This post may contain affiliate links. It costs you nothing and helps keep the lights on and weights racked here at Students Fitness. Read our affiliate disclosure if you're having trouble sleeping.
Top Pick: RAW Synergies ThermoPRE
It’s made with safe and natural ingredients that give you energy, boosts your mood and focus, and helps your body burn fat!
ThermoPRE is expensive and not the best tasting so, while it’s the overall most effective thermogenic preworkout, check out the following options for more choices.Check Price
Table of Contents
- Top Pick: RAW Synergies ThermoPRE
- The Best Thermogenic Preworkout Supplements
- Best Value Thermogenic Preworkout
- Upgrade Pick
- Best Natural Thermogenic Preworkout
- Biggest Pump
- Best Thermogenic Preworkout Pill
- What are Thermogenic Preworkouts?
- What to Look For in a Thermogenic Preworkout Supplement
Preworkout supplements are great for weight loss already.
They can help empower you with the energy and focus necessary to smash your way through even the toughest workouts.
Anaerobic exercise likes this helps you burn calories and build lean body mass, which increases your basal metabolic rate.
Good for weight loss, see?
…what if preworkouts were even more effective at weight loss?
Thermogenic preworkouts can help you increase that calorie expenditure even more!
No, it’s not magic.
It’s science, and while thermogenic preworkouts won’t cut you from 300 to 160 pounds by themselves, they’ll give you a slight edge as you put in the effort for the journey.
So, which ones are worth your time?
The Best Thermogenic Preworkout Supplements
|MuscleTech Vapor X5 Ripped||190 mg||Yohimbe||4.1||$
|Evlution Nutrition ENGN Shred||260 mg||Cayenne, CLA, Yohimbe||4.1||$$$
|RAW Synergies ThermoPRE||250 mg||Black Pepper, Cayenne, MCTs||4.1||$$$$
|Jacked Factory Nitro Surge||180 mg||Black Pepper||4.6||$$
|Jacked Factory Burn-XT||270 mg||Black Pepper, Cayenne||4.2||$
Best Value Thermogenic Preworkout
- Flavors: Blue Raspberry, Candy Watermelon, Cotton Candy, Fruit Punch, Hawaiian Hurricane, Icy Rocket Freeze, Strawberry Limeade
- Calories: 15
- Sugars: 0 g
- Caffeine: 190 mg
- Thermogenic Ingredients: Caffeine, Yohimbe
- Other Notable Ingredients: Niacin, Creatine, Beta-Alanine, Taurine, Arginine, Hawthorn Extract, Choline, L-Theanine, Galangal Extract
We’ll start with the least-expensive preworkout on this list.
MuscleTech Vapor X5 Ripped has a shiny container and shinier insides.
If you’ve read my article on how to make your own preworkout then you’ll see a lot of those ingredients in Vapor X5 Ripped, including some you wouldn’t necessarily expect to find in a commercial preworkout.
Like many preworkouts, Vapor X5 Ripped has ingredients split into “Matrices” such as Musclebuilding Matrix and Pump Matrix.
These ingredients all work together to increase your blood flow, your energy, your mental engagement in the exercise, and your muscle’s ability to rebuild after the workout, like any good preworkout should.
And MuscleTech managed to do this rather cheaply.
That’s because Vapor X5 Ripped includes fewer proprietary blends, which cost money to use.
With some flavors.
There’s a huge price disparity between flavors!
As for thermogenic ingredients, this one includes caffeine to increase your metabolism and Yohimbe to increase your body heat, which (literally!) burns calories.
- Boosts physical and mental capability
- Cheaply priced
- Seven flavors to choose from
MuscleTech’s Vapor X5 Ripped is a great choice for gymgoers wanting a thermogenic preworkout on a budget.
- Flavors: Blue Raz, Cherry Limeade, Fruit Punch, Furious Grape, Green Apple, Pink Lemonade
- Calories: 0
- Sugars: 0 g
- Caffeine: 260 mg
- Thermogenic Ingredients: Cayenne, Caffeine, CLA, Yohimbe
- Other Notable Ingredients: Arginine, Betaine, Alpha GPC, Choline, B-Vitamins, Beta-Alanine, Huperzine A, L-Carnitine, L-Tyrosine
Evlution Nutrition ENGN Shred is a mind and metabolism-boosting preworkout powder.
It’s calorie-free and uses sucralose as a sweetener.
Taste-wise, most people like this preworkout. There are six flavors to choose from.
