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William Paterson University's Official Student-Run Newspaper

The Beacon

Pre-workout vs energy drinks: What the difference


Caution: The products mentioned here only target healthy adults (18+). It is not recommended to consume these beverages if you are sensitive to caffeine or in combination with any stimulants from other sources. High levels of caffeine have been shown to cause nervousness, irritability, sleeplessness, and, occasionally, rapid heart rate, according to the Mayo Clinic. 


Disclaimer: This review comes from a health enthusiast at the Vitamin Shoppe, which sells all the drinks mentioned on this blog. I am not financially compensated for these blog posts from the Vitamin Shoppe or other vendors. 


Energy drinks are also increasing in popularity among consumers. According to Gitnux, 32.5 percent of all adults drink energy drinks. The market for energy drinks is set to increase by 7.1 percent from 2021-2023 


Much like energy drinks, pre-workout is one of the most popular supplements used by gym-goers. A study from Gitnux indicates, “Approximately 67% of male respondents and 46% of females reported use of pre-workout supplements in a study of regular gym-goers.” 



Pre-workout is a supplement that contains a variety of stimulants that give people a boost of nitric oxide and energy.  This allows people to have a better “pump” as well as push themselves harder in the gym increasing the amount of intensity in their workouts.


Energy drinks and pre-workouts may seem similar when looking at them from a consumer’s perspective but are meant to increase your energy. However, pre-workouts and energy drinks are far different than one might imagine. Let’s take a look at the most popular energy drink and pre-workout to compare and contrast the two


The most popular energy drink, according to Gitnux, is Redbull, taking 43 percent of the market share. At the same time, the most popular pre-workout is Bucked up “Woke AF,” containing double five-star reviews on many of their flavors. On the vitamin shops website. 


Caffeine content:


In terms of Caffine content the Bucked Up wins by a mile containing 333 mgs of caffine with Red Bull contaning 111mgs of caffeine (3 times less!). Bucked ups massive amount of caffeine can cause jitters to people that first are not used to its potency and secontly not getting any exercise after taking it. With that being said it depends on what you entended on using the dink for; if you are not doing intense exercise do not take Bucked Up!
Vitamins/nutrition facts:

For starters, Red Bull contains sugar and calories, although drinks, including Ghost and Gorilla Mind, do not contain any sugar. Bucked Up does not have this problem, containing exactly zero grams of sugar and zero calories. Red Bull has been shown to contain B vitamins like niacinamide (vitamin B3), pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), vitamin B6, and vitamin B12. With that being said, Bucked Up does contain 100 mcg of vitamin B12. This shows that energy drinks have more vitamins but can contain sugar. 


Other Stimulants:


Caffeine is said to be the only notable stimulant in Red Bull, but Bucked Up, on the other hand, has many other stimulants in it, such as Caffeine (333mg), dendrobium, and synephrine. With Bucked Up having three powerful stimulants, this shows that using pre-workouts is not for your everyday consumer.   




When comparing these two energy enhancers, it is safe to say both are proficient in caffeine, which shows that both will energize you effectively. With that being said, pre-workouts contain much more caffeine as well as include other stimulants. So when it is all set and done, pre-workouts are not for the weak and can not be used for a casual study session; however, it is great to help fuel your workout. It is important to make sure you are not taking them to late at night.

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