Rest Day Supplementation
One of the most frequently asked questions we receive is about supplementation on both workout days and rest days. The questions range from what to take to what is the best of a certain product. One of the most asked questions is whether or not you should use supplements on your rest days.
The answer to this is not always as simple as people may think. To some people, supplements are purchased to make training more effective or aid your recovery from training sessions. This is not always the case. There are several types of supplements. Some have to be taken daily to maintain what is known as “saturation” to get the most benefits out of taking them. If you don’t get to a level of saturation, then the effects work on a diminished scale. Lets dive into which supplements are taken daily, and what supplements can be taken only when training.
The basic rule of thumb for these is to take them daily. Depending on the one you choose the dosing can change from once a day to as many as three times a day. A multi that you take more than once a day may be more beneficial as others can sometimes be under dosed in important vitamins and minerals.
Fish oil is another phenomenal supplement that should be taken daily, training or not. Fish oil will definitely require more than one dose to obtain the recommended 2 – 3 grams of DHA/EPA to get the most of both anti-inflammatory and cardiovascular benefits. When reading the label make sure that the brand you choose lists EPA/DHA amounts separately from the overall value. Without having this information you may be purchasing a product that will not meet your requirements.
Protein has its place in the diet plan of any person who is training or trying to lose weight. Protein is essential to recovery. Protein can be used on both training and rest days and will help you meet your macro nutrient numbers better without adding a ton of calories. This can come in handy for a quick meal or to substitute when calories become scarce on a diet.
This is more of a training day supplement. Pre-workouts are designed to increase blood flow and delivery of nutrients to the muscle cells as well as give you that extra boost of energy to get through your workout. Many people even use these instead of coffee or energy drinks to give them their midday boost.
Post workout is a great way to aid your body in recovery after a tough workout. There are plenty of great ingredients that can both refuel and replenish the body. This can also be used to aid the body daily to replenish electrolytes lost during hot days or when your sweating a lot. It can also be used to aid your body when you ingest less calories when dieting. Not only for flavor in a large glass of water, but to aid in fueling the body when calories are decreased.
These are designed to be taken daily to aid your body in many different ways. Some are fueled with caffeine to give you an energy boost, while others have other ingredients that will suppress appetite and speed up metabolism. Regardless of the type you choose, they definitely should be taken on a daily basis.
Creatine offers many benefits. The predominant one is to aid in increasing muscle mass. This is one of the few supplements where saturation is key to obtaining the benefits. There are two ways to get saturated. The first is to dose 15 – 20 grams daily for 5 – 7 days. This method has been shown to come with some intestinal issues. The other method is to take between 3 – 5 grams daily for a month and then continue for as long as you choose to take it. The second method is the preferred method these days as the stomach issues are diminished.
These focus supplements are meant to be taken on a daily basis. The user can choose to not take it on days when they feel they do not need the memory or focus. However, this is another supplement where daily dosing may aid in overall effectiveness. Since stimulants are included in many of these products, that should be taken in account when choosing other stimulant based supplements.
We all know the benefits of taking a detox/fiber supplement is immeasurable. This becomes especially valid when changing your diet. When a diet is changed, the body has to adapt to become effective in the new caloric intake as well as the foods that are ingested. If you normally take in foods that have a lot of fiber and switch to foods that have less fiber, then the body may have issues eliminating waste. By adding a detox/fiber supplement to your daily supplementation then you can reduce the risk of this becoming an issue.
There are many beneficial supplements out there and it can be challenging to know what to use and how to use them. If these supplements will only help on training days then take them on just those days. If they can help in other areas of your life, then you may consider adding them in on a more daily basis to get ingredients that may be useful to your body.