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Can you mix pre-workout with anything?

Pre-workout supplements have become increasingly popular among gym-goers and athletes looking to boost their energy and performance during workouts. While pre-workout is designed to be taken on its own, some people wonder if it’s okay to mix it with other drinks or supplements.

What’s in Pre-Workout?

First, let’s take a look at what’s typically found in pre-workout:

Ingredient Purpose
Caffeine Increase energy and alertness
Creatine Improve strength and power
Beta-alanine Reduce fatigue
Citrulline Improve blood flow and endurance
Taurine Improve focus
B vitamins Increase energy

The main effects come from ingredients like caffeine, creatine, beta-alanine, and citrulline. It’s the precise blend and dosages of these key ingredients that is responsible for the performance-enhancing effects of pre-workout.

Drinks You Can Mix with Pre-Workout

While it’s generally recommended to take pre-workout on its own, there are some drinks that can be safely mixed with it:


The simplest option is to mix your pre-workout powder with water. This will provide all the ergogenic effects of the supplement without introducing any other compounds.


Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are often taken alongside pre-workout to promote muscle growth and reduce fatigue. There is no issue with mixing BCAA powder into your pre-workout drink.

Protein Powder

Whey or plant-based protein powders can also be combined with pre-workout. This will provide protein around your workout to support muscle repair and growth on top of the strength and energy boost.


While many pre-workouts already contain creatine, you can add extra creatine powder to your pre-workout drink. This can further enhance your power output during high-intensity exercise.

Carbohydrate Powder

Adding a carb powder like maltodextrin, dextrose, or highly branched cyclic dextrin can provide an additional source of fast-digesting carbs for fuel during your workout.

Drinks to Avoid Mixing with Pre-Workout

On the other hand, there are some drinks that you’ll want to avoid taking with pre-workout:


Since pre-workout and coffee both contain caffeine, combining the two can lead to excessive caffeine intake if you’re not careful. This raises your risk of side effects like jitteriness, anxiety, and sleep issues.

Energy Drinks

Just like coffee, energy drinks have high amounts of caffeine and stimulants that can interact with pre-workout. Best to avoid this mixture.


You should never mix alcohol with your pre-workout. The combination of stimulants and depressants can place great strain on your heart and body.


Certain medications like blood thinners, antidepressants, and antibiotics can potentially interact with ingredients in pre-workout like caffeine. Speak with your doctor before mixing pre-workout with any prescription medications.


Although juice provides carbohydrates, its acidity can degrade some of the ingredients in pre-workout, reducing its efficacy. Water is a better mixing option.

Should You Mix Pre-Workout with Anything?

At the end of the day, your pre-workout is designed by supplement experts to give you an optimal dose of the key active ingredients. While it’s not dangerous to mix in certain supplements like protein powder or BCAAs, you won’t necessarily enhance the effects.

Additionally, adding extra compounds makes it harder to pinpoint the root cause if you experience any unwanted side effects.

For these reasons, it’s best to take your pre-workout as directed with water only. This ensures you get the full effects of the precise formula.

However, one exception is if you’re following a specialized workout nutrition program that calls for certain supplements to be stacked together. In this case, mixing different products is part of the structured plan and the dosages have been carefully balanced.

Some examples of pre-workout stacks include:

Stack Benefits
Pre-workout + BCAAs Enhanced endurance and reduced muscle fatigue
Pre-workout + creatine Greater increases in power and strength
Pre-workout + protein Increased muscle repair and growth
Pre-workout + carbs Extra fuel for intense training sessions

Following a structured stacking protocol specifically designed to complement your training goals is a smart approach. But avoid randomly mixing multiple supplements together.

How to Safely Mix Pre-Workout

If you do decide to mix your pre-workout with another supplement or drink, here are some tips to do so safely:

  • Read labels carefully and start with half-doses of each supplement to assess tolerance.
  • Never exceed the recommended dosages for any of the ingredients.
  • Drink plenty of extra water before, during, and after your workout when stacking products.
  • Do not mix pre-workout with medications, drugs, or alcohol.
  • Listen to your body and stop stacking if you experience adverse effects.
  • Talk to a doctor or nutritionist if you have any questions about supplement interactions.

The Bottom Line

At the end of the day, talk to your doctor or nutritionist if you have any questions or concerns about mixing pre-workout powders with other supplements or drinks. Although some combinations may be safe if done carefully, taking pre-workout as directed is always the best approach for beginners.

Once you become more experienced and want to explore specialized workout nutrition stacks, make sure to follow dosage and safety recommendations closely. Start slow and pay attention to how your body responds.

Mixing your pre-workout properly will maximize the benefits while minimizing side effects and potential interactions. Use common sense and be cautious when combining pre-workout with other supplements.