Can You Mix Pre Workout With Protein Powder? Is It Suitable?

Have you ever found yourself staring at your fitness supplement collection, wondering if it’s okay and if can you mix pre workout with protein powder? It’s a common question among fitness enthusiasts, as both supplements can be incredibly beneficial for achieving your fitness goals. 

Yet, there is a great deal of conflicting information concerning whether or not combining the two separate supplements is safe.

In this article, we’ll explore the science behind pre workout and protein powder, and help you determine whether or not mixing them is the right choice for you. We will also answer some FAQs and state if there is any risk of mixing pre workout with protein powder. So, let’s dive in!

Can You Mix Pre Workout With Protein Powder?

Can you mix pre workout with protein? Many people wonder if it’s safe to mix pre workout and protein powder, and the answer is generally yes. In fact, combining the two supplements can be a great way to maximize your workout results. 

Nevertheless, certain pre workout supplements may include high doses of caffeine or other stimulants, which may trigger harmful side effects when mixed with protein powder in rare situations.

Pre workout supplements are designed to enhance your physical performance during exercise by increasing energy, focus, and endurance [1, 2]. They often contain ingredients like caffeine, beta-alanine, and creatine, which work together to improve your workout performance. 

On the other hand, protein powder is used to support muscle growth and repair, as it contains the building blocks necessary for these processes [3].

If you do decide to mix pre workout and protein powder, it’s important to pay attention to the ingredients in both supplements and their dosages. Mixing both supplements might not work for everyone. 

It’s also a good idea, to begin with, a low dose of each supplement and gradually increase it as needed. Before incorporating it into your regimen, likely with any supplement, you should always check with a healthcare practitioner.

Related: Can You Mix Creatine With Protein Powder? Safe Or Not?

Understanding Both The Supplements

can you mix pre workout with protein powder
Alexey Koza/ iStock

Pre Workout

Pre workout supplements are designed to help individuals enhance their physical performance during exercise  [1, 2]. They often contain a combination of ingredients such as caffeine, beta-alanine, creatine, and nitric oxide boosters that work together to improve energy, focus, endurance, and strength [4].

Pre workout supplements can also help individuals push past their physical limits and reach their fitness goals faster. A 2016 study has shown that when taken prior to exercise, caffeine-containing pre workout supplements can help improve anaerobic power performance [2].

But, it’s vital to remember that certain pre workout supplements might have serious side effects when consumed in big quantities or if a person is allergic to particular substances or ingredients. Anxiety, headaches, nausea, jitters, increased sweating, dehydration, and diarrhea are a few of the usual adverse effects.

Protein Powder

Protein powder supplements are a convenient and effective way to increase your daily protein intake. They are often used to support muscle growth and repair, as well as aid in muscle gain, weight loss, or maintenance [3]. Evidence suggests that protein powders can enhance post-workout recovery and improve performance [5, 6].

Whey, casein, soy, and pea protein are just a few of the many substances that may be used to make protein powder supplements. To enhance protein content, these supplements may be simply added to shakes, smoothies, or other meals.

Some of the potential side effects of increased protein powder intake may include digestive discomfort, bloating, acne, kidney damage, and allergic reactions [7].

Related: Can You Mix Creatine With Pre Workout? Is It Safe?

How to Use Pre Workout and Protein Powder?

When it comes to using pre workout and protein powder supplements, timing is key. Pre workout supplements should be taken approximately 15 to 30 minutes before exercise to allow for proper digestion and absorption and for the pre workout supplement to kick in. 

Protein powder supplements, on the contrary hand, can be taken at any time of day. Still, they may be more beneficial when ingested after 30 minutes of exercise to stimulate muscle growth,  repair, and development.

Although according to research increasing your daily protein intake should be the main goal to increase muscle protein synthesis [8], it does not matter when you take the protein and in which form.

Can You Mix Pre Workout With Other Pre Workouts?

It is generally not recommended to mix different pre workout supplements together, as they often contain similar ingredients that can cause negative side effects when taken in excess. Combining different pre workout supplements can also make it difficult to determine the appropriate dosage of each supplement. It’s important to follow the recommended dosage and usage instructions on each individual pre workout supplement to avoid potential negative effects.

At last, it is generally not a good idea to mix pre workout with other pre workout and is not recommended.

