Tuesday, May 31, 2011

3 Things to Spend Your Money on...(before you spend it on supplements)

I'm a fan of some supplements, I just think they are too often over relied on. Ultimately, the very best supplement will slightly accelerate the progress made from training and nutrition, rather than creating progress in itself. I tend to stick to the few basic supplements that have a good evidence base and have consistently produced results for myself and my clients. These include good quality protein powders, multivitamins, fish oils, creatine and green tea extract. In fact in the case of the multivit and fish oil I tend to think of these less as supplements and more as staples. But beyond that I've never been particularly impressed by anything. So if you're going to spend money on something to improve your health and performance, here's a list of things I'd spend it on first.

Better meat -while I have to say I'm agnostic regarding some of the specific claims made by raving fans of organic food, I do tend to think that a cow that was well looked after and fed it's natural diet is going to be better for you than a grain fed cow that was treated with drugs and so on. Food quality is important, and if you're going organic I would have fattier meats such as beef higher on my list of priorities than vegetables.

More vegetables- Even if you think you're eating enough vegetables the likelihood is that you're not. Regardless of your goal, increase the volume and variety of veg that you're eating before spending money on a supplement. The point is to create a "base" of health before chasing a more specific goal such as fat loss or muscle gain. Trying to pack muscle on an unhealthy body is an exercise in futility.

Soft tissue work- particularly if you do suffer from niggling pains. Just like the previous points stressed creating internal health through proper nutrition, structural health is just as important if you want a life-long and successful training career (which you should!) So before looking for a miracle pill, find good soft tissue therapist to ensure you're body is actually working properly. At Aegis we have a phenomenal network of specialists we can refer our clients to if needed.
Bottom line, supplements are fine. But to get the most bang for your buck look at getting healthy, nailing your diet and eliminating niggling pains so that you can move and train effectively before you splash out on the next "magic bullet".

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