What Is The Best Pre Workout For Beginners? (My Top 7 Picks)

best pre workout for beginners


If you’re between the ages of 13-25, you’ve definitely heard of this stuff. It’s like the next big thing, especially amongst teens.

In high school, I would see kids that have never seen a weight room, gymnasium, or field in their entire life talking about pre-workout like it was the holy grail.

In the span of like 2 years, it went from being this niche product that only the hardcore athletes and gym kids would use occasionally for tough training sessions, or game days, to kids taking it before math class to get a quick buzz.

I started taking the stuff at 15 and was taken aback the first time using it.

It’s one of the few supplements that actually have noticeable effects on your performance, and when used properly can be a great tool for increasing your performance.

There are lots of bad, under-dosed, and overpriced pre-workout formulas out there. There are also lots of great, high quality, highly dosed pre-workout formulas that well great for seasoned stim junkies like myself, may not be the best choice for beginners.

This list is meant to help newbies find the best pre workout for beginners. This pre workout cannot be too weak, but it also cannot be too strong. Balance is what I’ll be looking for, when trying to find the best pre workout for beginners.

If you’re a newbie looking to purchase your first canister of this here sweet, sweet miracle powder, strap in as I share with you the 7 best pre workout for beginners.

What Is The Best Pre Workout For Beginners?

best pre workout for beginners

Now here is what I’ll be looking for when trying to find the best pre workout for beginners.

  • 150-300 mg of caffeine (roughly)
  • 4500-9000 mg of L-citrulline (the higher the better)
  • 2000-4000 mg of beta alanine
  • 750-1500 mg of L-tyrosine
  • 1500-3000 mg of malic acid
  • A good price to serving ratio
  • Safe ingredients

Now my best pre workout for beginners would do at least 5 out of these 7 things really well, while still being competent in all areas.

Alright with my personal criteria out of the way let’s find out what the best pre workout for beginners is!

#1 Gorilla Mode Pre-Workout Formula

best pre workout for beginners

Gorilla mode although a bit on the strong side, is a great choice for anyone who is looking to try pre-workout for the first time. It’s a great pre-workout in general, and arguably the best on the market.

I would recommend single scooping the first time you try it just to test your tolerance as the 350 mg of caffeine that comes with a full dose may knock you on your ass.

The full ingredient profile for Gorilla Mode looks like this.

These numbers are per 2 scoops:

  • L-Citrulline 9000 mg
  • Creatine Monohydrate 5000 mg
  • GlycerPump (65% Glycerol Powder) 3000 mg
  • Malic Acid 3000 mg
  • Betaine Anhydrous 2500 mg
  • L-Tyrosine 1500 mg
  • Agmatine Sulfate 1000 mg
  • Kanna (Whole Herb, Sceletium Tortuosum) 500mg
  • Caffeine Anhydrous 350mg
  • N-Phenethyl Dimethylamine Citrate 350mg
  • Bioperine (Black Pepper Fruit Extract, Standardized to 95% Piperine) 10mg
  • Huperzine A (Huperzia Serrata Leaf Standardized Extract) 400mcg

Now just half these numbers to get the single scoop doses. This pre-workout has pretty much everything, it is an extremely balanced formula, and one of the best pre workout for beginners.

The ingredient profile is the best I’ve ever seen. The one negative about this formula is that if you intend to use the full dose(2 scoops) you’ll only have 20 servings to use before you run out.

Now as a beginner just getting into pre-workouts this issue may be circumvented by the fact that you only need to use 1 scoop, which doubles your serving count to 40.

Bottom line, it’s a great pre workout and one of the best pre workout supplements for beginners.

#2 Transparent Labs BULK Pre Workout

best pre workout for beginners

Transparent labs BULK Pre Workout is an awesome starter pre. It’s a great balance of energy, focus, and pump. The caffeine content is moderate at 200 mg per serving making it one of the safer choices for beginners.

The entire ingredient profile looks like this.

