allergic reaction, and someone else said that it made them feel sick.

Any negatives?

• Use of Caffeine and Synephrine HCl can cause side-effects.

• Contains Beta-Alanine and doesn’t use Creatine.

• Keeping a fat burner and pre workout separate might be easier.

• Possibly uses too many ingredients.

The bottom line

Overall this is a good product if you’re looking to get the best out of your workouts while trying to cut fat at the same time. Our main concerns are the use of Synephrine HCl and the lengthy list of ingredients.

That being said, our recommended course of action if you’re trying to do that is to choose a quality fat burner and pre workout and take them separately.

3) Elevate

Product website: www.bulkpowders.com

elevate bulk powders

Elevate is a pre workout supplement made by Bulk Powders.

If you’ve read any of our health and fitness content before, you’ll know that we’re big fans of Bulk Powders and their reasonably-priced products.

Elevate is Bulk Powders’ premium pre workout offering and it comes in three different flavors.

The ingredients

Elevate contains some great pre workout ingredients such as Citrulline Malate and Caffeine, which are two of our favorites.

It also contains black pepper extract (Bioperine) to help with absorption.

Vitargo is its main flagship ingredient, which is a sports performance carbohydrate.

It’s a good ingredients list, the only things that were missing in our opinion were things like Creatine and L-Theanine. It’s a shame because otherwise this is a great product.

What are people saying about it?

There were 73 reviews on the official website at the time of writing. Of those, 69 were five stars and four were four stars.

That’s pretty good going, but it’s difficult to tell whether they censor the reviews which are published on their official website.

Any negatives?

• Like 4 Gauge, this is a premium priced product, coming in at $35 / £28 / €32 per 540g (20 servings).

• Doesn’t contain some of our favorite ingredients such as L-Theanine, Red Beet or Creatine.

• Contains quite a lot of caffeine as well as taurine

The bottom line

Elevate is a good pre workout supplement but it won’t be for everybody because it contains quite a lot of stimulants.

It’s a decent option but we still recommend 4 Gauge ahead of it.

4) Mypre 2.0

Product website: www.myprotein.com

Mypre 2.0 Myprotein

Mypre 2.0 is the updated pre workout supplement made by UK-based company Myprotein.

Mypre is one of Myprotein’s most popular supplements and they have recently updated their formula for the ‘2.0’ version.

It uses a range of different ingredients to help get you feeling at your best in the gym so you can maximise your workouts.

The ingredients

It uses decent doses of L-Citrulline Malate, Creatine Monohydrate and L-Carnitine, which are three of our recommended pre workout ingredients.

It also contains 175mg of Caffeine per serving, which is a good amount.

However, it was a shame that Mypre 2.0 doesn’t use any L-Theanine, and we’re not too sure about the use of Beta Alanine, as it’s been known to cause some nasty side effects in some people.

What are people saying about it?

It has a 3.54 out of 5 average rating on the official website, which is probably just about right.

One person said that they loved the product after originally taking the first version of the supplement.

However, someone else who had been taking the 1.0 version said that the updated formula was “half as good”.

Any negatives?

• Uses Beta Alanine.

• L-Citrulline is under-dosed.

• Doesn’t use L-Theanine with Caffeine.

The bottom line

This is an solid enough product and so it makes it into our top five.

However, there are a few things that stop it from being rated as the best product around right now. Namely the fact that the L-Citrulline is under-dosed and it uses Beta Alanine as an ingredient, which we don’t recommend.

5) Thermopro

Product website: www.theproteinworks.com

Thermopro The Protein Works

Thermopro is made by The Protein Works and is actually mainly marketed as a fat burner supplement.

However, because of the choice of ingredients, many people choose to use it as a pre workout as well, as is stated on the official website.

The ingredients

Thermopro uses a lot of fat burning ingredients such as Cayenne Pepper Extract, Green Tea Extract, Green Coffee Bean Extract and Caffeine.

It also uses N-Acetyl L-Carnitine, which is one of our top recommended pre workout ingredients.

Our main gripe with this product is that it is just a few ingredients short of being considered as a top pre workout.

For example, there’s no Creatine Monohydrate or Citrulline Malate, meaning that it’s hard to take it too seriously as an actual pre workout supplement.

What are people saying about it?

Thermopro has pretty good reviews on the official website, but that’s probably not a surprise.

Many people reported that it gave them good energy lifts before hitting the gym.

One person said that it worked really well as a pre workout when taken about 30 minutes before training.

Any negatives?

• No Creatine or Citrulline Malate.

• Designed as more of a fat burner.

• Tablet form (lower doses).

The bottom line

Thermopro could be a good budget option for you if you’re looking to raise energy levels before hitting the gym. It could help to burn fat too, but it’s not quite the best pre workout formula on the market right now.

When to take a pre workout supplement

This tends to vary a little bit from person to person. The directions which come with your supplement are a good place to start, but the truth is that everyone is different and has varying degrees of tolerance to the ingredients.

For some people, taking a pre workout 30 minutes before starting training is perfect, but for others, it can take as long as an hour to kick in. We highly recommend testing the product yourself to see what works best for you.

Anything else to consider?

As we always say when discussing supplements, it’s important to remember that they won’t do the hard work for you. You’ll still have to be the one doing the hard work in the gym.

It’s no good taking a pre workout and expecting it to boost your training without any extra effort on your part. As with most things in life, there’s no shortcut to success when it comes to achieving a muscular and toned physique.

That being said, taking a good quality pre workout supplement can make all the difference if you feel like you’ve hit a ‘plateau’ in your training.

It can be the missing link that makes sure you’re getting the very best out of every single workout.

And always remember that supplements work best when combined with a healthy diet and lifestyle. Make sure that you’re eating right, have a good training schedule and are getting enough rest to feel the full effects.

Conclusion – our final thoughts

So there we have it, our top pick of the best pre workouts on sale right now.

We’ve taken you through what to look for in a pre workout supplement and brought you our top-rated products at the moment based on all of the important information.

We recommend 4 Gauge as the very best product in this category right now because of its quality natural ingredients list as well as the positive customer feedback, but you won’t go too far wrong by choosing any of the products on our list.

The Sport Review's product reviews are independent advice you can trust. Sometimes, we earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we don't allow this to bias our coverage. The reviews are produced through a mix of expert opinion and real-world testing.

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BIOGRAPHY: Victor Moses

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