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Which supplements should I take as an athlete to improve performance, training, recovery, and get faster.

Dr. Kevin Sprouse - Supplementation for Endurance Athletes

Dr. Sprouse serves as the Head of Medicine for EF Education First Pro Cycling. He works with elite and professional athletes across numerous sports and disciplines, including professional cycling, triathlon, PGA golfers, NFL and MLB players, and Olympic track and field as well through his company Podium Sports Medicine.

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Importance of Nutrition for Performance

  • Supplementation is only a *piece* of nutrition.
  • Your nutrition hinges on the food you eat.
  • You can’t supplement your way out of a bad diet.
  • RDAs are misleading (as athletes) because they represent the amount necessary for 97% of the population to avoid deficiencies
  • Your training plan and performance should not hinge on these things.

Basic Recommendations

These are recommended for most endurance athletes and are not specific advice. However, based on frequent blood testing of elite athletes, these are the most useful ones:

  • Multivitamin - Vit C, Bs, Mg, Zn, NAC (SwissRX Multi)
  • Omega-3 (Inflammation, Gut, Neuro)
  • Vit D (Immune, Muscle, Hormone)

The Feed Formulas

  • Logistic feasibility for having these most needed supplements on hand.
  • Tailored to these basic needs as well as recommendations for elite athletes.

Considerations for Performance

Does Timing Matter?

Timing is less important than we may have lent it to be. We are seeing that it’s more important to establish a habit than worry about optimal timing.

Some of these do have timing recommendations, but the major benefit is chronic use (with an optimal food/diet being first and foremost).

Annually, Dr. Sprouse recommends tailoring your dosage of some supplements to the time of year as well. For example: as time change occurs and we get into “winter light”, you could double your Vit D dosage (like 2500 IU > 5000 IU).

Considerations for Recovery

We highly recommend SwissRX Total Recovery because, while CHO and protein are some of the most important aspects of recovery, this product packs in many of these other supplements that manage recovery.

  • Tumeric
  • Proteases
  • Probiotics
  • Omega-3
  • Carbohydrate
  • Protein
  • Ketones (Ketone IQ)

Would you NOT want to take these supplements around training to avoid diminishing adaptations?

For most people, the real issue is with antioxidants and whether they blunt adaptation (inflammation) to training.

There are ways to play with the supplements you are taking, but the general idea is to: lay off the massive doses of supplements related to antioxidants (like Vit C, E) around training but keep enough coming in to support your immune system.

Vegetarian or Vegan?

Yes, you can get what you need on one of these diets but it requires being attentive and diligent with it. Supplements certainly help, but you should aim to nail your diet. Then, do some basic tests (bloodwork) to keep tabs on where your body is.

As always, talk with your personal practitioner and/or doctor to know what is right for you. We are grateful for Dr. Sprouse’s time and continuous input.

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The Feed. / Saturday, May 14, 2022