Our girls know that we don’t go very big into supplements, and it’s something we get a lot of questions on – SO, we thought a blog was in order to explain.
Supplements…. They are exactly what they say they are on the tin. SUPPLEMENTATION to solid nutrition and training. If you don’t yet have the basics in order then supplementing with 5g of liquid gold every day is NOT going to turn you into the toned goddess you are imagining.
Sorry for the reality check – but it’s important!
On the other hand, if you DO have the basics down, then supplementing with the right products for your goals can definitely give you more of an edge.
So first off, what do we need to lay the foundations?
Eat nutrient dense, real food, and enough of it! We use a flexible dieting system which gives our team options to choose from & allows variety – but with that, we do expect you to make sure you are eating a good amount of whole (non processed) food and veggies alongside your bagels ok.
Dark green leafy veg is an excellent source of fiber, folate, and carotenoids. They also have vit C and K, iron and calcium, as well as antioxidants – So eat up. People who struggle to get their veggies in may benefit from supplementing with a greens powder.
Get your training to where it needs to be. It’s easy to blame not popping a multivit for your stalled progress, it’s more difficult to admit that you’ve stopped PUSHING yourself past your limits. We say it again and again, but progressively and consistently overloading the muscle is how we see big changes. More weight, more reps, more TUT (Time Under Tension) – these are all factors in progressive overload. Utilise them and push for more, outwork yourself EVERY session.
This is one of the most overlooked, and critical, factors to getting results. We know you’re busy, we know you want to watch that next episode on Netflix… BUT your body NEEDS sleep! It varies based on the individual, but between 6-8 is the norm. If you are running off of 5 hours – yes, you can ‘manage’ (trust us WE KNOW), but you are short changing the return you’re going to get for the effort you put in. We need sleep to recover, repair and grow. Not to mention to concentrate and regulate your stress / anxiety levels.
The natural increase in growth hormone and melatonin that happens when we sleep is one of the key factors in keeping our cortisol balance in check. Start making the effort, establish a routine, switch your tech off an hour before bed, read a book, listen to a meditation app, do whatever works for you – just make sure you prioritise this.
Especially in females we rank this as the most important factor in progress, both athletically and aesthetically! Your body doesn’t know the difference between all of the different stress factors it is exposed to throughout the day – whether it’s work, personal relationships, training, the juggling act of life… The flight or fight stress response was there to keep us alive in extreme, uncommon situations. Nowadays we are pretty much in that constant state for 18 hours a day, no wonder we are TIRED!
If your system is over stressed, it won’t prioritise repair, growth or digestion. This is why we speak to our ladies so much about stress management tactics. Take walks, meditate, take a bath, go for a massage, switch the phone off for a few hours, take some time out to read a book – again, everyone is different so find what works for YOU. Managing your stress levels may be all you need to kick start your results – address this before adding more cardio and reducing food which is actually going to put MORE stress on your body.
Once you have all of this in check, we can think about adding a few supplements that we do believe have benefits:
- Multivitamin: Choose a well rounded multivit that has a dose of Vits C, D, B12 included
- Fish oil: High quality Omega 3, 6, 9 preferably. These contain EPA, DHA and ALA
- Probiotic: We recommend lactobacillius – This will improve your digestion and nutrient absorbtion
- Creatine: Creatine monohydrate – 5g post workout. There are a lot of myths surrounding creatine. The key thing to know is that it will help boost your performance, endurance and aid recovery – helping you build more lean mass.
There are a million more which have benefits such as tumeric for reducing inflammation, ZMA and HTP-5 for aiding sleep… But we’ll cover those another time. Let’s hit the foundations strong first and worry about the 5% later ;)
Shan & Mags xx