What you need to know and consider
As protein shakes and the use of a massive array of different supplements are becoming more rapidly widespread, I feel it is part of my duty to you to inform you of the benefits of taking certain supplements in conjunction to a well balanced nutrition plan. I will also address the false misconceptions of taking supplements over the course of the next few months. It can be confusing, and understanding supplementation can be made increasingly difficult by public perception and branding.
For example, if you were to ask the average person what they think of protein shakes, a typical response could be a grimace coupled with “you don’t know what’s in them; it can’t be ‘good’ for you”. In their mind, you may as well be publicly sticking a needle in yourself! The exact same person probably wouldn’t have the same reaction to the consumption of a ‘sports based’ energy drink, which are extremely widespread and available from just about every shop/supermarket, despite these drinks very often containing high levels of sugar, and many other stimulant based ingredients. Lucozade for example is actually marketed endorsed and supported by athletes, yet is purchased and consumed by a often inactive demographic.
Firstly it is essential that you have a balanced diet containing all the necessary nutrients (macros and micros) before introducing any shake or supplement. It is far more beneficial to get your diet on track first for you to notice tangible results and also for you to make vast improvements in your health. There isn’t a supplement invented that will transform you or help you if the rest of your diet is poor.
Remember that by definition a supplement is ‘Something that completes or enhances something else when added to it’. The use of any supplement is also dependent on your individual goals. I suggest before committing to purchasing any supplements you discuss your goals and current lifestyle with a fitness professional (such as myself!) and do your own research.
I do acknowledge that supplements can play a role within an individual’s routine and can definitely help in terms of reaching goals, and I do personally take a variety of supplements myself. However, the main points to consider with your existing diet & lifestyle before purchasing/committing to any supplements are:
-Are you eating clean/whole food choices, and avoiding processed and refined foods?
-Are you eating sufficient amounts of protein/carbohydrates/good fats to support the level of training you are performing at?
-Are you eating at regular intervals?
-Are you always aware of what your next meal will be?
-Do you plan and prepare your meals?
-Do you drink sufficient water for your bodyweight on a daily basis? (https://tristanbuttle.wordpress.com/2014/01/20/are-you-drinking-enough-water/ – have a read to find out how much).
-Do you feel you get sufficient sleep and recovery? (See my blog https://tristanbuttle.wordpress.com/2014/01/18/the-importance-of-sleep-my-first-quick-blog/ for more info),
-How much stress do you have within your current lifestyle and how do you combat it?
I suggest that you consider addressing all the above points before introducing supplements into your routine.Doing this will not only improve you health massively but also place you on the right path to achieving your goals.
Thank you for taking the time to read this blog, if you found it useful please like and share with others.
If you need any help or further advice, please do not hesitate to contact me, on here or on Facebook.