‘Peri’ or perimeter workout nutrition and its use are becoming more prevalent within the health, fitness and performance industry. Fortunately, quality and reputable brands such as PhD Nutrition are recognizing the benefits of this, and by formulating research driven compounds, they are providing athletes and fitness enthusiasts’ with additional tools to enhance performance and aid recovery.
One of my preferred peri workout supplements, with reference to intra-workout in particular is PhD Nutrition’s Intra BCAA+ powder, combining a generous dose of branch chain amino acids (BCAA’s) in the form of hydrolysed whey ensuring maximum ease of digestion and absorption. Of the 6,980mg of BCAA’s provided, 4,610mg is that of Leucine which is often referred to as the ‘anabolic switch’ in terms of activating muscle protein synthesis (MPS). Leucine is the primary messenger for MPS and metabolizes in the liver, stimulating an increase protein mTOR (Mammalian Target of Rapamycin – responsible for signalling multiple pathways, including nutrient uptake). If muscle retention and gain are your primary focus, as they are mine, an astute decision would be to place emphasis on the MPS throughout the day as well.
The above aside, the addition of key ingredients such as Glutamine and vitamin C contribute to reducing inflammation in the gut, assisting absorption, and enhancing immune function. The added bonus of this product, which also makes it a favoured choice, is the fantastic flavours (PhD’s unique flavouring system is certainly something they are recognised for!) available – Unfortunately I’m a fan of both Coconut & Lime, and Coconut & Mango so I couldn’t possibly decide on one! Intra BCAA+ is now a staple amongst my supplement stack and has been a huge contributor to maintaining intensity and enhancing recovery of strenuous training sessions.
Top tip’s to optimize MPS
- 5-2.0/kg of body weight of protein day to day.
- Selection of high quality protein sources rich in essential amino acids (EAA) is required – Food sources are of course primary but complementary products such as PhD Nutrition Pharma Whey HT+ and Pharma Pure are also great additions around the training perimeter.
- Consume a protein source, as soon after exercise as possible – Duration, volume and intensity will obviously dictate intra-nutrition requirements. This makes Intra BCAA+ ideal for me with the addition of PhD Battery +3 for sessions extra-long in duration or especially high in volume.
- 20-25g of protein needed after exercise / meal – 0.3/kg equivalent to 8-9g of EAA per serving.
- Aim to eat 5-6 meal per day – all containing quality protein sources.
- Each meal should be spaced every 3-4 hours – “Pulsed”.
- High quality protein sources rich in Leucine are required for maximal response – 2-3g Leucine per serving – As stated above, with Intra BCAA+ you get a very generous amount of Leucine per serving.