9 Benefits Of Using Supplements

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Society has become incredibly hectic.

Often, we are on the move, chasing deals and careers. We work crazy amounts of overtime just to keep up with the corporate and business world pace.

When we can, we squeeze in some exercise time before, during or after work.

Over weekends, a time which should be used to recover, we are playing catch up: with friends and family.

And there’s the crazy bunch like myself who have to prepare for the Comrades Marathon each year. For us, Saturdays and Sundays are “Long Run” or “Race” days. On these days, we are on the road, running anything between 21kms and 42kms.

Crazy as life can get, we all have the capability to master our time usage.

Ironically, the absolutely lazy put just as much, if not more, strain on their bodies.

As a direct result of our busy or lazy schedules, our eating habits have gone array. Fast foods are the order of the day.

“I mean c’mon, where on earth am I meant to find the time to cook a healthy meal?” many will say.

Whichever side of the fence of life you lie, it’s evident that we are all placing an incredible amount of strain on our bodies.

In this article, I want to highlight the importance of supplements, from an athlete’s perspective and busy person’s perspective.

1. Supplements Educate You On Healthy Eating Habits

I’m no doctor or health expert. But I have a reasonable amount of knowledge on what good eating habits entail.

Because I take supplements, I am forced to understand – at a very basic level – what the different vitamins are and how they benefit me.

Ultimately, sub-conscious as it is, supplements have taught me to watch what I eat.

2. Supplement Make Up For Lost Nutrients In 21st Century Food

The reality is that food is no longer what it used to be. It seems the more convenience we seek, the lesser the quality of our food.

Have you ever stopped to think that some of the food you see on the shelves takes forever to get there? It takes weeks and sometimes months to transport some food items. That length of time depletes the nutrition.

Add to that, the amount of processed and preserved food, you quickly realize that nutrients are fast becoming a luxury.

Supplements assist greatly in negating these lost nutrients.

3. Supplements Make Balanced Nutrition Intake More Practical

I’ve already highlighted that we are either busy or lazy.

For the prudent, those who are able to lead a balanced and disciplined lifestyle, it’s impossible to consume your average requirements of vitamins and nutrients daily.

By consuming supplements, your intake of required nutrients becomes more practical.

4. Supplements Strengthen Your Immune System

This may seem like a foolish point to make.

But the potential stress levels of life can reach boiling points.

My week starts on Sunday, with long hours of church commitment. At church, I serve in the Car Park ministry and as you can see below, it can get hectic:

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Monday to Saturday entails training for Comrades Marathon, a massive commitment. I supplement my running with cross-training, spending time in the gym at least three times a week.

I have to spend hours doing research and writing blog posts like the one you are reading now. As a Nike+ Run Club Coach, I have live sessions every Tuesday and Thursdays, where hundreds of runners come through for training. At these sessions, I have to be lively and fully engaged as I lead all those athletes.

In between all this, I have a minimum of 3 meetings per week.

Then there’s my family, not to mention my lovely girlfriend who deserves just as much, if not more, attention as every other area of my life.

Do you see how easy it is for my immune system to bomb out?

I don’t know about you, but I am under no illusions. I am also not trying to be “Superman”.

Supplements are an important part of my immune system.

5. Supplements Enhance Your Physical Activity

I have been involved in training for a very long time. In fact, the Comrades Marathon is dubbed, “The Ultimate Human Race”, is feared by many.  

Although I encourage many people to approach Comrades fearlessly, completing the race on race-day is a mammoth task. Training for months on end is an even harder dynamic to content with.

Supplements enhance your training on two levels. The first level is to help you to stay fit consistently over lengthy periods without going through physical or mental fatigue. The second level is to perform at your peak for specific events, eg running a personal best in a marathon.

6. Supplements Prevent Injuries

For someone like myself, who goes through extreme levels of training, common running injuries are always a scary reality.

In the past 7 years, I have only ever suffered one injury. Well two. But the second one was a freak accident, where my toe got crushed at wedding when someone stood on my foot by mistake.

Supplements that help with muscle recovery are incredibly vital for my muscles to repair adequately.

7. Supplements Enhance Common Sense

I’m sure you’ve heard this cliché: “common sense is no longer common”.

We often lose our minds and emotions given the demanding lifestyle most of us live.

To keep abreast of life, it is imperative to have common sense. Basic as this may sound, many struggle with having sense.

Supplements help significantly with cognitive function.

8. Supplements Help Keep You Young

I love feeling like I’m “Sweet 16”. Being vibrant and energetic is an incredible feeling.

Whilst it’s a fact that we will all age, the rate at which we age lies largely in the palm of our hands – firmly in our control. Regular exercise and good eating habits are the most effective way of ensuring you age like good-wine.

My angle to keeping young is far from the “do nothing and take magical pills” hogwash. In as much as supplements aid physical activity, supplements aid you to age well when you take good care of yourself.

9. Supplements teach you discipline

This for me is probably the benefit I love the most.

Supplements don’t come cheap. So, from a financial perspective, you need to make a sacrifice.

Secondly, supplements teach you consistency. You need to take them regularly for them to work effectively.

Lastly, supplements teach you that hard work always precedes any additional aid.

You have to take care of yourself – good eating and exercise – for supplements to work effectively. Supplements don’t replace good eating and exercise habits. They supplement it.

Supplements can never be an excuse for neglecting to eat properly and exercise regularly.

Conclusion

There are many negative stories regarding supplements. Whilst many are true, most are just rubbish.

There are also many brands that are rubbish and have side effects. I use Herbalife supplements and I have no issues with them.

To negate the rubbish and negative vibes around supplements, you need to have solid reasons why they are beneficial. I hope this post will help you acknowledge and value the role they play in your life.

God Bless!

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