This is a collaborative post.
It’s been a while since I wrote about fitness, but with the new year upon us, I’m bringing you a beginner’s guide to sports supplements. Sports supplements can help improve performance but are they really necessary?
Even if you think they might give you an edge over the competition, how do you go about choosing the right ones for your own personal requirements? In this post, I’ll be looking at some of the points to consider if you’re thinking about giving sports supplements a try this new year.
If you are just starting out with fitness, you may be confused at the sheer array of supplements on the market today, from the best pre workout solutions to supplements for building muscle.
I know I still get really confused when I’m getting ready for rugby matches and some of my teammates are talking about electrolytes and hydration tablets!
Sports supplements can be very confusing. Some are lauded as being essential, and others are recommended as extremely desirable. And there are still more that you should not even consider. Where do you start when there’s so much conflicting information around?
Do I actually need to take sports supplements at all?
Not necessarily. But they can really help if you have specific goals in mind. Whatever level you are at, and whether you are an athlete, a bodybuilder or a weight lifter, it goes without saying that you want to both look your best and perform to the best of your ability. If you’re dedicated and have goals, you will work hard to achieve them, sacrificing a lot to get to where you want to be.
But from time to time, you may hit a brick wall: no matter how much work you put in, you can’t seem to reduce your percentage of body fat any further. Maybe you are going through a constant vicious circle of muscle gain followed by loss.
Perhaps something in your personal life has affected your mood, discouraging you from getting to the gym; or you’re feeling run down and in need of a burst of energy to improve your endurance work-out. For all these scenarios and more, there are different types of sports supplements that can give you a helping hand.
It could be something as simple as adjusting your diet to cut down on the number of calories you take in, or build up the protein content of your meals. Or you could choose to take particular sports supplements, for example, the best muscle-building prohormone available for your requirements.
What should I do before taking any sports supplements?
The most important thing to do before taking any kind of new supplementary product is to do your homework and make sure you know what you’re trying out. Research all around the subject before you decide that one particular supplement will be more beneficial than another.
It’s easy to be swayed by a friend at the gym or by someone on an online forum, who tells you that he couldn’t have achieved his levels of fitness without this or that substance. But the results from any supplement will vary from person to person according to everything from their own body build to their diet, their workout schedule and their personal fitness level. You need to know that the sports supplements you’re planning to take are right for you personally.
Before taking any supplementary substance, even if you choose the best natural prohormone on the market, you should always consult your doctor if you have any medical condition or if you are already taking any prescribed medicines. For example, even natural substances have been known to contraindicate with anti-depressants with harmful results, so it’s simply not worth taking the risk.
The best prohormones for sale will come with detailed guidance on the ingredients and on all possible side effects, as well as the proper way to take the supplements for best effect – so always follow the guidelines.
What are the sports supplements known as prohormones?
Any mention of ways to increase hormone levels as a method of improving performance may well set alarm bells ringing. When the subject of hormones comes up, we instantly think of testosterone and the controversial anabolic steroids that some famous – and plenty of less famous – athletes, both amateur and at a competitive level, have been caught taking in order to give themselves an edge.
These substances, which are injected into the body rather than ingested, are of course very unsafe as well as illegal. However, it’s important not to tar prohormones with the same brush.
Unlike steroids, a prohormone does not introduce actual hormones into the body. They are, instead, known as precursors. What this means is that, when ingested, the best prohormone helps stimulate the body’s production of hormones such as testosterone, which can, in turn, have a knock-on effect on the body’s ability to add muscle mass, reduce body fat and improve overall levels of stamina.
Most prohormones are entirely legal and, when taken as directed, can be safe and relatively free from the more unpleasant side effects caused by anabolic steroids. Carefully controlled usage, coupled with an effective Post Cycle Therapy (or PCT) to return the body to its natural state between cycles, can offer a range of benefits, such as building mass and muscle, increasing endurance and improving motivation.
Are sports supplements right for you?
There’s only one person who can answer that question! The key thing here is to make sure you do your research, consult your doctor and focus on what you’re trying to achieve. That way, you’ll be sure to find a sports supplement that can complement your fitness goals as well as ensure you remain healthy.
Have you tried any sports supplements? I’d love to hear your thoughts, so let me know in the comments below if you have any feedback or suggestions. If you enjoyed this post, check out some of my other fitness posts or visit my Fit and Strong board over on Pinterest.