Vegetarian Bodybuilding

Amino Acids

What Are Amino Acids?

Most bodybuilders have a motto, "Protein, protein, protein!" Protein is a major component in one's workout and diet, however most body builders do not really know why. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins, and are ultimately what make them work for body builders and fitness gurus everywhere. What exactly are amino acids? How do they work? How can they work for you?

Amino acids are responsible for the creation of all of your body's enzymes; from the enzymes responsible for digestion and respiration, to the enzymes needed for your body to build muscle. While these enzymes and amino acids are often found in foods, some of these essential amino acids are usually only found in supplements. These supplements are designed to work much faster than a meal high in protein. In order for protein to really have an effect on your workout, it needs to be consumed a few hours before your workout. Since many people choose to work out first thing in the morning, or cannot work out on a full stomach, this is not always a possibility. Taking an amino acid supplement will get muscle building enzymes to your body faster than waiting on your protein-rich meal to settle.

Not only are amino acids good to take before you exercise, but your body actually needs them after a rigorous workout. Once you are finished working out your muscles, blood flow to your muscle tissues is high. This time of high blood flow rate is another crucial time to take an amino acid supplement. Why is this the best time to take amino acids? Because when blood flow to your muscles is high, your muscles are more receptive to supplements and protein. Even though your workout is over, amino acids taken after a workout will help muscles to build up faster and can prevent a long recovery time. This is optimal (no is here) not only building muscle, but in having the stamina to work out more often, without such a long "down time" between gym sessions. Quicker muscle repair is crucial for squeezing in more workouts during the week.

Amino acid supplements are the fastest and easiest way to get the most out of your workout. While most amino acids can be found in high protein foods, it is not always practical to consume a large, protein rich meal before or immediately after an intense gym session. There are many different types of amino acid supplements, and which one you decide to take really depends on what you want to get out of your workout. There are amino acid supplements to help burn fat like carnitine, amino acid supplements to help promote muscle growth such as ornitine at bedtime, and even amino acid supplements to provide your body with extra energy such as glutamine. Technically carnitine is not classifed as an amino acid but it is a nitrogenous compound much like a protein/amino acid and acts similarly in the body with regard to muscle repair and leaning out.These different amino acid supplements are offered in different forms, the most common being a powder form, a tablet, or capsule form. The powder form and the capsule forms are said to be the best choice, because some scientists say that the pressure and heat used to form tablets can actually destroy some of the amino acids, making the tablets not quite as effective as the other two alternatives. As far as capsules or powder, that decision is really up to your personal preference.

So if you want to get more out of your gym time and more out of your body, look into an amino acid supplement. They can help you to increase your endurance, increase lean muscle growth, burn body fat, and give you the energy you need to get through your workout and recover faster! An amino acid supplement might be just what you need to take your workouts and your body to the next level!