4 Gauge Pre-Workout Review – Is It A Legitimate Contender?

Combating tiredness and boosting energy in your workouts is vital, and best of all, it's possible! You can take pre-workout supplements like 4 Gauge, a powder commonly taken by gymgoers.[1]

Multiple ingredients in 4 Gauge create positive results for workout performance. This is why I've covered 4 Gauge's all-natural pre-workout supplement in detail.

Read my 4 Gauge pre-workout review to learn all the relevant facts.

4 Gauge is a pre-workout drink that the manufacturer states is made from high-quality, carefully selected natural ingredients that balance energy, muscle pumps, muscle gains, focus, and strength. It comes in a unique case that resembles a shotgun shell.

4 Gauge's manufacturer claims that their pre-workout supplement gives you longer-lasting energy and focus through what they call 'Smart Caffeine,' which is a combination of Caffeine and L-Theanine.

Caffeine increases your overall energy levels and stimulates you, while L-Theanine boosts mental focus and relaxation.[2]

4 Gauge Pre-Workout







Overall Score


My Personal Experience Training With 4 Gauge Pre-Workout

To ensure I got a good experience with 4 Gauge's pre-workout, I took it 30 minutes before all my gym sessions for three weeks.

This way, I could reflect on it and judge its effects during my workouts.

1. Flavor

4 Gauge’s manufacturer sells their popular supplement in one flavor, Fruit Blast. In my opinion, the flavor tastes great and made my workout a little more pleasant, but there was a slight synthetic hint despite the natural ingredients.

Fortunately, the grainy, chalk-like feeling that accompanies many pre-workout supplements wasn’t present.

The downside here is obviously that there are other brands with a lot more variety when it comes to flavor. So if you're not a fan of fruit punch, you're out of luck.

Using 4 Gauge Pre-Workout

2. Performance Increase

After about 30 minutes, I knew this was an effective pre-workout, and as you would expect, the quality of my exercise performance in the gym improved.

However, even though my mental performance improved with 4 Gauge, it wasn't to the same extent as with other pre-workout supplements I've reviewed.

3. Pump

4 Gauge did help me achieve a good pump, which I noticed as my workout progressed, though that’s to be expected from a pre-workout supplement combined with a workout promoting muscle growth.

However, it’s worth noting that other pre-workouts have helped me to achieve a better pump.

An example of this is the Transparent Labs BULK pre-workout, which has extra ingredients supporting muscle growth like Vitamin D, Zinc, and Boron.

These also support testosterone production, which feeds back into muscle growth for men.

4. Focus

Achieving a higher level of focus is one of the main reasons many take a pre-workout supplement before starting their workout.

I noticed that my energy production and focus increased once 4 Gauge kicked in. This translated to more reps and heavier weight lifted.

However, as I wrote above, it wasn't to the same extent as with other pre-workouts.

5. Energy

I noted an increase in energy which gave results in focus and drive, which helped me push out more reps and lift heavier weights, promoting muscle growth and improved strength.

This is a welcome benefit to anyone's workout, but that's to be expected from a caffeine-based supplement like 4 Gauge.

One dose has 150 mg of caffeine, so it's definitely on the lower end of most pre-workouts. If you're unsure how your body will react to the caffeine, 4 Gauge might be a good one to start with.

6. Side Effects

Though I noted no adverse 4 Gauge pre-workout side effects, some can be triggered by allergies to one or more of the ingredients.

I recommend reading the label and making sure you are not allergic to any of the listed ingredients.

In my experience, many side effects are caused by active ingredients like artificial sweeteners and large amounts of caffeine.

These are a few ingredients included in many pre-workouts, but 4 Gauge has no artificial sweeteners and a lower level of caffeine, which is a big plus.

Learn More - What Are The Pre-Workout Side Effects?

7. Post-Workout

A positive was that I didn’t experience any crashes after the effects wore off.

