Many of my friends use a pre workout such as C4 prior to lifting. I have never used one but am curious if I would see a major change in the effectiveness of my workout. I do a lot of strength training and weight lifting for my hour long workouts. Will using pre-workout help at all besides giving me more energy?
From personal experience I am able to tell that preworkout will help you in training. If you use it very often the effects of it will disappear. I only use it when im not having a good workout, this way when I use it it'll have a good effect. You should just try it, it is not that expensive.
Another good solution is a cup of coffee before training.
From my experience I've also learned you shouldn't take to much preworkout before sleep, because you will not feel very tired after using it.
Except for giving energy it will not help, but if you're having a bad workout you will be less dragged feeling after taking it. Preworkouts like C4 include creatine and other supplements, but the amount of these supplement in one scoop of preworkout is too little to have any effect whatsoever.
Pre-workout is mainly just a mix of caffeine, creatine, beta-alanine, and maybe some other amino acids as well as some weird and questionable ingredients like 1,3-Dimethylamylamine (DMAA) that have influence on the cardio vascular system.
There are quite some studies saying that they work, while there are other that say they don´t work. So i think this is something that everyone should decide for himself, however, my personal opinion is that there is no need for such kind of supplementation rather get some vitamins, good sleep and have a clean diet - the results will come for sure.
So will it give you more energy? Probably yes ... depending on the ingredients and the amount of the components in it.
Some additional information: http://www.ironmanmagazine.com/preworkout-supplements-do-they-work/