Beta-alanine is common among bodybuilders and other athletes as an ergogenic aid to improve their workout performance and physique. Beta-alanine improves athletic performance and can also help with muscle growth and bodybuilding (1). Beta-alanine is present in supplements, preworkout products, or in food such as chicken, beef, and eggs. Here are crucial tips to maximize your beta-alanine workouts.
Choose the Right Exercises
Beta-alanine works best when combined with exercises that place a lot of stress on your muscles. The amino acid is particularly effective when paired with resistance training, so it’s so often common in pre-workout supplements.
If you plan on using beta-alanine supplement before hitting up your local gym, be sure to choose weightlifting or bodybuilding exercises that target multiple muscle groups at once—squats, deadlifts, and bench presses are all great choices. It’s also important to note that a 5-minute workout may not give beta-alanine enough time to kick in; if you want to reap its full benefits, try working out for 15 minutes or more.
Don’t Over Push the Pace
Beta-alanine helps you push harder and longer, but it’s important not to overdo it. While beta-alanine can help improve your workout performance, there is a limit. It’s best to avoid pushing yourself too hard when using beta-alanine supplements because that could lead to a painful muscle condition called rhabdomyolysis.
The condition can cause severe muscle pain and weakness. The workout results enhanced by using beta-alanine supplements should not be painful without benefits but instead improved positive results you can enjoy and be ready to repeat the same. If your muscles feel incredibly tender or sore after working out and being stiff or rigid, it could be a sign you’re overstretching your workouts.
Set a Timer
Sure, it’s easy to skip a rep or two when you’re performing sets of eight. It’s also easy to get lost and forget that you’re supposed to be doing 12 reps per set. For either of these scenarios, set a timer. It’ll force you to pay attention and will help maximize your workout performance. With beta-alanine supplement, you can always push yourself harder than you think—but not if you don’t know how many reps are left. Set a timer! And then work hard to achieve your goals.
Even more importantly, using a timer requires you to focus on what you need to do during your workout. Setting a clear goal, say, do three reps every 90 seconds, gives yourself one less thing to worry about during your activities(like making sure there is enough time for six total rounds). Don’t want to bring an actual clock with you? No problem. There are several free timers available online so all that hassling with an egg timer is over!
Do Isometric Holds
Isometric holds are just what they sound like—you’re holding a specific muscle contraction at a certain point of your range of motion for a set time. You’re not moving through space and stressing your joints but building strength with these. Holds can be helpful before or after your workout; regardless, it’s essential to be intentional about them.
Beta-alanine helps in muscle contraction and endurance, so if you’re doing isometric holds as part of your warmup routine, consider adding beta-alanine to help boost performance. The same goes for postworkout isometrics: If you want to do more reps with a heavier weight, beta-alanine will help get those muscles primed and ready to work hard again.
Warm Up Longer
You can’t expect to see dramatic results from beta-alanine without a solid warmup. Increase your workout time by at least 10 minutes because it takes several minutes for your body to feel loose and ready for activity. You will reap greater rewards from your workouts by building more warmup time. That is especially true if you are currently working out with little or no warmup. It may seem small, but even minor adjustments can positively impact your performance.
Beta-Alanine is easy to incorporate into your diet and can be especially beneficial for athletes. Proper supplementation of beta-alanine may help you optimize your workout program and increase your ability to train harder and longer. The more endurance and power you have, the more growth hormone is released, which helps with muscle growth, fat loss, and other benefits for your body composition. But if you want to see these results, it’s crucial to find an effective dosage of beta-alanine that works for you.