I’m particularly partial to the Grapes of Wrath, er, Furious Grape flavor!
For thermogenic ingredients, ENGN Shred contains your typical caffeine (from both coffee beans and green tea) along with cayenne pepper and conjugated linoleic acid (CLA).
CLA is a healthy form of trans fats, not made by industrial processes, which has some research backing it up as a fat burnin’ supplement!
ENGN Shred’s cayenne pepper comes in the form of Capsimax, a proprietary version that’s more suitable for folks who don’t want a hot’n’spicy drink.
Other ingredients, such as L-Carnitine, help focus your body on burning fat during your workout.
There are plenty of mind-boosting ingredients as well, such as both Alpha GPC and choline bitarate.
That actually concerns me a little because excessive amounts of choline may contribute to brain fog. Perhaps lay off the choline-rich eggs while using this preworkout?
Arginine, betaine, B-vitamins, and other ingredients help this preworkout give you the energy you need to finish that workout.
By the way, the label lists 260 mg not for caffeine but for the combined amounts of caffeine and green tea extract.
So, it’ll be a lot of caffeine per scoop, but likely not a full 260 mg.
- Does not contain creatine
- Good taste
- Plenty of thermogenic ingredients
- Both Alpha GPC and choline may contribute to excessive choline levels and brain fog
- Too much caffeine for some people
Evlution Nutrition ENGN Shred is a fat-burning preworkout supplement that helps your body continue burning fat even after your workout is done.
Best Natural Thermogenic Preworkout
- Flavors: Fruit Punch
- Calories: 0
- Sugars: 0 g
- Caffeine: 250 mg
- Thermogenic Ingredients: Black Pepper, Caffeine, Cayenne, Medium-Chain Triglycerides
- Other Notable Ingredients: Acetyl-L-Carnitine, Beta-Alanine, Citicholine, KSM-66 Ashwagandha, Theacrine, Yerba Mate
ThermoPRE is a gender-neutral thermogenic supplement (no Yohimbe here!) that’s good for giving you clean energy thanks to sourcing caffeine from more than just coffee.
In addition to the caffeine, you’ll also get a thermogenic boost from black pepper and cayenne. Medium-chain triglycerides help, too.
ThermoPRE was designed by a Doctor of Pharmacy to be effective and, more importantly, as safe for as many people as possible.
You’ll get no artificial flavors or sweeteners here. Or artificial dyes and colors.
And, for people worried about cross-contamination, ThermoPRE is manufactured in a facility that does NOT process allergens such as nuts, dairy, or gluten!
All of the ingredients are high-quality.
However, this does drive up the price a little bit compared to other preworkouts with similar ingredients.
Also, ThermoPRE has a bit more of a… noticeable… taste than other preworkouts.
- Clean energy
- Designed by a Doctor of Pharmacy
- No artificial dyes, colors, gluten, fillers, flavors, creatine, or sweeteners
- “Spicy aspirin” taste
RAW Synergies ThermoPRE is an expensive source of allergen-free clean energy and thermogenesis that’s safe for nearly everybody.
- Flavors: Fruit Punch, Lemon Lime, Orange Pineapple, Watermelon
- Calories: 0
- Sugars: 0 g
- Caffeine: 180 mg
- Thermogenic Ingredients: Caffeine, Black Pepper
- Other Notable Ingredients: Acetyl-L-Carnitine, Beta-Alanine, L-Citrulline, L-Theanine, Theobromine
Many of the other thermogenic preworkout supplements contain a dozen ingredients or more to boost whatever they can.
Jacked Factory Nitro Surge focuses on just a few ingredients, so they’re not diluted by a smorgasbord!
You get energy from caffeine and theobromine, tempered by L-Theanine so you don’t get jittery or crash.
L-Citrulline, Acetyl L-Carnitine, and Beta-Alanine encourage blood flow and nitric oxide production to give you a massive pump.
Finally, black pepper in the form of BioPerine helps boost your metabolism, triggering thermogenesis.
Simple and effective.
Not every preworkout supplement needs to be a nootropic brain-booster, too. Nitro Surge focuses on your muscles!
- Clean energy without a harsh crash
- Limited selection of effective ingredients
- Doesn’t boost your focus
- Not everyone feels the energy-boosting effects
If you don’t need a boost to your focus past what caffeine gives then Jacked Factory Nitro Surge is a great choice, especially if you want a huge pump!
