excessive pre workout consumption

Fitness enthusiasts regularly make use of pre-workout supplements to improve their performance and energy levels for exercise. But excessive use of a preworkout can have some undesirable side effects.

Taking too much of a pre-workout supplement can cause a number of effects on the body, ranging from mild to serious. It’s quite common for individuals to experience these side effects after consuming a heavy volume of pre-workout.

Excessive Pre Workout Consumption

Consuming excessive amounts of fitness supplements and formulations, which is more than the manufacturer recommends, can have an impact on your performance and your body. These supplements are well-liked in the gym community. While your pre-workout might have a nice taste, they don’t come without any adverse impacts on your body when consumed excessively.

Here are the five most common side effects you might expect when using a pre-workout supplement:

#1 – Jitteriness

Caffeine is a primary ingredient making up many pre-workout supplements. Caffeine is a stimulant, which is known to increase mental focus during exercise. In addition to this, caffeine also reduces fatigue.


Caffeine can also possess numerous potential side effects. These can come into effect if you consume a lot of pre-workout. This excessive consumption of caffeine can cause drowsiness, increased heart rate, nausea, insomnia, restlessness, jitters, or anxiety.

#2 – Increased Water Retention

Another common ingredient in most pre-workout formulas is creatine. This ingredient has been proven to enhance high-intensity exercise capacity during exercise. Even though creatine is mostly used in a pre-workout supplement, it can also be used on its own.

However, this creatine can have some side effects. While the effects of creatine are generally mild, it can cause weight gain, bloating, water retention, and digestive issues.

#3 – Mild Reactions

Two ingredients sometimes used in pre-workout formulas are niacin (vitamin B3) and beta-alanine. Beta-alanine is an amino acid that reduces lactic acid in the muscles while exercising. Meaning that you can sustain your workout for extended periods.

woman itching

However, this ingredient commonly causes paresthesia, which is a tingling feeling in your feet and hands. It’s a harmless reaction originating from your nervous system but some individuals find this uncomfortable.

Niacin is another ingredient that’s known to produce mild side effects. This ingredient is included in most pre-workout formulas for its vital role in energy metabolism, but it also has skin-flushing effects. Niacin triggers a blood rush, which may cause blood to rush to the skin’s surface and result in red patches.

#4 Digestive Upset

Some Pre-workout formulas include several ingredients that are known to cause digestive upset. Such ingredients include caffeine, creatine, magnesium, and sodium bicarbonate. Sodium bicarbonate, particularly in high amounts can typically cause these digestive problems.

On the other hand, magnesium can have laxative effects. This is especially the case when it comes to magnesium citrate. Taking too much of this ingredient is common when using pre-workouts and can cause diarrhea.

In addition to this, using too little water when mixing pre-workout supplements also has the potential of upsetting your digestion. Not to mention, this can also cause dehydration.

#5 Suffering from Headaches

Citrulline is another ingredient added to most pre-workouts to increase blood flow to the muscles while at the gym. Citrulline Malate is an amino acid that functions to boost nitric oxide levels in your blood. This results in enhanced muscular performance.

man in gym with a headache

However, this ingredient can also cause headaches. While taking this type of amino acid, you should be aware that this increase in blood flow can affect your brain and your muscles, resulting in some individuals experiencing migraines. This is often the result of blood pressure changes in the small blood vessels in your brain.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take for pre-workout to wear off? 

Studies and research have shown that pre-workout can stay in the system for four to six hours. When you first take pre-workout, you gain the most pronounced effect within 30 to 60 minutes after ingestion. The majority of this effect wears off six hours after you initially take it.

What happens if you take too much of a pre-workout supplement? 

Most pre-workouts on the market are equipped with as much as 500 mg of caffeine per serving. Due to this, taking too much of this supplement is likely to harm your blood vessels while increasing your heart rate, causing insomnia, headaches, drowsiness among many other issues.

Are preworkouts bad for your heart? 

Research has shown that consuming high doses of caffeine from these pre-workouts while also consuming your regular daily intake of caffeine in coffee, cola, and other sources may lead to various heart-related issues. These might include high blood pressure, or hypertension, which increases your chances of suffering a heart attack.

Are pre-workouts bad for your kidneys? 

One of the drawbacks of using pre-workouts is the potential damage caused to your heart, liver, and kidneys. This is mainly because the body struggles to break down the considerable influx of chemicals when ingesting pre-workout supplements. This causes high liver enzyme levels.

Can pre-workout supplements cause nerve damage? 

A massive misconception surrounding this product is that it causes nerve damage. There is no evidence to suggest that the consumption of ingredients like Citrulline Malate, Beta-Alanine, and other chemicals play a role in causing long-term nerve damage.

Can you become immune to a pre-workout? 

Your body can form a tolerance when these pre-workouts are being overused. This can make your body immune to the impacts of these ingredients. However, it doesn’t mean your body doesn’t change under an influx of them.

Your body is going to be affected by the consumption of such products, even if you don’t gain the energy and muscle growth and strengthening properties. For this reason, it’s highly recommended to use this supplement in intervals.