Athletes, gym rats and bodybuilders all need both a strict diet and a proper workout plan in order to see results. Sports supplements play an important role when it comes to getting all the nutrients and being able to perform at your best. These products are used on a regular basis and can help with muscle growth, weight loss and provide you with energy to get your workout done. But, since they are dietary supplements, they are not regulated as much as medicines or drugs in general. This is why it’s important to do good research regarding which supplement you need and what it can do for you.
What Sports Supplements Should I Take?
Proteins are the building blocks of muscles and the average person needs about 1.2 g/kg if he/she is sedentary all the way up to 3.3 g/kg when trying to bulk up.
As you can see, protein intake needs to be higher if you want to increase muscle growth and while you can do so through whole foods, taking sport supplements is more effective. Whey protein has been proven to give you the protein your body needs without the risk of digesting incomplete proteins or putting the digestive track under stress, which can happen with whole foods.
Another workout supplement great for boosting muscle growth is casein which is a slow releasing source of protein. This type of supplement makes it easier for the body to breakdown and absorb the protein during sleep as muscle fibres regenerate the most during rest.
Branched chain amino acids are taken in order to improve performance on long workouts and improve recovery. BCAAs are made of leucine, valine and isoleucine which are great for reducing catabolism (muscle breakdown) and for improving muscle growth too. BCAA’s are found in foods high in fibres and can boost strength, power and energy whilst being useful for maintaining lean body mass on non-training days.
These supplements are known as fat burners as they help increase fat loss making it ideal for those of you who want to lose weight ECA (Ephedra-Caffine-Asprin) has been proven to reduce body fat in a safe manner and without any major side effects. When combined with a proper weight loss diet and an adequate workout plan, fat burners can be extremely effective.
The best sport supplement to use for strength workouts or HIIT exercises is creatine as it can increase the growth of lean muscle tissue. Creatine is also helpful when running or doing biking sprints, weight-lifting and sporting activities such as hockey, football and basketball. But in order for creatine to be effective it needs to be taken with 40 – 60 mg of whey protein, 50 mg Dextrose, and 5 mg of Glutamine.
Glutamine is the most sufficient amino acid found in protein and also in skeletal muscles. Alongside an increase in muscle growth and decrease in muscle catabolism, glutamine can also help improve gut health and contribute to a normal functioning immune system.
Work out supplements that contain glusosamine sulphate can help prevent joint injuries and damage caused by intense workouts or sporting activities. This substance is contained in the fluid around your joints.
These small treats can help you repair muscle fibres after a workout and also give you energy before any sporting activity or workout. Make sure you look for sports bars that contain whole grains, dried fruits, nuts, soy casein and whey milk. Avoid sports bars that have trans fat and those that are high in fibre and fat if you are going to play a sport. Sports bars should have at least 10g of protein in order to be effective.
To reduce muscle wasting from a calorie-reduced diet, it’s important to use ZMA (Zinc Magnesium Aspartate.) This workout supplement increases testosterone levels and it is also beneficial in a fat-loss program. You will also notice an increase in strength and it will help make for a healthy diet too.
When to Take Sport Supplements
If you are training after work or early in the morning, it’s important that you have enough energy. Sport supplements such as BCAA and creatine can help you maintain energy levels and give your best during your workout. Consume one shake 45 min before training.
If you have long training sessions, it’s important that you take work out supplements during your workout too. BCAA is going to provide you with the amino acids needed to increase protein synthesis thus muscle growth and decrease muscle breakdown too. Occasionally take sips from a 500ml shake during your most intense workouts.
The best time to “feed” your muscles is after your workout which is why you need to consume carbs and protein to start the repair and growth of your muscles. Alongside protein and carb-rich foods taking glutamine and whey protein is going to give you that boost which is more easily absorbed. You can take casein too but it is not going to be absorbed as quickly as whey protein.