Arnold Schwarzenegger was once a bodybuilding champion recognised by many as someone who really brought the sport to the masses. After winning a very high profile competition he was interviewed.
The interviewer asked: "What made you achieve such great results? Was it the hours spent in the gym? Are you using different techniques?" Arnold's response was simple. He said: "It was the food I eat."
A body builder's diet consists of eating small meals but often - around seven meals a day. They also need to have very high protein diets. Protein is key to mend the torn muscle fibres which are ripped during training.
Due to having to eat so often, bodybuilders have now resorted to taking supplements as replacement meals, such as high protein drinks or "all in one drinks" which are a mixture of protein, carbohydrates, amino acids, glutamine, creatine and other muscle building supplements. Supplements have now advanced that much that there are supplements for every different goal. For example, there are supplements such as high caffeine supplements to be taken before the gym to give you more energy and to increase fat stores being used therefore decreasing weight.
Creatine is a supplement that is used by many different athletes such as footballers to rugby players. Bodybuilders especially use it as it helps you train harder and can increase strength by up to 5-10% over an eight week period. It also retains some water that is consumed by the person, which the gives you the pumped up look which a lot of body builders are trying to achieve.
Such things as zinc are taken by bodybuilders to increase testosterone which makes them stronger, which in effect makes them bigger, as the more weight you are lifting, the more you will grow. There are also supplements which you can take for while you are asleep, such as ZMA which stands for zinc monomethionine aspartate and magnesium aspartate.
These again are to increase strength. ZMA should not be taken with cheese or milk as calcium stops the zinc being absorbed. Another protein shake that can be taken just before bed is a protein which is specifically designed to be slow releasing as it slowly releases into the body through the night stopping the body getting hungry and also giving a steady protein supply to the body which is necessary for muscle growth.
Brian Elliott is a personal trainer gym fanatic writing on behalf of notinthegym.com
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