I believe that a factor in this is that 4 Gauge only contains 150mg of caffeine per serving, while others can contain as much as 400mg per serving.

8. Cost & Availability

4 Gauge is among the popular pre-workouts, but there are cheaper alternatives.

One bottle, which contains 20 servings, costs $45, and the cost can quickly add up, especially if you take two or more scoops at a time and take it often, as many 4-Gauge users do.

One way to reduce the cost per bottle of 4 Gauge is to go to their website and buy their 3-shell package or the "Ultimate Ammo Crate" package.

With this offer, you get an extra fourth bottle for free, which equals $33.75 per bottle.

However, the cost of 4 Gauge is still higher than other pre-workouts I've used. This is true even when you find good discounts, because rival products still end up being cheaper or equivalent.

For example, when ordered direct from their website, Cellucor’s C4 Original only costs $29.99 for 30 servings, or just $20.99 when you subscribe after making your first order.

4 Gauge Pre-Workout







Overall Score



  • I didn’t experience a crash
  • I noticed an increase in my energy and focus
  • Gave me lasting energy and no jitters


  • Costs more than other pre-workouts
  • Slight synthetic taste was off-putting
  • I could only buy direct from the company

4 Gauge Pre-Workout Ingredients Examined

4 Gauge Pre-Workout Supplement Facts

Caffeine Anhydrous - 150mg

Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant that increases alertness and attentional performance.

The difference with Caffeine Anhydrous is that it is dehydrated caffeine, which appears as a white crystalline powder.

Once the dehydration process has finished, Caffeine Anhydrous remains. This dehydrated form of caffeine works the same way as regular caffeine but is much more concentrated and potent.

It is one of the more common ingredients in sports drinks and energy bars due to the powerful stimulation it provides.

L-Theanine - 200mg

L-Theanine is a naturally occurring amino acid in tea leaves.

This ingredient increases relaxation by lowering stress and anxiety levels without causing drowsiness, a common side effect of many relaxants and anxiety supplements.

L-Theanine has also been shown to counteract the adverse effects of caffeine that many experience, such as jitteriness and the energy crashes that come once the effect of caffeine has worn off.

This is why the two natural key ingredients create what is known as Smart Caffeine.

It has also been claimed by some that L-Theanine’s ability to combat stress and anxiety can assist the recovery process by helping the user to relax, which helps make recovery more efficient.

Learn More - Can Pre-Workout Makes You Feel Anxious?

Creatine Monohydrate - 1000mg

Creatine is an ingredient featuring three amino acids: Glycine, L-arginine, and L-methionine.

It is a natural substance found in red meat and fish and is one of the most researched and effective supplements. It is a popular supplement among gym users.

Once inside your muscle cells, creatine binds to a high-energy phosphate and assists your muscles with creating the energy needed for high-intensity exercise or lifting heavy weights.

Multiple studies have shown that those taking creatine significantly improved their one-rep max strength.

L-Citrulline DL Malate - 6000mg

L-Citrulline DL-Malate is an ingredient combining citrulline and malic acid. L-citrulline is a naturally occurring amino acid found in high amounts in watermelons.

It can also be found in other foods, such as cucumbers, pumpkins, and squashes.

Once L-Citrulline is absorbed, your nitric oxide levels get boosted, dilating your blood vessels, which will increase blood flow and lower blood pressure.

This also increases your mental performance and boosts endurance levels.

Red Beet Root Extract - 300mg

Red Beet extract comes from beetroot. Like with L-Citrulline DL-malate, drinking beet juice increases nitric oxide levels in your body.

This helps to enhance the users' exercise performance as nitric oxide opens up blood vessels, thus increasing blood flow.

Nitric oxide also acts as a signaling molecule that communicates with your body tissues and cells.

This ensures an increased blood flow to the muscles and a good intake of oxygen inside the muscle. It also helps with lowering blood pressure.

