There are literally hundreds of supplements that you can take to have the claim of boosting pre-or post workout effects.
In this quick guide I’m going to talk you through nailing pre-and post workout nutrition without spending hundreds of dollars each month.
It’s a step up from completely natural exercising/working out regime, but it doesn’t use expensive professional supplements or SARMs.
So this is the first step to take when you reach that plateau where you just don’t seem to be making any progress and are constantly in maintenance mode.
Once you’ve cracked using this for a couple of months, as a single stack of basic nutritional boosters, you can then make a decision on buying some of the professional products I recommend here, or going to the next level and using something like SARMs or the increasingly popular peptides, as SARMs are now less available due to legal changes.
How Important Is Pre-& Post Workout Nutrition?
It’s perfectly reasonable to work out naturally. If you work hard and do the right exercises, with the right frequency and development, you’ll have a great look and make fantastic progress after a few months.
If you keep pushing myself harder and harder you could get to your goals. The truth is doing it completely naturally is harder than not.
Putting aside the excellent quality of SARMs, peptides, and professional grade supplements nowadays, there is a simple stack of pre-and post workout nutritional tools you can use to get over that usual natural bodybuilding bump in the road.
So pre-and post workout nutrition isn’t essential, especially in the beginning. If you want to go beyond that first hurdle, you’ll need some nutritional and motivational supplements, and if you want to go beyond the second hurdle, you’ll need another step up in terms of the supplements you use.
These Are The Top 6 Workout Supplements That Can Benefit Anyone
If you’re looking to take that next step, my advice is to look at the following six supplements that are completely safe to use, and have proven benefits for bodybuilding and exercise progression generally.
If you want to gain lean muscle mass at a faster rate than you can naturally, then increasing the amount of protein you have is essential.
Although normally, as a macronutrient, protein should only make up about 35% of your overall calorie intake, you will need to increase it alongside your other calories if you are trying to increase your muscle mass.
Don’t overdo additional protein. It can put stress on the body, can lead to unused calories, and can be wasted money. When you see people eating tons of protein rich foods every day, and then also drinking to large protein shakes each day all you have to do is laugh. There is simply no way that that is a reasonable strategy.
However, post workout, a protein shake around 400 Cal, is definitely advisable and should be built into your regime right away.
Second on my list is caffeine. This should be used pre-workout in order to give you a mental and physical boost.
Around 100 mg of caffeine 30 minutes before your workout will kick in pretty soon after you start and elevate your ability to focus, be determined, drive yourself forward to complete the reps you need, and push past muscle exhaustion.
If caffeine gives you the jitters, or you have anxiety which can be heightened by caffeine intake, then you can still take 100 mg. However, you should team it up with a capsule of 400 mg of L-Theanine, which is renowned for calming you, and counteracting the jittery nature of caffeine to give you a smooth rush.
Some people advocate 200 mg, but this is a nootropic level to take as a single dose. However, because of the physical exercise element, I wouldn’t advise you that high until you know you can handle it because you will have an elevated heart rate. Keep to 100 mg, and after a month ago to 150, then another month go to 200 mg.
3. Fish Oil
Third on my list of essential natural bodybuilding substances is fish oil. I widely available supplement that is brilliant for heart health.
But more than that, fish oils help to prevent muscle soreness after workout, brilliant to take with your protein shake post workout.
Around 1000 mg is perfect, but a little less if you have a diet already rich in oily fish, things like flax seeds and walnuts which take up some of the slack.
Omega-3 has been shown to counteract the inflammatory effects of omega-6, found in many modern foods, especially soy-based products.
After your workout, it’s brilliant because there is evidence it helps to promote improve muscle protein synthesis, which can both help to build muscle and repair it faster.
4. Beta Alanine
This is another chemical you should be cramming into your pre-workout supplement stack. Beta alanine is an amino acid found in meat, fish, and poultry.
But you’ll need around 3 g of it, and you won’t get that unless you are eating nearly a kilogram of meat. So 2 g supplementation on top of the protein rich diet post workout really could work wonders for you.
It increases the concentration of carnosine. Carnosine counteracts the buildup of lactic acid that happens in the body during exercise.
Lactic acid is what causes that exhausted burning sensation in your muscles. It’s a failsafe that stops us exerting beyond our physical limits and hurting ourselves too much. But carnosine at higher levels can lead to less lactic acid, meaning you can push yourself just a little further.
It’s especially useful during the short burst high intensity exercises. Sprinting, rapid movement exercises, light, fast, weights and stress, where you get that horrendous burn can feel crippling.
Creatine is something you will always be told you should take to help you with your workouts. You can buy it in the form of creatine monohydrate, a white powder.
There is some debate around whether creatine should be taken before or after your workout.
The advocates of using it pre-workout say that it helps with high intensity activity, delivering more energy to the muscles because it’s used as an energy source.
Post workout it’s also used by people who advocate its ability to you to recover more quickly, and to fuel muscle development.
Basically, you can use it at either end. Personally, I would dose it equally an hour pre-workout, and immediately post workout. That way, it doesn’t really matter who is right, you are getting benefits of creatine into your muscle tissue for both energy and recovery consistently through that key time of day.
6. Mucuna Pruriens
Last on my top six is something called the dopamine bean, or by its official name Mucuna Pruriens. It’s called the dopamine bean because it contains an active ingredient called L-Dopa which is a precursor to dopamine.
Taken in sufficient quantities of around 1500 mg, this can elevate levels of dopamine significantly for a few hours.
Dopamine is our risk and reward hormone that increases determination, physical and mental energy levels, seeking an award through increased levels of effort, and elevated mood.
So not only will you work out harder and longer, you’ll feel more satisfied after wards and have a potentially huge grin on your face, especially alongside all those bouncing endorphins.
Creating Pre-And Post Workout Supplement Stacks
Let’s finish up here by stacking altogether for you.
Pre-workout you are going to mix around 2 g of creatine into one of your standard energy drinks.
To that you’ll also add the beta alanine to the energy drink (so it’s not like red Bull, just a sugary sports drink, you’ll need a 100-200 mg caffeine pill and possibly a L-Theanine capsule).
Mucuna Pruriens can be bought as a powder, but it doesn’t taste great. You’re far better off necking a couple of capsules of it (1000 mg or more) instead.
You’ll consume this pre-workout Stacked and consumed about 30 minutes before you begin, or round 45 minutes prior if you have eaten in the past two hours.
Post workout, as soon as you can after finishing, you’ll have your protein shake. Around 400 Cal of protein powder, mixed with 3 g of creatine, and taking a capsule of fish oil at the same time.
I’m telling you, that you will feel a difference. Especially if you do it every time. You’ll see after about two weeks of this that you feel elevated starting your workout, then your buzz through it far more easily, and recovery and results will also be improved.
Don’t expect miracles though, because this isn’t like peptides, SARMs, or even professionally constructed natural supplements.
You will get a lift in energy, endurance, focus, and power. Post workout, your cover slightly more quickly, and your muscle growth and hardness will be slightly better than you could ever achieve with just natural workouts.
The next step is a professional pre-workout supplement like Dark Energy.