I have recently had several people ask me what kind of products I take and my opinions on certain products so I thought I’d write a post about my basics and what I’ve found works for me!
- PROTEIN POWDER: I’ve found since working out that this powder is a little life saver at the end of my workouts just to really help with muscle recovery as well as the building of new muscle through protein synthesis. After working out there’s that little window of time that is crucial for rebuilding and growth when a protein powder is the right answer. Now protein powders are daunting though because there are so many different kinds. If you do research on the different types however, you find they all break down at certain rates so some are good for through the day protein and meal replacement shakes while others are more beneficial for that post workout recovery shake. For after recovery shakes I try to stick with hydrolyzed whey protein or whey protein isolates. These are already broken down some so my body doesn’t have to process them and break them down as much. The absorption window for these proteins is usually 30 minutes to an hour so after workout that’s perfect. I personally cannot have whey protein concentrate because it is too heavy for my stomach and not broken down enough so my body has a really hard time processing it. I use GNC Pure Isolate because I get 25 grams of protein, which is a good amount for my body to be able to absorb, and there are BCAA’s in there as well. It is low on calories as well and tastes AMAZING!
- PRE-WORKOUT. I love being able to when I’m lifting feel that extra push of energy plus all the blood flow and pump components that I get in my pre workout. I personally use GNC Lit which I finds really works for me. It contains 250 mg of caffeine and is clinically dosed on it’s beta-alaline, which helps break down lactic acid, Citrulline, which helps with blood flow and Arginine, which is a nitric oxide and also helps with circulation and blood flow. The creatine in the lit is micronized so it is able to get into your blood stream faster and helps with power output as well as muscle growth. I add an extra half scoop of Creatine hcl which is a micronized creatine and very fine so your body absorbs it fast and you don’t need to do any loading phase with it at all. I also add Betaine hcl to my pre, which betaine is a newer studied product so there are not as many things out about it, but I use it to help with endurance and just power/strength output like the creatine. It also helps with protein synthesis so having it in my blood stream for when I take my protein later is beneficial.
- BCAA’s. Branched chain amino acids are essential building blocks for muscle recovery, soreness and growth. I am lucky that my protein has some in them because I am extremely forgetful and don’t drink them by themselves as often as I should. When I’m not forgetful and take them I use XTEND BCAA’s and their blood orange flavor is my go to. SO GOOD! They have a total of 7 grams of BCAA’s and glutamine is part of that really helping to combat muscle soreness. They also add citrulline to help with that blood flow to your muscles afterwards for better recovery.
- ODDS and ENDS. Those three above are my main components when it comes to supplements I take. I do also take a daily multi, plus biotin for the luscious locks, and extra vitamin d, b6, zinc and inositol powder to help with mood support and energy and filling personal nutritional gaps. Food is a huge part of my day too and I try to eat a good amount of protein, good fats, complex carbs and less processed foods. One of my huge weaknesses however is…. potstickers. I can’t turn them down! So those are an essential part of my day too… haha
Like I said at the beginning I have had people ask what I use so this is my personal opinion on these items and based on the research I have done and learned from my job as well. Just wanted to lay that out there just in case for some reason I am wrong in any way. These products however, I use on a daily basis and they really help me out. I hope you find this beneficial and this is literally just the surface of the studies on these products. You could write long posts about each one separately for sure. Maybe I’ll save that for another day! 🙂