We’ve all seen that person in the locker room chugging their pre-workout as they fiddle with the lock and prepare to walk out into the gym. Here’s what’s wrong with that: The caffeine and other performance enhancers in your pre-workout don’t turn on like a light switch. They need time to work their magic!

Instead of a minute or two before you touch the iron, try taking your pre-workout 30-45 minutes before training. If you can sip your pre-workout while you’re visualizing the workout to come, you’ll be even better prepared.

“If you’re feeling a little down, taking your pre-workout and giving yourself some time to feel it working is key,” Silver-Fagan says. “Cellucor C4 never ceases to get me pumped and ready to crush my training session.”

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