Rhodiola Rosea - 100mg

Rhodiola Rosea powder comes from Rhodiola Rosea, a plant that grows in cold parts of the world, for example, in the Arctic regions of Europe, Asia, and North America.

It is a herb that has numerous benefits for gym users.

For example, it has been shown to increase mental focus and endurance, improve physical performance and reduce physical stress.

It can also help alleviate many symptoms that arise with chronic stress. These include anxiety, depression, irritability, disturbed sleep, and fatigue.

Learn More - Does Pre-Workout Keep You Awake?

Acetyl-L-Carnitine - 500mg

Acetyl-L-carnitine is a form of the amino acid L-carnitine, found in almost all the cells in the human body; it’s produced in the body naturally, but it can be sourced from red meat, poultry, fish, and milk.

Acetyl-L-carnitine’s benefits for gym enthusiasts are that it helps improve athletic performance by helping the body burn fat by turning fatty acids into fuel.

Alongside its use as a fat burner to lose weight, there is also evidence to suggest that taking Acetyl-L-carnitine helps to boost recovery from muscle damage by reducing muscle soreness.

Coconut Water Powder - 300 mg

Coconut water powder dehydrates the liquid found inside coconuts into a water-soluble powder. Packed with electrolytes, especially potassium, coconut water powder helps support rapid hydration, which is essential for those engaging in strenuous exercise.

Coconut Water Powder also aids in weight loss as it has been shown to suppress the appetite and give the feeling of being full.

Because of this, many bodybuilders on a cut or preparing for a show take it.

Is 4 Gauge Pre-Workout Any Good For Bodybuilders?

4 Gauge’s popular pre-workout supplement should assist bodybuilders who have experience and are looking for effective supplements to help them boost performance.

It may also help bodybuilders who are on a cut due to the appetite suppression quality of coconut water powder.

Still, for those bodybuilders who want intense muscle pumps and quick muscle mass gains, I believe there are better options.

The same applies to fitness enthusiasts who want to boost their performance in the gym and improve at their chosen sports.

Better options than 4 Gauge are available for those who like to feel an energy boost while exercising, especially those with average or poor stamina.

Generally, pre-workout supplements are suitable for anyone who wants their workout session to go well.

Still, due to 4 Gauge's lower caffeine content, it may not be the strongest pre-workout for those who have built up a tolerance to ingredients like caffeine or caffeine-based pre-workouts.

Who Should Avoid Buying 4 Gauge Pre-Workout?

4 Gauge will suit most gym goers who have had a decent exercise routine for a couple of months or more, but there are some who it isn’t suitable for.

If you’re a beginner without much gym experience and looking for a way to take your fitness journey to the next level, then this supplement won’t give you amazing workouts.

In this case, you’re better off getting a personal trainer and starting 4 Gauge a few months later.

Some users have claimed that 4 Gauge is not long-lasting, but everyone has their own tolerance.

As I’ve mentioned, most pre-workouts contain more caffeine than 4 Gauge, so if you have a high tolerance to caffeine and have longer workouts, then this pre-workout may not cover the length of your session.

Learn More - Is Pre-Workout Good For Teens?

4 Gauge Pre-Workout Compared With Popular Alternatives

4 Gauge Vs Transparent Labs BULK Pre-Workout

A big difference between the two pre-workouts is that Transparent Labs state that their pre-workout helps with muscle gains and recovery by supporting testosterone production.

They claim that this is achieved by ingredients such as Vitamin D, Zinc, and Boron, which impact testosterone production.

This blend is not often found in pre-workout products, so Transparent Lab’s version certainly stands out if this aligns with your fitness goals.

The number of flavors that a Transparent Labs customer can buy their pre-workout in is eleven, while 4 Gauge only comes in the Fruit Blast flavor.

For those who like to try various flavors, this will be an important factor to consider when comparing both pre-workouts.

However, those who expect to find creatine should avoid Transparent Labs pre-workout.

