Whether you’re a world-class bodybuilder or an average joe, you’ll still want to get the most out of your training. The best way to maximize your performance gains is by providing your body with what it needs. And the best way to do that is with the right bodybuilding supplements. Before you reach for steroids consider supplementing correctly.
There are, quite literally, thousands of bodybuilding supplements available. Therefore, it can be a daunting proposition to choose the right ones. To help get you started, here’s a list, in no particular order, of the supplements that will provide the best bang for your buck.
Creatine is the best-researched athletic performance supplement, bar none. It has been present in the athletic arena for decades and used by bodybuilders all over the world.
Creatine monohydrate is a molecule that primarily serves to provide skeletal muscle energy by increasing the production of ATP. Without getting too nerdy about it, that means that you can do more work with less fatigue.
By and large, it’s considered one of the safest and most effective supplements for bodybuilding.
2. Protein Powders
Fairly ubiquitous even outside of bodybuilding, concentrated protein powders are still a top supplement for muscle building. There’s not a lot of guesswork with these, protein synthesis is crucial for muscle growth so getting enough protein is one of the pillars of bodybuilding itself.
There is a separate discussion to be had about how much protein is too much and which proteins are better. However, the convenient nature of protein powders alone earns them a place on this list.
3. Branched Chain Amino Acids
Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. Branched-chain aminos are three of the nine types essential to humans. When synthesized, these amino acids promote muscle growth, reduce muscle soreness, and reduce muscle wasting.
They’re particularly hailed as an excellent way to keep catabolism in check while maintaining a calorie deficit, such as during a cutting phase. Some research does confirm that they prevent muscle loss in those situations.
4. Multivitamins and Multiminerals
Most of the focus around nutrition in bodybuilding falls on macronutrients (fats, carbohydrates, and proteins). However, micronutrients are just as important to long-term health.
A balanced diet can provide a lot of the minerals and vitamins that you need but sometimes it’s difficult to get that. It’s difficult to get all the right foods, especially if you’re in the gym for two to three hours a day. That’s why a simple multivitamin and multimineral help tremendously and they have no real side-effects.
You may not think of your morning coffee as a supplement, but caffeine has shown some exciting results for athletic performance. Five milligrams per kilo of body weight improved performance for participants in one 2009 study.
Additionally, the short-term focus improvement can also help you if you schedule workouts shortly after waking.
6. Nitric Oxide Boosters
Nitric oxide is an important part of cell metabolism and helps increase blood flow to muscle tissue among other functions. Taking NO boosters such as citrulline malate and eating foods high in nitrates, such as beets, can help increase its saturation in the blood.
7. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
These essential fatty acids have been researched extensively and show a range of benefits, from reducing inflammation to improving exercise recovery.
Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) that you feel the day after a workout is a type of inflammation. In studies, the use of omega-3s showed a significant improvement in some participants in terms of perceived soreness and range of motion 48 hours after exercising.
The Right Fuel for Your Journey
There’s a saying that 20% of bodybuilding takes place in the gym and 80% takes place in the kitchen. It’s impossible to overstate how important the correct nutrition is for bodybuilding and supplementation is a way to achieve that.
It’s that much more important to get the correct nutrition if you’re using anabolic steroids. UK citizens can legally own steroids for personal use, and it’s your choice whether or not to use them, but make sure you take the necessary precautions.