Each number is per 1-scoop:

  • Citrulline Malate 2:1 6000 mg
  • Beta-Alanine 4000 mg
  • BCAA 2:1:1 (Instantized) 4000 mg
  • BetaPure™ Betaine Anhydrous 2500 mg
  • Taurine 1300 mg
  • L-Tyrosine 1000 mg
  • AlphaSize® Alpha GPC 300 mg
  • L-Theanine 360 mg
  • Caffeine Anhydrous 180 mg
  • Theobromine 50 mg
  • Infinergy™ (Dicaffeine Malate) 30 mg
  • Astragin™ 25 mg

BULK Pre Workout has a good amount of ingredients. The big stars of the show here are the 6000 mg of citrulline malate, 4000 mg of beta-alanine, and 200 mg of caffeine. The L-theanine, theobromine, and L-tyrosine are also nice additions as well.

Now I’m not a fan of the inclusion of BCAAs as they have been debunked into oblivion, but they do make nice expensive water flavouring so I guess there’s that.

Transparent Labs BULK Pre Workout is an awesome formula and has an argument to be the best pre workout for beginners.

#3 Kaged Pre Kaged Pre Workout

best pre workout for beginners

Kaged Pre Kaged Pre Workout aside from the stupidly complicated name is a pretty solid pre workout formula. It’s one of the best pre workout for beginners, and one of the better ones on the market overall.

The caffeine definitely leans towards the higher end sitting at 275 mg per serving. It has one of the better L-citrulline servings on the list at 6500 mg. Nowhere near Gorilla Modes 9000 mg, but still better than most of the other beginner-friendly pre-workouts on the market.

Here’s what the full ingredient profile looks like for Kaged Pre Kaged Pre Workout.

These numbers are per 1-scoop:

  • 274 mg of organic caffeine
  • 6500 mg of L-citrulline
  • 1600 mg of beta-alanine
  • 6500 mg of fermented BCAAs
  • 1500 mg of creatine HCL
  • 100 mg of spectra antioxidants
  • 2000 mg of taurine
  • 850 mg of L-tyrosine

It’s solid pre workout formula, with some, let’s just say unconventional ingredients. It has an argument to be the best pre workout for beginners, making it into the top 3. It has enough kick to give advance pre users a pretty good rush, while still being fairly beginner friendly.

#4 Huge Supplements Pump Serum

best pre workout for beginners

Now for those of you who don’t react well to caffeine, or are just interested in starting off with a stim-free pre-workout huge supplements pump serum is exactly what you need. Taking the number one spot on my top 5 stim free pre workouts post, huge supplements pump serum will always be in my upper etalon of pre-workouts.

Pump serum is jam-packed with ingredients, containing 14 fully maxed-out ingredients, only being rivalled by Gorilla Mode in terms of formula quality.

The full ingredient label for pump serum looks like this.

These numbers are per 1 scoop:

  • 980 mg of Choline (as Choline Bitartrate)
  • 197 mg of Sodium (as Himalayan Pink Sea Salt)
  • 8000 mg of L-Citrulline
  • 3000 mg of Betaine Anhydrous
  • 3000 mg of GlycerPump™ (65% Glycerol Powder)
  • 2000 mg of Beet Root Extract (Beta Vulgaris)
  • 1500 mg of L-Tyrosine
  • 1500 mg of Nitrosigine (Inositol Arginine Silicate)
  • 1250 mg of Agmatine Sulfate
  • 1000 mg of Pomegranate Extract (Punica Granatum)
  • 254 mg of VasoDrive-AP (Casein Hydrolysate)
  • 20 mg of Huperzine A 1% (Huperzia Serrata Leaf Extract)
  • 5 mg of Bioperine (Black Pepper Fruit Extract)

As you can see, this formula is absolutely loaded! The best part is you get 25 servings per container, as they somehow managed to fit all of these ingredients into one scoop. The price is a bargain to, as pump serum only costs $55 per container, or $2.2 per serving.

This is the best non-stim pre workout for beginners, and one of the better pre-workouts on the market.

#5 4 Gauge Pre Workout

best pre workout for beginners

4 Gauge pre-workout has the coolest-looking container by far. Appearances aside it’s an alright pre workout formula. I believe it’s one of the best pre-workouts for beginners, due to its low-stim count.

The ingredient selection isn’t anything special, but it does the job. Here’s what the full ingredient profile looks like.