Unlike 4 Gauge pre-workout, which contains 1000mg of creatine monohydrate per serving, Transparent Labs does not contain any creatine monohydrate.

A big plus for people who wish to avoid artificial sweeteners and ingredients is that neither 4 Gauge nor Transparent Lab’s pre-workout contains any.

Considering the number of pre-workout drinks that contain high levels of artificial sweeteners and ingredients, this is certainly a big positive for those who want to consume pre-workout drinks made with only natural ingredients.

Recommendation | Our #1 Pre-Workout

Taking Transparent Labs BULK Pre-Workout







Overall Score


4 Gauge Vs Cellucor C4 Original Pre-Workout

An area where Cellucor C4 Original Pre-Workout excels compared to 4 Gauge is the inclusion of Vitamin C, B6, and B12 into their recipe.

Including such vital ingredients means that Cellucor’s pre-workout has a beneficial impact beyond the workout itself, a big plus for health-conscious people.

Another area where C4’s product exceeds 4 Gauge is the number of available flavors.

Unlike 4 Gauge, which only comes in the Fruit Blast flavor, C4 Original Pre-Workout is available in nine different flavors.

Also, a bonus for C4 users is that it does not cost as much as 4 Gauge, which is worth keeping in mind for cost-conscious people.

However, some consumers have complained about the taste of some of C4's flavors. Other gymgoers have noted a tingling sensation over their body after consuming Cellucor's C4 Original Pre-Workout.

Some note that, unlike 4 Gauge, C4 uses two stimulants, caffeine and theacrine. Other consumers have also claimed that their C4 has turned clumpy.

Another drawback with popular workout brands like C4 compared to 4 Gauge is its use of a proprietary blend. Proprietary blends are a mixture of multiple ingredients shown under a fancy title.

The main drawback of proprietary blends is that the precise amount of each ingredient does not have to be listed, so the user doesn’t know whether each ingredient has been optimally dosed and how practical the ingredient itself is.

Frequently Asked 4 Gauge Questions

How many servings does each 4 Gauge have?

Officially, one bottle of 4 Gauge contains 20 servings, but it is worth noting that 4 Gauge's manufacturer claims that one serving of their pre-workout is the equivalent of 2 scoops, which is the regular dose for many gymgoers.

How should you take 4 Gauge?

As I mentioned, one serving of 4 Gauge is the equivalent of 2 scoops; it should be mixed with water and taken before your training session. While taking two servings daily should be no issue, I recommend you first take one serving and see how you feel. Some consume 4 Gauge 15 minutes before starting their workout, while others take it 30-45 minutes before.

Should I cycle on and off 4 Gauge pre-workout?

4 Gauge’s manufacturer recommends taking a break from their pre-workout every 6-8 weeks.

They recommend having a week off, claiming that doing this will help to keep your body more sensitive to the ingredients in the pre-workout.

How long does 4 Gauge pre-workout last?

4 Gauge’s manufacturer claim that the effects of their pre-workout last between 2 - 4 hours.

However, some users have claimed that effects disappear sooner. Though as I have mentioned, how long those effects last depends on the person taking it and the ingredients.

Learn More - How Long Does Pre-Workout Last In Your System?


Many dietary supplements are available, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.

To summarize my 4 Gauge pre-workout review, while its shotgun shell case is unique, it isn't the best pre-workout supplement for those who want grueling workouts.

There are also better options on the market that offer greater value for money and will help you to train harder and for longer in your training sessions.

We recommend this instead!

Transparent Labs BULK Pre-Workout







Overall Score



  • Cleanest and best tasting formula
  • Sustained energy and pump for workouts
  • Clinically dosed time-tested ingredients 
  • No artificial flavors or sweeteners 


  • Slower delivery time due to high demand


1. https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/health-benefits-pre-workout-supplements
2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1179/147683008X301513

Last Updated on February 21, 2023