Whether caffeine gives you jitters, insomnia, or heart palpitations, there are many reasons why you could be searching for the best non-stim pre-workout supplement. Unfortunately, the vast majority of pre-workouts come with caffeine included, because people take them for ENERGY.
But you don’t have to include a stimulant in your supplement to get ample energy for exercise. In fact, you can achieve peak performance with the best non-stim pre-workout supplements.
So what are the best non-stim pre-workouts? In our opinion, the best caffeine-free pre-workout supplements start with a base of collagen protein. But to understand why, you first need a solid understanding of what collagen is and how it works in your body.
What is collagen protein?
Collagen protein is the most abundant protein in the human body. It is a main structural component in tendons, ligaments, muscles, bones, cartilage, organs, skin, and blood vessels – just to name a few. In short, it is THE most important protein for your body.
There are a lot of benefits to taking protein before workouts, and even more benefits when that protein is collagen. Collagen supplements help to keep your body in peak working condition by providing it with the building blocks it needs to provide strength and flexibility to all your connective tissues.
This is especially important as you get older, since your natural collagen production starts to slow down more each year once you hit your mid-20s. That’s why it takes you longer to recover and your joints give you more aches and pains than they used to.
So, what specifically makes collagen the best non-stim pre-workout supplement? Let’s go through all the reasons this powerful protein is the base for the best stimulant-free pre-workouts.
9 reasons collagen is in the best non-stim pre-workouts
Here are the top nine reasons you should consider collagen when looking for the best pre-workout without caffeine:
1. Collagen can help prevent injuries
Tendon and ligament injuries are by far the most common sports injuries, and taking a regular collagen supplement may help to prevent them. That’s because over 80% of the dry weight of tendons and ligaments is collagen.
When you provide your body with ample collagen, it helps to make your connective tissues stronger and more flexible, so they are less likely to snap or tear when subjected to quick direction changes or external forces. It is this reason that many people consider collagen to be the best protein for athletes.
On top of helping to prevent strains, sprains, and other exercise-related injuries, collagen can help you heal faster if you do sustain an injury. Collagen is the protein your body uses to create new tissue fibers during wound healing, and a pre-workout collagen supplement can help speed up the process.
2. Collagen can improve joint health
Another reason the best non-stim pre-workouts use collagen protein is that collagen is instrumental for your joint health. As we mentioned above, collagen plays a huge role in the health of your tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and bones.
Many athletes and fitness enthusiasts are held back by joint pain or joint injuries. Luckily, studies have shown that collagen can reduce joint pain and stiffness – and improve mobility. So, if your knees hurt when running, a collagen supplement will make the best non-stim pre-workout for you.
If you take a pre-workout supplement with collagen protein, it may help you run for longer, lift heavier, and engage in higher-impact activities without joint pain.
3. Collagen may shorten your recovery time
Another reason the best stimulant-free pre-workouts should contain collagen is that collagen protein can significantly shorten your recovery time after exercise. Collagen protein is directly involved in muscle repair – after all, it’s what new tissue fibers are made of!
Consuming collagen in your pre-workout can get your body straight to work on muscle repair, so you have less soreness and downtime between your workouts.
4. Collagen is easy on your gut
A healthy gut is essential for nutrient absorption, which, in turn, can support your workout performance. Luckily, studies have shown that collagen can improve gut health in multiple ways, including reducing inflammation, enhancing nutrient uptake, and healing your gut lining.
In addition, collagen is much easier to digest than some other protein supplements. For example, if you compare collagen protein vs whey protein, whey is much more likely to cause stomach upset since it is harder to absorb and contains lactose.
This is why the best non-stim pre-workout supplements contain collagen.
5. Collagen can help with weight management
If you are trying to lose weight or maintain the weight you’re at, collagen can be extremely helpful. Collagen supplements are low in calories, but almost exclusively protein. It’s also easier to determine how much protein you are getting since supplements are easier to absorb than protein from food in your diet.
Collagen can also make you feel full for longer. Why? High-protein diets increase satiety hormones like glucagon-like peptide-1 and cholecystokinin. They also work to suppress ghrelin, which is a hunger hormone.
This means you will be less likely to snack between meals and your body will feel satisfied on fewer calories. AND you will be ensuring you have enough protein in your body to maintain your muscle mass. Just another reason why to choose collagen products when looking for the best non-stim pre-workouts.
6. Collagen can combat oxidative stress
Some studies suggest that collagen supplements have antioxidant properties, which can help combat the oxidative stress that can result from intense workouts. Oxidative stress can break down cell tissues, create inflammation, cause premature hair graying, and even damage your DNA!
In short, oxidative stress is something you don’t want, especially when you are striving for peak performance. The best non-stim pre-workouts should contain collagen so they can combat oxidative stress with naturally antioxidative properties.
