Pre-workout is a supplement which on consumption before exercise boosts your energy levels as well as provides you sustained energy during the workout. It comprises of constituents like beta-alanine, creatine, amino acids, L- Citrulline, etc. It even assists in muscle recovery after long exhausting workouts.
If you are also familiar with Pre-workout and it forms a part of your regime, you might have seldom experienced the issue of pre-workout supplements turning gawky and lumpy. The supplement might become solid and dark-colored with plenty of lumps.
This change in the texture and overall look and feel gives an impression of a fake supplement. You might have also come across such an episode and repented buying such a supplement.
This happens with almost everyone consuming pre-workout supplements, even with other supplements like whey proteins, BCAA, etc. But this condition is all the more common in case of pre-workouts.
Is it because of authenticity issues or some other reason? How can these issues be sorted? Explore Below!
Common Reasons Why Pre-workout Powders Get Clumpy
Reason 1: Hygroscopic Nature of Pre-workout constituents
Various ingredients of pre-workout are hygroscopic in nature, which means it consists of particles which pulls and clasps molecules of water, turning sticky and fuggy itself. This hygroscopic nature of constituents persuades the pre-workout powders to attract moisture and water particles from the air. This phenomenon leads to the formation of clumps and it gets furthermore coarsened with time.
Chemicals, preservatives, and sweeteners present in pre-workouts prevent the supplement from solidifying; however, these are not good for health. Hence even if a pre-workout hardens because of the lack of these three, it doesn’t always mean that it is a forged supplement. It might be because of the absence or very little presence of these chemicals and preservatives.
Reason 2: Left- out the supplement for long-duration
This is the most obvious reason behind pre-workouts or any other supplement getting clumpy. If you leave your pre-workout supplement unused for a very long period of time, i.e. more than two months after opening the seal, it will start deteriorating.
Even if you open the box once and then open it the next after 10 days, the texture starts changing. This does not mean that it has started decomposing within 10 days of opening rather that is just its nature. However, if it is not consumed within a month or two then it begins to tangle.
Pre-workouts might not be a part of your daily regime, but even if the supplement is consumed every second or third day, this leads to a regular or alternate stirring of the powder which in turn prevents lump formation to some extent.
Reason 3: Leaving Pre-workout supplements in hot, humid or damp place
This is also one very common reason behind clumpy pre-workouts. Often people keep their supplements in their two-wheelers or cars in order to carry them gym, however, they end up leaving these supplements in vehicles for long duration in sunlight. This not only creates a warm but unpleasant environment for the supplement, which is inappropriate for it to sustain. Even if pre-workout is kept in a cupboard or a room that has moisture or humidity, it will start lumping.
Some people find keeping pre-workouts in refrigerators a good idea, it is fine to do so for a small duration provided that you stir them regularly. However, if it somehow remains uncapped or lid is not fixed perfectly, it might get exposed to the moisture of the refrigerator and can get coagulated.
Reason 4: Removing the Silica Gel Packet from Pre-workout containers
The silica gel packets are placed in pre-workout containers for some reason. They avert the supplement to attract moisture from the atmosphere and make the pre-workout powder sustainable for a longer time. Many people remove this silica gel packet either because of the chance of mixing it sometimes in water along with pre-workout by mistake or because of unawareness.
Do not remove the packet from the container as it adds to the life of the supplement and prevents it from getting hard.
How to Prevent Pre-workouts from Getting Clumpy?
1. Cover the lid properly: The lid of the pre-workout container should be tightly closed. Even if it is left out uncapped for a few hours, it absorbs moisture from the air due to its hygroscopic nature.
2. Never transfer the supplement to another container: Firstly, the containers are designed as per the supplement. Transferring them to another container might not meet the requirements of the specific supplement. Secondly, while transferring the supplement you expose it to the atmosphere which brings it in contact with moisture. Hence, do not change the box of the supplement as it might turn the pre-workout clumpy.
3. Store at a moderate or mildly cool temperature, do not dump: Pre-workout supplements remain good if kept in a slightly cold and dry atmosphere. It should not be dumped in a closed cupboard for a long time. Keeping it in a refrigerator at mild temperature is a good idea.
4. Do not remove the silica gel packet: As explained above, the silica gel packet should not be removed from pre-workout to keep the supplement intact. Leave it buried in the pre-workout powder.
5. Stir the supplement regularly: Even if you don’t consume pre-workout regularly, stir the supplement daily so that it doesn’t settle and solidifies.
What to do When Your Pre-workout Gets Clumpy?
If you have a pre-workout, which is already in bad condition (i.e. clumpy), below are the remedies for it:
- You can try breaking the lumps of pre-workout with crushers or forks from your kitchen.
- If crushers and forks don’t work, try blending it in a mixer and then preserve in its box covered properly.
- Store it in a refrigerator.
It can be concluded that due to their hygroscopic nature, pre-workouts are extremely prone to get clumpy. Hence, always purchase the pre-workout supplement as per requirement and take good care about the handling procedures. Never leave it in the sun or dump areas. Just a few preventive measures can add to better sustainability of your pre-workout supplement.