T Nation

Beginner Supplement Line Up


Hey all, I've recently started taking the following supplements as I have begun seriously working out. Can anyone offer any advice in the way of how/when I should take them as well as any other info you can think of?

-ON 100% Optimum Whey

I usually take it after I workout but I'm going to start taking it every morning as well.

-GNC Creatine Monohydrate (5g an hour before working out)

I've just taken my first dose of this stuff tonight before working out. My plan is to simply take 5g an hour before I work out which is every other day. (3 times a week)

-GNC L-Glutamine caps

I haven't taken any yet, I'm going to start tomorrow. I plan on taking 2 a day.

-GNC Men's Multivitimin

Packed with vitimins and minerals. Not much to say here, 2 a day.

So can anyone offer any advice? You'll notice I'm taking a conservative approach with the creatine. I'm not doing the whole "load up" thing. I've read that in the long run, loading up, maintaining doses and wash out is the same as steady small doses of 5g over the course of a month.

Any comments?


Those L-glut caps are the 1g tablets right? I brought the gnc stuff awhile ago too but don't think they're that useful in such small doses. I would instead buy some BCAAs if you're looking for amino supplements.

You need to address post-workout nutrition. If you don't want to buy something like Surge, then add a high gi/high carb drink with the whey and some bcaa's (or I guess the l-glutamine caps if you must)


Not sure what level you're at but if you're less than a year into your program..I would rec'd staying away from supps all together. You'll make huge gains naturally and then can start supplementing when your gains start to slow.

I see way too many people dumping supps in and still have no clue as to what plan they're gonna follow and what their goals are. Even the most committed of people new to training that actually stick with it for more than a year or two..take time to "understand" or figure their body out. Once that is done and you've established a program that works best for your needs, goals, and body type...only then can you evaluate if the supps are working..and worth buying.

The introduction of a supplement program at that point will be a motivator and help blast through the plateau you'll most likely start to experience.

Too many start with supps too early. Not needed imo.

But if you decide to finish what you bought...I'd do the protein an hour before your workout...and no more than an hour after...30grams/serving and no more...I'd also eat a 1/2 oats with your post workout shake...and about 32 oz. of water.

Creatine I'd do 2.5 grams an hour before..and 3 grams..with your post workout shake. Same with the glut pills...one in the am...one before workout..and one after.

As far as supplementing those items..this is what I've found to work best for me.




Throw the creatine in your PWO shake, easy, effective, and take 5g on your day off at some time.

Remember, protein powder is just to help you reach your protein goals.

Do you know how much you should be eating?


So you think I should take 5g of Creatine every day pretty much?

For protein, I've read that I should take 1g for every lb of bodyweight. I'm 180 right now, so that's 180g of protein a day. It's not too hard because I like eggs, tuna and I take my protein shake with milk which adds another few g's of protein...


i don't think, that gnc's house brand is good at all, to be honest. Go with another company


Creatine monohydrate is all the same shit really. You don't need to worry about "quality."

My advice:

  • try to get in 200g of protein
  • replace glutamine with BCAA
  • take your 5g of creatine with your protein shake for post workout (PWO)
  • add in fishoil (at least 5g per day)
  • drink 2-3 cups of green tea (because green tea is the fucking bomb)



take protein in the morning, right after your workout, and right before you go to bed. for every pound you weigh, consume 1g of protein (160lbs = ~160g protein). mix in milk for calcium and added protein.

as for creatine, I suggest taking it once in the morning and once right after you workout. drink copious amounts of water throughout the day.

as for the Glutamine...switch to BCAAs. I'd take BCAAs but I'm a poor college bastard who can only afford so much.

the GNC men's multivitamin is fantastic. I take it also. one tablet in the morning and one at night.


Due to the vast amounts of information here at this site, and the fact that Biotest is top of the line, I would try to switch to Biotest's whey protein - 30 bucks, 5lbs, and its for sure high quality.

Due to its speed of digestion, I would take this in the morning, and pre workout. Other times you can use it in conjunction with whole food protein or slower digesting powders for a more comprehensive well rounded protein intake.

Take it after your workout, to replenish what was used during the workout. If you want to do more in addition to that, its fine.

Horrible deal. When this runs out, don't buy it again. Glutamine becomes advisable mainly during periods of extremely low carbs. If you do decide to use it, at least find somewhere to buy a powder. GNC capsules are a horrible, horrible rip off, on the order of 100 or 1000 times more expensive than an equivalent amount of powder (I can't remember, but its ridiculous. I know. I work there.)

Thats fine.

Again, just to reiterate, if you have the means to order from this site, I would recommend buying from here. The products are the best and they are priced right.

Like others have mentioned, BCAAs would be more beneficial than glutamine. In addition, you may want to look into Surge for an optimal pre/post workout recovery drink.

What are your goals?


Thanks guys. I'll make some tweaks, namely I'm going to start taking my creatine in my shake after I workout and not before.

I'll finish off my pills of Glutamine and then look in to getting some BCAA pills because I heard the powdered mix tastes like death.


Oh, and before we all forget: eat a healthy diet. Supplements are just that: minerals/vitamins/etc that SUPPLEMENT your diet. Make sure you get carbs and protein and all the other essentials. Balance it out and you'll be on your merry way. Good luck.


I'm going to sound like a T-Nation commercial, but here's what I recommend as the basics:

1) Low carb Metabolic Drive (or complete if you're bulking and need extra calories)
2) Creatine
3) BCAA (Around your workout only, other use is too expensive)
4) Surge
5) Fish oil
6) Multivitamin
7) Green Tea
8) HOT-ROX if you're cutting, Alpha Male if you're bulking


You wouldnt recommend Whey?


fuck yeah green tea!


With the exception of glutamin, this is actually pretty reasonable for a beginner. Congrats for being fairly even-minded.

Yeah, you need a lot of protein. Get as much as you can from real food, but keep a protein tub in the kitchen if you somehow can't get enough of it into your system.

Creatine is good too, you probably won't need it too much if you eat enough meat, but it's probably not a bad idea and it's cheap.

Multivitamins are ok, not critical, but since they're cheap then why not?

But anyway, supplements are #4.

1 and #2 are diet and lifting, on equal footing.

3 is life style, especially rest and sleep.

Make sure you eat enough: 1g of protein / pound of body weight, maybe more. Calories enough so you're above maintenance (if you goal is to grow). Make sure your post-workout nutrition is good.
Lift heavy and smart.
Get plenty of rest and sleep.
Only after that worry about supplements.


the GNC creatine makes me naseous

fish oil and flax oil are really important, i take 2g of each with every meal