Lion's mane mushroom is popular among athletes and fitness enthusiasts for its ability to improve focus, mental clarity, and energy levels. When taken before a workout, Lion's Mane helps reduce fatigue, increase endurance, and promote muscle recovery.
The functional mushroom can be consumed in various forms, such as powder, capsules, extracts, or ready-to-drink beverages. If you have time to spare before your workout, you can leverage Lion's mane mushroom recipes to prepare a tasty pre-workout meal. Combining Lion's Mane with other pre-workout ingredients like caffeine, L-citrulline, creatine, beta-alanine, or BCAAs can further boost its benefits.
In this detailed guide, we will examine why more fitness enthusiasts use Lion's mane mushrooms before their workout. Please stick with us to understand the benefits of Lion's Mane that could take your workout to the next level.
6 Reasons To Use Lion's Mane Before A Workout
1. Fights Fatigue
Lion's Mane medicinal mushroom reduces fatigue, improves endurance, and increases energy levels during exercise. Performing a similar role to supplements like caffeine and taurine, Lion's Mane can help any man or woman handle intense workouts. Lion's Mane mushroom can help you exercise for longer and with greater intensity, leading to improved physical performance and results from your workout sessions.
A research study on mice(1) showed a significant increase in muscle endurance and improved muscle fatigue when the diet was supplemented with Lion's Mane. If you are into other workout supplements, combining Lion's Mane, caffeine, and taurine can help you enhance your energy and strength in the gym.
Interesting Read: Learn how to combine Lion's Mane and coffee.
2. Promotes Muscle Growth
Lion's Mane pre workout supplement promotes muscle growth by increasing insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), reducing inflammation and inflammatory response, and supporting nerve function. The mushroom increases IGF-1 levels, a hormone that plays a crucial role in muscle growth and recovery. In addition, the mushroom enhances the effects of workout supplements like inositol, which also boosts growth hormones.
Additionally, its anti-inflammatory properties can reduce muscle damage and promote recovery after exercise, improving muscle growth and overall physical performance.
Lion's Mane also stimulates the production of the nerve growth factor (NGF) through a process known as neurogenesis. NGF plays a role in nerve cell growth, maintenance, and survival and may also play a role in muscle growth and recovery. One research study conducted in 2018(2) verified Lion's Mane's ability to promote the synthesis of the nerve growth factor.
Read More: See how Lion's Mane promotes neurogenesis.
3. Promotes Vasodilation
Vasodilation widens blood vessels, increasing the flow of blood and oxygen delivery to the muscles and improving physical performance and recovery.Lion's Mane has potential benefits for promoting vasodilation through its effects on nitric oxide (NO) levels. In addition, the mushroom behaves like citrulline malate, one of the workout supplements that also promotes vasodilation by increasing nitric oxide levels.
Research has also shown(3) that Lions Mane acts as an ACE inhibitor (a group of medications used for treating high blood pressure), further proving the mushroom's effectiveness in vasodilation. In addition, this research suggests that combining Lion's Mane with other workout products like Citrulline malate (both nitric oxide boosters) can enhance vasodilation, guaranteeing high performance in the gym.
Read More: See how Lion's Mane fights high blood pressure.
4. Loaded With Muscle Growth Nutrients
Lion's Mane is a natural source of various nutrients that can support muscle growth and recovery and boost energy, including polysaccharides, essential amino acids, antioxidants, and vitamins and minerals. Polysaccharides, complex sugars, help cells produce energy.
Taking Lions Mane as a pre workout boost provides essential amino acids, including leucine and beta-alanine, vital in muscle development. Additionally, it is rich in antioxidants, such as ergothioneine, which can help reduce muscle damage and promote recovery after exercise.
Finally, this mushroom that boasts a shaggy appearance is a source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D, B vitamins, biotin, and magnesium, that support muscle growth and promote the balance of electrolytes in the body. In addition, the mushroom can enhance and maintain mass muscle growth when combined with other supplements like agmatine sulfate and choline bitartrate.
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5. Promotes Weight Loss
Making lion's mane mushroom part of your diet can help you lose extra body weight. Lion's Mane improves metabolism, which can help the body burn more calories and promote weight loss.
Additionally, it has an anti-inflammatory property that reduces inflammation and oxidative stress. Inflammation and oxidative stress contribute to weight gain and make it harder to lose weight.
Taking Lion's mane extract improves gut health and digestion and accelerates fat metabolism. Finally, Lion's Mane may help to increase energy levels, making it easier to stick to an exercise routine and support weight loss efforts.
Read More: See how Lion's Mane promotes weight loss.
6. Fights Brain Fog
When you're experiencing brain fog, concentrating and staying motivated can be difficult, making it harder to stick to a workout routine. Brain fog can also cause physical fatigue, making it difficult to perform physical activities at your best.
If you're experiencing brain fog and want to continue working out, trying simple strategies may help boost your energy and focus. One of the best strategies is using Lion's Mane for brain fog to enhance your concentration on physical activity when working out.
Lion's Mane, an edible mushroom, combats brain fog by promoting nerve growth, increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factors, and improving brain function. Lion's Mane's compounds—Hericystin and Erinacine—support the central nervous system and improve cognitive function, including memory and mental focus.
How to Incorporate Lion's Mane into Your Pre-Workout Routine
Lion's mane mushroom powder is a versatile option that can easily be added to your pre-workout shake or smoothie. Besides boosting cognitive function and supporting the immune system, it aids in fat metabolism, which can contribute to your fitness goals. These numerous health benefits of Lion's Mane make it a popular choice among those seeking a natural supplement to improve athletic performance.
