Are you just beginning your bodybuilding journey? Maybe you are just trying to get in shape for summer. You have heard supplements can help, but don’t know where to start. So here is your guide for the most essential supplements for every beginner.
1. WHEY PROTEIN
I almost don’t even consider this a “supplement” for the fact that it is just an extra source of protein. Protein is the building block for muscle. Without a proper amount of protein in your diet, you won’t build muscle. It’s that simple. Whey protein is great because it is the fastest digesting form of protein out there. This means when your body is craving protein (like post-workout), you can down one of these shakes and get the rebuilding process started. Whey protein is one of the best sources of protein shown in clinical research to help build muscle and strength when used with your hardcore training and nutrition plan.
Creatine is arguably the most studied and proven supplement in history. Creatine is naturally occurring in the body and can be found in red meat and seafood. It has been shown to help build muscle mass and strength when used with resistance training. Really, anyone serious about maximizing muscle and strength should really consider taking creatine. It is relatively inexpensive and has proven benefits.
3. BRANCHED-CHAIN AMINO ACIDS
BCAAs are essential amino acids from protein found in food. The three amino acids are leucine, isoleucine and valine. BCAAs help fuel skeletal muscles, preserve muscle glycogen stores and reduce protein breakdown. BCAAs are popular with bodybuilders for promoting muscle recovery, which may allow for more frequent training. One of the amino acids, L-leucine, has been shown to increase protein synthesis to help increase lean muscle and strength!
4. A PRE-WORKOUT SUPPLEMENT
Pre-workouts have a variety of different ingredients and dosages in them, so finding a quality pre-workout can take some knowledge and research. But the goal of most pre-workouts is to increase focus and energy. Make sure to slowly work up to stronger pre-workouts, especially if you are sensitive to stimulants like caffeine, although you can find pre-workouts without any caffeine, like Pre-Workout N.O. Fury® caplets.
5. A POST-WORKOUT SUPPLEMENT
A quality post-workout will have a fast-digesting carbohydrate, creatine and amino acids. This supplement’s job is to facilitate protein synthesis and glycogen resynthesis. In other words, it aids in muscle building, energy replenishing and faster recovery. Find a quality post-workout supplement to take with your protein shake for the ultimate post-workout stack!
6. CASEIN PROTEIN
Casein protein is the main protein found in milk and is actually the opposite of whey protein (in terms of speed of digestion). It is a slow-digesting form of protein instead of fast. This form of protein is best used before bed. Having casein before bed allows your body to continue to digest protein through the night, giving your body the protein it needs, even while you sleep.