Regardless of your body shape, size or training goals, supplements can be beneficial for anyone. If you want muscle growth you need to have a number of contributing factors all working together. You may go to the gym 3 or 4 times a week, but if your diet is poor and you’re not hitting your macros, any potential gains will be sacrificed.
If your training is good and you have a diet and supplementation plan to match it, you will undoubtedly reap the rewards further down the line.
Supplements can give you that little extra you need to make really good gains and make all that hard work in the gym worth it. Here are 5 important supplements you need to be taking for muscle growth and general health and well being.
1. Whey Protein
Protein is vitally important to build muscle and strength. It is the vital nutrient for muscle growth and repair. Whatever your goal is, you need to make sure you are getting enough protein and that you get it when your body needs it.
Whey protein powder is an absolute must for this, whether it’s for after your session when you don’t have food handy, or for when you are so busy at college or work you don’t have time to eat your pre-packed meal.
You should be aiming to consume a source of protein with every meal. Whey protein is quickly absorbed into the body making it an ideal supplement to take in a shake just after you’ve trained.
One of the greatest benefits of whey protein is it’s versatility. You could, for example, add it to your morning oats for additional protein to make up your macro-nutrients for the day. The best selling Impact Whey Protein comes in dozens of flavors meaning it can go with anything.
2. Amino Acids
The building blocks of protein are amino acids. Thousands of amino acids are what form large protein structures in the human body. Amino acids can be an effective supplement to help you achieve your training goals.
It is recommended to consume between 5-20g of amino acids per day taken as multiple doses. This can be done via a number of different sources:
☐ Tablets and capsules
Amino acids can be taken pre, post or intra-workout, but for maximum benefits you should consume these pre and post workout to support recovery and adaption. Try Myprotein BCAAs which have a 2:1:1 ratio of Leucine, Isoleucine and Valine, the 3 most important amino acids for protein synthesis and subsequently muscle growth.
What do amino acids do? When you begin exercising,your body starts to rapidly break down muscle tissue, in a process known as protein degradation. Consuming amino acids aids the recovery and development of muscle tissue, and lean muscle mass.
Creatine is a molecule made in the liver and kidneys to create the muscle energy used for muscle contraction. During intense exercise creatine stores in the body are used up quickly, and this is when taking a creatine as a supplement can be very beneficial. Creatine stores can be replaced allowing you to continue training at a high intensity for longer.
Muscle tissue absorbs creatine from the bloodstream in order to fuel intense exercise. When you exercise creatine is converted into adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is a major energy source within the body, allowing muscles to work harder for longer and increases your metabolic rate.
Creatine is one of the most researched supplements in existence and is proven to increase:
☐ Muscle Size
It’s completely legal as it is a naturally occurring substance within your body and it’s also very cheap, 5-10g a day and you are on the right path. Creatine Monohydrate is the most effective and ethically proven strand.
You may not deem this as a necessary supplement, but it can be incredibly useful. There are always days when you feel fatigued and you don’t feel like you want to go to the gym. For these kind of days pre workout becomes an essential supplement, so you can train at maximum intensity. MYPRE is one of the most potent pre workout formulas on the market.
☐ Pre Workout can be used to boost your energy levels before a workout
☐ Intra Workout can increase your stamina, helping you to workout for longer
☐ Post Workout will shorten your recovery time
5. Vitamins & Minerals
The body cannot produce its own Vitamins and minerals, meaning they must be consumed through your diet. This can be achieved through food or supplements.
There are 3 main reasons why minerals are necessary:
☐ They help to build strong bones and teeth
☐ They control body fluids inside and outside cells
☐ They turn the food you eat into energy
Sometimes it is difficult to consume the required vitamins just through your diet, and this is where Vitamin & Mineral supplements can prove useful. Taking supplements can prevent you from suffering from a vitamin and mineral deficiency.
Take Home Message
You should seriously consider making these supplements part of your training regimen. It is of course important to remember that supplements are ‘supplements’ and they should be consumed alongside a well balanced diet. This will help you to achieve your goals and make the progress you want.