Imagine having the feeling of taking pre-workout again for the first time.
The idea of cycling pre-workout products can be seen as terrifying for some. Is it really necessary to cycle my supplements even if I just take a basic pre-workout?
In my opinion, yes it is a good idea and there are a few reasons why I feel it is important to cycle pre-workout ingredients. Here is how to best go about it without feeling like you’re back in the Stone Age while pumping iron.
The basic pre-workout ingredients are:
- beta alanine
These are the ingredients that most mainstream pre-workout supplements contain. Not a lot of research is out there on the long term consumption of most pre-workout ingredients and especially in combination with each other.
Strictly from a health standpoint it is a great idea to cycle off from all of these ingredients at some point. Make sure to research all ingredients if you are confused. Many ingredients go by different names and forms. (Example: Citrulline and Citrulline Malate)
Cycling caffeine has a lot to do with the tolerance developed from taking large doses over time.
After lowering your tolerance of caffeine, consuming 100mg may feel like consuming 200 or 300mg. Depending on the tolerance level and exposure to caffeine it can take anywhere from 2-8 weeks to fully reset a caffeine tolerance.
I have easily cycled creatine many times. Creatine is not a stimulant so there is no exact noticeable difference, other than some lack in regular top performance at the gym. Many will argue that cycling off creatine is not necessary. However, it is simple and easy so why not?
It does take up to 30 days or more to fully cycle off from creatine and for levels in the body to return to normal.
Beta Alanine helps raise muscle carnosine levels. Like creatine, its levels of storage in the body increase after a few days of consumption, and can take weeks to rid the system.
It is suggested that beta alanine to be consumed for up to 8-10 weeks without causing any complications. It has been shown that some deficiencies in certain amino acids in the body can occur from long term use of beta alanine.
Many pre-workouts contain beta alanine and many do not. Therefore it is important to read ingredient lists carefully and ensure the desired ingredients are present or not. Core Pump is again a great product that does not contain beta alanine. Core Pump would be an alternative to most pre-workout products and a great pre-workout product all by itself!
Citrulline and Arginine
There are not many studies out there about the long term use of most pre workout ingredients, including citrulline and arginine. It has been shown that the long term use of arginine can cause less arginine to be absorbed by the body over time. Many studies claim citrulline is converted into arginine by the kidneys and they both would have similar effects as far as supplementation.
Similar to creatine, citrulline it is not a stimulant and can be easily cycled without dramatic noticeable effects.
Just from a health standpoint, cycle your pre-workout regimen for a period of 4-6 weeks. Save yourself some money in the process!
If you can handle 3 scoops of your current pre-workout supplement, and if cycling off it can give you the same effects with just one scoop after a few weeks, then it is certainly worth your time to give this a try. Proper supplementation is critical to get the most out of every workout. This is why it may be beneficial to cleanse the body to ensure it is performing at its peak.
Remember that feeling of taking a pre-workout for the first time? You can have that feeling again with proper cycling of products!