How To Time Your Supplements

Brandon Hahn November 29, 2012 Supplement Articles
How To Time Your Supplements

In previous articles, we’ve discussed how to stack supplements together for maximum benefits. This time around, let’s go a bit more in-depth and explore when exactly you should be taking all of these pills, capsules, powders, potions and brews. Supplement timing can be as beneficial as what you actually take, and all it takes is a little know-how to get it right.

Working Around Your Schedule

In doing hundreds, if not thousands, of custom dosing protocols for folks over the last few years, one of the most important variables is your own personal schedule. Some who read this may be students, while others may have jobs, while some may do both or nothing at all! When you workout is often a matter of when you can get it in, and that’s ok. Based on your schedule, you want to learn what you are taking, what it does for you, and from that you’ll have an idea of when it’s best to dose it.

Stims in the Morning

It’s always best to take it as far away from bed time as possible. You need your sleep, and without sleep, the recovery (aka: The Grow Time) portion of your training can’t occur properly. Some stimulants last for quite a long time, even after you feel the desired effects wear off. If you have trouble sleeping after taking a stim product in the afternoon, back it up to the morning!

If you must take a stimulant later in the day, be smart about it. Choose a product that has a shorter duration and won’t interfere with your sleep. For example, if one were to take a 12-hour product such as Athletic Xtreme’s SlimFX at 2pm and expect to go to bed by 11pm, one would certainly run into some problems! On the other hand, if one opted to take a Stimulant X instead, which has a duration of roughly 8 hours, sleep patterns wouldn’t be nearly as affected.

When it comes to pre-workout products, the duration is usually a matter of minutes, rather than long lengths of hours. Your average pre-workout is there to get your body rockin’ for an hour or so, and by the time you’re ready to leave the gym, it should be about gone. Word to the wise, though. If you train in the morning, it’d be best not to mix a long-acting stim with a short-term pre-w/o formula. Aside from potential interactions, that’s just too much! Save the long-acting one for another time.

”Test Boosters” in the Morning or Before Bed

First of all, let me put this as a blanket term. “Test boosters” is a generic term for the myriad of products out there that are meant to jack up your test levels. This term is extremely generic and often applies to products that don’t boost so much as they do modify, or even ones that work to lower estrogen or estrogen conversion, thusly increasing test. Products these days don’t overall increase your production of overall test as they do work with what you normally make and convert it to a more usable form of test for your training needs.

That being said, if you’re going to modify your test levels to a form that’s better to make gains, you’ll want to hit it when your body has the highest test production. Do you boys remember waking up and not being able to walk around in front of your mom due to something a little bit embarassing in your trousers? Yeah, high test levels, folks. Consider that morning wood a good indicator, and remember that! Take advantage of your higher test levels when you wake up and dose test-boosting products asap.

At night, our test levels may be lower, but not when we sleep. As we snooze, the body is creating all sorts of things to help us recover from the day, and hormones are no exception. Dose a “test booster” before you bed down and it will be there to make things all that much better for recovery as you dream of hot chicks, hot cars, hot dogs, or whatever it is you crazy kids dream of these days.

Recovery Aids and Fuels

This category is meant for those products which are meant to aid in your recovery. Whether it is to refuel and refeed the muscles, replace lost elements due to exercise, or to just boost your system to grow, recovery aids and fuels are best taken at certain points during the day.

Amino acids are the tops in this category, as they help to not only fuel your workout but to help repair the damage done. If you have never trained while sipping an amino drink, you really need to. It will help to increase your ability to perform, guaranteed. Is this the only time to drink it? No. In my opinion, having some before bed is also a good idea, as well as some in the morning. Are those times necessary? Maybe not, but it would ideally help the process along if you did.

Protein shakes are seen in many lights. Some are intended to replace nutrients and fuel in a quick manner, while others are seen to be additional meals or even meal replacements. For the sake of this article, we’ll consider the basic whey isolate. It is relatively fast to be digested and ideal for recovery. Swig a protein drink before your workout for increased calories, or guzzle one afterwards to put back what you just burned up.

Bottom line is that it really depends on what you are looking to use and what your daily schedule is like. For me, I get up early in the morning, work an 8-hour day, and THEN I have time to hit the gym. For others, they can punch the iron first thing in the morning and go about the rest of their day. Whatever your schedule allows, use these tips to get the most out of your supplementation routine. Pay close attention to what products do for you and go from there. As always, if you need help, feel free to ask! Shout out in the comments section below, join the Athletic Xtreme Community and post up your questions, or contact our customer service experts anytime.

About The Author

Brandon has been in the fitness industry for over seven years and has trained over 1,000 clients. He has competed in several bodybuilding competitions and continues to improve his physique with hardwork and dedication. With a Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Science, Brandon has the knowledge and skills to get you on the fast track to fitness.