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Supported Single-Arm Dumbbell Row

Supported Single-Arm Dumbbell Row

Hold a dumbbell in your right hand, place your left hand on a bench in front of you, and assume a staggered stance, left foot forward. Hold your elbow in as you row the wight to the side of your torso. Do 10 reps, switch arms and leg positions, and repeat the movement.

Dumbbell Triceps Kickback

Dumbbell Triceps Kickback

Grab a pair of dumbbells, bend your knees and lean forward so your torso is nearly parallel to the floor. Tuck your upper arms next to your sides, bend your elbows, and hold your forearms about parallel to the floor, palms facing up. Simultaneously extend your arms straight back and rotate the weight so your palms end up facing each other. Return to the starting position. Do 15 reps.

Dumbbell Hammer Curl and Press

Dumbbell Hammer Curl and Press

Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, hold a pair of dumbbells at arm's length by your sides, palms facing each other. Without moving your upper arms, curl the weights to your shoulders, and then press them overhead until your arms are straight. Reverse the move to return to the starting position. Do 10 reps.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Muscle Building Supplements

Muscle Building Supplements are not an absolute must for bodybuilders, but can be used alongside a well-balanced diet to show off all that hard work in the gym. If you feel like you want to supplement your diet then the following guide should help find the right supplement for you. At we only recommend substances approved by the International Natural bodybuilding Association (INBA).

Protein Powder

Looking for a quality protein powder is not hard as there are so many. Points to look for are the levels of protein and the levels of the BCAA’s leucine, isoleucine and valine. Taste will be an issue with a lot of people. However over recent years the flavors have really improved. The best thing here is to check product reviews to see what people are saying. One bad review is ok, but if everyone is complaining about taste, that’s generally stay away territory. Price for some people can be an issue. However, I personally believe and found that paying a little extra does get you a better quality product.

Whey Protein

Whey protein is one of the most popular protein shakes on the market. This is due to it being high in the muscle building amino acids leucine, isoleucine and valine. It also has a high BV rating making it a fast acting protein source which is also filling. Whey protein accounts for around 20% of protein in milk and is a by-product of cheese production.

Whey Isolate

Whey isolate is a more expensive due to its superior quality, higher BV, as well as containing less fat and lactose per serving than whey protein. Isolate is roughly 90% to 98% protein whereas whey concentrate is 70% to 85% protein.

Whey Blends

Whey blends are a specialized formula containing both concentrates and isolates making it more cost effective than buying isolates alone.

Casein Protein

Accounting for 80% of protein in milk, it is a much slower digesting protein than whey protein. Casein protein has a protein value of 92% and is very popular with weight gainers. Although having a lower BV than whey protein it is more efficiently used to build muscle.
Casein is popular as it is used by the body to build muscle and less is used as an energy source. This way casein encourages the body to use carbs and stored fat as energy. Casein protein is also popular as it is high in the body building supplement glutamine.

Soy Protein

Soy protein is a high quality protein however is not as efficient as whey protein or casein in building muscle. Soy protein is a fast digesting with a fairly average amino acid profile. Soy isolate has a higher BV, but lower quality than soy protein.


Protein content here isn’t the number one focus however it is usually a good high level. For recovery you should look for whether or not it has high levels of amino acids and BCAA’s (branched chain amino acids). Some of the recovery shakes will contain creatine which is a bonus. However when choosing your recovery shake keep a close eye on the sugar levels and sometimes this can be higher than desired.

Meal Replacements

These are more than just a protein source, rather a complete nutritious meal. Some of these are designed for dieting and some for mass gain so make sure you get the right one for your needs. Meal replacements often come in the form of a bar. These are great if you are looking to bulk and need to add extra calories through a snack.

