Strength Training is getting a lot of buzz these days in the health and weight loss industry. At the core, this is a good thing; becoming stronger has obvious and hidden benefits that simply cannot be denied. The conflict comes when the discussion turns to the best way to get strong.
Healthy and proper training and diet are the basis of any strength training routine, but it quickly gets difficult to determine which philosophies have merit and which are merely hype. Some trainers swear that the best solution is hours spent every week in the gym, while others promote a program based on diet and supplements. A favorite example of the latter is Popeye the Sailor, whose strength was based on massive supplements of spinach.
The fact is, supplements are not necessary to gain muscle and strength, if you have a healthy and balanced diet. That is a pretty strong statement, especially on a site that sells supplements. However our business is based on overall health more than the latest training fads.
In order to find the benefits of strength training, we need to look at strength. Despite advances in health technology, we have become weaker in recent generations due to a more sedentary lifestyle. At the beginning of the last century, more people became strong through day to day work. Even in the days of yore, there were some who sought ultimate strength by training their bodies.
One of the earliest to train was Milo of Croton. Milo was a six-time wrestling champion at the ancient Grecian Olympics (he also used to hang out with Pythagoras, the triangle guy). One of his training methods was to carry a new born calf on his back everyday, by the time the calf was a full grown bull, Milo had to be pretty stout!
Having a calf around also meant that Milo had access to all the whey he wanted. Whey powder as a source of protein is a popular supplement for strength training. Building strength means building healthy muscles, and muscles are built from protein
Fish Oil supplements, with their large doses of Omega 3 fats, have been known for years to have several benefits. Omega 3’s are important in reducing cholesterol. In addition, Omega 3 fats help to reduce inflammation which can bring on soreness from training, as well as help to reduce body fat.
A proper diet will provide all of the vitamins and minerals that your body needs, but multivitamin supplements remain popular and may have benefits to a strength training program. Calcium and iron are shown to help in muscle recovery, and vitamin C helps to boost the immune system that may be weakened by fatigue in the gym.
There is some debate over the benefits of creatine as a strength building supplement. Some studies show that use of creatine can boost short term anaerobic performance, while others show no demonstrated benefit. The European Food Safety Authority states that the long term, low dosage use of creatine shows no risk to healthy individuals, however it is not recommended for use by patients experiencing renal problems. There have also been isolated reports of muscle cramping associated with creatine use.
Most trainers emphasize that the quality of your training, the form and technique you use, is more important than the amount of training you do. The same is true of your supplements. When you are considering supplements, look for the best quality you can find, like the High Purity Supplements from BioSynergy!