Each of these numbers are per 2 scoops:

  • 6000 mg of L-Citrulline DI-Malate
  • 1000 mg of creatine monohydrate
  • 500 mg of Acetyl L-Carnitine (as Acetyl L-Carnitine HCI)
  • 300 mg of Red Beet (Beet Vulgaris) Root Extract
  • 300 mg of Coconut Water Powder
  • 200 mg of L-Theanine
  • 150 mg of Caffeine Anhydrous
  • 100 mg of Rhodiola Rosea (Root) Powder

I think it’s a great choice for beginners due to its low stim count and non-stimulatory energy sources. Now it does only come with 20 full servings, and has some ingredients that are a bit on the under-dosed side which definitely hold it back from being a great pre workout.

All in all, it’s a solid pre-workout formula that can act as a great gateway supplement.

#6 Ghost Legend Pre Workout

best pre workout for beginners

Ghost is an extremely popular pre-workout among high schoolers, and people who don’t have a clue what the hell they’re doing in the gym mainly because of its taste.

Unlike most pre-workouts which taste like kool-aid mixed with hot battery acid, ghost actually tastes alright which makes it very appealing to the masses. To the small percentage of people who can actually read an ingredient label, it’s a mid-tier pre-workout at best.

I recommend it to beginners because of its great taste, moderate caffeine count (250 mg), and affordability.

Now the full ingredient profile looks like this.

These numbers are per 2 scoops:

  • 4000 mg of L-citrulline
  • 3200 mg of beta-alanine
  • 1500 mg of Nitrosigine (Inositol Stabilized Arginine Silicate)
  • 50 mg of Senactive (Panax notoginseng (root) and Rosa roxburghii (fruit)) extracts
  • 1000 mg of L-Tyrosine
  • 1000 mg of Taurine
  • 300 mg of Alpha GCP (Alpha-Glyceryl Phosphoryl Choline 50%)
  • 250 mg of Natural Caffeine (from Coffee(Coffee spp.) Bean)
  • 100 mg of Theobromine
  • 50 mg of AstraGin (Astragalus membranaceus and Panax notoginseng) Root extract
  • 1.5 mg of Rauwolfia (rauwolfia vomitoria) Root extract

Not the strongest formula but it does have a decent energy and focus blend which explains its popularity as well. Overall a decent pre-workout, that I believe could be a great introduction to the world of pre-workout.

#7 RYSE Element Series Pre Workout

best pre workout for beginners

Now the RYSE element series pre-workout is Ryse’s attempt at a beginner-friendly version of their classic high stim formula. The element series is like Ryse lite, as it only contains half of the caffeine seen in their loaded, and project blackout pre-workouts.

The ingredient profile for Ryse loaded pre looks like this.

These numbers are per 1 scoop:

  • 3200 mg of beta-alanine
  • 2000 mg of betaine anhydrous
  • 1500 mg of arginine nitrate (as NO3-T)
  • 1500 mg of L-taurine
  • 150 mg of caffeine anhydrous
  • 70 mg of zumXR Delayed-Release Caffeine (std.min. 75%caffeine)
  • 10 mg Vincamine (as Thinkamine)

Not too many pump ingredients in here, but a decent amount of focus and energy. Ryse will usually taste alright, some of their flavours do dip into monster energy and red bull tier though, but nothing unpalatable.

What Makes A Good Beginner Pre Workout

In my eyes, a good beginner pre-workout is something that is effective while still being fairly easy on the system. For example, huge supplements wrecked pre-workout, although a lot more effective than something like 4 Gauge, or ghost, it may not be the best choice for beginners as the stimulant count may be too much to handle.

Having a sufficient amount of pump, non-stimulatory energy, and focus-boosting ingredients is essential for making a great beginner pre-workout in my opinion. Also as a beginner, you probably don’t want to break the bank on your first pre-workout either, which is why I think affordability, and serving count should also be a factor when deciding on your first pre-workout as well.

When Should You Use Pre-Workout?

You should only use pre-workout when you actually need it. This is super hypocritical coming from me as I love going on 2-week long pre-workout benders, taking the stuff nonstop.

I love the feeling of being stimmed out of my mind, blaring the most absurd heavy metal, hardstyle, alt-rock playlist known to man from my headphones, but I know in the long run that taking this stuff non stop is not conducive to a stable long term performance.

In all actuality, the main thing that stops me from staying on pre-workout non-stop is the price. Pre-workout ain’t cheap, especially once you start double, or even triple-scooping the stuff.

