T Nation

Peri-Workout Supp Help

Hey, I’ve been lurking for a bit but realized I need some help with my workout supplementation. I want to maximize the potential from my peri-workout supplements/nutrition, but I’m not really sure of the best way to go about this.

At the moment I have:

  • instant oats
  • dextrose
  • whey protein
  • creatine monohydrate
  • beta alanine

I have been using the following recently: pre-WO shake= approx. 40g instant oats, 25g whey, 5g creatine
post-WO shake= approx. 40g dextrose, 25g whey, 5g creatine

What I want to know is how to make the best use of the stuff I have to maximize my gains? Is what I’ve been doing okay, or should I make any changes to the make up of my shakes? Also what’s the best way to take beta-alanine, when, how much etc.?

Thanks for any help!

(Note- would ideally like to use Biotest’s products, but not in the US so that’s not possible for now due to cost)

[quote]Smythwicks wrote:
Hey, I’ve been lurking for a bit but realized I need some help with my workout supplementation. I want to maximize the potential from my peri-workout supplements/nutrition, but I’m not really sure of the best way to go about this.

At the moment I have:

  • instant oats
  • dextrose
  • whey protein
  • creatine monohydrate
  • beta alanine

I have been using the following recently: pre-WO shake= approx. 40g instant oats, 25g whey, 5g creatine
post-WO shake= approx. 40g dextrose, 25g whey, 5g creatine

What I want to know is how to make the best use of the stuff I have to maximize my gains? Is what I’ve been doing okay, or should I make any changes to the make up of my shakes? Also what’s the best way to take beta-alanine, when, how much etc.?

Thanks for any help!

(Note- would ideally like to use Biotest’s products, but not in the US so that’s not possible for now due to cost)
[/quote]

I don’t see anything wrong with what your currently doing (you could cut the creatine to 3 or 4 grams and would see a difference). Why the interest in a change? Why beta-alanine?
FTR…the solid food part of your routine must be ‘solid’ before any supplements will make a difference.

[quote]BlueCollarTr8n wrote:
FTR…the solid food part of your routine must be ‘solid’ before any supplements will make a difference. [/quote]

That and maybe a higher GI carb instead of oats… Oats seemed to slow me down unless I had them at least 90 mins pre workout. I would have used a higher GI carb but I just like to eat too much. Personal preference.

The only thing I’d suggest is getting rid of the oats (feel the same way about them as MAF14), and adding some BCAA’s. Perhaps you’re already sipping on them as you lift, but if not they will make a BIG difference. With that too, you can drop the Whey Protein and save it for post-lift.

As for the beta-alanine I normally suggest that immediately pre-workout as I find (depending on brand) it takes time to absorb and give the full benefit.
All the best!

John Meadows recommends beta-alanine on his site. He mentions that 4-6g per day as the amount required to reap the benefits. So you could split it into 2-3g pre- and 2-3g postworkout if you want.

I used Biotest’s peri protocols (containing beta-alanine) and also the Beta-7 supp, and while I do think they gave me a decent recovery boost, I do fine without them. It’s your call whether you want to drop the money on it, but it’s definitely a non-essential element of workout supplementation.

[quote]MAF14 wrote:

[quote]BlueCollarTr8n wrote:
FTR…the solid food part of your routine must be ‘solid’ before any supplements will make a difference. [/quote]

That and maybe a higher GI carb instead of oats… Oats seemed to slow me down unless I had them at least 90 mins pre workout. I would have used a higher GI carb but I just like to eat too much. Personal preference.[/quote]

This actually raises a fair point… how close to your workout is the pre-WO shake? Probably a good idea to keep it to at least 40 minutes before based on what you’re using there.

[quote]bigmac73nh wrote:

[quote]MAF14 wrote:

[quote]BlueCollarTr8n wrote:
FTR…the solid food part of your routine must be ‘solid’ before any supplements will make a difference. [/quote]

That and maybe a higher GI carb instead of oats… Oats seemed to slow me down unless I had them at least 90 mins pre workout. I would have used a higher GI carb but I just like to eat too much. Personal preference.[/quote]

This actually raises a fair point… how close to your workout is the pre-WO shake? Probably a good idea to keep it to at least 40 minutes before based on what you’re using there.[/quote]

Forgot to mention that^. Also, I think extra leucine is always a good idea, especially pre/during/after workout.

[quote]BlueCollarTr8n wrote:

I don’t see anything wrong with what your currently doing (you could cut the creatine to 3 or 4 grams and would see a difference). Why the interest in a change? Why beta-alanine?
FTR…the solid food part of your routine must be ‘solid’ before any supplements will make a difference. [/quote]

-I am working on the the solid food part of my diet as well, its not terrible but does need some improvement alright. I might lower the creatine intake a few days, was off it for a few weeks and have only restarted it recently so was thinking I should take more for a few days for ‘loading’ purposes.
-It’s not so much that I’m interested in change, I’ve only been doing the above for a few days and I wasn’t sure if I was approaching things correctly so I figured it best to ask and get things right from the get-go!
-As for the beta-alanine, I picked it up reasonably cheaply and said I’d try it and see how it goes. I’ve read that is an effective supplement and there is research backing its use & effectiveness.

