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It's my first time taking supplements...because I need to add more muscle mass. I do a lot of olympic weightlifting, so I squat(front & back) everyday, lots of static holds (around 200kg) - snatches, clean and jerk etc... I am training them everyday...but I have found recovery to be hard so far. So I read about glutamine, creatine and the brown rice protein and got some.

My question about taking them is, they all say I should take them after or before my workout, is it right to take one after the other?or taking one of each on the same day? surely it can be good for you...

  • because I need to add more muscle mass - The process of building muscle mass is complicated. Adding supplements to your training is not a guarantee for increasing mass. – rrirower Jul 7 '15 at 13:30
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    but I have found recovery to be hard so far - Of course it is since you're training every day. You should look to rest at least one day per week. – rrirower Jul 7 '15 at 13:31
  • If your diet is lacking protein and creatine, supplementation might really help you. However, if you are having trouble with recovery your problem might be overtraining (training too much), which will hinder your progress. – joao Jul 7 '15 at 13:33
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Check out these resources for more specifics about the supplements:

  • Glutamine -- not shown to increase muscle mass, but shown to lower inflammation (i.e. recovery). Timing doesn't matter. No more than 5g any time of day.
  • (Brown Rice) Protein -- protein is protein. There is minimal increased uptake during and post training. One book recommended 10-15g pre, intra, and post workout (total of 30-45g)
  • Creatine -- helps muscles convert ADP to ATP (the energy source used by muscle). Take 5g in your pre-workout.

Don't get too caught up in supplements, as the effects are typically minor. You will get better results in managing recovery through other means:

  • Sleep, rest: muscle grows when you sleep and rest is vital to recovery
  • Food: up to a certain point, carbs really help your recovery and energy during exercise. Taking easily digested carbs with your protein pre, intra-, and post- training will help.
  • Cardiovascular: weightlifting (i.e. Olympic weightlifting) requires a lot from your max output energy systems. Performing low and slow cardio like cycling for 20 minutes post workout can help with recovery and blood movement.

When training every day, you need to vary the demands placed on your body to allow for localized recovery. That can, but does not necessarily, mean that you take days off. When you hit the gym, you should have days where you focus on different work. For example:

  • Monday: technique work -- low to medium weight, more overall reps
  • Tuesday: upper body work -- jerk from blocks, strict press, etc.
  • Wednesday: lower body work -- squats and cleans
  • Thursday: accessory work -- focus on weak areas using isolation work
  • Friday: heavy day -- focus on moving medium to heavy weight, lower overall reps
  • Saturday: cardio day -- more focus on cardiovascular system than normal daily routine
  • Sunday: accessory work -- focus on weak areas using isolation work

The important takeaways here are to vary the type of work and intensity of work to keep progressing. Alternate between light and heavy to allow for some more recovery before going heavy again. Break down your routine so you can give certain areas more focus.

DISCLAIMER: I am by no means an Olympic coach, and any program you get from a proper coach will do better for you than something I just pulled out of my head for instructional purposes.

Going heavy every day in every exercise will leave you too exhausted to keep progressing. That's going to do more for you than your supplements.

  • Thank you for the detailed information, I won't rely a lot on them, I tried creatine and whey protein for the first time yesterday, sent me straight to sleep and feeling more refreshed than I usually do, but I think I lack a lot of what these things have to offer. But awesome answer, I'm really grateful for this information. – user2405469 Jul 8 '15 at 8:20
  • Good sleep is about the most anabolic thing you can do. – Berin Loritsch Jul 8 '15 at 12:24
  • Yes, since I started olympic lifting my sleeping time has gone up from 6 hours to 9 hours, my body really seems to need it. – user2405469 Jul 8 '15 at 12:59

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