Supplements for strength training
Unless you are a serious bodybuilder, supplements for strength training are generally not necessary. In most cases, gym goers who eat a good, high quality and varied diet will be able to effectively develop their strength naturally.
However, there are a few supplements for strength training that can be used to fill any gaps, help you get all the nutrients you need and give you that extra edge in your strength workout.
Vitamins and minerals for strength training
A general one a day multi-vitamin is a good idea for anyone and is especially beneficial for strength athletes as their bodies have greater needs.
Other good vitamins to take as supplements for strength training include magnesium, zinc, calcium and vitamin C. Our bodies require plenty of these vitamins when strength training and building muscle.
Zinc is especially important for maintaining high testosterone levels, a hormone which is essential for good muscle growth.
Protein powder for strength training
Protein powder can help you get more protein, but is not essential if you have a good whole food diet.
In fact, for most people it is better to try to get all you need from a protein rich diet, as good whole foods create a stronger surge in your metabolism than protein powders.
Although most people can get the protein they need from a protein-rich diet, a good quality whey protein supplement can be beneficial as a supplement for serious strength training.
Creatine for strength training
Creatine is a substance that is made by the body to store energy. It is a natural substance derived from amino acids.
This substance is found in food, but most people only ingest about 2 grams per day naturally from food sources, so if you want to experience the benefits of improved performance and recovery from creatine you will need to try a supplement.
Creatine can help serious strength training by letting you increase your intensity, the weight and number of reps you can perform.
Between 5 and 10 grams of creatine a day is a sensible amount if you want to try this natural boost.
You can try taking more (some lifters take up to 30 grams a day) but this would only be advisable for those with a higher body weight (over 200 pounds).
There are a couple of points to note about this supplement. Creatine can cause water retention, which can bloat the muscles slightly and cause cramping. It can also cause an upset stomach if you take too much at once.
The best way to take creatine is slowly so that it has time to digest and doesn’t aggravate the stomach.
You also need to drink enough fluids (about 1 pint for every dose of creatine) to counteract its water retention properties.
Creatine can be found in all health food shops and all body building shops in powder, capsule and chewable form. This is one of the best supplements for strength training for those looking for an extra edge via a natural supplement.
Testosterone for strength training
Testosterone is a naturally occurring anabolic hormone in our bodies. Men have more testosterone than women, but they also use more and conversely, women are more sensitive to testosterone than men.
Testosterone can increase athletic performance by enhancing muscle development, strength and performance, however, because of this, the use of the anabolic hormone is considered a doping offence in competitive sport.
Testosterone can be taken by various forms including tablets, capsules, skin patches, gels, injections and nasal sprays.
Sources of extra testosterone can be found in fenugreek extract, which comes from the fenugreek plant. Some natural testosterone supplements in health food shops contain this extract.
Testofuel is a natural supplement for strength training, designed to boost your body’s own testosterone levels.
This supplement includes vitamins, oyster extract, ginseng, D-aspartic acid and much more, all designed to help your body create its own testosterone boost. Click here to check out the powers of Testofuel for yourself.
Growth hormone for strength training
Growth hormone is a peptide hormone occurring naturally in our bodies. It aids muscle recovery, growth and cell reproduction.
This hormone is used in the medical profession to treat growth disorders but it is also used by some athletes to simulate muscle growth as well as other people looking for anti-aging benefits.
There are a number of supplements that contain natural ingredients that are thought to boost our bodies’ natural HGH levels.
Share your thoughts on supplements
Do you take any regular supplements? Do you find they make a big difference to your training or gains?
Which other supplements would you recommend?
Let us know your thoughts about supplements in the comments.
Read more about diet and strength training