Here is my top 5 list of supplements
for building muscle
So you want to know how to build muscle fast?! These supplements have stood the test of time and have helped produce superior results over and over. Before I list them, there is one point I need to make very clear.
Food, my friend, trumps any natural supplement on anyone’s list.
Eating REAL food (i.e. the list of ingredients is 1) and enough of it is essential for building lean muscle.
If you don’t believe me that’s fine… it’s your money. Hey, we all need to learn our lesson’s! Ok, I promise I’m done ranting.
Check out my quick start guide if you want to see an example meal plan that will help build lean muscle.
- Fish Oil (not necessary if you consume grass fed beef daily)
You can read more about the benefits of fish oil at this post.
- Protein Powder (whey protein based for post workout shakes and milk protein based for meal replacements)
- Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAA’s)
Learn about the benefits of BCAA’s at this post.
- High quality multivitamin and/or super greens
So you’re either deep in thought wondering why Nitric Oxide Blast 2000 and Andro-Whatchama-dione aren’t on the list, or you’re thinking that I can’t count!
Indeed, I put 6 items on the list. The sixth one wouldn’t be necessary if you truly ate fruits and vegetable at every meal. Even If you do (in which case kudos to you!), the soil in which they where grown was most likely over farmed and not nutrient rich.
Think of this last entry as added insurance for your health and hard earned money you are spending on the other supplements.
Ok, maybe I have been reading too much from Charles Poliquin. I started using fish oil over 10 years ago when he talked all about it at an olympic weight training seminar I attended in Buffalo, NY (my home city… and yes, I am a Buffalo Bills fan…). Chad Waterbury, Dan John, Eric Cressey and countless other “celebrity” strength coaches all have Fish Oil
near the top of their supplement list for building lean muscle…. and you should too!
Creatine (of course!)
I’m sure you figured you would find this one on the list. Did you know that Creatine is naturally found in high amounts in red meat? If your diet is high in grass fed beef, then you will need to supplement less with creatine AND fish oil since grass fed beef is high in omega-3 fats.
Creatine is about the safest most researched supplement out there. Make sure you follow my link above to read more about creatine. I am a big fan of Beverly International Creatine Select.
BCAA’s and Glutamine (the amino superstars!)
These essential amino acids provide a serious anabolic (lean muscle building) and anti-catabolic (muscle breakdown prevention) tour de force. Using these amino acids before, during and/or after training will produce phenomenal results… but only during intense training sessions where you are really pushing yourself hard.
This combination is also very effective in maintaining or even building lean muscle mass during periods of significant calorie deficits like extreme fat loss phases (oh no, summer is around the corner!) or the final 3-6 weeks leading up to a bodybuilding show.
My wife and I use Beverly International Glutamine Select Plus BCAA’s and have done so for many years now. It’s one of the few great tasting powdered formulas that has the highest grade ingredients.