Supplementation For The Female Lifter.

The focus for this article is for women who are the average type of female who works out hard and regularly, but who is looking for some recommendations on products… Supplements included are fat loss, joint support, vitamins, pre workout and more!


Ctgblue: Introduction

For those of you who don't know me, Icequeen is my better half. She is the one who inspires me to get my lazy butt out of bed almost everyday at 4:30am to hit the gym by 5:00am. She and I are both certified personal trainers and she also holds Pilates and Yoga certifications.

    Check Out Icequeen's BodySpace Here.

She works out harder than most people (me included, many times). She knows her diet, knows how supplements work and, more importantly, how they work on her. Both of us have tested many products and she has given me the input needed for the female point of view.


Icequeen: Supplements For Women

I think that the first thing that needs to be dispensed with, even before we make a proper introduction to this article is the question of what kind of women we are writing this article for and about.

While it is our goal to include suggestions for the widest number of women possible, those women seeking help with AAS or pro-hormones and those women who really aren't interested in breaking a sweat while working out may feel a little bit left out.

Thus, the focus for this article is the woman who is a more average type of female who works out hard and regularly, but who is looking for some recommendations on products that will enhance her gym experience without worrying about the "we will pump you up" hype of many of the products targeted toward our male audience.

The range of products marketed to women is outstanding and somewhat overwhelming, and sensible (and frugal) girls may wonder if we really need all of the many products that are marketed to us. The girl new to working out may even be confused as to whether she can (or should) use the same products as men and what she should or should not combine.

Since, like most women, the man in my life is much more experimental in regards to his supplement regime, I have had a difficult time deciding what is truly necessary, but in the six years that I have been buying, testing, and consuming supplements, I have made my decisions on many questions.

I will try, as I go, to answer several of the more pressing questions that the female lifter may have and also give you my opinion of the supplements that I have tried.

While I have aged in the four years since I wrote my original article, I have more importantly changed. I had a nasty bout with an anti-depressant, which helped me gain 30 pounds (which I had to struggle to lose) thus, the skinny girl pictured in that article is now a little older, a lot wiser, and a little heavier.

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In my teens, I was all knees and elbows. In my 20's I was obsessively thin. At 30, after giving birth to my second child, my metabolism lurched. Suddenly I couldn't eat all that I wanted and stay perfectly thin. Find out what I changed.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

So, my first question: Can I use my man's supplements?

In short, yes, but make sure that you WANT to use them first. Do you really want "massive pumps" and "pipeline veins"? Also, note that many products are dosed for a 180-200 pound man. So if you are a 120 pound girl, start with one half to two-thirds of the recommended starting dosage.

Be sure as well to read the label; some products discourage female usage either directly or indirectly. Generally speaking, however, you can share supplements.


-> Fat Burners:

    We all want to lose the junk in our trunk, but there are so many products available that claim to be the answer to our prayers that it is hard to know which ones are for real. In my opinion, this is one of the categories in which you will really need to experiment.

    For example, I cannot take anything with chromium picolinate in it, although it does help curb the appetite very well. I am also a little sensitive to yohimbe, but I can take as much caffeine or ephedra as you want to throw my way. Be careful with any of these products; read the labels and follow the directions.

    Once, during the ephedra witch hunt, I overheard a woman talking about a product and she said that it worked great, if you took TWICE what the label said! Please don't do that and please remember that even the best (legal) thermogenic is probably only going to increase your rate of fat loss by about 10%; there are no miracle pills and no substitutes for clean eating and a solid work out program.

    Having tried just about everything out there, I would say that the following are my favorites:

    Stimulant X by Anabolic Xtreme is an amazing appetite suppressant, but it is SO intense that after a few days I could not sleep. Another excellent product is T2 by Fusion Nutrition, but it has a similar cumulative effect on me. Basic Cuts by Designer Supplements is an affordable and effective supplement that I have had good results from, as is Allmax Razor8.

    If you do not like caffeine, you may also like Aerobitine by SNAC, but be warned that you will not feel it kick in; you will just kind of notice how good you feel after awhile. (note: the products that caused some sleep issues in IQ have not done so in most people we have talked to, nor in me - CG)

PRODUCT
SNAC Presents:
Aerobitine

The innovative new Anti-Fatigue/Fat Loss formula from the makers of ZMA. Aerobitine was developed by the world-renowned sports nutritionist Victor Conte, founder of the SNAC System and former bassist for Tower of Power and Herbie Hancock.
[ Click here to learn more. ]


-> Pre-workout:

    This is a tough category for me, but CTGBLUE and many of my friends are big fans of having something before the gym. I workout at 5:00 a.m. and I really do not like much of anything in my stomach that time of day except water, my thermogenic, and creatine.

