T Nation

Questions About Peri-Workout Nutrition


Post away.


I, like 99.99% of the training world, don't have access to Anaconda or any of the other high end secret supplements that you lucky ones have your hands on. What would be the best alternative para-workout nutrition for those who have access to the currently available Biotest supps(Surge Workout Fuel, Surge Recovery, BCAA, etc.) and other easily available supps?

Also, could you provide some cheaper alternatives to those who can't afford the cost of certain protocols but want to optimize WO nutrition within their budget?




I was wondering if you see coconut water as having any place in para-workout nutrition. This likely sounds like a silly question given the cutting-edge stuff you've been discussing lately, but I'm curious if this humble liquid has potential value around training.


What is the current thinking regarding the best protocol for supplementing with BCAAs para-workout? Specifically for strength, if that matters. Thanks.


If you can't get Anaconda the protocols to do are as follow:

PROTOCOL 1 (1-3 times per week, when working on a weak area)
Workout - 60 = Alpha-GPC
W - 40 = 1 FINiBAR
W - 30 = 2 scoops Surge Workout Fuel
W - 15 = 2 scoops Surge Recovery
During workout (early half) = 1 FINiBAR
During workout (later half) = 1 scoop Surge Workout Fuel
W + 15 = Grow! Whey 2 scoops
W + 90 minutes = Grow! Whey 2 scoops

PROTOCOL 2 (other workouts)
Workout - 60 = Alpha-GPC
W - 40 = 1 FINiBAR
W - 30 = 2 scoops Surge Workout Fuel
During workout (early half) = 1 FINiBAR
During workout (later half) = 1 scoop Surge Workout Fuel
W + 15 = 1 scoop Surge Recovery, 1 scoop Grow! Whey
W + 90 = Grow! Whey 2 scoops


For strength, I actually don't see it as much of a tool to use. Alpha-GPC, Power Drive, Spike are all better choices. BCAAs would be more effective either with endurance training or during bouts of super intense training to prevent chronic CNS fatigue.


Hi CT,

1) To control cortisol, is it beneficial to use Glycine in addition to PPS or is PPS alone good enough? Can you explain the differences between the two in this regard?

2) Is post workout Glutamine primarily used when using low carb diets or is it also useful during mass gaining phases when carbs are at a moderate level (and primarily consumed post workout)?



It has some decent potential to help keep yourself hydrated... in that regard I might even go as far as saying that it is superior to commercial stuff like Gatorade the likes.

But I wouldn't call it a staple to para-workout nutrition or even something I would recommend on a regular basis.


PPS influences cortisol directly while glycine has more of an indirect effect.

Glycine is a neural inhibitor/relaxant. It decreases mental stress, helps you relax which facilitate proper cortisol modulation when taken in the evening.

I only see it as being useful when carbs are near zero or when the individual has a weak immune system.


Wow that was like instant response!

So if PPS influences cortisol directly, does this imply that if I take PPS, I don't really need to take Glycine, or is it still beneficial to use both since the relaxing effects of Glycine would help reduce my mental stress levels (whereas PPS doesn't sound like it necessarily does that)?

Thanks for your continued help. I spent almost all my free time this week reading the hundreds of pages of all your existing posts and it's ridiculous how much useful information there is in there!


Coach, the second half of my meals leading up to my workout currently looks like this.......

295g 4%fat grass fed beef mixed w/Zucchini,Tomatoes,Onion,Garlic
1TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil
4-Regular Fish Oil Caps
5g Leucine

1Scoop Low-Carb Metabolic Drive Shake mixed w/serving of Superfood
50g Almonds

5:10-5:15 (15min Before Workout)
1 Serving Surge Recovery (if volume is high)

1 Serving Surge Workout Fuel (if volume is lower)

6:15-6:30p.m (Post-Workout)
1 Serving Surge Recovery

How does the timing of everything here look to you?? Are there areas of improvement in your opinion? Thank you in advance for any help or advice and thank you for your passion of giving all this great information and experience, it is appreciated.


Glycine would be of some help. PPS can reduce cortisol production by up to 30% in perfect settings, so in real life it's more likely to be around 15%. Relaxation, although indirect, can have much more profound effects.


a) first, holy crap.

b) what role/ratio should protein play before or during a workout? I see you've got Finibars and sometimes Surge Recovery in there... is there a time when protein should be laid off?

c) Does it matter if creatine is taken anywhere near workout time? The loading process seems to be slow.

d) Is it para-workout or peri-workout? Or parrot-workout?


Hi Coach,

I'm not quite ready to use your advanced protocol just yet, but would appreciate your opinion on this one I'm about to start. I'm an etcomorph looking to gain size.

60mins before workout = 2 caps Alpha-GPC
30mins before workout = Surge Workout Fuel (2 scoops)
During workout sip 20g of casein hydrolysate
Immediately after workout = Surge Recovery (2 scoops +5g creatine)
60 mins post workout = 20g casein hydrolysate

Thanks for your time.


I would have the RECOVERY pre-workout (10-15 minutes out) so that insulin will be spiked DURING the workout. If you gradually drink your protein throughout your workout there will be no real need to have a specific post-workout shake right after the workout.

So the protocol could become:

60mins before workout = 2 caps Alpha-GPC
30mins before workout = Surge Workout Fuel (2 scoops)
10 minutes before workout = Surge Recovery (2 scoops +5g creatine)
During workout sip 20g of casein hydrolysate
60 mins post workout = 20g casein hydrolysate + 5g creatine

Although your protocol would also work, albeit not optimally from what I experienced this week.


Awesome, I'll try it on Thursday, thanks again. Creatine before and after the workout?



With these kind of protocols, do we have to respect the "10% rule" of body fat?
Would be useful take fenuplex, insulinomics or Receptomax with them?
Is there a guideline or first step for those are above 10% and hence, low carb diet?



Ever have any problems with feeling sick/throwing up during a workout after ingesting that much pre-workout? I'd love to experiment properly with this type of protocol but have no doubt it would come straight back up after about 3 sets.


In an ideal world nobody training to look good should ever go above 10-12%. But I'm not as anal as Charles when it comes to the 10% rule and carbs intake. The protocol explained in this and other threads is so effective that I tend do be more lenient with whom can use it.

If you are way above 10% then simply keep your carbs low during the rest of the day.

And simply eat low-carbs on your off days.


YES! Studies have shown that these are the two best times to ingest it.