When I start working with new clients, the first priority is generally to come up with a fitness and diet routine that starts to build healthy habits. But once that routine has set in and some results start to show, then it’s time to switch focus onto motivation and getting the most out of gym time.
And the best way to increase energy levels, strength, endurance, and overall performance during training, is through pre-workout supplements.
However, in a market filled with snake oil and fancy advertising, it’s difficult to figure out what products to try out. So, I’ve spent the last 4 months reading online pre workout reviews, testing them with clients, and analyzing the ingredients with dieticians.
And you get to learn about all the research results on this page, without having to go through the same effort.
Our Top Pre-Workouts for Women (2021 Updated)
OUR #1 RATED
2. 4 Gauge
4. Transparent Labs
This product came to my attention several months ago, and it’s the one I ended up going back to for further research several times. The online reviews almost seemed to be too good to be true, but I quickly got some positive feedback from friends and a few clients.
The first thing I did was review the ingredients list, which contains all natural products in a carefully chosen formula. There are no hidden secrets, which is why I think it’s possibly one of the healthiest pre workout supplements available.
What a lot of women pointed out was that unlike other products, there was no sudden crash from a caffeine high thanks to a lower dose that amplifies through what the makers call EnXtra. This is a combination of natural extracts designed to boost the effects of caffeine.
Having seen and experienced the increased energy and power, I think this is definitely the top rated pre workout to use.
2. 4 Gauge
The next pre-workout for women that I would recommend is 4 Gauge, and I have to say, it does come in quite a cool looking container. While it isn’t specifically designed for women, it’s very easy to adjust the dosage by taking fewer scoops.
Male and female athletes have commented in quite a few Facebook groups and forums that the added mental energy can help to stay motivated during training, which can be half the battle.
The caffeine dose is quite high, so be careful if you plan to take it later in the evening, or if you’re a coffee drinker. The benefit of this is a higher rate of fat burning, which works well for cutting and general weight loss.
Nitrosurge stands out from other pre workouts because it has the added benefit of increasing nitric oxide levels. Even a small increment has been shown to make quite a difference to your body’s blood flow.
And the more you can get your blood flowing, the faster you can deliver energy and oxygen to the muscles that are working the hardest. The added blood flow can also oxygenate the brain more to help you focus better on doing quality exercises.
What I didn’t find was so great is that it does contain artificial sweeteners, which can have an impact on your gut health.
4. Transparent Labs PreSeries Lean Pre Workout
What stood out to me the most with Transparent Labs was the long list of ingredients. Usually, this is an indication that not too much research has gone into the formula, but I had a dietician look at the details and compare it to other pre workouts.
The good news is that the chosen ingredients have been proven to increase energy levels and performance, but it also has some bonus BCAAs. These are essential amino acids that muscles need to recover faster and build new fibers.
It’s also free from all sorts of artificial crap with a decent selection of flavors that are quite popular.
The only thing for women to keep in mind that it’s quite high in caffeine, so you may want to take a lower dose.
Next on my list of recommended pre workouts is Cellucor, which stood out to me because of the two following re-occurring online comments: It’s one of the few options that has the added vitamins that your body will need to repair and build muscle tissue and you get to choose from quite a range of flavors. So, even if you bulk order, then you won’t get sick of the same taste all the time.
My dietician friend also pointed out that it contained some added creatine and arginine, which are amino acids that are critical for muscle growth.
Just keep in mind that it does contain artificial sweeteners, which some people try to avoid.
6. RSP AminoLean
AminoLean is more than an average pre workout powder as it provides a blend of ingredients that the makers claim will promote faster muscle recovery and weight loss similar to what women's fat burners do.
What my dietician pointed out as one of the best features was the very broad range of amino acids, including BCAAs. For any athlete heading into a high-intensity workout, this can make a difference in the recovery phase.
There’s also a convenient serving chart which shows how many scoops you should take depending on the intensity of your training. It does have a downside though, and that is corn syrup and artificial flavorings, which is the main reason it’s further down on this list.
