Maximize Endurance With Beta Alanine
By Harry Fessel, ProSource Website Editor / Senior Writer | Thursday, September 3, 2015 2:42:36 PM America/New_York
Increase Work Output With the
Ultimate Endurance-Support Amino!
Here they come, the dog days of the workout warrior’s year. Those winter and spring days of setting a new and challenging physique goal are long behind us now (or four months ahead of us). The glory days of summer, of turning heads and making a big impression with a dialed-in silhouette, have come and gone. All of the fair-weather fitness enthusiasts have departed the gym, leaving the floor to just a small coterie of iron fanatics. Autumn is here, and new inspiration is needed.
Serious bodybuilders know that the months between Labor Day and New Year’s Day present a golden opportunity to lay a solid foundation for new growth and loftier goals once next year kicks in. It’s a time to shake up your regimen, try new exercises and rep schemes, and shock your system to ramp up anabolism.
In short, September through December isn’t a time to rest on your laurels. It’s a time to go longer, go harder, and set your sights higher. All of which brings us to the subject of endurance support.
Rewarding, productive workouts are all about going past previous established breaking points. In terms of growth yield, the last rep is the most important. If you’re phoning in the same 6/6/6 with the same number of plates on the bar, workout after workout, you’ve already stopped growing. You’ve got to go the distance … and more.
Beta Alanine: Bodybuilding
Endurance Super Weapon
Fatigue is the enemy. It's what turns a potentially productive workout into a waste of time. Fatigue during high-intensity exercise such as weight lifting is linked to acid build up in the muscles and blood. This is the burning sensation you feel at the end of a hard bout of exercise. There’s nothing worse than that feeling, halfway through a workout, of losing steam. To prime the pump for greater performance, many athletes supplement with a pre-workout product prior to exercise. Chances are, if you’re one of these athletes, you’re already supplementing with the endurance amino, beta alanine. Many pre-workout supplements contain undocumented trace amounts of this invaluable performance optimizer. Before we get to the topic of how to supplement wisely with beta alanine, let’s talk about its function.
Beta alanine plays a rate-limiting role in carnosine production by interacting with histidine. High muscle carnosine improves muscle performance through its ability to buffer skeletal muscle pH (acidity) during high intensity, fatiguing exercise. Since one of the primary causes of fatigue during exercise is metabolically mediated decreases in pH (or acidosis), it should come as no surprise that beta alanine supplementation and subsequent increased muscle carnosine levels would help to support increased workout volume and intensity. In fact, in clinical investigations, beta alanine supplementation over a period as short as four weeks has been shown to increase muscle carnosine levels by more than 60%, leading to increased muscle endurance and workout intensity.
The Endurance Amino: Data From the Labs
Lately, we’ve been seeing some compelling science that suggests adding beta alanine to your diet can improve your staying power and workout productivity. Let’s take a closer look at the science.
In a report that appeared in the American College of Sports Medicine’s flagship journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, researchers from the United Kingdom were investigating nutritional strategies to help combat acid build-up, delay fatigue, and enhance performance. They had healthy men supplement for 4 weeks with either beta alanine (6.4 grams per day) or a placebo. Before and after supplementation they performed a cycling test to exhaustion at an intensity that caused them to fatigue in about 2 minutes. After 4 weeks of beta alanine supplementation, they ingested either maltodextrin or sodium bicarbonate before the cycling test. Results showed that 4 weeks of beta alanine supplementation allowed subjects to exercise for about 17 seconds longer when they ingested maltodextrin and 23 seconds longer when they ingested sodium bicarbonate. Translated, this means that 4 weeks of beta alanine supplementation increased performance by about 15%.
Another study, published in the Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, investigated beta alanine when combined with creatine monohydrate. In the study forty-four young (aged 20 to 22 years), healthy untrained men supplemented daily with either a placebo, creatine (5 grams), beta alanine (1.6 grams) or beta alanine plus creatine for approximately one month. Surrounding the supplementation regimen, all of the participants completed three consecutive thirty-second sprints on a cycle ergometer to determine their maximal power output while cycling.