7. Collagen can boost muscle growth
There is a reason some athletes consider collagen supplements the best pre-workout for muscle gain. Your muscles need protein to bulk up. Protein is an essential nutrient for muscle growth, repair, and maintenance.
When you engage in resistance training or other forms of exercise that challenge your muscles, you create tiny micro-tears in the muscle fibers. These micro-tears need to be repaired and strengthened, and collagen protein plays a key role in this process.
It should be noted, however, that collagen in its true form is not a complete protein, so it is best to look for supplements with tryptophan added in - this makes the collagen a complete protein, and therefore more effective at aiding muscle growth.
Where collagen shines compared to other proteins is its direct support of your tendons and ligaments. By maintaining the health and integrity of connective tissues, you provide your body with stability and support during exercise. This means you can lift heavier weights without fear of injury, which in turn can help you see faster results.
8. Collagen may improve your endurance
Studies have shown that collagen may significantly improve your endurance performance. Collagen has been found to increase speed, heart rate, and muscular endurance in athletes.
And, if you are using a single-serving liquid collagen supplement, you can even bring some with you on long races or marathons to give you a renewed burst of energy once your pre-workout wears off.
9. Collagen offers numerous health benefits
There are so many liquid collagen benefits that go beyond your workouts – and these are benefits that most other protein supplements don’t provide.
Collagen may be anti-aging: Collagen supplements have long been praised for their skin benefits. They improve skin health by boosting skin elasticity, enhancing skin hydration, and improving cell recovery.
- Collagen may reduce cellulite: While not all athletes are concerned with cellulite, it’s worth noting that collagen can help if you are. Improving your skin elasticity through collagen supplementation may help to reduce cellulite.
- Collagen can improve hair and nail health: Increased collagen intake can prevent brittle nails and help maintain hair follicle structure. Collagen may also contribute to the production of keratin, a primary protein for hair growth and strength.
- Collagen may reduce arthritis symptoms: Collagen supports joint health and may help reduce inflammation around joints, making it particularly valuable for athletes dealing with arthritis or joint issues.
While collagen offers all these potential benefits, the quality of the collagen source is crucial. So let’s talk about what you should be looking for specifically in the best non-stim pre-workout supplement.
The best non-stim pre-workout
By now you should understand why the best pre-workout without caffeine should contain collagen. But what type of collagen, exactly?
To ensure you have the best non-stim pre-workout supplement, you should look for a hydrolyzed or nano-hydrolyzed collagen supplement. This is collagen that has gone through the chemical process of hydrolysis, which breaks it down into easier-to-digest pieces.
Why is this important?
In its whole form, a collagen molecule is too big to fit through your stomach pores. Sure, your stomach acid can break that molecule down, but your body is not going to be able to dissolve and absorb all the collagen before it passes through your digestive system as waste.
You can think of a hydrolyzed collagen supplement as being partially digested for you! This way, when you take it, your body can put it straight to use and make the most of all collagen’s amazing benefits.
The next thing you should look for in the best stimulant-free pre-workout is collagen that has tryptophan added in. As we mentioned above, collagen needs tryptophan added to be a complete protein, and a complete protein will better assist you in reaching your workout goals.
In our minds, the best non-stim pre-workout supplement is Frog Fuel Ultra. Frog Fuel Ultra contains nano-hydrolyzed collagen, tryptophan, carbohydrates, beta-alanine, citrulline malate, and other ingredients that can help you boost your potential.
It’s the best non-stim pre-workout supplement because it contains collagen, is a complete protein, has workout-enhancing additives, can be fully digested in just 15 minutes or less, and has absolutely no caffeine.
Best yet, this liquid collagen pre-workout comes in single-serving pouches, so it is easy to put in your pocket or gym bag and take on the go. You don’t even need to mix it with anything! Just toss your non-stim pre-workout supplement back when you hit the gym and you are good to go.
FAQs about non-stim pre-workouts
What is a non-stim pre-workout?
A non-stim pre-workout is a supplement you take before exercising. It is meant to give you a boost of energy and enhance your performance. Because energy is a big draw of pre-workouts, many pre-workout supplements contain caffeine or other stimulants.
A non-stim pre-workout is a supplement without those stimulants. The best pre-workout without caffeine helps you get energy through protein, carbs, and other non-stimulant ingredients.
Is it safe to take non-stim pre-workout every day?
The best non-stim pre-workouts are safe to take every day. Just make sure you research your supplement carefully since most supplements aren’t FDA-regulated. Read reviews and look for claims backed up by science.
When should I take a stim-free pre-workout?
You should ideally take your pre-workout supplement 30 to 45 minutes before exercise. But if you have a nano-hydrolyzed supplement like Frog Fuel, you only need to take your supplement 15 minutes before working out.
Do non-stim pre-workouts work?
Yes! The best non-stim pre-workouts tend to be equally as effective for athletic performance compared to caffeinated products. They are also regarded as safe for a wider group of people, since you don’t need to worry about the possible side effects of caffeine.