Bodybuilding Supplements: Do They Really Work? | Ask The Fitness Nerd
Posted Dec 06 2008 7:47am
Do bodybuilding supplements really work, or are they just a waste of good money? The Fitness Nerd dissects body building supplements.
Dear Fitness Nerd,
I have a question:
I’m 41 years old, and workout 5 days a week. I use a lot of bodybuilding supplements and spend a lot of money on them.
Unfortunately, I’m not gaining muscle like I want.
Currently, I take Masstech protein 2x a day. But I’ve also tried Anabolic Pump, NoXplode, SuperPump 250, Universal Animal Stak, Size One, and Vitrix. But I don’t see many results. Am I doing something wrong? Can you help me on it? Thanks — Gleidson
Thanks for the question Gleidson.
I’m afraid that what you just discovered is probably discovered every day by countless bodybuilders and fitness buffs who are hoping to get an edge at the gym by downing expensive shakes, powders and pills.
Just browse the myriad of bodybuilding supplement discussion boards out there and you’ll find plenty of mixed opinions on whether supplements actually result in better performance at the gym. Some people swear by them, others shrug their shoulders and say all supplements give you is really expensive pee.
it’s often hard to sort out what really works, versus how many of the reported results are just the product of the placebo effect.
While there are some supplements out that may be effective for helping more highly-conditioned trainees overcome plateaus, unfortunately, the majority of bodybuilding supplements and sports supplements marketed in fitness and bodybuilding magazines (and increasingly, online) are more sizzle than substance.
Bodybuilding Supplements: Big Demand, Big Promises … and Big Money
The first thing to realize is that bodybuilding supplements are a huge business.
In 2007, sales of sports, diet and bodybuilding supplements — as well as energy/sports drinks and specialty diet foods — topped $19.6 billion. That’s a lot of dough. So there is plenty of demand out there and lots of money to be had. With all that blood in the water, it’s bound to attract sharks, unfortunately.
The second thing to understand is that supplement manufacturers have figured out what nearly every other good direct marketer has discovered: That people want quick fixes. And they are capitalizing on that.
The idea that you can down a shaker of “clinically-formulated” protein powder, or the latest NOS booster and suddenly build that beach body or killer physique is very attractive. I mean, if it really worked, who wouldn’t do it?
And supplement manufacturers pull out all of the stops and use every clever trick in the book to make you really believe that they’ve cracked the code to “insane anabolic pumps” — whatever the hell that actually means.
Anatomy of a Bodybuilding Supplement Ad
There is a pretty standard formula to marketing bodybuilding and fitness supplements, whether those supplements promise to help you burn fat and get “ripped” or help you add pounds of lean mass fast.
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