How Do Workout Supplements Work?

Some people use supplements prior to or after working out. These individuals may believe their supplements are helping them have a more effective workout or getting them closer to their health goals. Other people know less about supplements, though, and if you are one of those people, you may be skeptical about the results. Before you start taking supplements to improve your workouts, it can be a good idea to do your research and read up on the different kinds of supplements. Finding out what they are and how they work can help you understand which ones you do or do not want to take.

1. Protein

Protein powder is one of the more common or popular workout supplements. At its least effective, protein can still reduce muscle fatigue and soreness after a workout. If used in conjunction with the proper diet and the right kind of exercise, however, protein powder may offer you increased muscle growth. Protein can also come from food: we consume a certain amount of protein every naturally from the foods we eat. If you aren’t interested in supplementing your protein intake with powder, you may want to consider eating a more protein-rich diet.

Protein powder comes in a number of forms that are derived from a number of different substances or bases. Whey protein is one common protein you might see in powdered form on a store shelf. Along with casein, whey protein comes from cow’s milk. Other common forms of protein used for commercial powders include pea or other vegetable proteins, soy protein and hemp protein. These may have different effects, so you may consider trying them out in small amounts to see which ones work best or which ones give you the desired effects.

2. Pre-Workout

You may have heard of pre-workout before and wondered, what does pre workout do? As opposed to a supplement like protein powder that you take after going to the gym, supplements taken before running or weightlifting are often intended to give you more energy and reduce fatigue while at the gym. These supplement powders may contain caffeine, giving you a boost of energy while you perform physical activity. Other substances within them, such as creatine, may inhibit muscle fatigue by breaking down lactic acid buildup or allow you to complete more repetitions of an exercise. While these supplements may not directly build muscle in the same way protein powder may, they could give you the ability to work out longer or at a higher intensity, helping you build strength organically.

3. Chocolate Milk

Chocolate milk? You read that right! Some athletes swear by chocolate milk as a post-workout supplement. Chocolate milk includes protein, the effects of which have been discussed above. In addition, though, chocolate milk can offer you carbohydrates and electrolytes, which can aid in muscle recovery, as well as water, which is important for rehydration. Plus, chocolate milk is a tasty reward after hard work. It can be important to remember that chocolate milk does include fats and some added sugars, so if you’re on a strict diet while working out, this may not be the proper post-workout supplement for you. If you burn a lot of calories and need the extra nutrients, however, chocolate milk may be the perfect beverage.

There are a lot of workout supplements on the market, so it can be important to do your research before deciding which ones you want to use. Applied properly, supplements can boost your workout performance and help you achieve your physical goals. Even some things that don’t seem like supplements can enhance your workout, like chocolate milk and protein-rich foods. Like with any major lifestyle change or initiative, it can be useful to make a plan before getting to work. Mapping out your supplements can be a part of diet planning and exercise preparation that, if done effectively and correctly, can lead to positive results.