When I started on my own personal transformation, it was all self-taught; books, Magazines, web. I began the transformation without the use of supplements. However, as I began to research more and further develop my physique, I decided to incorporate supplementation. I have tired some that are no longer in my regimen, including Creatine, and have recently started trying new ones such as L-Carnitine. I work with a Naturopath and suggest you do the same. It is also important to know that not all supplements are for everybody, and depending on your goals and starting physique, it is very individual. Working with a coach or naturopath is the best way to figure out which supplement if any are beneficial for your body and goals. The following is what has worked for me, so please take it with a grain of salt. My personal goals are to be defined, long and lean and not carry an excessive amount of muscle. I love clothes and like to look good in them The following is a list of my favourite supplements.
- Fish Oil– I prefer the oil to the capsules. It is easier to swig a tablespoon for me then swallow a ton of pills. Fish oil has a myriad of benefits and I have included it in my own regime for over 3 years. Fish oil has been proven to decrease inflammation, aid in fat loss, help decrease anxiety, stress, depression and cravings. Also, when taken with your meals, it lowers the glycemic index of the meal being eaten. Believe it or not, when I do chose to “treat” myself to something, I actually consume more FAT, but taking a swig of fish oil along with the cheat meal. While prepping for shows, Fish Oil is the fat that stays in my plan right up until the end. Added benefits are improved cognitive function, healthy skin, hair and nails and energy. My favourite isNutraSea with added DHA by Ascenta.
- Branch Chain Amino Acids– I have tried many throughout the years, but RIVALUS POST RX is my favourite thus far. It is comprised of BCAA’s and stevia. I find that sipping it between meals and of course post workout helps to curb cravings as well as repair muscle tissue.
- Pre Workout Energy– I used to work out without pre workout supplementation.. I have found that over the years however, as my workout intensity increased, I needed something more than my espresso to push me through the heavy reps and various sets. After trying various pre workout aids, I have found my perfect fit. TruEnergy by TruPerformance Nutrition gives me just the right amount of focus and drive without the jitters, shakes and crash I have experienced with other products. The product is based on B-vitamins, Gingko Biloba and Rhodiola Rosea.
- ProBiotics– I started taking a good quality Probiotic when I developed an intolerance to certain dairy products and therefore needed to supplement to aid in the healthy bacteria needed to create a healthy gut flora. I prefer to pop a pill in the morning and forget about it; however other great sources of live bacteria are Kefir, Kombucha, and sauerkraut. I like Renew Life as well as UDO’s brands.
- L-Glutamine– great for muscle recovery, healing of wounds and also helps with energy and healthy gut flora. I have used different brands, but really like GLUTAMEND by Fusion Bodybuilding now.
- Antioxidants—I like to switch my antioxidants up every month or so. Right now I am taking an ECGC by NOW (the active component in Green tea). Other ones are C-ALA, vitamin C, Resveratrol (although I prefer to drink this one:) and others not mentioned.
- Vitamin D– this is great especially for us Canadians who get 2 days of sun all year.
- Magnesium Citrate – I LOVE CALM by Natural Vitality in Raspberry. It helps with anxiety, aids in gastrointestinal distress and I feel like I am having a fizzy soft drink at night…my little indulgence!
That rounds up my current supplementation list. I do go periods of taking a multi-vitamin, but haven’t really noticed a difference when taking one. I am also currently experimenting with L-Carnitine right now and am noticing an increase in energy. I will keep you posted!
I hope this has helped some of you navigate through the world of supps. I would love your feedback!