Unless you’re a sponsored athlete and get the stuff for free, or have the money to fund your ever-growing stim addiction, it would probably be in your best interest to ration your supply.

To help you out, I will share the scenarios in which pre-workout should be used, and when it shouldn’t.

When Pre-Workout Should be Used

best pre workout for beginners

Pre-workout should only be used in scenarios that require you to be at your absolute peak state. Here are some examples:

  • Leg days
  • Going for PRs
  • Competition
  • Game days
  • Matches
  • Extremely brutal team practices, or competitive scrimmages
  • Fights
  • Sparring (debatable)
  • High intensity cardio (like you’re about to puke)
  • Races
  • Talking to your gym crush

Now some would argue that pre-workout can be used to help motivate, and get you to the gym on days when you are feeling run down, and unmotivated, however, I believe that is just a cope.

Pre-workout should not be used as a crutch to mask a shitty diet and bad recovery.

When Pre-Workout Should Not Be Used

best pre workout for beginners

Now to avoid developing a crippling addiction to caffeine, stimulants, and ear-bleedingly loud Katy perry hardstyle remixes, (like I did), allow me to enlighten you on when to hold off on caffeine.

Don’t use caffeine when:

  • You are doing a lighter, less strenuous workout
  • Upper body days (try your best not to, as tempting as it may be, unless you are going to have an absolutely grueling session)
  • You are doing a moderate to light cardio session
  • During an uncompetitive scrimmage or practice
  • Just to go to the gym and hangout

I could probably list more, but I don’t feel like it right now. I have a love-hate relationship with really, really long lists. My point here is don’t use pre-workout excessively, or else you risk building a tolerance so high that you can no longer feel your pre-workout.

It can get to the point where you build a dependency on the substance, and you need pre-workout to work out, or else your risk experiencing withdrawals.

You basically go from being a gym addict to a crack addict. So in summary, use pre-workout responsibly, or become completely dependant on stims (which is possible if you’re rich and/or don’t care about your heart, and nervous system health).

Should Beginners Take Pre-Workout?

Like most things in life, it depends. Pre-workout is definitely not a necessity, but it can sure help. If you have the money and self-discipline to use pre-workout, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to add it to your routine.

However, if you need pre-workout to workout, and start using it as a crutch, well then you may want to hold off before you become you have to go to gym bro AA.

If you’re a beginner who’s adamant on taking or trying a pre-workout supplement my best advice would be to take it slow, and limit yourself to only once or twice a week in the beginning.

What If I Already Use Caffeine Throughout My Day, Can I Still Take Pre Workout?

Yes, you can still take pre-workout even if you’re already taking other sources of caffeine, however, you must try to balance and track your caffeine intake (or try to).

On those days when you do take pre-workout make sure to limit or eliminate all other sources of caffeine, or just use a not stim pre-workout.

A good rule of thumb is not to exceed 400 mg of caffeine a day. I think you can push this number to 500, maybe even 600 mg, but nothing over that. If I were you I would try my best to stay under 400 mg per day, and only go over that limit every so often.

Is Non Stim Pre-Workout Better For Beginners

Non-stim pre-workout is like non-alcoholic beer. You only take it, to try and trick yourself into thinking that you’re having the real thing. It’s like having sex with a condom, vs going in raw.

I mean yeah it’s probably smarter to play it safe and think long term, but in the short term you’re gonna feel like a god when you’re pulling 400 plus pounds cracked out on 400 mg of caffeine.

Just kidding (partly), non-stim pre-workout does have its advantages over standard pre.

Advantages Of Non-Stim Pre-Workout

The advantages of non-stim pre-workout are as follows:

  • Better pump ingredients (usually)
  • Cleaner more stable non-stimulatory energy
  • Less addictive
  • Less side effects
  • Safer
  • No crashing

Those are all of the benefits of non-stim pre-workout I could name off the top of my head. So if you’re a nerd, and care about heart health, longevity, and your CNS health, non-stim pre-workouts are for you.

However, if you’re a true gym bro, which means you don’t plan on living past the age of 35, and you’re willing to sacrifice longevity, and organs for sick gains let me share with you the advantages of standard, stim fueled pre-workout.