7. Red Leaf Pre-Workout Energizer
If you’re afraid to ignite the jitters or often find yourself struggling to get to sleep, then Red Leaf may be a good choice for you. It’s not as reliant on stimulants as many other workout supplements, and instead makes use of raspberry ketones.
These can improve your brain function and help to keep you focused and motivated without feeling overstimulated. Along with the antioxidants from a selection of superfoods, it’s a good option if you want something to help detox as well.
The main downside is that it’s not as long lasting as other products, so make sure you factor that into your decision.
8. RARI Nutrition
Rari is the final one of my recommended pre workouts. The reason I added it on here is that a lot of athletes commented that it started working fast, in most cases in less than 20 minutes. And once it kicks in, they reported better pumps for building more strength and muscles.
It’s also one of the few options that is low-carb and contains no animal products. That makes it suitable for vegans, as well as anyone on a keto or paleo diet.
However, I personally wasn’t a big fan of the flavors, and the caffeine dosage is rather high.
Creatine supplementation has shown modest benefits in a few small trials. A 2003 study in the Journal of Athletic Training found that college football players taking the supplement had less cramping and dehydration, as well as fewer injuries than players who took a placebo.
Editor at Live Science
Are There Any Pre Workout Side Effects?
Yes, there are a few side effects that are common with pre workouts. They generally depend on the concentration of the ingredients and your body size, but if you start feeling uncomfortable with the following, then try to lower your dose or take a break.
Common side effects:
Don’t worry if you encounter these, as they will fully reverse once you lower the dose or take a short break.
What To Look For In A Good Pre Workout For Women
The important thing for women to remember is that the average pre-workout supplements are often geared more towards men. This means that the concentration of the ingredients can be a bit on the high side.
In most cases, you can just take a lower dose, but I generally try to encourage my clients to choose a product that has a specific formula for women. With constantly new and improved ingredients, I try to focus on the old reliable ones.
Most pre workouts will rely on this stimulant, not just for the benefits to mental performance, but it also works as a natural thermogenic fat burner. That means it increases your metabolic rate to produce energy from stored body fat. Unless you're sensitive to stimulants, this is a good thing to see on the label.
Studies have proven that creatine will increase athletic performance . Physiologically this happens by providing muscle cells with one of the main ingredients needed to release and process energy.
BCAAs are a set of essential amino acids, which means the human body cannot produce them on its own. The main benefit of these is that you provide your muscles with everything needed for faster recovery.
4. L-arginine, L-citrulline, and L-norvaline
This combination of amino acids is becoming increasingly common, and they promote different functions in the body. These include metabolic processes, nitric oxide levels, and fat burning, which all help to provide more energy.
Whether it is weight training or cardio, if you are truly looking to use caffeine as a performance enhancer, it would be prudent to cycle your intake since your body gets used to the effects of caffeine rather quickly.
Can pre workout for women make you gain weight?
Yes, a pre workout supplement can make you gain weight if your body is replacing fat with lean muscle mass.
With muscle weighing more than fat, it’s more important to keep track of your BMI.
What’s the best pre workout for weight loss for women?
The best pre workout supplement for weight loss is a combination of caffeine, creatine, and BCAAs.
These help to elevate your metabolism and energy levels, while at the same time helping your muscles to recover faster.
Is pre workout for women dangerous?
No, pre-workout supplements are not dangerous, as long as you stick to the recommended dose.
Some of the ingredients can cause side effects, including jitters and nausea, but these are fully reversible and don’t pose a health risk.
Is pre workout necessary for women?
No, pre-workout isn’t necessary, but it can provide advantages that will allow you to get more out of your time at the gym.
By working harder and more effective, you can get to your goals quicker, whether that’s weight loss or more lean muscle.
What Is The Best Pre Workout Supplement For Women?
After all the research, testing, and reviewing with dieticians, I have come to the conclusion that I will be recommending Powher as the best pre workout drink for my female clients. I have seen positive results for energy levels and weight loss, which is what most of my clients are looking for.
The formulation is also not too stimulating and not geared towards muscle gain, which will suit most women.
If you give it a try, then make sure you let us know on Facebook how it worked for you.
My #1 PRE WORKOUT FOR WOMEN