A common question I hear a lot is, “Should I take supplements, or not? And if so which ones?”. This is something that is going to be a personal preference depending on you as an individual. Supplements are great for aiding us in areas that we might be lacking, but sometimes it’s not necessary that we need to be taking them. The key is to find out what areas we feel we need some help and support in, and then knowing exactly what supplement we can use to help assist us in that area. Finding a supplement that you like and trust is a big player in that as well. Here is a list of some of our supplements that we like here at the gym!
HMB is a dietary supplement that helps to reduce muscle damage that occurs from training. Because it helps to reduce the muscle damage that occurs it allows us to also reduce our recovery time, which means we will be able to train harder and more efficiently. HMB has also been shown to help increase both overall muscle strength and endurance. This is because HMB is a chemical that is produced when the body produces leucine, which is an amino acid found in the body, and is therefore why it is able to effectively aid in building muscle and reducing the damage that occurs from training. Since it helps us increase our muscle mass, it can also cause us to lose body fat and increase our metabolism due to the increase in muscle. In addition to the benefits that HMB gives us during our training, it also helps us outside of training as well. HMB has been shown to reduce the amount of muscle loss through inactivity and aging. This is going to be important for a lot of people seeing as after the age of 30 we can begin to possibly see decreases in muscle of about 3-5% over the course of a decade, but after the age of 35 we can begin to see as much as .5-1% decrease in muscle loss annually. Helping to prevent that muscle loss will help us remain stronger overall and less susceptible to injuries.
HMB + Creatine
We’ve seen all of the benefits that HMB alone can give us, but what about if we add creatine to it? Creatine, just like HMB, is also used to help aid in increasing strength and lean muscle mass. However, creatine shines when it comes down to movements with quick, short bursts. This makes it great for things such as weightlifting and sprinting, aka CrossFit. The combination of both HMB and Creatine has been shown to make improvements in squatting, deadlifting, and interval training. This was true for both trained and untrained athletes, which means it’s perfect for you no matter what fitness level you’re at! In addition to helping improve your lifts, this combination has also been shown to increase your performance with running, cycling, and rowing. Finally, this combination has been shown to act as an antioxidant, as well as helping improve your cognitive performance when you are sleep deprived.
This is a supplement that is supposed to help limit fatigue in our muscles. Beta alanine helps to buffer out lactic acid build up in our muscles, which is that burning feeling that we tend to feel when working out. Because of this, we can see an improvement in our short duration high intensity training. This means that we would see a delay in fatigue in things such as running, cycling, and rowing. This delay in fatigue means that we are able to get those few extra reps in towards the end of a workout. In addition to the benefits that beta alanine gives us during our workout, we can also see some benefits outside of the gym. Beta alanine has been shown to improve cognitive function, as well as having some anti-aging properties such as increasing muscle quality and function in older adults.
Pre-workout is one of the more common supplements we tend to hear about, and is one of the most questioned supplements on whether or not we need it. Pre-workout is designed to help give you that extra push of energy for your workouts. Here at Black Iron we like TinFold for our pre-workout option. This is a pre-workout + nootropic blend. This means that it provides you with the energy of a pre-workout with the brain boosting strength of a nootropic to help you focus during your workout. This pre-workout will help give you a steady stream of energy, without leaving you feeling itchy like some pre-workouts tend to. The nootropic that it contains will help you stay focused during your lifts to help you get the most out of each lift.
These are just a few of the many supplements that we can take that can help aid us in areas that we need to be helped. These four supplements are ones that we love here at Black Iron, and have seen great results from. However, the list of supplements that can be beneficial to us could go on for days. With that being said, check back next week to get more information on some of the other common supplements that we tend to hear about!
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