    Creatine and I have a very difficult relationship. Again, I am very sensitive to the type of creatine that I take. The first few products I tried a few years ago brought on migraines, so I stopped taking them. Last summer my husband brought in some newer products that he wanted me to try and they did not have this effect on me.

    So at present, I have used creatine ethyl ester products from Axis Labs, SNS, and ALRI and they really work well. I am currently using a Kre-Alkalyn product called Purple K by Fusion Nutrition and I really do like it. Since I am in my late 30's I need a little help with recovery and I find that creatine has a noticeable effect.

PRODUCT
Fusion Nutrition Presents:
Purple-K

Throw away all your other creatine products, they don't mean much anymore. Purple-K is the world's first creatine that does not convert to toxic creatinine ('kree-AT-ah-neen'). This means you will be able to experience all the benefits of creatine without the side effects, while consuming much less at a fraction of the cost.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

    I do not consume anything else before my morning workouts; however, if I should go later in the day, I am fairly simple. I like so light whey protein. Nectar, Substance, or Isopure are some of my favorites, mixed with some BCAA's, of which I really like X-tend the best. (Try grape Xtend with grape Substance or lemonade Xtend with lemonade Nectar for a taste explosion, these combos taste like Kool-Aid.)

    Often, if I am doing a strenuous yoga or Pilates class, I will also use Hammer Nutrition Endurolytes Powder to help with cramping. I have usually done an earlier workout or worked all day, so I am a little depleted and this really keeps me from hurting.

PRODUCT
Hammer Nutrition Presents:
Endurolytes Powder

Electrolyte replacement during exercise can vary as much as tenfold between two athletes. No other area of endurance nutrition or supplementation calls for such individualized dosing.
[ Click here to learn more. ]


-> Post-Workout:

    Like many people, I don't feel as if I consume enough green vegetables, so for a few years I have been supplementing with Green Magma I tried the drinks and just cold not stomach them, so the pills are a great alternative. Do these have a highly noticeable effect? No, but I know that I am getting some minerals that I would ordinarily lack.

PRODUCT
Green Foods Presents:
Green Magma

Green Foods Green Magma is a very nutritious, mildly alkaline powder made from organic young barley grass juice. Young barley grass contains perhaps the most balanced nutrient profile of all green plants with an abundance of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, proteins, active enzymes, and chlorophyll.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

    I am a stickler about the post workout protein, so I have tried most of the protein powders on the market. As I mentioned, for a straight shot of tasty whey, I like Nectar, Substance, or Isopure, mixed with some Xtend BCAA's. If I have these, I usually have a bowl of oatmeal later; however, if I am short on time and I have to get my protein and carbs together, I often use a mixed protein that my husband gets custom made.

    Other good MRP's include:

PRODUCT
EAS Presents:
Myoplex

It takes a solid nutritional foundation to build your best body ever. Myoplex is designed to take the guesswork out of high performance nutrition, delivering the highest quality protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals.
[ Click here to learn more. ]


-> Other Stuff I Like:

    Vitamins:

      A couple of years ago, my daughter ran track and my husband bought her some performance vitamins, Vita Tech. She never took them, so like a good mom, I decided not to let them go to waste. These things are fabulous! Within a week I noticed that I felt better. I am a huge fan of this product and recommend them to everyone.

PRODUCT
Techline Presents:
Vita Tech

Vita Tech is designed for the competitive bodybuilder and serious athlete seeking to maximize physical performance. Containing a broad spectrum of performance nutrients, VITA TECH provides vitamins, minerals, stress B complex, amino acids, antioxidants, fat burners, and digestive aids.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

    Joint Health:

      I will also not go without MSM and Glucosamine. This is one area of supplementation which I cannot neglect or I really feel it in just a few days. My husband and I have tried just about everything on the market and NOW Foods makes the best products that I have tried. Their capsules are affordable and they work. We use NOW Glucosamine 1000 and NOW MSM 1000.

