Most pre-training complexes contain a long list of ingredients that you have never heard of. But you have to know one component, even if you do not take pre-training complexes. This is beta-alanine.
Author: Jim Stoppani
QUESTION: I do not accept pre-training complexes, because I do not like stimulants. Tell me, is there an available ingredient in pre-training boosters that I can take to improve the effectiveness of training?
Creatine could be a simple answer, but most of the pre-training complexes contain scant amounts of this nutrient, so serious powerlifters have long been taking creatine separately. Nitric oxide boosters could also take part in the tender, but personally I will give the palm of the beta-alanine championship.
Pre-training complexes often contain impressive dosages of this interchangeable amino acid, and there are good reasons for that. Studies have shown that beta-alanine gives everything we expect from the pre-training complex: even without stimulants, beta-alanine increases muscle strength, endurance and peak power. I call it the "secret" ingredient of pre-training complexes, although the presence of beta-alanine in the preparation often gives a sensation of innocuous tingling of the skin in the region of the lips and neck, called paresthesia.
But do not let this tingling hold you back from taking this fantastic and inexpensive performance booster. Tingling is an excellent proof that the drug, on the packaging of which the beta-alanine dose is not indicated, contains the nutrient in an adequate, effective dosage. In other words, the stronger the tingling, the higher the dose.
An indispensable "replaceable" amino acid
Beta-alanine refers to non-essential amino acids, as it is synthesized in the liver. In addition, we get it from food, in particular with red meat and poultry meat. In the body, beta-alanine, both derived from food and synthesized in the liver, is picked up by muscle fibers and combines with the amino acid histidine to form the carnosine dipeptide. It is with carnosine that the beneficial properties of beta-alanine are related.
You ask, what is special about carnosine? Carnosine increases the ability of muscles to bind hydrogen ions, which accumulate when the concentration of lactic acid is increased against a background of high intensity exercises, for example, strength training or cycling. In turn, this increases the ability of the muscles to maintain the force of contractions during long training sessions.
In the gym, counteracting the accumulation of lactic acid allows you to raise more weight and perform more repetitions at the final stages of training. Over time, this leads to significant progress in both power and power performance, and in the collection of muscle mass, and at the same time contributes to a more effective loss of fat. So while others take pre-training complexes just for the sake of momentary effect, beta-alanine gives you a short-term benefit, which increases for weeks or even months.
Studies on beta-alanine have accumulated enough. For example, the results of the experiment, published in the International Journal of Sports Medicine in 2008, showed that subjects who received more than 4 grams of beta-alanine daily for 30 days could increase 25% of repetitions during squats compared to group members, who were given a placebo.
A recent study, conducted at 2012 in one UK university, revealed that a four-week beta-alanine intake of amateur boxers increased the mean impact force in the last 10 seconds of the 3-minute round simulation by 2000% compared to the placebo group. The ability to save the knockout power of the strike in the final segment of the round is tantamount to the ability to maintain muscle strength and power in the later stages of training, which means that you can lift more weight and perform more repetitions.
If you believe in science, the minimum effective dose of beta-alanine is about 1,6 grams per day. However, higher dosages will lead to better results.
In one study, it was reported that after the subjects switched from 2,4 gram of beta-alanine per day to 3,6 grams, the level of muscle carnosine increased markedly. And when the dose was increased to 4 grams per day, another jump in the intramuscular concentration of carnosine occurred.
Since we often attach nutrients to the training schedule, I recommend taking beta-alanine for 30-60 minutes before training. Experiments have shown that the maximum concentration of beta-alanine in plasma is reached in 30 minutes after administration, and already after 3 hours the nutrient completely disappears from the blood stream. For this reason, I advise you to take X -UMX-2 grams of beta-alanine before and after your workout, and so you will get a total dose of 3-4 grams per day.
Also, experiments suggest that beta-alanine and creatine have a synergistic effect. One study reported that members of the power disciplines who received 3,2 grams of beta-alanine daily in combination with 10 grams of creatine monohydrate for 12 weeks received significantly more muscle mass gain and simultaneously lost noticeable amounts of fat mass compared to athletes who took only 10 gram of creatine and athletes who received a placebo. In this case, in the creatine group, or in the placebo group, there was no decrease in fat mass.
Do not be afraid to make your own pre-exercise drug. I believe that this is the best way to get a pre-training booster, which will not be a waste of money. In a word, determine what is ideal for you, and act!