Weight Gainers

The ultimate muscle building supplements for newbies and hardgainers looking to bulk. Quality carb intake is just as important as protein intake. Weight gainer supplements provide a good quality mix of simple and complex carbs with good protein content.
When choosing a weight gainer price v quality may become an issue. In my experience paying a little extra will get you the superior product. The more quality product will have lower sugar levels as well as lower levels of cholesterol and saturated fats.
The protein content should be around 30g per serving, however this shouldn’t be a problem to find as many come as high as 50-60g per serving.


Creatine is a hugely popular nutrition nutrient due its ability to improve stamina and endurance as well as muscle growth and development. A widely studied nutrient it has been found to be both safe and effective for muscle builders and athletes alike.
Creatine comes in powders and pills. It may be beneficial to use an all in one product that contains whey protein and creatine.


The most common amino acid found in your muscle glutamine makes up 61% of skeletal muscle tissue. During intense exercise glutamine levels become heavily depleted and can take some time to recover. Therefore supplementing can be of great benefit to restore the levels and improve muscle growth.
You should note that some protein supplements and foods in your diet already contain levels of glutamine. Therefore check these first before adding more to your nutrition plan. ON gold standard whey is useful as it contains over 4 grams of glutamine per serving.

Supplement v Food

-The BV of supplements helps get protein to the body fast when needed. This is first thing in the morning and post-workout.
-Supplements tend to be cost effective when looking at 30g servings.
-The supplement is a much more complete protein source often containing vitamins and minerals.
-Supplements come in a wide variety of flavors.
-Red meat can contain high levels of saturated fats.
-Can be stored easily.
-Convenient- much less cleaning up.
-A protein shake can be easier on the body before bed.

Food v Supplement

-Knowing where it came from and what’s in it is essential for proper nutrition.
-some foods are more cost effective
-foods are more versatile
-some shakes can cause bloating
-beef has been shown to pack on more muscle than other forms of protein

When to take protein

When following an exercise plan it is desirable to eat 5-6 small meals evenly spaced throughout the day. This is the case whether you want to lose weight or gain weight. Eating throughout the day keeps your metabolism engine running. This means your body will body will burn more fat and store less of what you consume. Therefore when it comes to when to take protein, it should be alongside these meals.
The following is a sample plan telling you what point in the day protein supplementation will be beneficial.


First thing in the morning, the body will be in a fasting condition. This is known as catabolic state, the opposite of anabolic where is the body is in a state of growth. Therefore the body needs a fast acting protein to get the body into a positive nitrogen balance again. At this point it will good to use whey protein to feed the body. It will also be good to consume a slow digesting protein such as casein. This will keep you running until your next meal.


Eating a meal with carbs about 2-3 hours before you work-out will ensure you have the energy to push out those reps. However you will need to supply your body with the protein to get you through it. Therefore taking a slow digesting protein will keep your body in an anabolic state as you work-out. Again, casein will be useful here due to its muscle building capabilities.


This will be the same as the morning where your body will be breaking down muscle to feed itself. By using fast and slow acting proteins you feed the muscles with what they need immediately and keep you going for next few hours.


By taking a slow digesting protein before bed, your body will stay in the anabolic state for longer. Your muscles will rest and grow most when you are sleeping. Therefore this is possibly one of the most important times to take protein.


There are many products for you to supplement your diet with for that extra edge. Just remember that these products are supplements. This means you should have a good diet in place on which to build upon. You will get much better results by obtaining your nutrients from a number of different sources.


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Ultimate 30's Workout

Increase the amount of testosterone and growth hormone your body produces by working multiple muscle groups and keeping rest periods short. For cardio, your lactate threshold can still be increased throughout your thirties, so intervals are king to counter any loss of lung power.

Ultimate 40's Workout

Short, sharp shocks are the way to fire up your body in your middle years - which means you can forget long-winded weights workouts. Vary exercises, intensity and timings to keep your muscles guessing.

Ultimate 50's Workout

You may not be able to lift the heaviest weight, but that's okay. Instead, stretching and yoga should be part of your training, and body-weight moves can replace heavy workouts. Do three sets of 10 reps of the following exercises to protect your joints and maintain muscle mass and testosterone.