Does Pre-Workout Expire? (Will It Go Bad After Opening)

Do you buy pre-workout supplements? Have you ever asked yourself, "does pre-workout expire?"

You might find it challenging to use the pre-workout before it expires and wonder how to make it last. 

Knowing when it expires and how to store it can also be challenging. We’ll demonstrate how to deal with these concerns in this article. 

A pre-workout supplement gets taken before working out to increase energy and focus. They’re very popular amongst bodybuilders and gym-goers because they help increase training volume and help burn fat faster [1]. 

Pre-workouts come in different forms, such as powders, tablets, or drinks. The effect of the pre-workout can last anywhere from 3 to 6 hours.

While manufacturers will use different ingredients, most contain caffeine, beta-alanine, amino acids, and creatine [2]. 

All pre-workouts have a certain shelf-life and will expire. Depending on the ingredients and storage, they will expire after 1-2 years. However, if they are left in direct sunlight or in an environment where mold can form, they can expire much faster.  

All pre-workout products have an expiration date on them. It is generally printed on the tub somewhere.

Typically, an open pre-workout is good for 1-2 years. However, you should keep an eye out for signs that it’s going bad. This includes mold, a bad smell, clumping, or not mixing well.  

You can take a pre-workout after the expiration date. However, the expiration date also signals when the ingredients will lose potency.

If you take pre-workout after this date, the ingredients might not be as effective as before that date. 

Related Article - How Long Does Pre-Workout Last In Your System?

Does Pre-Workout Expire?

How To Tell If Your Pre-Workout Is Bad (Common Signs)

There are some signs you need to look out for if you’re unsure whether your pre-workout has expired.   

The first sign that your pre-workout could be expired is the smell. When you first open your pre-workout supplement, it may have a specific smell (maybe the flavoring of your choice).

Over time, this smell will change slightly. If the product suddenly starts to smell strange, it can be a sign that the pre-workout has gone bad.  

If you’ve wondered ‘how to tell if pre-workout is expired just by looking at it?’ another simple warning sign is clumpiness. If the seal of your pre-workout product gets broken, the pre-workout can start to interact with the air and moisture.

This can make powder from pre-workout supplements look clumpy. This is an obvious sign that the pre-workout has gone off.

One of the key ingredients in a lot of pre-workouts is an ingredient called glycerol. This attracts water and moisture, which can lead to clumpiness.  

The third sign you might notice is that your pre-workout supplement is not mixing as well as it used to. This is another tell-tale sign that it has gone bad.

Many of these signs are easily seen when you open your pre-workout tub. If it looks clumpy or has gone moldy, then the pre-workout has gone bad. 

If you’re unsure if your pre-workout has gone bad, you could do a taste test. If your pre-workout doesn’t taste like it usually should, it might have gone off.

An ingredient might have oxidized, gone bad, or reduced in quality. 

Another subtle sign that your pre-workout supplement might have gone bad is that it causes an irritating sensation in your throat or stomach.  

does pre-workout go bad

Does Pre-Workout Go Bad After Mixing? (Can You Mix In Advance?)

Once you have mixed the pre-workout supplement, you should use it within 12 hours. Just ensure that it has not been exposed to varying temperature fluctuations.

You should also take approximately 30 minutes before starting your workout at the gym after consuming pre-workout.

If you leave it mixed for too long, it could cause a breakdown in the protein structure. 

This could lead to lower energy levels and overall performance. This is a common problem for those that might mix their pre-workout the night before and drink it in the morning. 

Pre-workout can go bad in water if it gets left in direct sunlight or if it gets left for over 12 hours after mixing it.

You can mix pre-workout the night before if you’re consuming it within 12 hours after mixing it. 

But it’s not recommended to drink a day-old pre-workout because it might have gone bad.

If you need to prolong the quality of the pre-workout, you can store it mixed in the fridge, which is a suitable environment as it will be cold and dark.  

do pre-workouts expire

Does Pre-Workout Lose Potency Over Time? 

Pre-workout is the most potent before it expires, provided it gets stored properly.

It’s also more potent when taken 30 minutes-2 hours before your workout. However, over time it can lose its potency, especially if it has expired. 

While all the ingredients won’t lose potency after the expiration date, ingredients such as vitamins and amino acids start to break down, which lessens their potency. This usually takes place over 6 months.  

There are a lot of potent ingredients in a pre-workout supplement. Four of the most important ones include caffeine, creatine, beta-alanine, and electrolytes.

After opening, amino acids and vitamins break down the fastest. 

pre workout expiration

How To Properly Store Your Pre-Workout Supplements

You should not store pre-workout in heat. It should be stored in a cool, dry place.

There isn't an exact room temperature that pre-workout needs to be stored. Just ensure that it isn't kept in direct sunlight.  

There are a variety of ways that you can increase the longevity of your pre-workout. One way is to ensure that the labeling of the pre-workout is correct.

Secondly, always ensure that the container is sealed tightly and air can’t get in quickly because this can lead to mold and clumpiness.

Thirdly, always store your pre-workout in a convenient and suitable place like a kitchen cupboard.  

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Frequently Asked Pre-Workout Expiration Questions 

What happens if you drink expired pre-workout? 

So, can you take expired pre-workout? Yes, but we don’t recommend drinking an expired pre-workout supplement because it might cause issues like gastric distress. While it doesn’t last forever, it can be pretty uncomfortable, especially at the gym!  

Is clumpy pre-workout bad? 

No, it is still safe to consume and will be just as effective. Minor clumping is natural because pre-workout supplements absorb moisture from the air, which causes clumping. It doesn’t affect your supplement's safety, quality, or potency unless it becomes severe. 

Can expired pre-workout make you sick? 

Yes, expired pre-workout can make you sick. The most common sign of sickness is an upset stomach or gas. In some rare cases, you can experience nausea, bloating, and abdominal pain.  

Does C4 and Alani Nu pre-workout expire? 

Yes, all pre-workout brands expire. Every brand should have the expiry date printed on the tub or container that it is stored in, no matter which brands you use.  


Conclusion

Now that you know what to watch for, you know what to look for in a pre-workout supplement and how to tell when it has expired.

This is helpful, especially if you don’t take them daily. Always ensure that you store pre-workout in a cool, dry place within an airtight container to prevent it from going off well before the expiry date. 

References:

1. https://jissn.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1550-2783-7-10
2. https://jissn.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12970-017-0173-z

Paul J

Last Updated on September 29, 2022