Capsules deliver the benefits of Lion's Mane in a convenient and easy-to-take form, providing natural growth factor support, enhancing cognitive function, and promoting immune system health.
Lion's mane mushroom extracts are a potent and concentrated form of the mushroom, offering many benefits as other forms, including fat metabolism support and immune system enhancement. Extracts can be taken sublingually or mixed with water, making them an excellent choice for those who want to experience the benefits of Lion's Mane without consuming raw mushroom.
Consume Ready-to-Drink Beverages
Selected culinary medicinal mushrooms like Lion's Mane are now available in ready-to-drink beverages, providing a convenient way to enjoy the benefits of Lion's Mane mushrooms before your workout. These drinks can help combat physical fatigue, reduce mild cognitive impairment, and support athletic performance.
Best Dosage for Lion’s Mane in Pre-Workout
The optimal dosage of Lion's Mane for pre-workout benefits varies depending on the individual and the supplement form. Generally, it is recommended to take 500 mg to 3,000 mg of Lion's Mane extract daily, ideally 30-60 minutes before your workout. This allows time for the supplement to take effect, reducing fatigue and improving endurance.
Follow the manufacturer's recommendations for dosing and timing for those using lion's mane powder, capsules, or ready-to-drink beverages. Then, monitor your response to the supplement, adjusting the dosage to achieve your desired performance benefits.
Stacking Lion's Mane Mushrooms with Other Pre-Workout Ingredients
Combine With Caffeine For Increased Alertness
Pairing lion's Mane, also known as Hou Tou Gu, with caffeine is a popular choice among fitness enthusiasts seeking a sharper mind and improved cognitive function during their workout.
Combining these two ingredients provides the anti-fatigue activity associated with Lion's Mane and enhances alertness and focus from caffeine.This powerful duo can help you achieve better results in your training while harnessing the medicinal purposes of lion's mane mushroom in alternative medicine.
Pair With L-Citrulline For Enhanced Blood Flow And Endurance
L-citrulline is an amino acid that improves blood flow and reduces lactic acid levels, thus preventing impaired muscle contractility and promoting endurance.
When stacked with lion's Mane, L-citrulline can further enhance the benefits of this potent mushroom, such as lipid metabolism regulation and reduced inflammation. As a result, the combination of Lion's Mane and L-citrulline can help you push through intense workouts while supporting overall health and wellness.
Mix With Branched-Chain Amino Acids (BCAAS) For Muscle Recovery
Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are essential for muscle recovery and growth.Combining BCAAs with lion's mane pre-workout can significantly improve recovery time, allowing you to bounce back faster after a strenuous workout. The synergy between lion's mane mushroom and BCAAs boosts athletic performance and supports a healthy and balanced lifestyle.
FAQs About Using Lion's Mane Pre Workout
Does Lion's Mane Give You Energy?
Lion's Mane is a medicinal mushroom widely studied for its potential health benefits, including increased energy levels. This remarkable mushroom is believed to contain several naturally occurring compounds, including antioxidants and polysaccharides, that contribute to its energizing effects.
One of the ways Lion's Mane supports stable energy levels is by regulating normal blood sugar levels. Blood sugar levels are crucial in determining how much energy you have throughout the day. By maintaining stable blood sugar levels, Lion's Mane may help you avoid energy crashes and boost your sustained energy.
Read More: See how Lion's Mane fights diabetes by maintaining stable blood sugar levels.
What Are The Potential Lion's Mane Side Effects?
Lion's Mane is generally safe when taken at the proper dosage. However, in rare cases, the mushroom may cause side effects, including digestion problems like gas and nausea. These side effects, however, should not be alarming as they tend to disappear on their own within a short period.
However, consulting a healthcare professional when dealing with severe side effects is always a good idea. Moreover, if you have allergy issues or are taking other prescription meds, talk to your doctor before using Lion's mane mushrooms. Also, if you use other workout supplements, seek medical guidance to avoid dangerous interactions between your supplements and Lion's Mane.
Does Lion's Mane Lower Dopamine?
No, Lion's Mane does not lower dopamine. Instead, the mushroom increases happy hormones, including dopamine and serotonin.
The mushroom's ability to boost dopamine levels is one of the reasons it is used to fight various mental health conditions, including anxiety and depression. This means that a pre workout with Lion’s mane can give you an elevated, happier mood.
Read More: See how Lion's Mane fights depression.
Lion's Mane pre-workout supplements offer benefits like anti-fatigue properties, providing an energy boost, supplying the muscles with oxygen during a workout, and fighting inflammation to encourage the muscles to heal quickly after a workout. The pre workout supplement also provides the nutrients needed to promote muscle growth, including B vitamins, amino acids like beta-alanine, electrolytes regulating minerals, and biotin.
Lion's Mane mushroom works exceptionally well with other workout supplements, including creatine, caffeine, taurine, inositol, agmatine sulfate, citrulline malate, and choline bitartrate. When fitness enthusiasts—man or woman—combine Lion's Mane mushrooms with these supplements, the results are vasodilation and improved blood flow to the muscles, more focus, better pump, and improved strength. We, however, recommend talking to a healthcare professional before combining random supplements to avoid interactions and side effects.
Have you used Lion's Mane during a workout? What results did you get? Let us know in the comments.
- Increase in muscle endurance in mice by dietary Yamabushitake mushroom ( Hericium erinaceus ) possibly via activation of PPARδ, (1)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30938015/
- Neurotrophic properties of the Lion's mane medicinal mushroom, Hericium erinaceus (Higher Basidiomycetes) from Malaysia, (2)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24266378/
- Evaluation of Selected Culinary-Medicinal Mushrooms for Antioxidant and ACE Inhibitory Activities, (3)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21716693/