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So you want to take supplements? But do you need them?

So you’re back in the gym and are eager to make some gains.

You’re on a mission to reach your post lock down ‘beach body’ and have decided to order all the supplements!

Pre, post workout powders, shakes and pills... even an intra workout for that 20 minute HIIT class you plan to go to every Thursday morning before work.

With a formula like that, it’s got to work right?

Unfortunately the only successful outcome they will have, is creating a whole in you wallet.

Sadly, you can’t supplement your way out of a bad diet.

Supplements are very much like the icing on a cake. It doesn't make the cake, but they can add to it.

Even if the majority actually worked, their impact would still be very minimal, almost undetectable. In fact, very few supplements have any evidence based research behind them at all. The only supplements with adequate backing you should consider (depending on your goals) are some form of basic protein powder, creatine-monohydrate, or a general multivitamin (plus vitamin D for the majority). Others simply don't have enough viable research to back their claims.

However, a placebo is a powerful thing...

If you find yourself more motivated and consistent with the remainder of your diet and training because of incorporating supplement 'x or z', then their positive (indirect) impact on your lifestyle choices are potentially worth the investment.

In reality supplements are the last thing you need to reach your goals (unless they are magic kind of supplements, 'steriods').

Quite literally the last thing you should consider.

But, unfortunately supplements are the first thing many people turn to in order to build their dream physique without even considering making positive behavioural changes, which inevitably will have greater lasting effect.

This is due predominately because of #supplement marketing and incorrect ‘#fitness’ material being shared online and in everyday media.

Don’t be spending ‘x’ amount on pills and powders because a cover model or popular influencer recommends them.

Put it this way, they didn’t get that #physique popping creatine capsules or green tea extract. Their body is quite literally their job, and they are willing to do (take) anything to #enhance their position in getting more eyes and followers.

The same goes for collagen and the majority of beauty products... that detox diet definitely didn't contribute to their glowing skin complexion (#photoshop).

Taking into consideration all of the above, supplements still have their place at the top of the pyramid. Though they are the least important, dietary supplements may still warrant consideration.

But... and this is as big but... it depends solely on the individual's current diet and lifestyle choices and needs.

Take a look at your current diet...

Are you doing everything you can to maximise your efforts without supplements?

  • Are you consuming the right amount of food (calories) for your goal?

  • Are you eating enough protein from high quality, food based sources?

  • Do you consume a variety of fruits and vegetables (if any)?

  • Do you ever chuck in a small handful of nuts, seeds or half a cup of wholegrains regularly?

If you’re not ticking off the majority of the above, the likelihood is that you don’t need any form of supplement.

Get your diet in check before you splash out on all the supplements!

If you do decide you purchase some, do a little research into their benefits. If they sounds to good to be true, then they are.

Don't be pouring on the icing before you've even made the cake.

If you want to read more about certain supplements and the research behind them, more importantly if they work? I recommend heading over to they compare all the current supplement data in one place and display it in an easily digestible way.

Good luck with the gains



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