When we first start training, let’s face it, we have no idea what we’re doing. What we really need is some instruction, and I tell you this as a reasonably experienced lifter, what you consume really matters. Here are some beginners supplements that you should take, as well as some more information on other supplements you shouldn’t take to begin with.
If you’re reading this article, you probably need some more information on training too, so why not check out our training blog
Whey Protein is probably the first supplement you should take. The reason for this, is convenience. When training you need to consume more protein, of which whey is a form. You should aim to take in between 3-5g/kg of body weight.
We recommend supplementing with whey post workout for protein synthesis, taking advantage of your anabolic window. Buy from a reputable brand and the key word you’re looking for is ISOLATE.
Here’s some stores you should look at
Creatine is probably the most studied sports supplement, and quite frankly it works. We go into more detail on Creatine here. In my opinion, whilst it works, water retention can be an issue, so dependent on your goal, I normally wouldn’t advise it at first. However, it usually is found in good weight gainers, so if that’s your goal, you’re probably getting some there.
Pre-workouts essentially are taurine and caffeine. You know when you drink a couple of cans of red bull? Yeah, that feeling, but more! Do they work? Well, it depends on if you have difficulty motivating and more so a placebo effect than anything else. There used to be some great pre workouts which are now banned for instance Jack3d, however if you’re motivated and can amp yourself up, you don’t really need them.
BCAAs or Branch Chain Amino Acids are crucial to replenish and grow. They really do prevent you from becoming catabolic and assist in adding size and muscle mass. Would I recommend them in a beginners supplements stack? Possibly not. But as you become more experienced and need to recover and start to lose newbie gains, then they’re a great addition.
Unless they’re the anabolic kind, just no. But that’s another story and definitely not for the beginner, steer clear of ‘natural test boosters’, they don’t work and are a waste of money.
Again, goal dependent, fat burners can be great, but you can achieve most of what you will with fat burners, with caffeine and taurine. If you’re going down the anabolic route and look at things like clenbuterol and ephedrine, these work a lot better. (BUT DEFINITELY NOT FOR BEGINNERS). In terms of looking to lose fat, look at your diet first before investing in a magic pill, add in fasted cardio, jobs a good’n.
Multi-Vitamins are absolutely essential. When you’re training, you need to make sure your body readily has access to vitamins and minerals required to repair what you break down when you train. You don’t need to shell out £££ on a multivitamin, just your ordinary supermarket brand will do, but definitely worth taking!
Omega 3 – EPA/DPA
For me, this is a must, as I don’t like fish. (Fish from the chippy doesn’t count I’m afraid. If you eat tuna/mackrel/any oily fish, you’re okay, but if like me, you don’t like fish, then a fish oil/capsule will be a welcome addition to your beginners supplements stack.
What would we include in your beginners supplements stack?
- Whey Protein
- Omega 3/fish oil (dependent on diet)
Honestly, when you first start, that will be pretty much all you’ll need. I’m not a big supplementer and my stack right now is as follows;
- Whey isolate (with oats pre workout)
- BCAAs and Maltodextrose (intra workout)
- Weight gainer (post workout – ectomorph bulking season)
That really is all. No pre workout, creatine comes in my weight gainer, no fat burners, no shit. You just don’t need it. Most of all, what you eat is most important of all. You can get most of what you need from food. So eat wholesome, balanced and varied meals.
Here’s some great places to get your supplements from