If you have a vested interest in bodybuilding and building muscle, you’ll probably know that generally, bodybuilders go through two stages: Bulking, and cutting. When cutting, bodybuilders will diet down for a show or photo shoot, looking to maintain as much lean muscle as possible, whilst stripping away as much body fat and water retention as they can. During the off-season however, when they don’t have any photo shoots or competitions for several months, they will bulk up and build as much muscle mass and size as they possibly can. Building muscle mass is far from easy, and it requires much more than vast quantities of food and regular training. A healthy supplement stack is highly recommended when bulking, so for that reason, here’s a look at supplements ideal for mass gain.
Main Mass Gain Categories
Whether bulking or cutting, whey protein is the number 1 best-selling Bodybuilding Supplement for a reason: because it really works! Protein is vital for the growth and repair of muscle tissue. In order to build muscle, bodybuilders need at least 2g of protein for every pound that they weigh. So, a 200lb bodybuilder would require 400g of protein a day in order to grow. Whey protein is a convenient way of getting more protein into the body without consuming huge quantities of meat, fish, and eggs etc, and it is also much more rapidly absorbed as well.
Featured Muscle Building Proteins
If you’re looking to bulk up, a mass gainer should ideally be included as part of your supplement stack, as it’s a great way of increasing your protein intake and calorie intake, without consuming vast amounts of food. Mass gainers are high in calories and protein, and are enriched with vitamins, minerals, and additional amino acids as well, to help provide perfect conditions for adequate muscle building. Mass gainers can be consumed along with meals, or as a meal replacement to help meet your daily macros. Mass Gainers are also great for post workout recovery as they deliver carbs, protein and fat in one quick and convenient shake.
Featured Mass Gainer Supplements
Many studies have been completed on creatine over the years, and the main result is, creatine works. Its been proven to help build muscle, recover from workouts faster, increase strength and improve workout performance. Best of all, its low cost and easy to take in either pill or powder form. Creatine is an amino that is synthesised in our body naturally. By supplementing with creatine we increase the amounts in the body to a level that produces the benefits discussed above. The end results is, when higher levels of creatine are available, we become stronger, can exercise for longer and recover from training quicker.
Featured Creatine Supplements
When you’re bulking, you’re trying to build as much muscle mass as you possibly can, which is where casein protein comes in so handy. We grow when we rest, providing our bodies have all of the nutrients necessary to rebuild our muscles even bigger and stronger than they were previously. As we sleep for around 7 – 9 hours on average, going that long without any nutrients can place the body into a catabolic state, which means it will actually burn muscle tissue as a source of energy, as there is nothing else available. You want to remain in an anabolic (muscle building) state, which is where casein protein is so handy. Casein protein is similar to whey protein as it too is derived from dairy, although it is much slower to be absorbed and is a slow-release protein. This means that over a prolonged period of time, a steady stream of protein, amino acids, and other nutrients, will be gradually released and absorbed into the body, fuelling it, preventing catabolism, and keeping it in an anabolic state. A casein protein shake before bed is ideal.
Featured Casein Protein Supplements
Optimum Nutrition has long been a leader in the nutritional and sporting supplement industry. Although they are known mostly for their best selling protein powder Optimum Nutrition’s 100% Whey Gold Standard, they also offer a range of other supplements. One of these lesser known supplements is Opti-Men - a multivitamin, mineral and health complex for men. Lets take a quick look at the supplement and see how it compares to others in the field.
Arginine is an amino acid that is involved in many different processes. It is most famous for its potential to enhance nitric oxide synthesis and increase "muscle pumps".
Do you need a quick healthy snack to eat on the go? These homemade protein bars are a great replacement for the sugar-filled muesli bars you'll find at the supermarket. These bars are high in protein, fibre and healthy fats, and only natural sugars are used.