What Happens If You Snort Pre-Workout?

by Nader Qudimat
Updated July 28, 2023

In the fitness and bodybuilding world, pre-workout supplements have become a staple for many.

They're designed to boost energy, endurance, and focus during workouts.

However, a dangerous trend has emerged where individuals snort these supplements, believing it will lead to faster and more intense effects.

This practice is not only misguided but also poses significant health risks.

Let's dig into if snorting pre-workout is safe, the risks and the safe way to take pre-workout...

What Happens If You Snort Pre-Workout: Quick Overview

Snorting pre-workout supplements is dangerous and can lead to severe health risks, including damage to the nasal passages, respiratory issues, and even heart problems.

The high concentration of stimulants and other ingredients, when snorted, bypasses the digestive system and enters the bloodstream directly, leading to potentially harmful effects.

The Rising Trend: Snorting Pre-workout

In recent years, there's been a disturbing increase in people snorting pre-workout supplements.

This trend is fueled by misinformation and the misguided belief that snorting these powders will result in quicker absorption and enhanced effects.

However, this couldn't be further from the truth.

Pre-workout supplements are popular among athletes and fitness enthusiasts for enhancing performance, increasing energy, and improving focus.

However, the method of consumption can significantly impact the effects and potential risks associated with these supplements.

One such method, snorting pre-workout supplements, has been gaining attention due to its potential health risks.

What Are Pre-Workout Supplements?

Pre-workout supplements are typically powders mixed with water and consumed before exercise.

They contain various ingredients, including amino acids, caffeine, and creatine, designed to increase energy, endurance, and focus during a workout.

However, the misuse of these supplements, such as snorting them, can lead to serious health risks.

The Risks Of Snorting Pre-Workout Supplements

In recent years, there's been a disturbing increase in people snorting pre-workout supplements.

This trend is fueled by misinformation and the misguided belief that snorting these powders will result in quicker absorption and enhanced effects.

However, this couldn't be further from the truth.

Nasal And Respiratory Damage

Snorting any substance can lead to damage to the nasal and respiratory tracts.

A study on sharing snorting straws and Hepatitis C Virus infection in pregnant women found that sharing snorting utensils in non-injection drug use may be an additional risk factor for virus transmission (source).

Although this study focused on drug use, the physical act of snorting can damage the delicate tissues in the nose and respiratory tract, leading to potential health risks.

Increased Risk Of Stroke

A case report outlines an incident involving a previously healthy 24-year-old man with no apparent risk factors apart from consumption of pre-workout supplementation who developed a hemorrhagic stroke (source).

While this case involved oral consumption, snorting pre-workout supplements could increase the risk due to the faster absorption rate.

Potential For Toxicity

A study identified N,α-diethylphenethylamine (NADEP) in pre-workout supplements branded as “Craze” and sold online.

The toxicity of NADEP may be similar to that of methamphetamine (source). Snorting these supplements could increase the risk of toxicity due to the faster absorption rate.

Risk Of Adverse Events

A study concluded that dietary supplements with and without caffeine, especially pre-workout and energy products, can be dangerous.

The extent of the risk is difficult to obtain from studies based on databases such as the FDA adverse event database (source).

Snorting these supplements could increase the risk of adverse events due to the faster absorption rate.

Real Stories And News of People Snorting Pre-Workout

The Case Of Rich Piana

Rich Piana, a well-known bodybuilder, reportedly snorted pre-workout supplements.

According to a death report obtained by TMZ, Piana's girlfriend, Chanel Jansen, told investigators that Piana would "snort this powder," which she identified as "CON-CRET PRE workout powder (Lemon-Lime)" (source).

Piana collapsed in early August of a certain year while receiving a haircut.

He was rushed to the hospital and placed in a medically-induced coma, which he remained in for just over two weeks before dying.

Piana's autopsy ruled his cause of death as "unknown," partly due to an inability to run toxicology tests.

The autopsy also revealed that Piana suffered from heart disease, which the medical examiner could not rule out as a possible cause of death.

YouTube Video: "Snorting Pre Workout???"

A YouTube video titled "Snorting Pre Workout???" discusses snorting pre-workout supplements.

The video does not endorse or promote this practice but aims to educate viewers about its potential risks and dangers (source).

The video emphasizes the importance of using pre-workout supplements as directed by the manufacturer and discourages misuse such as snorting.

It also encourages viewers to stay healthy and achieve their fitness goals safely and responsibly.

Not Worth The Risks

These real-life stories and discussions highlight the serious risks of snorting pre-workout supplements.

It's crucial to remember that these supplements are intended to be consumed orally, as directed by the manufacturer.

