Want to know the best way to gain muscle with supplementation?
While it’s true that you never need supplements in order to build muscle, it’s certainly something that can help you to increase your muscle mass significantly and that can help to give you more size and definition. Supplementing shouldn’t be seen as essential and it should never replace a good diet and exercise regimen.
However, when you combine exercise and diet with supplements, then you can see amazing results and give yourself that slight competitive advantage. This is why they’re called supplements in the first place – they’re supplemental.
But which supplements do you need and which are the best ones for gaining strength and burning fat? Let’s find out…
If you’re looking for supplements that will specifically help you to grow your muscles, then you will largely want to look at amino acids, protein shakes and others that fuel the body with the raw building blocks that it can use in order to actually build and repair muscle.
First up on this list is protein powder. Whey protein is undoubtedly one of the very best supplements for muscle gain and if you only use one muscle building supplement, then it should be this one!
Whey is a by-product of the cheese making process and is found naturally in milk. This is a lean and highly ‘bio-available’ form of protein, meaning that it provides you with protein without adding too much fat. This also means that it comes in a form that the body is readily able to use.
The best thing about whey protein is that it is cheap, it doesn’t go off and it can be easily transported. So in other words, you can bring it with you on a day out and consume it wherever and whenever you want. You don’t need whey protein because it’s possible to get all your protein requirements from your diet. But that said, you’ll find it’s much easier to build lean muscle if you do have a protein supplement!
Creatine is the second best way to gain muscle with a supplement. This is mainly used for increasing energy levels, which it does by allowing you to recycle ATP. Ultimately, creatine will give you just a couple of more reps during any set and that’s enough to lead to greater gains when you recover later on.
At the same time though, creatine is also useful because it encourages water retention in the muscles – increasing their size by one inch! This is the best way to gain muscle without having to put in any work and for that reason, creatine is a fantastic addition to any bodybuilding supplement stack.
BCAAs are branch-chained amino acids. These are amino acids (the building blocks of protein) but in a more ‘ready’ format that the body can use. What makes this so great is that it prevents the muscle from being broken down during intense activity and also actually encourages the muscle to be restored and built back up following exertion.
If you already take BCAAs, then there’s a good chance that it’s as a part of a pre-workout. Pre-workout supplements are designed to give you more energy during workouts, to prevent the breakdown of muscle and even to help you repair muscle more quickly afterward. They tend to include lots of stimulants and also things like BCAAs and carbohydrates.
You don’t need a pre-workout but for those days where you just can’t motivate yourself to get in the gym, they can potentially help. Keeping one to hand is one of our favorite bodybuilding tips.
Testosterone boosters are supplements that enable you to produce more testosterone. These include things like herbs that have been shown in studies to stimulate testosterone production, as well as vitamins and minerals that the body uses to create testosterone (like zinc and magnesium).
Taken together, these can potentially increase levels of free testosterone, resulting in more strength and power, as well as increased hypertrophy. They can also help to make you feel more confident, aggressive and ‘alpha’ – side effects that a lot of guys enjoy!
A multivitamin is an absolutely essential tool for boosting muscle growth and improving your workouts. Vitamins and minerals provide a wide range of different jobs throughout the body, from increasing protein synthesis and muscle mass, to aiding with sleep, to elevating testosterone.
At the same time, they also help to strengthen the immune system, which can prevent you from getting ill. Nothing will destroy your gains quicker than coming down with the flu!
So those are the best supplements for muscle gain, but these should only be extras on top of a great bodybuilding diet. What should that be based around?
Well really, this could be an entire article (or book!) in itself. But the basics are:
A great way to do all this is to use an app like My Fitness Pal to monitor the calories and macros/micros that you’re eating on any given day. Combine this with careful observation of your body shape and you can adjust your intake to gradually improve your results.
And remember: what you eat is just as important as how you train. In fact, in many ways it is actually more important if you want to know how to get big muscles. This is one of the most important bodybuilding tips and something you should always be mindful of. Exercise is not an excuse to eat what you want – it’s a reason to eat right!