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What Does High-Stim Mean In Pre-Workout?

by Nader Qudimat
Updated July 30, 2023

Pre-workouts are designed to boost energy, improve focus, and enhance performance during workouts.

One thing you've probably heard about pre-workout supplements is "high stim," but what does it mean?

This article will dive into what it means and if it's for you...

High Stim In Pre-Workouts: A Quick Overview

High stim in pre-workouts refers to supplements that contain a high concentration of stimulants.

These stimulants, often caffeine, yohimbine, DMBA, and others, are designed to boost energy and enhance focus during workouts.

What Is High Stim In Pre-Workouts?

High stim, short for high stimulation, refers to pre-workout supplements that contain a high concentration of stimulants.

These stimulants, such as caffeine, boost your energy, enhance your focus, and improve your overall workout performance.

The Role Of Caffeine In High Stim Pre-Workouts

Caffeine is a key player in high stim pre-workouts.

It's a powerful stimulant that wakes you up and enhances your athletic performance.

But how does it do this? Caffeine activates areas of your brain and nervous system that can increase performance.

The Science Behind Caffeine And Exercise

Research shows that caffeine can significantly improve your exercise performance.

It does this by reducing perceived effort, which means you don't feel as tired as you should during your workout.

This allows you to push harder and longer, leading to better results.

Here's an example of a high-stim pre-workout, the El Jefe Guerilla:

The stimulants used are 400mg Theobromine, 300mg Caffeine, 150mg Infinergy (75% Caffeine), and 100mg Caffeine Citrate.

This pre-workout provides outstanding muscle pumps, smooth, sustained energy throughout your workout, and long-lasting focus.

It's worth noting that it does not contain any exotic stimulants, making it a suitable choice for those who prefer to avoid them.

This pre-workout is a potent blend of ingredients that aims to enhance your workout performance, providing sustained energy, improved focus, and impressive pumps.

It's packed with scientifically-backed ingredients and has received positive reviews for its effectiveness.

It's not for beginners, but for advanced users looking for a potent pre-workout, El Jefe Guerilla is a solid choice.

The energy it provides is smooth and long-lasting, without any crashes. The pumps are outstanding, and there's a significant improvement in focus during workouts.

For more detailed information, you can read the full review here.

Ingredients In High-Stim Pre-Workouts

These are the commonly found ingredients in high-stimulant pre-workouts...

Eria Jarensis

Eria Jarensis is a plant often used in supplements due to its psychoactive properties.

It contains a high concentration of phenylethylamine substances, known to enhance mood and increase focus.

Benefits

  • Mood Enhancement: Eria Jarensis is known to enhance mood due to its phenylethylamine content. Phenylethylamine is a compound that can promote better mood and well-being.
  • Increased Focus: This plant is also used for its cognitive-enhancing properties. It can help increase focus and attention, making it a popular ingredient in nootropic supplements.
  • Energy Boost: Eria Jarensis can boost energy, making it a common ingredient in pre-workout supplements.

Side Effects

While Eria Jarensis is generally considered safe, it can have some side effects, especially when taken in large doses. These can include:

  • Nausea: Some people may experience nausea after consuming Eria Jarensis.
  • Headaches: Headaches are another potential side effect of this plant.
  • Increased Heart Rate: Eria Jarensis can cause an increased heart rate due to its stimulant properties.

Synephrine

Synephrine is a naturally occurring alkaloid that is considered to be a safer alternative to ephedra.

It is found in some dietary supplements that are marketed to promote weight loss.

Benefits:

  • Synephrine has lipolytic effects, meaning it helps break down fats and other lipids. This can aid in weight loss.
  • Unlike other weight loss ingredients, it can increase the metabolic rate without affecting heart rate or blood pressure.

Side Effects:

  • While generally considered safe, some reports have linked synephrine with adverse cardiovascular events, especially when combined with other stimulants.
  • The most common adverse events were tachycardia (rapid heart rate), and palpitations.
  • Less common events were variations in blood pressure, fainting, myocardial infarction, and others.

Mucuna Pruriens

Mucuna Pruriens, also known as velvet bean, is a tropical legume native to Africa and tropical Asia and widely naturalized and cultivated.

Its English common names include velvet bean, Bengal velvet bean, Florida velvet bean, Mauritius velvet bean, Yokohama velvet bean, cowage, cowitch, lacuna bean, and Lyon bean.

The plant is notorious for the extreme itchiness it can produce on contact, particularly with the young foliage and the seed pods.

