My Pre-bed Nutritional ritual is massively important to me.
I am aware that during my sleep that I need to put my body into its best possible state to recover from todays exercise, repair and be ready again for tomorrow’s physical demands. This is the only way to make Gains.
I try to ensure that I never go to bed without consuming the following 15 minutes before I head up the stairs!
SLOW RELEASE CASEIN PROTEIN POWDER Typically during our 6-8hour slumber every night we are fasting. Going this long without fuel if your body is in need of repair and recovery from the days demands may potentially cause the body to start pulling fuel and Proteins from your skeletal tissue, ie. Muscle.Casein is the Slowest digesting Protein available and so therefore releases a steady flow of Amino Acids to the body over the night, typically taking up to 7 hours to be fully digested. Studies show that by consuming Casein Protein Powder before sleep that amino acid levels were spiked and subsequently muscle protein synthesis was increased. What this means is that your hard efforts in the gym are not going to be ruined by the fact that you have starved your body of the Proteins that it requires to repair over night and that you will possibly gain muscle and strength!
30-40g Pre Bed Ideally
GLUTAMINE Glutamine is the most abundant Amino Acid found in Skeletal Muscle and the human body. It in fact makes up over 60% of skeletal muscle tissue. It also plays a major role in the health of our gut and is the main energy source for our immune system. In fact many hospitals supplement critically ill patients with high dosage Glutamine in an attempt to support their immune systems or Gut disorders. Many Studies have shown that Glutamine supplementation reduces Muscle Tissue breakdown. Glutamine is ideally taken both immediately post workout but also pre-bed. Another primary reason for pre-bed supplementation is due to the fact that it also Increases Human Growth Hormone levels. If you want to gain muscle, lose fat and sleep well – an elevated HGH level is of paramount importance.
5g Pre Bed Ideally
As eluded to in the above paragraph, the elevation of Human Growth Hormone is the largest contributor to a deep, restorative, recovery sleep. HGH is released from the pituitary gland and as we age the amount naturally released reduces. Possibly a large contributory factor as to why we sleep so well as Teenagers when it is at its Peak and why our sleep worsens in later years as it dissipates. HGH is also responsible for the maintenance, growth and repair of our body’s tissues and our skeletal muscle and also plays a large role in maintaining low body fat levels. All of these factors which clearly decline in the ageing process are due largely to our natural decline in HGH. Anybody interested in anti-aging and living optimally should do everything possible to naturally maintain their Growth Hormone levels. L-Arginine supplementation under resting conditions has been shown to substantially increase blood GH levels.
5g Pre Bed Ideally
Glycine is another Amino Acid which is produced naturally by the body from other biochemicals present. It is also found in high Protein foods including meat, fish and eggs. A typical daily diet includes about 2grams of glycine. Its role is to support our bones and muscles and aid the functioning of our metabolism. It is however also an inhibitory neurotransmitter supporting the health of the brain and playing a large role in supporting a good night sleep. It has a calming effect on the brain helping us to wind down before sleep.
Sleep is one of the single most important things to living and performing optimally and to helping us recover, repair and to achieve our physical goals. Glycine has been shown to dramatically improve sleep quality but also rather than leaving you feel groggy the next day as many sleep aids do, it actually regulates feelings of fatigue and improves wakefulness and sharpness of thought and actions
3-5g Pre Bed Ideally
NOTE My Pre Bed Ritual consists of mixing 100g of Sheep Yoghurt with 40g Chocolate MyProtein Slow Release Casein Powder 5g MyProtein Glutamine Powder 5g MyProtein AAKG Arginine Powder 5g Glycine Powder I add dashes of Almond Milk as the Casein Powder swells and absorbs the fluid and becomes very thick and stir until it creates a slightly runny mousse.
I add some blueberries on top put it in the fridge and then it sets to a very tasty Chocolate mousse within 30minutes.
Perfect for an ideal snack ideally 15-30minutes before I head up to bed
In addition to this I also pop -
ZMA Is a supplement containing - ZINC 20mg - Zinc is an essential mineral with antioxidant properties that supports the immune system and also plays a critical role in Protein synthesis.
MAGNESIUM 300mg - Magnesium is another essential mineral that supports the metabolism and also helps with the management of stress and sleep
VITAMINB6 7mg Vitamin B6 may help energy production
When combined together into a single supplement taken before bed there is a lot of clinical research that supports its benefits.
The main effects of this combination have been shown to be a blunting of cortisol and an elevation of both testosterone and Growth Hormone.
Cortisol is released by the adrenal glands and is part of a normal daily, healthy functioning bodily process. However chronically elevated Cortisol levels which arise in people who are putting their bodies under excessive physical and mental stress will lead to Fat Gain, Declining Performance and ultimately poor health and sickness. Elevated Cortisol levels are also responsible for Poor sleep. As Individuals intent upon getting the best physical gains and performance from our bodies we must learn and understand how to manage our Cortisol levels. ZMA has been shown in much research to help supress elevated Cortisol levels
Alongside copious additional positive research - In 2000 Researchers gave ZMA supplements to a group of NCAA Footballers working out twice a day. After 7 weeks they found significant increases in the players Testosterone and Growth Hormone. If you are serious about achieving better sleep, better recovery and improved strength and muscle gain with a loss of fat then this supplement is definitely worth a try.
CONJUGATED LINOLEIC ACID Is a naturally occurring Omega 6 Fatty Acid. Highly important for everyday Health. However several studies have also shown that adults that took CLA before bed burned more calories from body fat whilst sleeping and expended less energy from proteins during sleep. These tests were performed in a Metabolic Chamber study.This supplement is possibly lower on my list than all of MY ESSENTIAL ones listed above. However in my opinion it is definitely worth giving a try!
2 Tablets before bed containing 1.6grams NB I also take 2 tablets with meals twice per day also