What supplements should I use in martial arts?

If you’re looking for advice on what supplements to use in martial arts, first figure out whether you should be using them at all. You should be able to get everything you need, especially if you’re young from a good diet plan. However, there are a few reasons people, myself included take supplements regularly as a part of their diet.

1. Meal replacement

I’m pretty busy day to day so it’s easier for me to throw some instant oats and some whey into a blender with a banana for breakfast than make an omeltte or porridge. This means they replace the meal with a quick and easy alternative and I get some good carbs, protein and micronutrients in early on.

2. Convenience

If you’re living with your parents, you might not be able to buy all the food you want every day so making up for it with supplements is a possiblity. Same goes for if the shops close to you don’t sell food which fits your diet plan that well, the gap in macronutrients can be made up using supplements.

Climate

If you’re living in the U.K or northwards or in New Zealand, over winter you may want to look at taking vitamin D3 as you probably aren’t getting enough from sunlight because you’ll probably be more covered up, be inside longer and obviously, the sun goes down earlier. Lower vitamin D can lower your testosterone levels so keeping a good intake up can be beneficial.

Supplements which you should use (if you need to)

Main message here is keep it simple, supplement companies love to bombard you with ads and promises of better performance, but what they tend to do is mix a few simple things together and mark the price up.

Vitamines

If you’re eating brown rice, chicken and oats every day, liklihood is you’re not getting enough micronutrients (vitamines and minerals) in. Finding a good multi-vitamin can help a lot with loads of health aspects from sleep cycles to digestion. Be careful however, taking too much of certain vitamines like vitamin C it can lead to health risks (C particularly as some companies sell vit C pills with around 200% RDA).

Creatine

Creatine works. It’s not a steroid and it’s not illegal to take for competition. It takes about 3 weeks to accumulate in your body to make a difference so don’t expect to be the hulk overnight. Again, the message with creatine is to keep it simple, companies sell all sorts of creatine, most of which haven’t been shown to be any better than regular creatine monohydrate.

Instant oats

As I mentioned before, I take these as a breakfast replacement. They’re a good source of carbs and can be quickly made in a shaker or a blender and mixed with other things too. Don’t try to cook them though, trust me, it doesn’t work.

Whey protein

This is a good quality source of protien. Ideally you should be consuming 1g of protein per lb of lean muscle mass (you’d need to calculate your body fat % to find this figure) so if you need more protein, it’s a good place to start. If you do get enough protein, no matter what the supplement companies say, more whey protein won’t really do anything. Check what you buy as well as some brands pack their whey protein with sugar in the flavourings. So if you need it, it’s good to take, if you don’t need it, don’t bother.

Vitamin D3

This is a great way to raise your vitamin D level back up to where they should be during winter months. As I said before, if your vitamin D levels drop, your testosterone can too so it’s worth taking duirng the darker, colder months.

Takeaway

There are a lot of supplements out there and a lot of rubbish too. Ideally, you’ll have enough of all your nutrition in your regular diet but the world isn’t ideal so supplementing can be necessary. If you do choose to buy, keep it simple and buy individual ingredients over big expensive stacks which have loads of stuff you don’t need.

Thanks for reading, if you enjoy reading our articles, sign up to our email list with the link below  to recieve updates as well as more free content, interesting posts I’ve found as well as early updates on any products we might bring out in the future.http://forms.aweber.com/form/82/368267382.htm

What supplements do you use? Comment below and like our facebook page for more posts on martial arts. Also check out these videos by Omar Isuf, an intelligent power-lifter, on this topic

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axZGhPPp3k8 3 good health supplements

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYKKwWxT19w 3 overrated supplements

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4WvJSEGZr4 some good info on whey protein

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLRbUHAfkV0 some good info on creatine

Photo credits to pastorfit.com

How to build success habits.

Building good habits can make the difference in what level your game is at. if you are habitually training multiple times per day, you have a good diet and you’re sleeping and recovering right, it’s obvious to think your game will improve. The trouble for many is getting to this point. I’m going to break down an easy way of forming good habits you need to improve your game. This can be applied not only to martial arts, but sport and life as a general.

Start small

Ok so you want to start making things go better for you. The biggest mistake most people hit is doing too much too early. My Dad for instance might decide he wants to lose weight and will change his current diet which doesn’t really have any consistency to it, to an all salad and low calorie diet, it will last for a couple of weeks max and then he gives it up. The message is baby steps.

Take one aspect of your life and do something proactive. Keep doing it over and over again until it becomes natural. An example put forward by Elliot Hulse of Strength Camp is taking a walk every morning to lose weight. This has a couple of effects: your calorie usage for the day goes up, meaning you will start losing weight if all else stays the same but you also start to build momentum. Elliots video on the subject is just below.

Building momentum

So yeah great you can get up and go for a walk every morning or whatever it is you’ve changed as a small start. From here you can start building momentum.

This happens in two ways. The first, particularly if you’re a martial artist or a sports person as we tend to be pretty kinesthetic people is that movement gets you going, gets blood pumping around your body, most ideas I have for new posts, lessons, buisness plans all tend to come during my walk.

The ultimate momentum builder is the habit of building habits. You’ve just started to build positive habits throughout your day with that one simple start.

You can progress from here. For instance the next step might be cleaning up your diet so the next step is to record everything you eat WITHOUT changing what you eat, again don’t do too much too soon. You can then build on it and start cleaning up your diet, sorting out a healthy macronutrient intake and so on riding on the back of the momentum you’ve build from the small initial steps.

You might want to start indroduing more exercise. If you’re a martial artist you probably already go to training a few nights per week, you might want to form a new habit of hitting the gym for strength and conditioning twice per week as well.

The point is once you start building habits successfully, use the momentum to build more positive habits at a good pace, never too much too soon.

Goal Setting

So here comes the science part. What we’ve discussed is the most powerful form of goal setting in sports psychology: the process goals. It’s been found that people react to these goals the best. I find it’s helpful to write down performance goals associated with the process goals (I.E, I want to increase the speed I can run 1.5 miles or the number of times I tap people out per session, I want to lose so much weight etc.) so that I keep the mid-term goal envisioned, but the most important part is the process goals. These are “I’m going to turn up to training 3 times per week”, “I’m going to walk every morning” “I’m going to record all the food I eat” type goals, focus on these but keep the longer term plan in mind.

Jugganought’s article on Goal setting: http://www.jtsstrength.com/articles/2015/05/06/the-sport-psychology-of-goal-setting/

Hard Work Becomes Effortless, the power of 21.

What might have been hard in the past will soon feel effortless. It will become a part of your life. Doing the odd healthy things in an unthealthy lifestyle won’t make you healthy as much as the odd unhealthy things in a healthy lifestyle will make you unhealthy.

Some people talk about the power of 21, the idea that if you force yourself to do that thing for 21 days, maybe it’s get up an hour earlier. After 21 days it will feel natural, it won’t be a chore to do it. Eric Thomas does a great video about this and I reccomend all readers watch his stuff, he’s great for getting you motivated.

The takeaway is that you don’t need to change your whole lifestyle at once. In fact, doing this can really screw you up and you can end up worse than before. Start small, build momentum using the power of 21 and set your goals properly.

Thanks for reading, if you enjoy reading our articles, sign up to our email list with the link below  to recieve updates as well as more free content, interesting posts I’ve found as well as early updates on any products we might bring out in the future.http://forms.aweber.com/form/82/368267382.htm

Have you had any success with this? leave a comment below and like our page to follow for more training tips for martial arts.