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In the words of the great Arnold Schwarzenegger, “The greatest feeling you can get in a gym, or the most satisfying feeling you can get in the gym is… The Pump. Let’s say you train your biceps. Blood is rushing into your muscles and that’s what we call The Pump. You muscles get a really tight feeling, like your skin is going to explode any minute, and it’s really tight – it’s like somebody blowing air into it, into your muscle. It just blows up, and it feels really different. It feels fantastic.” This quote is from Arnie’s inspirational movie from the 70’s “Pumping Iron” – if you haven’t seen it I suggest you immediately buy yourself a copy and get ready for a serious dose of motivation. An arguably even better dialogue from this movie where he compares the pump to sex but I’ll leave that for you to discover on your own.
N.O.-Xplode by BSN
No xplode by BSN supplements (Bio-engineered Supplements and Nutrition) has got everything you need in a pre workout, with a focus on helping you achieve maximum pump. In addition to the huge Nitric Oxide boosting component, it also contains ingredients to help with energy and motivation, fat burning, recovery and focus. If you only want to use one product to improve your resistance training performance and recovery, this would be a good choice. It is easily among the best pre workout supplements for maximizing pump.
The Mechanics of ‘the pump’
Technically speaking, pump is due to hyperaemia and can be considered to be a form of temporary hypertrophy. What does this actually mean? It means that your muscles appear bigger (hypertrophy) temporarily due to an increased supply of blood (hyperaemia). This can happen during heavy training when the amount of blood coming into the muscle is greater than the amount leaving the muscle. Lifting heavy weights creates this condition in two ways. Firstly, the muscle needs oxygen and nutrients in order to contract, especially when under a load. Secondly, the chemical processes that occur in the muscle in order for it to contract create waste products (lactic acid etc) which need to be removed.
Top Secret Nutrition Pre Workout Pump Igniter
Pump Igniter by Top Secret Nutrition is another one of the best pre workout supplements for pump. It is specifically designed to maximize pump and if reviews are anything to go by then it does a good job of it.
What Causes ‘the pump’
Lots of very hard work and lifting to failure will ensure a pump but in order to maximize it there are a host of products available to help with this. Most of these products market themselves as N.O. (nitric oxide) boosters. Increasing Nitric Oxide levels in the body facilitates Vasodilation which can be described as the widening or enlarging of the diameter of blood vessels. This helps boost performance of muscles by increasing blood flow which means more fuel can be transported to muscles and more waste can be removed from them, more quickly. With maximum vasodilation you can get more blood to your muscles thus being able to work them harder which will make your body pump even more blood there and eventually your muscles become engorged with blood and that is when you experience ‘the pump’. There are many products specifically for boosting N.O. however all pre workouts contain some N.O. boosters. Depending which pre workout you use you may or may not need an additional N.O. supplement. Bullnox for example has a huge pump component and you do not require any additional supplements to maximize pump. See my review of it here: Bullnox pre workout review
Pump HD pre workout
Pump HD by BPI sports is another great pre workout supplement with a particular focus on maximizing pump. This pre workout has a good energy boosting component without too much central nervous system stimulation, so you will be amped to train without getting that horrible jittery feeling. Definitely worth having in your cupboard!
There’s no time like the present – so I suggest you get yourself a good pre workout, watch the clip below and head to the gym. Happy lifting!
Motivation from Pumping Iron
Awesome! That’s a very informative read. And I love “the pump”.. One of my biggest inspirations when it comes to working out is Arnold and Cory Gregory.. They’re now partners! I love the pre workout high too, mix that with some good music and you got a great workout overtime. Very Informative read though, I wish the best of success to you!
thanks Tad, happy lifting!
Hi, I am definitely going to be keeping on eye on your site for some great workout tips! It looks very informative and that you really know what you are talking about! Supplements are so hard to understand for those of us that don’t usually take them. I wouldn’t even know where to start so thank you for having some good suggestions. Best of luck to you!
Thanks Rachel – happy training!
I use to use preworkout and I have to say it really does work. It may motivate me to work again which I need to do soon. Preworkout is like an energy drink with coffee too me, I get amped up and quick. I would recommend people to try it at least once if they haven’t already.
Thanks for reading Brandon!