Best Thermogenic Preworkout Pill
- Flavors: Not Applicable
- Calories: 0
- Sugars: 0 g
- Caffeine: 270 mg
- Thermogenic Ingredients: Black Pepper, Caffeine, Cayenne
- Other Notable Ingredients: Acetyl-L-Carnitine, Green Tea Leaf Extract
Preworkout powders are great. Most of the time.
Sometimes, though, you just don’t have the space to carry a bunch of powder with you.
It can be difficult to prepare preworkouts in a lecture hall when you don’t have much time for the gym between classes!
What do you do?
Try a preworkout pill!
Jacked Factory Burn-XT is a thermogenic-focused fat burning pill that works great as a preworkout pill.
One capsule contains 135 mg of caffeine alongside green tea leaf extract and Acetyl-L-Carnitine for energy.
BioPerine’s black pepper extract and Capsimax’s cayenne extract both provide bioavailable thermogenic compounds.
There’s even a tiny bit of leucine, a branched-chain amino acid!
Plus, since these plant-based ingredients come in capsule form, you don’t have to worry about any nasty taste.
- Easy to transport take
- Primarily thermogenic ingredients
- The caffeine boost can be jittery
- Nothing to boost your pump
Jacked Factory’s Burn-XT is a thermogenic fat burner supplement that’s also good as a preworkout for students who may want to skip the liquid pre workout blend.
What are Thermogenic Preworkouts?
If you’re into fitness then you’ll likely know what a preworkout supplement is.
It’s a powder you mix with some water, typically fruit flavored, that aims to give you extra energy, focus, and blood flow so you can exercise more easily.
But what about the “thermogenic” part?
Broken down, that word basically means, “creates heat.”
Thermogenic compounds are ingredients which increase your body’s metabolism.
They typically make you feel warmer.
That warmth is from your body burning extra calories for heat!
How do Thermogenic Preworkouts Help Weight Loss?
Thermogenesis helps your body lose weight through a simple mechanism.
As you should remember from elementary school, you are a warm-blooded organism. That means your body produces heat internally through thermogenesis.
Thermogenic ingredients turn up your body’s internal thermostat.
(This is separate from diet-induced thermogenesis, which is when your body expends calories to digest food.)
As your body has to burn calories for the energy required for thermogenesis, thermogenic compounds help you burn extra calories.
Every calorie burned helps you lose weight!
The effects are small but add up over time.
How do You Use Thermogenic Preworkout Supplements?
Thermogenic preworkout supplements are used the same as other preworkout supplements:
You mix it in water (if it’s a powder) then drink it half an hour before you start your workout.
Who Should Use Thermogenic Preworkouts?
Most people who are looking to lose weight can use safe thermogenics (avoid ephedra!).
However, thermogenic preworkout supplements mess with your body chemistry, so some people should avoid using them.
For starters, thermogenic preworkouts tend to contain very large amounts of caffeine.
Also, thermogenic compounds can increase anxiety, restlessness, and insomnia, so you should avoid these preworkouts if you can use those words to describe yourself.
Finally, some thermogenic preworkouts contain Yohimbe.
What to Look For in a Thermogenic Preworkout Supplement
Despite its ubiquity, caffeine is not the #1 thermogenic ingredient!
It only has minor effects on your metabolism and little permanent effect on your body composition.
The most common thermogenic ingredients in preworkouts are:
- Black Pepper
- Cayenne Pepper (Specifically Capsaicin)
All of these can help boost your metabolism and/or induce thermogenesis, even if only at a small level.
If you want a thermogenic preworkout then ensure at least one of these ingredients is included.
You should pay special attention to black pepper because it can increase the bioavailability of other nutrients.
Its patented form, BioPerine, is even more bioavailable!
Other Fat-Burning Ingredients
While our focus right now is on thermogenesis, some of these preworkouts contain other ingredients to help your burn fast.
Carnitine, for example, helps increase your body’s lipid oxidation ability.
These can all add up but just remember:
One extra donut can add more calories than your fat-oxidizin’, thermogenesis-causin’ pre workout serving makes your body burn.
All that said and all those thermogenic preworkouts reviewed, there’s something important to keep in mind:
Thermogenic supplements have but a minor effect on your body composition.
They’ll help your weight loss, yes.
But only by a small amount.
You have to put in enough effort at the gym and in the kitchen.
If you’re not already losing weight then thermogenic preworkouts won’t help you.
If you’re already partway along your weight loss journey then thermogenic preworkout supplements can help you reach your destination earlier!