It has value in agricultural and horticultural use and has a range of medicinal properties.

Benefits

  • Parkinson's Disease Treatment: Mucuna Pruriens has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for over two thousand years for treating nervous disorders including Parkinson's disease. L-DOPA, a compound that is a direct precursor to the neurotransmitter dopamine is found in high concentrations in Mucuna Pruriens. Parkinson's disease is characterized by the death of dopamine-generating cells, and one of the primary treatments involves L-DOPA supplementation.
  • Mood Enhancement and Stress Reduction: Mucuna Pruriens is often used as a mood enhancer and to reduce stress. This is likely due to its dopamine-producing properties, as dopamine is a neurotransmitter that promotes feelings of pleasure.
  • Fertility and Libido: Some studies have shown that Mucuna Pruriens can improve male fertility by increasing sperm count and motility. It is also often used as an aphrodisiac.

Side Effects

  • Potential Overstimulation: Because Mucuna Pruriens can increase dopamine levels, it can potentially lead to overstimulation, causing restlessness, agitation, and insomnia.
  • Gastrointestinal Issues: Some people may experience gastrointestinal issues such as bloating, nausea, and vomiting.
  • Allergic Reactions: As with any supplement, there is always the risk of an allergic reaction. Symptoms can include itching, redness, and swelling.
  • Interactions with Medication: Mucuna Pruriens can interact with certain medications, particularly those used for depression and Parkinson's disease. Always consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Green Tea

Green tea is made from Camellia sinensis leaves and buds that have not undergone the same withering and oxidation process used to make oolong teas and black teas.

Green tea originated in China, but its production and manufacture have spread to other countries in East Asia.

Benefits

  • Rich in Antioxidants: Green tea is rich in antioxidants, which can help fight oxidative stress in the body and reduce inflammation.
  • Weight Loss: Some studies have shown that green tea can aid in weight loss by boosting metabolic rate and increasing fat burning.
  • Heart Health: Regular consumption of green tea has been linked to a lower risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • Brain Health: The caffeine and antioxidants in green tea can benefit brain health and cognition, potentially reducing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.

Side Effects

  • Caffeine Sensitivity: Green tea does contain caffeine, which can cause problems for people sensitive to its effects.
  • Stomach Problems: Green tea is acidic, which can lead to stomach problems in some people, especially if consumed on an empty stomach.
  • Iron Absorption: Green tea can inhibit iron absorption from food, which can lead to anemia in some people.
  • Interactions with Medication: As with any supplement, green tea can interact with certain medications, so it's always best to consult a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Teacrine

Teacrine is a natural compound often used in pre-workout supplements to boost physical performance, focus, and motivation.

It is structurally similar to caffeine and works in similar ways in the body.

Benefits

  • Energy Boost: Teacrine provides a noticeable boost in energy, similar to caffeine but without the jitters or crash.
  • Improved Focus and Motivation: Many users report improved focus and motivation when taking Teacrine supplements.
  • Physical Performance: Teacrine can enhance physical performance, making it a popular choice for pre-workout supplements.

Side Effects

  • Potential Overstimulation: As with any stimulant, there is the potential for overstimulation, leading to restlessness, agitation, and insomnia.
  • Tolerance: Some people may develop a tolerance to Teacrine, requiring higher doses for the same effect.
  • Interactions with Medication: As with any supplement, Teacrine can interact with certain medications, so it's always best to consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

N-Methyltyramine

N-Methyltyramine (NMT) is a naturally occurring trace amine, derived from the amino acid tyramine, present in several foodstuffs.

It is often used in weight loss and pre-workout supplements due to its stimulant properties.

Benefits

  • Energy Boost: N-Methyltyramine is known to provide a significant boost in energy, similar to caffeine but without the jittery side effects. This makes it a popular ingredient in pre-workout supplements.
  • Increased Focus: N-Methyltyramine is also known to enhance focus and concentration, making it useful for tasks that require mental clarity.
  • Fat Loss: Some studies suggest that N-Methyltyramine may aid in fat loss by increasing the body's metabolic rate. This makes it a common ingredient in weight loss supplements.

Side Effects

  • Potential Overstimulation: As with any stimulant, there is the potential for overstimulation, leading to restlessness, agitation, and insomnia.
  • Increased Heart Rate and Blood Pressure: N-Methyltyramine may increase heart rate and blood pressure, which could be dangerous for individuals with pre-existing heart conditions.
  • Interactions with Medication: As with any supplement, N-Methyltyramine can interact with certain medications, so it's always best to consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Alpha Yohimbine

Alpha yohimbine, also known as rauwolscine, is a naturally occurring alkaloid often used as a supplement for fat loss and mood enhancement.

