What to Look For in Your Training Supplements
Nutritional supplements have become incredibly popular over the last generation to really maximize the results of riders’ training routines, from pros to weekend warriors. Let’s dive into why this is the case, and you might want to look for when choosing one for yourself.
Medical professionals and researchers first began to really understand the link between nutrition and athletic performance in the 1950s, although links have long existed; as early as 500 BCE, consuming things like deer liver and lion heart were believed to improve performance on the playing field and battlefield alike. By the 1980s and ’90s, sports nutrition was a booming field, moving past basic protein supplements to take advantage of the latest breakthroughs in our understanding of the human body. Today, it’s nearly unheard of for high-performing athletes to ignore the benefits of modern, top-quality supplements, and that’s certainly true in motocross and supercross.
While a lot of traditional sports require short bursts of energy, or the primary use of one certain muscle group, motocross and supercross require the combined use of upper-body, lower-body, and core muscles for up to 30 minutes straight, all while maintaining a heartrate of 180+ bpm. In other words? Motocross is a physically demanding sport for your every part of your body. It’s no surprise, then, that riders look for every advantage possible to keep their bodies preforming at peak levels and speed up recovery.
Deciding on a supplement can quickly become overwhelming. Simply walking into a GNC store and buying a barrel of mystery powder with an appealing label may not get you what you’re looking for.
A good place to start would be to ask yourself: What sorts of demands are placed on your body during a moto? During training? What should you take before a workout to maximize your benefits? How about after?
Most supplements today pertain to three different times related to physical activity: pre, during, and post.
This usually involves some type of stimulant, such as caffeine, to help get you through a workout.
Hydration and/or sustenance are the focus here, to keep your body from running out of fuel during the workout.
This is when you want to replenish what your body lost, and introduce items that benefit recovery and reduce inflammation.
Once you identify a product that meets one or all of your needs, there are a few other key things most people look for when choosing a supplement.
Transparency and quality ingredients:
Make sure the ingredients are proven and safe. Avoid “proprietary blends” that don’t completely explain what’s in them or how much.
Lots of brands will add minimal amounts of ingredients so they can claim that they’re included. However, largely due to the cost of these ingredients, they may not include the recommended amount needed to achieve the otherwise clinically proven result.
Just because you’re consuming all of these supplements doesn’t necessarily mean your body can absorb them. Make sure the amounts included can be absorbed, or that there are ingredients to increase the bioavailability.
Although there are regulations on supplements, not all brands guarantee that they are free of banned substances. This is an added expense, but it gives you confidence in what you’re putting in your body.
One brand we’ve found that checks all of these boxes is ARMA Sport. In addition to meeting these requirements, ARMA has developed and tested their products in real-world conditions via riders (and co-owners) Jeremy McGrath, Chad Reed, Nick Wey, and Adam Cianciarulo, among others.
The ARMA line consists of three core products:
FIRE: Natural Boost + Focus is ARMA’s pre-workout/pre-race product, formulated to increase stamina and cognitive function using natural caffeine, and ARMA’s patented WGCP™, which is clinically proven to improve focus, concentration, and mental clarity by the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic.
BLITZ: Training Complex. ARMA’s stimulant-free, complex that enhances hydration, increases stamina, supports ATP production, decreases muscle fatigue, and promotes lean muscle development.
Reload: Protein Complex, is packed with 25 grams of 100% premium grass-fed whey protein (15g whey isolate and 10g whey concentrate) per serving and utilizes Curcugreen® (turmeric extract), MCT, and BioPerine® (black pepper extract) to rapidly deliver anti-inflammatories and antioxidants for post-workout recovery, as well as provide a daily source of high-quality whey protein and BCAAs.
To ensure their certified products are safe for athletes, ARMA has every single batch tested for banned substances before being released to the market. Certified by Informed-Sport LGC's world-class sports anti-doping laboratory (www.informed-sport.com).
Note: We recommend that you always consult your doctor/physician before using any supplements.