Gentleman’s Supplement Guide to Building Muscle: 5 Supplements You Should Take
When it comes to building muscle and shredding fat the natural way (that’s without ruining your health with anabolic steroids), supplementation should take third place in your priorities list, right after proper diet and exercise. But that doesn’t mean that supplements aren’t an important part of every gentleman’s muscle-building journey, especially when you consider the fact that meeting your daily protein requirements, for example, can be quite a chore. The Gentleman’s Supplement Guide to Building Muscle is especially true when you’re an intermediate or an advanced lifter, as building new muscle tissue becomes more and more difficult with every year that you put into the gym. Gentleman’s Supplement Guide to Building Muscle
Yes, protein supplements have many benefits, but aside from whey and casein shakes, you should also explore other supplements that can help you with muscle repair and total-body recovery, fatigue prevention, and fat burning, in order to elevate the quality of your workouts, and simply reach your muscle-building goals a little bit faster. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the supplements that you may want to introduce into your daily routine.
Meet your protein requirements
All right, gentlemen, let’s start with the most important supplement that you may or may not need depending on your lifestyle habits – protein. Like other supplements, protein is not exactly necessary if you follow a strict and calculated diet plan and if you are consuming ample amounts of dietary protein on a daily basis. Typically, you should aim to consume a gram of protein per pound of body-weight, meaning that if you weigh 200 pounds, you should eat around 200 grams of protein every single day. Needless to say, this is not an easy goal to reach, especially if you have a packed schedule and if you haven’t mastered the art of meal preparation yet.
As you might have guessed, this answers the question what are the benefits of a protein shake after a workout or during the day, as chugging down a protein supplement can help you reach your mark and ensure that you’re getting ample amounts of protein in on a daily basis. For your post-workout shake, you can stick with whey protein, but if you want to keep the muscle-building process alive throughout the night as well, then go for the slow-digesting casein protein instead.
Add a scoop of creatine monohydrate.
The next extremely popular supplement on our list is, of course, creatine. Now, creatine might be very popular in the fitness industry (and rightfully so), but it’s also one of the most misunderstood supplements on the market as well. Consumers are typically unsure of the benefits of creatine, how it works, whether or not it helps with fatigue and recovery, and whether or not it is safe for daily consumption. In short, creatine is absolutely safe, and there is no need to cycle it on and off throughout your fitness journey, simply take five grams every day for as long as you like.
The main question is, do you need it. And again, the answer varies depending on your goals, lifestyle, and long-term aspirations. One of the key myths is that creatine builds new muscle tissue. Unfortunately, creatine is not anabolic, but it does promote faster muscle growth and greater force exertion through cellular swelling and the improved production of ATP – energy. This creates an anabolic environment that allows you to grow muscle mass a bit faster and without burning out or feeling drained all day long after a particularly rough workout.
Given the fact that you can’t get ample amounts of creatine from food alone, this is basically the only nutrient that you have to supplement if you want it in your system. But before you do, remember that there is no need to load creatine, just take 3-5 grams per day, and you’re good to go.
Be consistent with glutamine
Next, we have glutamine, a beloved supplement among old-school bodybuilders and athletes in general that stood the test of time and is still one of the most popular supplements on the market, and for a number of reasons. The main reason why seasoned athletes love to add L-glutamine to their daily routine so much is that it offers long-term health benefits aside from helping with fatigue management and glycogen absorption. Remember, though, taking glutamine is a long-term commitment because you can only experience its true benefits by taking it over a period of months.
That said, the effort is well worth it, as supplementing with glutamine can help you stifle fatigue and recover from your workouts more easily by helping the cells absorb glycogen after a workout. What’s more, glutamine promotes immune system function over the long term, meaning that you can make better muscle gains by staying healthy, energized, and consistent with your training.
Sip on BCAAs during your workout
BCAAs (Branched-Chain Amino Acids) is a supplement that you might want to take during your workouts to keep your energy stores in balance, prevent premature fatigue, and keep the anabolic (muscle-building) process alive throughout your training session. While taking BCAAs is not a necessity to have a productive session, it can be a godsend if you’re exercising early in the morning before breakfast, or later in the evening after work when you’re feeling particularly drained.
This supplement can be beneficial if you’re trying to take your workouts to that next level of intensity while reducing the risk of injury or burnout. That said, you can take BCAAs whenever you like to fill your muscles up with those essential amino acids that promote muscle-protein synthesis, anabolism, and muscle growth in general. Try experimenting with BCAAs in the morning, during your workout, after your workout, or even before bed to find out what works best for you.
Add some beta-alanine to stifle fatigue
When exercising, you need to optimize the intensity, volume, and frequency of training in order to create a sustainable workout scheme that will allow you to progress over time, grow muscle, prevent injuries, and avoid the dreaded burnout. Making your workouts sustainable over the long term is the key to growing consistently year after year, which is why you might want to introduce a supplement like beta-alanine into the mix.
With beta-alanine, you might be able to improve muscular endurance during training, meaning that you can push yourself harder for longer periods of time, and thus get more work done without wasting your time in the gym or accumulating “junk volume.” While your body does produce beta-alanine on its own, that doesn’t mean that you have enough of the amino acid to get these benefits, especially if you’re generally running on a packed daily schedule.
You can combine a beta-alanine supplement with protein-rich foods such as lean meats, fish, dairy, and eggs to get as much of the amino acid as possible in order to boost the production of carnosine, which is, in turn, will promote muscle endurance. Over the long term, beta-alanine combined with regular training and a healthy diet plan can help you build lean muscle mass faster.
Wrapping up Supplement Guide to Building Muscle
Building an enviable physique should one of the main goals for every modern gentleman. Not only will you feel more confident, and not only will your suits fit better than ever, but you will also be healthier and stronger overall, which will significantly elevate your quality of life. Be sure to try out these supplements for yourself to see which work best for you and your fitness goals.