Great and informative article on the best pre workout for pump. Personally I’ve never been into any preworkout supplements since I’ve always done just fine without them but I totally understand if some guys and gals want to gain a bit of edge to their training. How important you think the pump is when we’re talking about muscle growth? I’ve read some articles on both sides saying it is essential and others stating that it’s completely irrelevant. What’s your take on this? Thanks a lot 🙂
In my opinion getting a pump is not absolutely necessary for muscle growth but you will certainly experience more muscle growth if your training results in a big pump because: 1) you’re working your muscles harder to get to that point and 2) the expansion paves the way for greater muscle growth. Pump on!
I enjoyed the information on the pump. I have seen pumping iron and I think you integrating Arnold’s philosophy was outstanding. He wasn’t crown Mr Olympia 7 times for no reason.
My only suggestion on the flow of the site is maybe make your information on the pump bold. The information for the pump being bold would stand out from the products being sold.
Hi Robert, I completely agree. Arnold is the king of this generation!
I just began working out with the idea of “pumping” and it’s the best feeling ever.
I love getting blood rushing to my biceps and triceps.
I think I’m in better shape now than I’ve ever been.
Do you recommend these powders for all ages?
I’m over 55 years of age and I’d like to take the powders you are offering, but not sure if they’re good for me.
I’m not a doctor so don’t take medical advice from me but in my opinion pre workout supplements can be suitable for any age group. I would probably avoid them or opt for a caffeine free version if you have any heart problems however. Happy training!
Do you have any recommendations on pre-workouts that don’t have you feeling bloated at the end? When I say bloated I’m referring to water retention in general, I’ve tried a newer product Lunacy (maybe you’ve heard of it), it gave a great energy boost and pump but had me swelled up like a balloon (not in a good way, lol)
Any input would be appreciated, thanks
If you are feeling bloated after taking your pre workout there are a couple of options. I assume that this bloating is due to how much you drink in a short period rather than the pre workout itself. I’m not a doctor so I can’t give medical advice but I know that some people mix their supplements with far less water than what’s recommended on the label. The other option is to drink it more slowly over a longer period of time. If neither of these things help then maybe you might want to try a different pre workout. Good luck!
Very informative post and I have some experience with the pre workout stuff.
I’ve tried a few of them and I’ve always had problems getting really jittery. I know that’s kind of the point, but it seems that most are just too strong for me.
Is there any product that you recommend that doesn’t have that side affect or maybe less of that side affect?
I imagine the jitters are probably from a caffeine overload. There are some stimulant free products that you may find more pleasant to take. Check out this post: The Best Caffeine Free Pre Workout Supplements
Really great post and information on all my favorite pre-workouts. I was using N.O Xplode for many years and felt I needed a change. Somebody suggested Bullnox and I have been using it for the past 2 week and boy is it a different experience. Completely loving it. I’m looking to change up my pre-workouts more often. What would you recommend after this cycle?
Tthanks Xander! I would suggest a stim free product like magnum opus or a week or two off the stims and then if you like bullnox maybe try C4 or performix ION. happy lifting!
I really liked this idea, however, is it safe for women to use it, I mean i do not want to have a ripped body although I want it to be slim and muscular.
Hope you get the drift, for me it is more like having a strong and slightly muscular body and not all the way ripped like men
Hi Shrey, getting ripped is not something that will happen by accident. To have really low body fat mainly comes down to diet, so getting your pump on is not something that is going to make you look super ripped, though it should help to improve the tone of your body.
Wow, this is a great informative read breaking down and explaining “pump” that all weightlifters are well aware of. I’ve been lifting weights since high school & have tried pre-workout shakes & supplements but stopped using them because they don’t seem to give me that energy boost they claimed they do.
If you had to choose one of the supplements in your article, which one would you say gives you the best energy boost while also maximizing the pump after a workout?
thanks Andrew, the effects are different for everyone but Bullnox is probably my favorite though it is now called B-nox.
Hey man, first of all thanks for this great, interesting and very informative article on pre workout.
I have actually never tried a pre workout before. I only use protein pulver and sometimes some creatine/Bcaa. Otherwise I tried some glutamine, but I haven’t really noticed too much differences. But I’ll probably check some of these out. Thanks for the recommendations.
Thanks, and good luck!