It is structurally similar to yohimbine, but is considered more potent and have fewer side effects.

Benefits

  • Fat Loss: Alphayohimbine is often used to aid in fat loss due to its ability to block alpha-2 adrenergic receptors, which are known to inhibit fat burning.
  • Mood Enhancement: Alphayohimbine is also known to enhance mood and reduce anxiety, likely due to its effects on neurotransmitter levels in the brain.
  • Increased Energy: Some users report increased energy levels when taking alphayohimbine, making it a popular ingredient in pre-workout supplements.

Side Effects

  • Potential Overstimulation: As with any stimulant, there is the potential for overstimulation, which can lead to restlessness, agitation, and insomnia.
  • Increased Heart Rate and Blood Pressure: Alphayohimbine may increase heart rate and blood pressure, which could be dangerous for individuals with pre-existing heart conditions.
  • Interactions with Medication: As with any supplement, alpha yohimbine can interact with certain medications, so it's always best to consult a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

DMBA

DMBA, or 1,3-dimethylbutylamine, is a stimulant drug that is often used in pre-workout and weight loss supplements.

It is structurally similar to DMAA, a stimulant banned in many countries due to safety concerns.

Recommended: What Is DMAA Pre-Workout?

Benefits

  • Increased Energy and Focus: DMBA is known to provide a significant boost in energy and focus, making it a popular ingredient in pre-workout supplements.
  • Fat Loss: Some studies suggest that DMBA may aid in fat loss by increasing the body's metabolic rate.

Side Effects

  • Potential Overstimulation: As with any stimulant, there is the potential for overstimulation, leading to restlessness, agitation, and insomnia.
  • Increased Heart Rate and Blood Pressure: DMBA may increase heart rate and blood pressure, which could be dangerous for individuals with pre-existing heart conditions.
  • Interactions with Medication: As with any supplement, DMBA can interact with certain medications, so it's always best to consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Other Ingredients In High Stim Pre-Workouts

Besides caffeine, high stim pre-workouts may contain other stimulants like yohimbine, theobromine, and synephrine.

These ingredients work together to enhance your resistance training and endurance performance.

High Stim vs Non-Stim Pre-Workouts: What's The Difference?

While high-stim pre-workouts are designed to give you a significant energy boost, non-stim pre-workouts do not contain stimulants.

Instead, they rely on other ingredients like amino acids to enhance your workout performance.

The Benefits Of High Stim Pre-Workouts

High-stim pre-workouts offer several benefits, including increased energy, improved focus, enhanced endurance, and better workout performance.

They can also help you push past your limits and achieve your fitness goals faster.

Are High Stim Pre-Workouts For Everyone?

While high stim pre-workouts can be beneficial, they're not for everyone.

If you're sensitive to stimulants or have certain health conditions, you may want to opt for non-stim or low stim pre-workouts instead.

Potential Side Effects Of High Stim Pre-Workouts

Like any supplement, high stim pre-workouts can have potential side effects.

These may include jitters, insomnia, increased heart rate, and digestive issues.

It's always best to start with a lower dose to assess your tolerance.

Half-Life Of Strong Stimulants And High Stim Pre-Workouts

The half-life of a stimulant is the time it takes for the concentration of the substance in the body to reduce by half.

This is important as it determines how long the effects of the stimulant will last.

However, the half-life of stimulants can vary greatly depending on the specific substance and individual factors such as metabolism.

For instance, the half-life of caffeine is typically around 3 to 5 hours, but this can vary.

Unfortunately, data on the half-life of other common stimulants in high-stim pre-workouts, such as yohimbine and DMBA, is not readily available.

Making The Right Choice: High Stim vs Non-Stim Pre-Workouts

Choosing between high stim and non-stim pre-workouts ultimately depends on your personal needs, goals, and tolerance to stimulants.

It's always best to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement regimen.

The Power Of Combining Stimulants

When it comes to high-stim pre-workouts, the combination of ingredients is key.

One strategy often used in these formulations is the combination of different forms of caffeine, such as caffeine anhydrous, caffeine citrate, and caffeine malate.

Each form of caffeine has its unique properties and absorption rates, which can lead to a more sustained and gradual release of energy.

