Beyond Raw is made by GNC and is generally recognized as one of the “anchor brands,” making up a significant part of their sales. Beyond Raw’s LIT Pre-Workout makes use of a lot of patented and branded ingredients, something made possible by GNC’s massive market share. But are those products the best for you? Brainz is going to find out.
Initial Impressions of Beyond Raw Lit Pre Workout
LIT’s design has style – we like the subtle flames in the background of the label. It doesn’t hit users over the head with its toughness or extremeness, which is refreshing.
Crack open the container, and you’ll find a powder a little more granular than a lot of other pre-workouts. It’s closer to beach sand than talcum. It doesn’t mix up all that smoothly, and we had to keep shaking it up to keep particles in the solution. The dark pink color is appealing.
Energy Ingredients in LIT Pre Workout
- Caffeine anhydrous 250mg
LIT Pre-Workout includes 250mg of caffeine, cutting right across the center of the usual dosages for pre-workouts (which typically range from 175mg to 350mg). That’s a significant amount of stimulant, equivalent to around 4 cups of coffee. But for users who have built up a tolerance to caffeine, it’s not likely to cause heart palpitations or anxiety.
However, since LIT uses caffeine anhydrous, rather than a slower-release form, consumers may have to watch out for a caffeine crash, especially if they’re doing a long weight-lifting session or intense Cross-fit workout.
Nootropic (Focus and Mood) Ingredients in LIT Pre Workout
One area where we have to find fault with LIT is in nootropic content. At Brainz, we’re convinced that the head is the real key to fitness, and we appreciate products that take focus and cognition into account. Mental clarity is crucial for avoiding injury and getting the most out of your workout. Too bad LIT doesn’t include any proven nootropics.
Anti-Fatigue Ingredients in LIT Pre Workout
- Beta-Alanine 3.2g
To counteract the expected caffeine crash and keep fatigue outside your peripheral vision, lots of consumers choose beta-alanine. It’s become one of the most common ingredients in pre-workout formulas because of its efficacy at extending endurance over intense exercise. Studies have shown as much as 10 minutes of increased endurance.
At 3.2g, LIT offers an optimal dose of beta-alanine, but athletes may want to steer the other way if they’ve experienced – and dislike – the tingling effect. That’s a dose that will amost certainly give you at least a little skin-crawling (though you have to go a lot higher if you want numb lips).
Pump and Blood Flow Ingredients in LIT Pre Workout
- L-Citrulline Malate 3g
- Nitrosigine® 1.5g
While many supplements ride the gray area of “maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t,” L-Citrulline and Nitrosigine actually do have studies to back them up. Both have been shown to increase blood flow over a placebo. While that doesn’t definitively translate to better performance, better blood flow is critical to performance.
LIT includes 3g of L-Citrulline malate, a form of citrulline that breaks down and is more easily absorbent. However, 3g is a little underdosed; we prefer to see more like 8g. The 1.5g of Nitrosigine is the recommended dose, and it’s the dose that has been used in clinical trials, so LIT is in line with the science.
Strength Support & Body Composition Ingredients in LIT Pre Workout
- Creatine monohydrate 1.5mg
When it comes to creatine in pre-workout formulas, there are two schools of thought. Some athletes prefer to measure out their creatine throughout the day, and have their preferred brands and dosing regiment. They’d rather not have it in the pre-workout, because they’re doing it themselves.
Athletes who want a more well-rounded, all-in-one product, though, will be glad to see 1.5g of creatine included in LIT. It’s lower than the optimal dose, but it’s a good way to start, particularly if you’re going to supplement later in the day.
Electrolyte Ingredients in LIT Pre Workout
- Sodium 15mg
- Potassium 90mg
Like with creatine, some consumers don’t care about seeing electrolytes or hydration support in their pre-workout; they’ve already got their go-to electrolyte source, and don’t need it up front. However, when you consider how crucial sodium and potassium are to cell function and muscle hydration, it’s nice to see them included in a pre-workout to know you’re getting off on the right foot.
But really, the 15mg of sodium in LIT is a nominal dose, not enough to have any real effect on hydration or blood volume. LIT’s 90mg of potassium represents dosing at a much more effective level, though.
The Extra Mile? Additional Pre-Workout Ingredients in LIT Pre Workout
- ElevATP 150mg
- NeuroFactor coffee fruit extract 100mg
LIT adds ElevATP to their pre-workout formula, 105mg of a patented formula. ATP is the source of energy for cells, necessary for muscle contraction, and it gets depleted during a hard workout. ElevATP may help increase available ATP during a workout.
Coffee fruit extract is a supplement that is showing up more and more often in pre-workout formulas. It’s though to have some benefits for recovery and rehabilitation, including lowering blood pressure. LIT includes the patented NeuroFactor coffee fruit extract. But we have to note that, patented brand or not, there’s not enough research to know an optimal dose yet.
Taste & Flavors
You can buy Beyond Raw LIT Pre-Workout in 9 different flavors, including some branded Jolly Rancher flavors like Watermelon, Blue Raspberry, and Green Apple. We tried Strawberry Lemonade.
The Strawberry Lemonade was very sweet, with an shockingly sour undertone. Honestly, they may be trying a little too hard to get the citric acid to mimic lemonade, and the sweet and sour don’t jibe – they rub up against each other. The closest thing we could approximate it to is sucking on a Sweetart.
Who LIT Pre Workout is For
LIT is designed for consumers who want a big blast of caffeine energy and can take the tingling sensation of beta-alanine.
Who LIT Pre Workout is Not For
LIT is not for users who want nootropics as part of their pre-workout regiment.
Potential Side Effects of LIT Pre Workout
- Some users report headache and burning/itching sensation
For the most part, we found LIT well-dosed for what it is – a pre-workout designed for energy and endurance. However, we found the lack of nootropics disappointing, and the whole product a little uneven.