Advantages Of Stim Pre-Workout

Here are the benefits of stim pre-workout:

  • Better energy and focus
  • More motivation and drive
  • Higher strength output
  • Better endurance and stamina
  • Mood enhancement that is scarily close to the effects of cocaine

Some pretty awesome benefits here. Like I said in the beginning, condom vs raw dog is the best comparison I can give you. They’re both good, ones just clearly better, while also being much more risky.

Can I Start Off With A High Stim Pre-Workout?

This is a tricky one, as everyone’s tolerance is different. Some people have a naturally high tolerance to stims, while others have one cup of coffee and end up sleeping in a ditch.

Now I may sound like a broken record here but, start off slow, and test your tolerance – don’t be a hero.

If you do want to start off with a high stim pre, try a half scoop first. If the half scoop doesn’t put you in a coma then you can go for the full single scoop dose(or 2-scoop dose depending on what pre-workout you’re using).

Now although high stim pre workouts seem great on paper, and can be great when used in the right circumstances, they do have their draw backs.

Negatives Of Using A High Stim Pre-Workout

High-stim pre-workouts can be great for some lifters (like myself), while being a complete waste of money for others. It all depends on how your body reacts to an extremely high dose of stimulatory ingredients.

Now although I love my high stim pre-workouts I have had negative experiences with them, as my body just couldn’t tolerate all of that caffeine at once.

It wouldn’t happen often, but every once in awhile, I would have a bad workout when taking the high stim pre. Some of the negative effects I would experience were:

  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Dehydration
  • Stomach cramps
  • Energy crashes
  • Adrenaline dumps
  • Axienty
  • The jitters

Nothing too crazy but, enough to throw you off while training. Now a lot of these negative side effects can be avoided with proper planning, and some basic critical thinking skills.

You have to know when, and when not to take pre-workout, or when to take a full dose, or a half dose.

Here are some strategies you can implement into your routine to help you avoid the negative effects of pre-workout, and how to actually improve the effects of pre-workout while on it.

1) Proper Planning

Make sure you plan out beforehand when you’ll be using your high stim pre-workout. The majority of people use their pre-workout on a whim, to help them when they’re tired, or feeling a bit under the whether.

Now that’s how pussies who don’t know how to properly rest and recover use pre-workout. If you’re a real lifter pre-workout should be used strictly as a performance enhancer. Plan out when, and when you will not be using it. This will help you implement the upcoming strategies I will be discussing.

2) Manage Your Caffeine Intake

Try to take much if any caffeine before you use a high stim pre-workout. I usually limit myself to just one cup of coffee on days where I’ll be using my high stim pre-workout, to avoid the negative effects of too much caffeine.

Having too much caffeine in your system can absolutely wreck your workout, turning you into a jittery, nauseous mess.

3) Keep That Diet Nice And Clean

Pre-workouts are probably not great for your body. They’re essentially meth lite, for gym rats who are too scared to try the real thing.

Now do to pre-workouts being somewhat of a health hazard you’re gonna wanna keep the rest of your diet for that day clean as a whistle. Eating a bunch of junk food before using a high stim pre-workout, is asking for an upset stomach.

When using pre-workout try to keep your diet clean to get the best effects. Especially the day/night before using as going on a huge pizza binge, then using high stim pre will just lead to your whole digestive system exploding.

Is There A Best Pre Workout For Women Beginners?

Nope. All pre-workouts work the same, regardless of gender.

Man, Woman, dog, cat, Decepticon, auto-bot, lizard, no matter what you are all pre-workouts will function the same, however height, weight, and genetics will effect tolorence.

So since women are usually smaller, and lighter than men, they may want to try lower stim options as their tolerance will just be naturally lower, unless they’re one of those blue-haired, fat acceptance chicks, then they may be more inclined to try one of the higher stim options.

Top Pre-Workout Picks For Chicks (Beginner-Novice Lifters)

What’s The Best Pre-Workout Overall?

Now the title of best pre-workout overall is really a 2-way race between huge supplements Wrecked pre-workout, and Gorilla Mode.

These are the 2 most potent formulas on the market, they’re like the Michael Jordan, and Lebron James of pre-workouts. clearly better than everything else, but in a grid lock with each other for #1.

Gorilla would be the Lebron in this situation with the much better all-around game, and better general use case. Wrecked would be MJ, as although wrecked may not be as well-rounded as Gorilla, the stim count will turn you into an absolute killer during training.

