Absolutely not! You may have heard the phrase, “if it clumps, it pumps.” The fact is that this phrase is perfect for explaining what happens to your favourite pre-workout supplement, and how clumped pre-workout is not a bad thing. If anything, if your pre-workout supplement is hardening or clumping, it can actually be a good thing, as it’s telling you it’s working!
In today’s pre-workout market, a number of pre-workout products have very high doses of pump ingredients. Some of these you may already be familiar with, such as L-Citrulline (or Citrulline Malate), Agmatine, Glycerol (or Hydromax), and Arginine. Many of these are amino acid compounds.
Many pre-workout ingredients can are hygroscopic, also known as a substance that absorbs moisture from the air. These ingredients attract and hold water, which causes them to clump with the other ingredients in your pre-workout supplement.
Basically, the clumping or hardening in your pre-workout is simply moisture from the air that is attracted to the ingredients in your pre-workout.
There are a few different solutions to stop pre-workout from clumping or to fix hardened pre-workout.
When you open your pre-workout supplement, you should see a silica gel, or desiccant pack, in the container. This little pack works wonders for keeping your pre-workout from getting hard as it absorbs moisture before any of the ingredients do. Always make sure you keep this pack in your pre-workout container until the last scoop!
You can also prevent pre-workout clumping by regularly stirring or shaking the pre-workout powder and container. This actually has a couple of benefits. First, it will ensure your desiccant pack moves throughout the container to absorb any moisture that’s present. Second, it makes sure all the ingredients in your pre-workout supplement properly mix together. Many pre-workout ingredients have different gradations, and therefore different weights. This can mean your pre-workout ingredients separate in the container. Heavier ingredients such as L-Citrulline settle at the bottom of the powder, while lighter ingredients like caffeine will gather at the top. This occurrence can make for an inconsistent pre-workout experience in each serving, as well as encourage clumping by having the same ingredient packed close together in the container. I like to shake and mix my pre-workout supplement before every use to ensure I’m getting a consistent experience every time and to keep my pre-workout from clumping.
The last thing to consider is where you store your pre-workout supplement. A cool, dry area is ideal, as this limits the potential for moisture to be present. A great option is the freezer - yes, you read that right! Storing pre-workout in the freezer can prevent clumping since it’s dry and there is very little moisture in the air.
If your pre-workout supplement already contains clumps, there are a few ways to solve this. Remember, clumped pre-workout is still usable, but you will want to break apart the clumps to get a consistent experience from your pre-workout powder.
You can put your pre-workout into a blender. This allows you to break up the clumps and mix all the ingredients back together evenly. If you are putting your clumped pre-workout into a blender, make sure you take out your desiccant pack first - just remember to put it back into the container when you’re done!
You can also break up your clumpy pre-workout with a knife, fork, or the other end of the scoop inside your container. Once you’re done, give the pre-workout a good shake, and the larger clumps will break down further.
Here at Supplement Superstore, we’ve put together a list of the 15 best pre-workout supplements that offer a great pump with high levels of hygroscopic ingredients. Just remember to follow the advice above, and you’ll get a consistent pre-workout experience every time you hit the gym!
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