PRODUCTS
NOW Presents:
Glucosamine 1000

Glucosamine is an amino sugar derived from the chitrin of shellfish. It is utilized by the body to support healthy joint structures. Glucosamine hydrochloride (HCI) is considered to be as stable and as effective as other glucosamine compounds.
[ Click here to learn more. ]
NOW Presents:
MSM

MSM (Methylsulphonylmethane) is a natural form of organic sulfur found in all living organisms. This natural compound, researched since 1979, provides the chemical links needed to form and maintain numerous different types of tissues found in the human body, including connective tissue such as articular cartilage.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

    CLA:

      I am also a fan of CLA. My opinion is that it makes my skin look better and I notice when I stop taking it that my skin looks a little drier. That may be an illusion, but it is one that I believe in. There are many good CLA products out there, but I am usually in favor of the simple, economical products.

      Again, NOW Foods CLA is great, but so are Primaforce Max CLA, Ultimate Nutrition CLA, and AllMax Nutrition CLA As I said, most of these products are so similar that there is not much difference except price and availability. I am sure that I have taken at least 10 CLA products and have personally never noticed much of a difference.

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NOW Presents:
CLA

CLA, a distinctive omega-6 fatty acid, has rapidly become one of the most talked about weight loss products since its introduction to the public in the late 90's. While small amounts can be obtained from meat and dairy products, supplementation may have a substantial impact on how effectively our body chemically decomposes and deposits fat in our cells.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

    Protein Bars:

      I cannot get away with the 380 calorie mega choco-peanut butter oatmeal bars that my husband finds so enjoyable. I need a bar with about 200 calories, 10-15 grams of protein, and few simple sugars. Finding bars that meet these requirements, and don't taste like cardboard, has been an adventure. Here are a few of my favorites:

      While there are others I have tried, these are the ones that are consistently in my cupboard.

PRODUCT
EAS Presents:
Myoplex Lite Bars

Myoplex Lite Bars won the 2005 Protein Bar Of The Year Award! The new Myoplex Lite Performance Nutrition Bar has been scientifically formulated to support your body's requirements for quality nutrients, day in and day out.
[ Click here to learn more. ]


-> Stress Maintenance:

    I am a high energy, very nervous person and have tried different products for stress maintenance. So, I have experimented with some different products.

    St. John's Wart:

      My first experiment was with NOW St. John's Wart. While I have heard many people say that this did nothing for them and others had small, but noticeable negative effects, I found that this helped take the edge off; however, it is one of the supplements that I found it better to cycle on and off of since I seemed to adapt to it fairly well.

PRODUCT
NOW Presents:
Mood Support

NOW Mood Support is a nutritional supplement that contains both nutrients and herbal extracts that aid in the support of a healthy nervous system and a positive, balanced mood state.
[ Click here to learn more. ]

    Phenibut:

      Phenibut has a much more pronounced effect than St. John's Wart. It really calmed me down, but did not make me lethargic. When I know that I am facing a stressful week I will include this in my daily vitamins. This is also a wonderful supplement for promoting healthy sleep patterns. Like most people, I go through periods when I just can't fall asleep.

      I generally take it and snuggle up in bed and read something light; in about 30 minutes I will notice a relaxed feeling and I can generally just go to sleep. However, if you don't go to bed once you take it, it won't work. It is not a drug and will not put you to sleep; it just helps relax you.

      Many of these products also have a daytime dosage to to help with stress. The products that worked the best for me were:

PRODUCT
SNS Presents:
Phenibut XT

SNS Phenibut XT is one of the best mood and focus enhancer on the market. It was designed to help those of us who need to relax.
[ Click here to learn more. ]


-> Others:

    I would also have to add Scivation Neuro-Stim to my random list of favorite things (have you noticed how much I like the products from this company?). I have used this product pre-workout when I just did not feel with it because it helps me focus. I have also used it when dieting to fend off cravings.

    For tight sore achy muscles Celadrin Cream by NOW has to be one of my top favorites EVER! I have also rubbed this one the back of my neck and shoulders when I felt a headache coming on and managed to not have to take any medicine. I have long begged to have a full body massage with this stuff.

PRODUCT
NOW Presents:
Celadrin Cream

NOW Celadrin Joint Relief Lotion can help support joint and cartilage response to physical activity, exercise and postural stability.
[ Click here to learn more. ]


Conclusion

I know I have not mentioned many supplements that are specifically made and marketed for women, but that is because, other than some MRP's, I have never tried any. Most of the products that I use are what my husband, a self confessed supplement junkie, has brought home.

Having read the labels of many of the products for women, I have found that the primary difference is the dosages and the avoidance of ingredients that are not good for women.

    Check Out Icequeen's BodySpace Here.