This is a long post, so bear with me.
Increased levels of excitatory neurotransmitters will improve the neuromuscular efficiency of the muscle.
Catecholamines and Acetylcholine are essential for peak performance. There are others too.
- Tyrosine is an aminoacid which converts to dopamine, epinephrine, norepinephrine (all catecholamines) in the brain. Rich sources are eggs, beef.
*Choline is an important part of acetylcholine. Increased levels of choline lead to higher acetylcholine production. Acetylcholine is critical for muscle contraction (snake poison from certain species can paralyze you by blocking the receptor sites, inhibiting Acetylcholine).
The richest sources are Beef Liver, Egg Yolks, Soy Lecithin (according to Cy Wilson, it does not affect Testosterone levels). Beef is another rich source, but only has roughly one fifth of the ammount found in egg yolks and one seventh of that found in beef liver.
NO CARBS and NO TRYPTOPHAN-RICH FOODS. Tryptophan converts to serotonin which calms you down and can inhibit maximal activation of the muscle. It is found in Turkey.
High carbs prior to a workout will lead higher serotonin levels as well, especially if coupled with tryptophan.
Veggies - these neutralize acidity in the body’s fluids. Body fluids make up 60% of an adult’s body weight. They should have neutral pH, blood being an exception at 7.4 pH. Acidity in the body can inhibit higher threshold motor units, which we want to tap into for maximal strength. Glutamine and calcium may have the same effect.
Green Tea - the caffeine will increase the firing rate of the motoneurones, as well as increase levels of epinephrine/norepinephrine. Theonine, an aminoacide abundant in green tea, lowers cortisol levels and increases alpha wave activity in the brain which translate into higher concentration levels. Theonine increase dopamine, precursor to epinephrine/norepinephrine, and lowers serotonin - which is why it relaxes you without making you groggy or sleepy the way kava kava does.
Vitamin C - improves hormone profile in your favor, helping reduce cortisol, increase testosterone.
Creatine (?) - not in the supplemental form, but through food. Herring is extremely rich in Creatine, having 6-10g/kg (roughly 5g/lb). Salmon has 4-5g/kg. Beef has 6.5g/kg. Chicken has 4g/kg. Who knows, it may not make much difference, but heck, with the benefits of having beef for added tyrosine/choline, it’s a nice side benefit at a minimum. Who said you need supplemental creatine?
B-vitamin complex throughout day - to help maintain nervous system and aid in the production of neurotransmitters (vitamin B5 is necessary to convert choline to acetylcholine, but you find it almost any food)
Another possible good choices are sardines and anchovies for DMAE, which converts to choline in the brain. It’s a far more effective source of choline than lecythin and choline bitartrate.
Adding to this apropriate cothing for the environmental conditions (temperature, humidity - in hot humid temperatures, more exposed skin and ventilation to the forehead - one of your body’s best radiators - is essential to prevent early fatigue of the CNS due to heat), psyching up (by tapping into your emotional drive and what makes you push yourself - certain tunes will usually help a lot with psyching up, along with visualization).
For post-workout, you would want to improve relaxation, and increase vasodilation to speed up recovery and the uptake of nutrients to the muscle.
NOW tryptophan seems like a good choice, to promote serotonin which does both. It also reduces the catecholamines, which constrict blood vessels. Tryptophan-rich foods might be a good choice for that postworkout meal, as you lie down in the couch half asleep.
Carb-rich foods will also increase serotonin levels, besides all the critical recovery function they aid in.
I’d like some input. I followed these guidelines prior to my leg workout, and what do you know, I squeezed 355 lb squats for 8 reps - the most weight I’ve handled yet. This is CONSIDERABLY more than my last session - 295 lbs for 8 reps. My pull-ups seemed much more effortless, and sense of fatigue wasnt as pronounced. Fatigue from set to set was reduced as well - instead of dropping from 12 to 7 to 6 to 6 reps, I went from 13 to 10 to 10 to 9. MUCH better.
Could it be just a good day? Yeah. But I honestly think there is something to it.