08 July, 2011
Supplements for Muscle Fatigue
Many natural supplements can help you fight muscle fatigue. It is important to remember that you should not rely on supplements for proper nutrition. Rest and recovery are paramount when you are training intensely. However, muscle fatigue supplements can help you enhance muscle performance more comprehensively than proper diet and recovery alone.
Creatine monohydrate can help with muscle fatigue because it increases muscles' ability to turn over or regenerate ATP, or adenosine triphosphate, according to "Natural Anabolics." ATP is the source of energy for strength-oriented and powerful muscle contractions. Creatine helps your body make ATP faster and more efficiently. Take 5 to 10 grams daily before or after your workout to help prevent muscle fatigue.
Beta-alanine works to decrease muscle fatigue by inhibiting lactic acid formation in muscles, according to "Supplements 101." A product of anaerobic respiration, which is the way your body produces energy during resistance training, lactic acid causes a burning feeling in fatigued muscle. As the acidity builds up, your muscles are no longer able to contract as forcefully. Beta-alanine increases intramuscular L-carnosine, an amino acid that buffers the acidity of lactic acid. Take 1.5 to 3 grams once before exercise and again with a meal later in the day.
BCAAs, or branched-chain amino acids, are effective for improving muscular endurance and preventing fatigue because they can be used as a direct source of energy for muscles, according to "Natural Anabolics." The unique "branched" molecular structure of L-leucine, L-isoleucine and L-valine, the BCAAs, allows them to pass directly into the bloodstream and on to the muscles without going through the liver. Take 5 grams of BCAAs before, during and after your workout session.
L-Arginine can support energy levels by boosting NO, or nitric oxide, in the body, according to "Everything You Need to NO." Nitric oxide is crucial to the endothelial system, regulating blood pressure by expanding blood vessels. In this way, supplementing with L-Arginine allows more blood flow to working muscles. This also means that more nutrients and oxygen are delivered to fuel intense bouts of exercise. Take 3 grams of arginine 30 to 60 minutes before a workout and up to two more times daily.
Taurine's role in energy production is important, as evidenced by the fact that it is found in muscle tissues that have high energy demands like the heart, according to "Supplements 101." Taurine also helps muscle cells regulate calcium levels, which impact their ability to contract forcefully. According to author Jim Stoppani, taurine may increase time to exercise exhaustion by up to 50 percent. Take 1 to 3 grams before your workout.
- Muscle & Performance; "Everything You Need to NO"; Jordana Brown, January 2010
- "Homemade Supplement Secrets"; Jeff Anderson; 2008
- "Natural Anabolics"; Jerry Brainum; 2006
- Muscle & Fitness: The Ultimate Supplement Handbook; "Supplements 101"; Jim Stoppani
- Iromaya Images/Iromaya/Getty Images