What To Take To Build Muscle – Naturally without steroids!
A question which has become really common when the aim is to maximize muscle and strength gains. What to take to build muscle? I’m going to give my opinion to help you steer away from all the BS fitness industries try to plant to our heads!
But first let me make one thing really clear…
BUILDING MUSCLE REQUIRES HARD & CONSISTENT WORK OVER LONG PERIOD OF TIME!
Everyone who tries to sell you something like “30-60-90 day muscle building EXPLOSION PROGRAM” is just a salesman and full of crap. There is actually two instances where you can expect to gain muscle in that rapid rate and those two are:
– Using Steroids
– Having 1-in-a-million Genetics
But for an average Joe like you and me it’s better to stick to the core essentials, the proven and working concrete principles of muscle building and strength training.
But as the article says we’re here to figure out what supplements to take to build muscle. So let me give you the only couple of ones what you really need SINCE…
99% of supplements on the market are complete BS!
Now that we got that out of the way let me give you the ones you should be focusing on:
#1 Creatine Monohydrate
Creatine Monohydrate is probably the most studied and researched supplement on the market. Numerous studies shows it’s powerful effects in High Intensity Activities (Weight Training) anything from gaining more strength, assisting recovery and adding size to your frame.
And to be exact Creatine is not something made only in laboratory, actually your body synthesize 1 gram of it everyday! But the trick is that to get the required 3-5 grams per day you should eat 3-5kg of meat in a day and needless to say that’s not healthy and plain and simple impossible.
So that is where supplementing with Creatine comes into play.
How to take Creatine? Just take one teaspoon a day for as long as you want to enjoy the benefits of Creatine. Doesn’t matter what time you take it in a day, before or after exercise, morning, evening, night, just remember to take it. Also it doesn’t matter what you mix with your Creatine with be it Juice, milk or water.
It will take about 2-4 weeks for your muscles to completely saturated with Creatine.
Wondering what Creatine to take? There are tons of different formulas of Creatine but the oldest and most researched still prevails as a KING and it’s the plain old Creatine Monohydrate. I personally use Micronized Creatine Monohydrate which is just a finer grind of the powder, meaning it mixes a bit better with the liquid.
#2 Whey Protein
Fitness Industrys golden child is THE WHEY PROTEIN! When you listen to a salesman promoting whey protein you’ll hear fancy terms flying around such as anti-catabolic, fast acting peptides and super recovery whey matrix. This is just a sales-pitch and you can ignore it completely. In fact in my opinion Whey Protein doesn’t really count as a supplement since what it truly is just a different form of food.
So what is Whey Protein? It’s a byproduct of cheese making from cows milk.
Does Whey Protein build me more muscle? No and Yes. Opposed to the claims of the fitness industry it doesn’t give you ANYTHING more than other sources of protein such as chicken, pork or beef. What Whey Protein truly is it’s just a convenient way to top up your protein intake if you see it necessary. There are some guys who take most of their protein intake from Whey but for me I like to eat more real food and take a scoop of Whey once in a while.
So all in all Whey Protein is a good choice of topping up your daily protein intake but if you ain’t supplementing with it you will not hinder your ability to build muscle and strength one bit. But it is real and it is working, just forget all the hype behind it and use it IF you see it necessary!
Creatine being the most studied supplement on the market Beta-Alanine comes a good second. And what exactly this Beta-Alanine is?
Beta-Alanine is a non-essential amino acid and it’s a precursor to “carnosine”, and this carnosine is found in fast twitch muscle fibers.
So what does beta-alanine exactly do and how can we benefit from it? The main effects come from Beta-Alanines rising and keeping Carnosine levels within the muscle fibers. During heavy training sessions Carnosine works by neutralizing the buildup of hydrogen ions in your muscles. And hydrogen ions make that burning sensations in your muscles when coming to the end of a set, they’re also metabolic waste product that inhibit contraction of the muscles.
All-in-all Beta-Alanine works by buffering your hydrogen ion buildup and this allows you to crank out couple of reps more in a given exercise per set.
And how you should take Beta-Alanine? Take 3 grams (normal teaspoon, not heaping) per day and after 4 weeks your carnosine levels should be raised approximately 60% and after 10 weeks 80%.
Beta-Alanine doesn’t really have any reported major side-effects apart from what users report of tingling or “flushing” sensation on your skin after about 15 minutes after digesting it. However, this is nothing to worry about and will decrease over time.
I’d recommend everyone who is interested gaining a small edge to their training to try and supplement with beta-alanine since it’s quite affordable and safe to use!
#4 Vitamins & Minerals
The thing here is that the next 3 vital vitamins / minerals in your body play a huge role in various very important bodily functions which are directly linked to strong immune system and efficient testosterone production. And the suprising truth is that most of the people are already DEFICIENT in every single one of these or atleast below optimum levels.
Don’t expect any steroid like gains when using these but will definately boost your training performance and promote strong immune system which means more progress in the gym since you won’t get sick as often.
So let’s take a quick look to them:
The different health effects of Vitamin D3 are really lengthy and I won’t go to details here but some of the major ones include Increased Immunity System Strength, mood and wellbeing uplift and efficient testosterone production.
It’s highly likely that your not getting enough vitamin D3 if you don’t sunbathe several days a week with your whole bare skin exposed to the sun. You get some D3 from your diet but the amounts are so low that they won’t have any practical effect.
And how much should you take daily? This depends a lot from person to person but somewhere between 2000-5000 IU per day, I personally been taking 5000 IU daily for I believe 3 years now.
Like vitamin D3 Magnesium plays imporant role over hundreds of different vital bodily functions. The problem is that people who sweat alot also lose a lot of this important mineral through sweating.
Common positive effects of Magnesium include Stronger Immune System, Preventing Muscle Cramps, Efficient Testosteron Production and Aiding Recovery of the muscles.
There are many different sources on the market for magnesium but the most bio-available one according to research seems to be Magnesium Citrate. Two other good options are Magnesium Glycinate and Magnesium Diglycinate. I personally use only Citrate.
For the daily dosage everything between 200-500 mg per day will probably be enough to restore optimum levels.
Like Magnesium, Zinc also leaves your body mostly through sweat. Zinc also like magnesium and vitamin d3 plays a big role in many different bodily functions.
For the daily dose between 10-30 mg should work out just fine for most people.
All-in-all when the aim is building muscle and strength about 95% of your results will come from right training, diet and sleep. The rest of the 5% can be achieved with all the supplements I listed here.
You got to remember that only Working out builds muscle, not any magical supplement or powder. Even when you’re using steroids you still have to work out.
So to sum all this up if you’re looking for that 5% small edge to your muscle and strength building routine absolutely try and test out all of the stuff I’ve outlined here. The great thing with every single one of these is that they are relatively inexpensive and safe to use!
To put everything to nutshell here is the bulletpoints:
- Take 5 grams of Creatine daily
- Take 3 grams of Beta-Alanine daily
- Use Whey Protein if you enjoy it or feel it’s necessary (not in any way essential)
- Take Vitamin D3 2000-5000 IU Daily
- Take Magnesium (Citrate) or other bio-available source 200-500 mg Daily
- Take 10-30 mg of Zinc Daily
This “Stack” is in my opinion the best for athletes looking for that little extra edge to their performance and general well-being!
Check out my article on how to build muscle HERE!
Did you find this article helpful? Drop me a line in the comment section below! I’d love to hear you thoughts on this subject.
Happy trainings everybody and Train Hard and Train SMART!