Misuse of these products can lead to severe health consequences, including damage to the nasal and respiratory tracts, increased risk of stroke, the potential for toxicity, and the risk of adverse events.

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

Alternatives To Snorting Pre-Workout

Snorting pre-workout is not a safe or recommended method of consumption.

There are several safer alternatives to consider:

  • Oral Consumption: The most common and safe way to take pre-workout is orally, as a drink. Mix the recommended dosage with water and consume it 20-30 minutes before your workout. This allows the ingredients to be fully absorbed into your bloodstream and ready to kick in when needed. Read more about it here.
  • Dry Scooping: Dry scooping involves consuming the pre-workout powder directly without mixing it with water. While this method can be effective, it's important to be cautious as it can lead to choking or digestive issues. Learn more about dry scooping creatine here and pre workout here.

How To Take Pre-Workout Safely

Taking pre-workout safely involves more than just the method of consumption. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Correct Dosage: Dosages should be based on weight, workout intensity, and personal tolerance. Always start with the recommended dosage on the supplement's label and adjust as needed. Overdosing can lead to side effects that may disrupt your workout.
  • Timing: Taking your pre-workout at the wrong time can be a major factor in its ineffectiveness. Most experts suggest consuming it 20-30 minutes before training.
  • Diet and Hydration: Your pre-workout supplement is meant to complement your diet, not substitute it. Without proper nutrition, your pre-workout might seem like it's not doing its job. Also, hydration plays a key role in how your body processes and absorbs nutrients, including those found in pre-workout supplements.
  • Sleep: A lack of sleep can counteract the effects of your pre-workout. While pre-workouts are designed to provide a boost, they can't fully compensate for a tired, unrested body.
  • Avoiding Tolerance: The most common cause of your pre-workout not working is your high tolerance to caffeine. Avoiding a tolerance build-up means you'll need to strategize when you take your pre-workout and how much of it.
  • Ingredients: Your pre-workout may contain effective ingredients dosed below their recommended dosages. Pre-workout ingredients should meet the minimum dosages for them to be effective. Learn more about pre-workout ingredients to avoid here.

Remember, pre-workouts aren't superheroes, but they give you an edge when used correctly.

Manage your expectations and give your pre-workout, and yourself, a fair shot at success.

Read more about why your pre-workout might not be working for you here.


Is it safe to snort pre-workout supplements?

No, it's not safe to snort pre-workout supplements. This practice can lead to severe health issues, including damage to the nasal passages and respiratory system, and even heart problems.

What happens if you snort pre-workout?

Snorting pre-workout can cause immediate and long-term health issues. These can include nasal and respiratory damage, heart problems, and an increased risk of overdose due to the high concentration of stimulants entering the bloodstream directly.

Can snorting pre-workout lead to addiction?

While pre-workout supplements themselves are not addictive, snorting can lead to addictive behaviors, especially if the individual is seeking an intense or immediate high.

Are there safer alternatives to snorting pre-workout?

The safest way to consume pre-workout is orally, mixed with water. This allows the ingredients to be absorbed safely and effectively into your bloodstream.

What should I do if I've snorted pre-workout?

If you've snorted pre-workout and are experiencing adverse effects, seek immediate medical attention. It's important to be honest with healthcare providers about what you've taken so they can provide appropriate treatment.

Can snorting pre-workout enhance its effects?

While snorting pre-workout may cause a faster onset of effects due to direct absorption into the bloodstream, it also significantly increases the risk of overdose and other serious health issues.

What are the signs of a pre-workout overdose?

Signs of a pre-workout overdose can include rapid heart rate, high blood pressure, severe anxiety, hallucinations, and in extreme cases, seizures or cardiac arrest.

Can I build a tolerance to pre-workout?

Yes, regular use of pre-workout can lead to a tolerance, meaning you may need to consume more to achieve the same effects. However, increasing your dosage can lead to health risks and is not recommended.

How can I safely use pre-workout?

To use pre-workout safely, always follow the recommended dosage on the label, consume it orally mixed with water, and avoid using it too close to bedtime as it can interfere with sleep.

Are all pre-workout supplements safe?

While many pre-workout supplements are safe when used as directed, some may contain potentially harmful ingredients. Always check the label and consult a healthcare provider if unsure.

Bottom Line

Snorting pre-workout supplements is a dangerous practice with serious health risks.

These supplements are designed to be consumed orally, allowing for safe and effective absorption.

Misuse can lead to immediate and long-term health issues, including damage to the nasal and respiratory systems, heart problems, and an increased risk of overdose.

Always use pre-workout supplements as directed, and consult a healthcare provider if you have any concerns.

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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