Let me start by saying there are a ton of amazing supplements out there that, if you train hard and get plenty of quality calories, will indeed enhance your physique and help you build muscle faster. Of course there’s also some crap supplements out there as well. And many of the ‘good’ supplements can put a huge dent in your bank account. That being said I want to cover some basic tried and true supplements that have been proven over time to produce muscle gains.
I’ll admit it, I love taking muscle building supplements and always have since I started (there are worse things you can do in life, right?). Don’t get me wrong; I’ve taken a lot of bodybuilding products over the years that did absolutely nothing for me. Like most things in life there’s a lot of trial and error involved when it comes to supplements. There are a few things to consider here; 1) it could be just a crap product. As you know, there are plenty of worthless supplements out there. For example, there are some fat burners out there loaded with caffeine to make you ‘feel’ like it’s working when all you’re really getting is just a boost from the caffeine. There are not enough of the other ingredients in the product to actual burn fat. 2) There’s the fact that everyone responds differently to certain substances. An example of this is I’ve known people to take nitric oxide (NO) boosters and have veins popping out everywhere with superior pumps. When I tried the same product I didn’t get that affect. So it wasn’t necessarily that the product didn’t work, it just didn’t work for me. You also have to factor in your nutrition plan and what type of training you’re doing which these are more important than any supplement. If you want to get big but you’re not training until failure and you’re not getting adequate protein then no muscle building pill is going to work for you. The same goes for fat burners if you’re eating everything that’s bad for you and skimping on cardio. AKA, there’s no magic pill despite the claims you may read from supplements ads. Now that we’ve covered that, let’s move on.
This can all be a little overwhelming, at least is has been for me in the past. But considering all the ‘new’ supplements with frills and fancy advertisements I’ve always reverted back to what I refer to as ‘old school supplements.’ Two amazing things happen with this; 1), you end up saving a LOT of money and 2), you start seeing solid results (IF, and only if you’re training hard and your nutrition plan in on target). A few examples of old school supplements are whey protein, creatine monohydrate and amino acids. To add, if you take a close look at most of today’s muscle building supplements they all include a blend of amino acids. Why not skip the hype, simplify your supplement plan, save your money and just take amino acids? The same goes for creatine. There are endless versions of creatine products out there now but many will agree that creatine monohydrate is still the most effective version. It’s also far less expensive that the other versions and creatine formulas.
There are some effective supplements that are little more than just standard supplements. Take pre workout formulas for example. Pre workout supplements usually consist of a mixture of many ingredients to boost energy, enhance mental focus, give you muscle pumps, and provide your body with nutrients such as aminos to help you increase intensity and get the most out of your workout. Pre workout supplements are about the only product I’ll buy that doesn’t necessarily fit in the old school supplement realm. Other than that, I stick with the basics; whey protein, creatine monohydrate, and amino acids. I may pick up some glutamine to take before bed as well. My point is there are really only a small handful of supplements you need for performance and to enhance muscle recovery. Or you could go the other route and spend half your paycheck on all of the hyped-up supplements which will essentially grant you the same results, if that.
Train with Passion,