Most people cite their main fitness goal, at least in terms of their appearance, as being lean, defined and toned. For most people, this generally involves losing some fat and gaining some lean muscle. There is no point in building up strong, good quality muscles if they are hidden underneath a layer of flab, and burning off fat without preserving and cultivating lean muscle not only takes longer (because muscle burns more calories), but will also leave you looking and feeling weak.
Getting the lean, toned look you are aiming for takes a combination of the right diet and an exercise program that includes both cardio and strength training. There are also a number of readily available supplements that can assist in your efforts and help you get the most effective results. Here are some of the best:
Creatine has been used as a muscle building supplement for over fifty years, and it isn’t just for body builders looking to pack on bulk. Creatine helps muscle to grow and repair, and this makes it a very effective weapon to have in your arsenal if you are trying to boost your lean muscle mass. While creatine is found naturally in red meat, to get the amounts you need for the optimum results the only way to go realistically is to incorporate the powder form into your diet plan.
L-Glutamine is a naturally occurring amino acid, which when added to the diet in supplement form offers proven benefits in terms of muscle growth and recovery. It can help stop muscle tissue degrading and can also prevent any negative effects on your immune system during a particularly grueling diet and exercise regime. It has also been shown to help in the healing of injuries, so if you sustain minor training injuries it can give you a slight advantage in terms of getting back into fitness.
Whey protein is the easiest way to make sure you are getting all of the protein your training schedule demands to help you build the lean muscle you need to get that defined look you are working towards. Whey has a form of protein that is very easy for the body to use, making it more efficient than other dietary forms because less gets wasted in the digestive process. The powder form whey protein can easily be added to shakes or food allowing you to take in more protein without the hassle or extra calories of eating more protein rich foods.
L-carnitine is a natural substance that the body forms in the liver and kidneys. As a supplement, it has no known side effects (even in high doses), but is shown to provide a wealth of health benefits, including assisting with fat mobilisation and muscle growth. This makes it dually helpful when you are looking to trim fat and increase lean muscle.
Green tea is regarded as something of a dieter’s best friend, because it has powerful fat burning properties, loads of antioxidants, and also gives you a good amount of caffeine which helps speed up your metabolism as well as giving you extra energy. All forms of caffeine are conducive to getting a more lean, defined look because they can help you burn more excess fat as well as give you the extra boost you need to work out harder and longer, but green tea is the best because it will also give you the antioxidant benefits.
Use any of these supplements or combine them in a way that supports your diet and exercise plan, and you will see benefits in terms of muscle development, fat loss, energy and general well being!