After supplementing with creatine, peak power production during the 2nd and 3rd cycle tests were found to be significantly greater when compared to the peak power production during these tests before the study was started. In an impressive fashion, when average power production was compared for all three cycle bouts before and after the one month supplementation period, the combination of beta alanine and creatine monohydrate was responsible for significantly increasing all of these values. The authors concluded that supplementing with creatine significantly increases peak power production rates, while combining beta alanine with creatine can significantly improve power production after one month of supplementation.
Interestingly, another recent study took a slightly different angle of measuring beta alanine’s ability to enhance physical performance. This time, the area of improvement involved cognitive function. The study was completed by researchers at the University of Central Florida and had eighteen soldiers from an elite combat unit complete a 30-day supplementation regimen with either placebo or beta alanine (Hoffman, Landau et al. 2015). Before and after the supplementation they completed a number of tasks that assessed physical and mental faculties. Muscle carnosine levels were found to increase and were correlated to fatigue rate, while changes in 2.5-kilometer run, one minute sprint and marksmanship were not impacted. When supplemented with beta alanine, participants improved their performance in the 50-meter casualty carry test and demonstrated improvements in a cognitive function test.
Finally, on the macro level, a recently published article in 2012 took the approach of summarizing a large group of studies already published on beta alanine. This article considered several different patterns of supplementation and involved over 350 research subjects. When all of these measures were considered, the authors concluded that beta alanine significantly improved outcomes when compared to a placebo. In particular, beta alanine improved and maximized the capacity to perform exercise.
Choose a Superior-Quality Source of Beta Alanine
to Maximize Both Endurance and Performance
Clearly, supplementation with beta alanine is developing quite the reputation for increasing training tolerance and the overall volume of exercise that can be completed. It seems the more researchers investigate, the more highly recommended beta alanine is for performance optimization, particularly with regard to intense maximal exercise like weight-lifting or protocols that involve longer exercise bouts or repeated exercise bouts with limited recovery.
As we mentioned before, many manufacturers include negligible trace amounts of this key workout facilitator in their unquantified “proprietary” formulations. A superior-quality product like BioQuest’s AndroFury contains a clinically validated 1000 mg dose of premium beta alanine. It also contains a full-spectrum, protodioscin-rich testosterone-supporting main ingredient that will bring a whole new super-intense dimension to your workouts, as well as a host of other performance maximizers to ensure you get the full endurance-enhancing effect.
Should you prefer to add beta alanine individually to your supplementation regimen, ProSource has you covered there as well. ProSource brand Beta Alanine is premium-grade material of the highest purity available, ideal for raising your intensity and postponing fatigue during extra-productive workouts. Just add a scoop to water or your regular pre-workout drink.
The scientific evidence in support of beta alanine is growing daily. Certainly if it can help you to maximize output, increase training stimulus, and ramp up productivity, beta alanine should be playing a high-priority role in your supplementation regimen.
If you're faltering at the finish line of your workouts, you need the ultimate endurance-supporting, fatigue-postponing amino, beta alanine!
Read more about AndroFury here!
Read more about ProSource Beta Alanine here!
Sale C, Saunders B, Hudson S, Wise JA, Harris RC, Sunderland CD. Effect of β-alanine plus sodium bicarbonate on high-intensity cycling capacity. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2011 Oct;43(10):1972-8. PubMed PMID: 21407127.
Okudan, N., M. Belviranli, H. Pepe and H. Gokbel (2014). "The effects of beta alanine plus creatine administration on performance during repeated bouts of supramaximal exercise in sedentary men." J Sports Med Phys Fitness.
Hoffman, J. R., G. Landau, J. R. Stout, M. W. Hoffman, N. Shavit, P. Rosen, D. S. Moran, D. H. Fukuda, I. Shelef, E. Carmom and I. Ostfeld (2015). "Beta Alanine ingestion increases muscle carnosine content and combat specific performance in soldiers." Amino Acids 47(3): 627-636.
Hobson, RM, et al. Effects of beta-alanine supplementation on exercise performance: a meta-analysis. Amino acids, 2012. 43(1): p. 25-37.
Use as directed with a sensible nutrition and exercise program. Read and follow all product label instructions and warnings thoroughly before use. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.