Is There Any Risk of Mixing Pre Workout With Protein Powder?

pre workout and protein powder

There is no inherent risk in mixing pre workout with protein powder supplements, as long as both supplements are taken in appropriate dosages and at the right time. 

Nevertheless, specific pre workout supplements could already have high concentrations of caffeine or other stimulants, so adding more from other supplements or other sources could increase the chance of unpleasant side effects like jitters, headaches, or anxiety.

It’s also important to note that some pre workout supplements may already contain some amount of protein, and adding additional protein powder may not be necessary if your protein intake is on point and can even lead to overconsumption of protein. Excessive protein consumption can cause digestive pain, bloating, and other gastrointestinal disorders.

In the end, there are no specific risks of mixing pre workout with protein powder but still, we do not recommend you consume them by mixing, instead try consuming them separately, just in case.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


In summary, it is generally safe to mix pre workout with protein powder as long as both supplements are taken in appropriate dosages and at the right time. However, it is essential that you avoid combining pre workout supplements with other stimulant-rich substances such as coffee or energy drinks since this might raise the chance of unpleasant side effects.

However, mixing pre workout with protein powder is considered safe and there is not enough research to prove any specific risks with mixing both of them.

Some pre workout supplements may already contain a certain amount of protein, so adding additional protein powder may not be essential and but of course, if it doesn’t cross your daily intake limit of protein then it is okay. 

It is also important to avoid consuming too much protein powder at once and to read the label of any other supplements or medications you are taking. 

Furthermore, we urge that you contact a healthcare expert before incorporating any new supplements into your regimen. Ultimately, choosing the right supplement for your individual goals and needs is important for optimal results.

More Protein And Pre-Workout Supplement Guides

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Should I Drink Protein Shake After Cardio? Pros And Cons

How To Make Protein Shake Thicker: 10 Easy Ways

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Can You Bring Protein Powder On A Plane? Travel Healthily!


  1. Outlaw JJ, Wilborn CD, Smith-Ryan AE, Hayward SE, Urbina SL, Taylor LW, Foster CA. Acute effects of a commercially-available pre-workout supplement on markers of training: a double-blind study. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2014 Aug 15;11:40. doi: 10.1186/s12970-014-0040-0. PMID: 25302053; PMCID: PMC4190923.
  2. Martinez, N., Campbell, B., Franek, M. et al. The effect of acute pre-workout supplementation on power and strength performance. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 13, 29 (2016).
  3. Pasiakos SM, McLellan TM, Lieberman HR. The effects of protein supplements on muscle mass, strength, and aerobic and anaerobic power in healthy adults: a systematic review. Sports Med. 2015 Jan;45(1):111-31. doi: 10.1007/s40279-014-0242-2. PMID: 25169440.
  4. Harty, P.S., Zabriskie, H.A., Erickson, J.L. et al. Multi-ingredient pre-workout supplements, safety implications, and performance outcomes: a brief review. J Int Soc Sports Nutr 15, 41 (2018).
  5. West DWD, Abou Sawan S, Mazzulla M, Williamson E, Moore DR. Whey Protein Supplementation Enhances Whole Body Protein Metabolism and Performance Recovery after Resistance Exercise: A Double-Blind Crossover Study. Nutrients. 2017 Jul 11;9(7):735. doi: 10.3390/nu9070735. PMID: 28696380; PMCID: PMC5537849.
  6. Cintineo HP, Arent MA, Antonio J, Arent SM. Effects of Protein Supplementation on Performance and Recovery in Resistance and Endurance Training. Front Nutr. 2018 Sep 11;5:83. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2018.00083. PMID: 30255023; PMCID: PMC6142015.
  7. Vasconcelos QDJS, Bachur TPR, Aragão GF. Whey protein supplementation and its potentially adverse effects on health: a systematic review. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2021 Jan;46(1):27-33. doi: 10.1139/apnm-2020-0370. Epub 2020 Jul 23. PMID: 32702243.
  8. Schoenfeld BJ, Aragon AA, Krieger JW. The effect of protein timing on muscle strength and hypertrophy: a meta-analysis. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2013 Dec 3;10(1):53. doi: 10.1186/1550-2783-10-53. PMID: 24299050; PMCID: PMC3879660.

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