Here's a quick rundown of these caffeine forms:

  • Caffeine Anhydrous: The most common form of caffeine found in pre-workouts. It's quickly absorbed and provides a rapid energy boost.
  • Caffeine Citrate: A faster-acting form of caffeine that kicks in quickly to provide an immediate energy surge.
  • Caffeine Malate: A buffered form of caffeine that provides a slower, more sustained release of energy, helping to prevent the crash often associated with caffeine consumption.

Adding to this potent mix of stimulants is hordenine, a compound found in certain plants.

Hordenine is believed to act as a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI), which means it can potentially prolong the effects of other stimulants.

By inhibiting the breakdown of monoamines (a group of neurotransmitters that includes dopamine and adrenaline), hordenine may extend the life of the stimulatory effects provided by caffeine and other stimulants in the pre-workout.

This combination of different forms of caffeine and hordenine can result in a powerful, sustained energy boost that can enhance your workout performance.

However, it's important to note that everyone's response to stimulants can vary, and what works well for one person may not work as well for another.

Always start with a lower dose to assess your tolerance and consult a healthcare provider if you have any concerns.

Please note that while this combination can be effective, it's also potent and should be used responsibly. Overuse of stimulants can lead to side effects such as:

  • Jitteriness
  • Increased heart rate
  • Sleep disturbances

Always follow the recommended dosages on the product label and listen to your body.

Exploring More Resources For Pre-Workouts

If you're on the hunt for the perfect pre-workout supplement, we have a wealth of resources available on our blog to help guide your decision.

For those who are particularly interested in the caffeine content of their pre-workout, we have a comprehensive list of pre-workouts sorted by caffeine amount, starting from 100mg and going up.

This allows you to choose a pre-workout that aligns with your caffeine tolerance and preferences.

If you're someone who craves intensity and is looking for the most potent options on the market, our list of the strongest pre-workouts is a must-see.

This guide will help you navigate the world of high-stim pre-workouts and choose one that suits your needs.

For those new to the world of pre-workouts or anyone looking to understand more about these supplements, our article on what pre-workouts do provides a comprehensive overview.

It covers everything from the benefits and potential side effects to the science behind how these supplements work.

Finally, if you're wondering about the frequency of pre-workout usage, our article on taking pre-workout twice a day offers valuable insights.

It discusses the potential benefits and drawbacks of multiple daily doses, helping you make an informed decision about your pre-workout routine.

Remember, choosing the right pre-workout is a personal decision that should be based on your individual fitness goals, tolerance levels, and overall health.

Always consult with a healthcare provider if you have any concerns.

FAQs About High Stim Pre-Workouts

Q: What does high stim mean in pre-workouts?

High stim in pre-workouts refers to supplements that contain a high concentration of stimulants. These stimulants are designed to provide a significant energy boost and enhance focus during workouts.

Q: What are some common stimulants found in high stim pre-workouts?

Common stimulants in high-stim pre-workouts include caffeine, yohimbine, DMBA, and others.

Q: How long do the effects of high stim pre-workouts last?

The duration of effects can vary greatly depending on the specific stimulants used and individual factors such as metabolism. For instance, the effects of caffeine, a common stimulant in high-stim pre-workouts, can last anywhere from 3 to 5 hours.

Q: Are high stim pre-workouts safe?

While high stim pre-workouts can be safe for many individuals, they can also cause side effects such as restlessness, agitation, and insomnia. They may also increase heart rate and blood pressure, which could be dangerous for individuals with pre-existing heart conditions. Always consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Q: Can I take a high stim pre-workout every day?

While some individuals may be able to tolerate daily use of high stim pre-workouts, it's generally recommended to cycle these supplements to avoid developing a tolerance to the stimulants. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions and consult a healthcare provider with any concerns.

The Bottom Line

High stim pre-workouts are supplements designed to boost energy and enhance focus during workouts.

They contain a high concentration of stimulants, which can vary greatly in their effects and half-life.

While these supplements can benefit many individuals, they can also cause side effects and may not be suitable for everyone.

Always consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

by Nader Qudimat

Forged by iron and cold steel, I'm Nader, a mid-30s natural bodybuilder. Once a 100lb skinny guy, I've transformed into a 200lb muscular athlete with over 15 years of lifting experience. Today, I leverage my transformation and extensive experience to guide countless individuals on their fitness journeys.

Click here to check out my 12 year transformation: Natural 12 Year Transformation

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