It really comes down to this. If you want to have the best possible performance during your workout go for Gorilla. Whereas, if you’d rather be as cracked out as possible during your workout go for wrecked.

It’s picking between a sniper rifle and a machine gun. With the sniper, you’ll be deadly, focused, and efficient. With the machine gun, well you’ll just be some dumbass running around with a AR trying to kill as many people as possible.

My preference would be Gorilla because I’m an MPMD and Lebron fan.

What’s The Best Pre-Workout For Brokies?

I’m gonna break this part down into 3 different sections. Natural bodybuilder, poor, and not in the red.

We’re gonna go from poorest, to most well-off, starting with the poorest category which is natty bodybuilder.

Natty Bodybuilder (Basically Homeless)

If you have no money whatsoever, and can barely cover your basic living expenses, the best pre-workout “supplement” would be instant coffee and a couple of slices of watermelon.

I’m not joking here, if you can’t afford supplements taking instant coffee, and fruit with L-citrulline in it can do wonders for your workout. To be honest this combo is probably more effective than over half of the pre-workouts on the market.

Poor (Just Getting By)

I did a little research and discovered some pretty good affordable pre-workouts. Nitro surge and Kaged sport pre-workout are great options, both costing under $30. You can also save up, and ration a better quality pre-workout.

Not In The Red (You Have A Little Room To Breath)

Ok for those of you who have a little extra cash to spend, I would recommend either buying a cheap pre-workout if you plan to use more than 3 times per week, or splurging and getting a really high-quality pre if you’re ok with rationing it out over a long period of time.


Which Pre-Workout Is Best For Beginners?

The best pre-workout for beginners is MPMD, Gorilla mode, as it is the best all-around pre-workout in my opinion.

Should I Get Pre-Workout As A Beginner?

It’s really up to you, and your financial situation. If you can afford it and can use it responsibly there is no harm in adding a good pre-workout to your supplement stack.

What Is The Healthiest Best Pre-Workout?

I would have to go with Gorilla mode. It’s the best pre-workout on the market and has a totally transparent formula with no sketchy ingredients, or doses on the label.

Is C4 Good For Beginners?

Hell, no! C4’s total dog crap. It’s a literal meme pre-workout that no one takes seriously.

What Makes A Beginner Pre-Workout Different?

Nothing makes a beginner pre-workout different. There’s no stim, low stim, and high stim. There’s no tailor-made pre-workout that is scientifically modified to be beneficial for beginners.

What Are The Best Pre-Workout Supplements For Beginners?

If you’re strictly looking for great individual supplements to take pre-workout, and aren’t interested in an actual pre-workout I would urge you to get some caffeine pills, L-citrulline powder, and some beta-alanine.

Is Pre-Workout Safe For Women?

Yes, pre-workout is safe for women.

Is Pre-Workout Bad For You?

Pre-workout can be bad for you if you overuse it, or if you use too much of it in one sitting.

What Is The Best Pre-Workout?

Gorilla mode, but huge supplements wrecked pre-workout is a very close second. It’s a 1a and 1b situation, with Gorilla just slightly edging out Wrecked.

What Does A Pre-Workout Do?

Pre-workout essentially allows you to be god, by giving you endless energy, motivation and drive, while also increasing stamina, strength, endurance, focus, and pain tolerance.


Alright, you’ve made it to the end. If you liked this article and found it helpful make sure to check out the rest of the blog for similar content.

We got reviews on barbells, squat racks, dumbbells, you name it. We also have some informational posts(finally) as well, and unique non-SEO optimized posts to make this look less like a sketchy affiliate site, and more of a blog.

The last few weeks have been dedicated to pre-workouts, so I’m gonna switch it up and try and find some non-supplement-related keywords to write about.

If you have any topic ideas you would like to see discussed, or any burning questions you would like answered let me know in the comments below.

With that, thanks for reading, catch you in the next one, I’m out.

One response to “What Is The Best Pre Workout For Beginners? (My Top 7 Picks)”

  1. […] what’s up? Ok, let’s get right into it. High stim pre-workout, is my favourite form of pre-workout, and probably a lot of yours as well. These are the biggest bang for your buck formulas as they are […]

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