[quote]MAF14 wrote:

[quote]bigmac73nh wrote:

[quote]MAF14 wrote:

[quote]BlueCollarTr8n wrote:
FTR…the solid food part of your routine must be ‘solid’ before any supplements will make a difference. [/quote]

That and maybe a higher GI carb instead of oats… Oats seemed to slow me down unless I had them at least 90 mins pre workout. I would have used a higher GI carb but I just like to eat too much. Personal preference.[/quote]

This actually raises a fair point… how close to your workout is the pre-WO shake? Probably a good idea to keep it to at least 40 minutes before based on what you’re using there.[/quote]

Forgot to mention that^. Also, I think extra leucine is always a good idea, especially pre/during/after workout.[/quote]

That’s kind of the reason I was unsure about the oats in the pre-WO shake, I try to take it at least an hour (or more) before going to the gym to give my stomach some time to empty a bit because I’ve never been able to train properly on any sort of full stomach. I thought I should maybe be doing it the other way around with dextrose in the pre-WO shake, and have it closer to gym time, and then the oats in the post-WO shake-would that be a good idea, or next time should I just replace the oats altogether?
-I’ll probably think about leucine or BCAA’s next time I’m restocking supplies but what I listed above is what I have for now, until it runs out.

[quote]CoachShredder wrote:
The only thing I’d suggest is getting rid of the oats (feel the same way about them as MAF14), and adding some BCAA’s. Perhaps you’re already sipping on them as you lift, but if not they will make a BIG difference. With that too, you can drop the Whey Protein and save it for post-lift.

As for the beta-alanine I normally suggest that immediately pre-workout as I find (depending on brand) it takes time to absorb and give the full benefit.
All the best![/quote]

Not taking any BCAA’s at the minute although I’ll probably try and budget for them next time, maybe instead of the beta-alanine… Would you suggest taking all the beta-alanine for the day just prior to working out, or just one a smaller dose spreading the rest out over the rest of the day?

[quote]bigmac73nh wrote:
John Meadows recommends beta-alanine on his site. He mentions that 4-6g per day as the amount required to reap the benefits. So you could split it into 2-3g pre- and 2-3g postworkout if you want.

I used Biotest’s peri protocols (containing beta-alanine) and also the Beta-7 supp, and while I do think they gave me a decent recovery boost, I do fine without them. It’s your call whether you want to drop the money on it, but it’s definitely a non-essential element of workout supplementation.[/quote]

Would the 2-3g before and after strategy be non inferior to taking 1-1.5g four times spread throughout the day (which is what the label says but I don’t trust it)? For the 2-3g pre- should I take that with the oat shake around 60-90 mins beforehand or just have it with some water closer to starting? What was your experience with it, good/bad/indifferent? Already bought it so gonna see how it goes over the next 6-8 weeks.

Thanks for all the help guys, appreciate it!!

Oh and are the approximate serving sizes I listed originally ok, or should I add more or less of anything eg. maybe more whey post-WO or less dextrose etc?

Thanks!

[quote]Smythwicks wrote:
Would the 2-3g before and after strategy be non inferior to taking 1-1.5g four times spread throughout the day (which is what the label says but I don’t trust it)? For the 2-3g pre- should I take that with the oat shake around 60-90 mins beforehand or just have it with some water closer to starting? What was your experience with it, good/bad/indifferent? Already bought it so gonna see how it goes over the next 6-8 weeks.

Thanks for all the help guys, appreciate it!!
[/quote]

If you choose to replace the oats with a high GI source, then add the 4-6 grams of beta-alanine to the shake about 30 minutes prior. If you stay with the oats, take the beta-alinine w/water about 20 minutes prior. Although I do think changing to a high GI carb. pre-workout is better than oats, moving the oats to post-workout is not an improvement over your current approach. I concur with the posters that advise the BCAA powder as soon as you can budget for it.

I want to be crystal clear about this whole supplement thing. If you do not have the solid food portion of your routine ‘squared away’, you are wasting your money on supplements. If you don’t count anything from your pre & post workout feedings, what are your macros?

[quote]Smythwicks wrote:
Oh and are the approximate serving sizes I listed originally ok, or should I add more or less of anything eg. maybe more whey post-WO or less dextrose etc?

Thanks![/quote]

They look about right to me. Some lifters would increase the protein.
Carbohydrate = .25 grams per lb of bodyweight
Protein = up to .25 grams per pound of bodyweight

Macros not including peri-workout stuff are approximately 100-150g of protein, 200-250g of carbs and 30-40g of fats. I think this is what they are roughly, but probably vary a bit on a daily basis.

I’ve been trying to clean up my food choices recently, ie. more of the good stuff, less of the bad. I’ve also been working to lower my carb intake, which I now realize has always been way too high. Even though my diet has never really been awful it was definitely way too carb heavy for someone with my metabolism, too much bread, cereal & potatoes.

Looking at the above macros I would think I should be increasing my protein & lowering the carb intake, would that sound about right?