The question of which supplements you’ll need for sports is one which is fortunately answered by the manner through which it was formulated, i.e. what made you think about the need to take supplements. In truth, it really just depends on which sporting code you’re participating in, and at what level, as there are different requirements for different sports.
That said though, it comes down to a matter of which area of your performance you either want to enhance, strengthen, or repair. It would be counter-productive for a footballer to want to bulk up in the mold of a body-builder, for instance, in the same way that an endurance runner wouldn’t be looking to take supplementation that will have them packing on the muscle mass.
If the sporting code you’re participating in is at a competitive-enough level that you’re thinking about dietary supplementation, then here you’ll be looking in the direction of options developed around the management of your body’s energy levels. A long distance runner, for instance, needs to have enough energy reserves to keep them going, so you’d be looking at supplements based on fats or sugars.
However, something which is protein-based and effectively simulates the slow energy-release properties of having a boiled egg for breakfast could make for a great alternative, which might be contained in something like a specialized protein shake or bar.
For sporting codes whose participants’ performance is enhanced by strength, the obvious direction to look in by way of supplementation is proteins. The cleaner the proteins, the better, with the likes of whey protein shakes often forming part of the nutritional regime of an active sportsperson’s dietary regime.
Weight-loss & toning
There might be times when your specific sporting code requires you to shed some weight, like a feather-weight boxer seeking to make their weight-division at weigh-in, for instance. In which case, if you want to make sure you still get adequate nutrition without packing on more weight, meal replacements are the go-to dietary supplements.
The supplementation rule-of-thumb
The fact that you simply cannot continue sitting on the couch and expect your dietary supplementation regime alone to help you realize your health and fitness goals speaks to reality of supplementation. We’ve isolated some distinguishable areas in which specific types of supplements would likely be required, but in practice whichever sporting code you’re active in won’t require just one of these areas in pure isolation.
Every sporting code requires energy, for instance – higher-than-usual energy levels, in fact, so muscle fuels such as creatine monohydrate might form part of the whole regime.
Both bodybuilders and endurance runners have more than this need for fuel in common, for instance. They also have the need for fast muscle recovery, etc…
This brings us to what we can refer to as the general supplementation rule of thumb, no matter what sporting code you’re participating in, which is that your supplementation should be structured according to the nutritional areas you’re in which you’re lacking or those in which you might need to reinforce.