Your body is constantly performing essential functions to keep you in a state of homeostasis; the balance that keeps you stable. Unbroken. Ready. However, your experiment requires shifting that balance to one of building up muscle, strength and power.
In order to grow you must adapt to a training stimulus: one that “shocks” the system into building. By reaching past your current strength with intense training you break yourself down, forcing your muscle to shift the balance toward building up.
This results in breakdown products of metabolism that when produced in excess will push the balance toward excessive breakdown. This includes metabolites like free radicals, which can damage cells and disrupt metabolic processes.
This breakdown, inflammation and subsequent healing response is what you experience as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).
You revel in this feeling of pain and soreness as a sense of accomplishment in your ability to induce a growth response from training. However, you loathe the fact that DOMS limits your strength, mobility and desire to train in the following days. When excessive, this lack of mobility and strength can linger for many days setting your back.
Thus, you must control your overzealous mentality in the gym to avoid the dreaded training induced soreness. Do this by optimizing and periodizing training stimulus and recovery. Shoot for moderation to avoid moving backwards, ideally you want “two steps forward and one step back.” It is the one step back, or recovery, that you must optimize outside the gym.
Optimization of recovery involves a number of key elements. First and foremost, is concentrated whole food nutrition. Prepare meals meticulously to ensure adequate protein intake, vegetable variety and caloric balance. Ensure growth by increasing calories and protein to build new blocks of muscle.
Second, in the rare event of an off-day, you need to be certain that you are obtaining all of your essential nutrients for maintaining optimal metabolism and ability to repair. There are many essential macronutrients (amino acids and fats) and essential micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) that you absolutely need to optimally function. Keeping track of all these is nearly impossible, requiring consideration of nutritional supplementation to ensure success.
Third, rest to be ready. This includes your body—and your mind. Stress, and its shift in our homeostasis towards breakdown, comes in both physical and mental forms. The physical stress of training is often quite clear, as it results in fatigue and soreness of the muscle groups trained. Conversely, mental stress may be harder to recognize as it comes in the form of anxiousness, tiredness, loss of concentration and other symptoms like gastrointestinal distress.
Deep, restorative sleep is absolutely essential to support recovery. When recovery is ramped up, growth hormone is released and the brain resets in deep sleep. Understanding the need to balance the equation of daylight and nighttime supplementation strategies, Beyond Raw® Labs has created the Raw Elements™ A.M./P.M. Vitapak® Program.
The scientists behind Raw Elements™ considered the predicted outcomes of muscle function, anti- inflammatory support, essential nutrient delivery, liver defense and optimization, and enhanced sleep. To do this, they meticulously formulated Raw Elements™ to deliver nutrients at optimal times.
The A.M. Vitapak® Program combines a Raw Nutrients™ multivitamin, Beyond Raw® Liver Guard, GlucoBolic™, clinical strength Omega-3s and digestive enzymes. The Raw Nutrients™ multivitamin delivers 32 nutrients including 17 vitamins and minerals at 100% of the Daily Value or more. This is crucial to fill in nutritional gaps in the diet which may be present with even the best food preparation. Vitamins like C and E are strong antioxidants which can help fight the effects of free radicals. Intense exercise can increase the production of free radicals, which can damage cells.
In the fight against oxidation and inflammation, liver function is critical. The liver is a vital organ for both detoxification and supporting metabolism to synthesize different amino acids essential for recovery.
Liver Guard is included in the A.M. Vitapak® Program to support this. Liver Guard delivers a patented blend of milk thistle, Picrorhiza kurroa root extract, and N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine to help support the liver’s antioxidant defenses. This includes glutathione, a potent antioxidant depleted by oxidative stressors like intense training. Further antioxidant support from added vitamin C, betaine and Setria® L-glutathione rounds out this formula.
Optimal metabolism is important, so the A.M. Vitapak® Program includes GlucoBolic™ and digestive enzymes. This is a blend of nutrients including cinnamon bark extract, bitter melon powder, fenugreek seed powder, turmeric root extract and chromium. This is anchored in the glucose metabolism support of fenugreek and chromium. Additionally, digestive enzymes support digestion of carbohydrates, proteins and fats.
Omega-3 fats, which are crucial to your healthy heart, circulatory and nervous system function, are also included in the A.M. Vitapak® Program. EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), which supports your body’s natural inflammatory response, is not easily produced in our bodies from shorter-chain Omega-3s eaten in foods like flax seeds. Supplementation with EPA and the other longer chain Omega-3s can support getting appropriate intake of this essential fatty acid.
In order to optimize recovery from sleep, Beyond Raw® Labs included a P.M. Vitapak® Program with nutrients known to enhance sleep and anabolism. While also providing more essential nutrients in the form of the multivitamin, additional vitamin B-6, magnesium aspartate, and zinc are incorporated in the P.M. Vitapak® Program to support metabolism, natural resistance and reproductive health. To improve your onset and maintenance of sleep, GABA, L-theanine, and melatonin are likewise included. L-tryptophan, known for its sleep supporting properties, and L-tyrosine are amino acids used by the body to create important neurotransmitters in the brain. With these nutrients, you aren’t just sleeping; you’re refueling.
From A.M. to P.M., support the foundations for your body to build on.