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Coupled with a great diet and killer training program, supplements can help you reach the boundaries of your genetic potential. They'll never supplant hard work and smart nutrition, but they can support your performance and physique goals. Here's the science behind the supps Erin Stern uses and how you can utilize them to build your elite body.
Erin Stern's Elite Body Trainer Supplements Overview
Watch the video: 9:13
You can't just train hard in the gym and expect incredible results. Training is only one slice of the proverbial fitness pie. After you work out, your job has just begun. You need training, nutrition, and supplementation to reach your physical potential. Each aspect of fitness builds upon the other, so focus as much on your diet and supplementation as you do on your training!
Even with an incredibly clean diet, it can be difficult to get the nutrients you need in the right amounts to support muscle growth and get the most from your hard work. Although they won't make changes for you, certain supplements can help you maximize your muscle-building and fat-loss efforts.
Dr. Jake Wilson and Erin Stern have chosen supplements to help you burn fat, build muscle, and develop an elite body. At first, Erin's recommended supplements might seem like a lot to take in one day, but if you break it down like she does, you won't spend the entire day popping pills or eating powders.
Although fit-minded people often try to eat a balanced diet, it can be difficult to ingest ample levels of important micronutrients on a daily basis. This is especially true for hard-training athletes, who have different nutrient needs than sedentary individuals.
Multivitamins won't necessarily correct a poor diet, but they can help cover any major micronutrient gaps in a well-formulated diet. Multivitamins are great because they deliver necessary vitamins and minerals in two or three pills, rather than multiple single-ingredient doses.
Protein is essential for muscle growth and repair, so it's a big component of any fitness diet. Whey protein has an incredibly high amount of essential amino acids (EAAs), which are critical for growth and can't be produced by the body. In 20 grams of whey, you get as many EAAs as you would in 30 grams of meat.
Whey protein packs a massive muscle-building punch at a low calorie level, which is important when you're building an elite body. Whey protein is also fast digesting. It delivers amino acids to your bloodstream quickly and effectively. The more rapidly you can have amino acids in your blood, the quicker you can turn on muscle protein synthesis.
Whey protein also aids your immune system. When you're training hard, your immune system gets taxed. Whey protein contains peptides that can actually strengthen your system.
Like whey, casein provides your body with the protein it needs for building and maintaining lean mass. Unlike whey, however, casein protein digests very slowly. With casein, your muscles get a steady flow of amino acids for hours. It's a great supplement to take at bedtime so you don't get hungry and your muscles stay well-fed through the night.
Fish oil is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, particularly EPA and DHA, which are incredibly beneficial essential fats. EPA and DHA support cognitive function, vision, fatty acid metabolism, muscle protein synthesis, and more. In order to gain the body composition and metabolic benefits of these two fatty acids, shoot for 2-4 grams of EPA and DHA combined every day.
Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)
CLA is another fatty acid that's been shown to enhance fat metabolism. In particular, it speeds up the enzymes that break down fat tissue. CLA occurs naturally in meat and some dairy products, but if you're on a meal plan, you can skip the extra calories and just get right to the good stuff. CLA isn't a stimulant, so you don't have to worry about the jitters.
Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs)
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. The three branched chain amino acids—leucine, isoleucine, and valine—can stimulate as much protein synthesis as all 20 of the other amino acids you'd find in chicken or steak. In other words, they're incredibly important to muscle growth—especially leucine.
Before and after you train, you don't want to spend a lot of time digesting. You want blood going to your muscles, not to your stomach. BCAAs are easily digestible, deliver a rapid source of amino acids to your bloodstream, and can stimulate muscle
protein synthesis in only 20 or 30 calories.
The window before your workout is the perfect time to take advantage of specific sports supplements like caffeine, creatine, beta-alanine, and BCAAs. Creatine and beta-alanine support muscular strength and endurance, while caffeine can increase your training energy and work capacity.
Erin Stern is mentally adept at getting herself prepared for a workout, so she prefers to train without caffeine. If you're like Erin, you can grab the caffeine-free version of Dymatize Xpand 2x, which contains performance-boosting ingredients without the buzz.
L-carnitine is a fatty acid transporter. It helps move fat into your cells' mitochondria where it can be used as fuel. L-carnitine supports fat loss by helping your body burn fat for energy. It can also encourage a healthy environment for lean muscle growth, which means it supports your hard work in the gym with added gains!
One of the branched chain amino acids, leucine, metabolizes to a compound called beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutrate, or HMB. HMB's job is to repair tissue damage. It can also prevent tissue breakdown and support muscle recovery.
The 28 days of the Elite Body Trainer can be brutal. You're going to wake up and feel sore from training with maximum effort. HMB can help you feel less sore, recover faster, and be prepared to train hard.
Glutamine supports your immune function, especially during times of extreme physical stress. Glutamine can also help you replenish muscular energy. Using glutamine with a moderate carb intake has been shown to speed your glycogen replenishment, which can prevent catabolism and increase muscle growth and recovery!
Gamma-aminobutryic acid, or GABA, is an amino acid, but it doesn't help build proteins like the branched-chains do. GABA occurs naturally in the body. It supports the nervous system and hormone production. It also supports more restful sleep, a stable mood, and fat loss. Take GABA at night a couple hours before you go to bed. It's best not to take it with a meal, however, because it could affect your digestion.
ZMA is a natural testosterone- and sleep-support supplement. Like GABA, ZMA may help you get more restful sleep. Athletes who are on an intense training program may be deficient in zinc, magnesium, and vitamin B6. ZMA is a powerful combination of these micronutrients that supports recovery and healthy levels of free testosterone.