March 20, 2019

You’ve got your jump rope, your knee sleeves, and protein powder, but do you have BCAA’s readily available in your gym bag?

BCAA’s are important for athletic performance, but also enhance muscle growth while  providing assistance with weight loss and reduced fatigue and soreness post-workout, making them an essential to have with you at all times.

First, what are BCAA’s anyways? While protein can be considered the “building blocks” of muscle, amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. BCAA’s, branched chain amino acids, are made up of three essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine and valine. What differentiates these amino acids from other amino acids found in the body is that these are essential, meaning that the body cannot produce them and they must be consumed as part of the diet.

BCAAs help promote the growth of new muscle fibers by providing a steady supply of amino acids. Unlike other amino acids, BCAA’s are broken down in the muscles rather than the liver, giving them direct access to those cells for absorption.

BCAAs also help regulate blood sugar levels, which means they are able to promote sugar intake into the bloodstream. This translates to better energy production during workouts first and foremost. It then helps the body to promote insulin sensitivity, allowing carbohydrates to be metabolized without the over-production of insulin. This leads to less sugar cravings and less nutrients being converted for fat storage in the body.

They’re also great for beginners as they help decrease fatigue after a workout. When you’re new and adjusting to WOD’s, you’re no stranger to workouts that end with in extreme muscle soreness.

BCAA’s provide direct amino to those muscles to not only reduce soreness by alleviating muscle breakdown with the tools for immediate repair, but also decrease central nervous system fatigue. 

But even if you’re not up on the latest science of amino acids and athletic performance (or you just don’t care), maybe one of the best benefits of adding BCAAs to your regimen is that they’ll help you drink more water. Let’s be honest, water can be…well…boring. Adding a scoop of our Affiliate Supplement Perform BCAAs adds naturally derived fruit flavors and slight sweetness without any sugars or stimulants. Everybody knows they should be drinking plenty of water, but BCAA’s make drinking water during a workout more enjoyable.

So, whether your goal is to improve your athletic performance, reduce fatigue or just drink something ‘other’ than water, BCAAs will be your new best friend before and during your workouts. Now get out there and hit it hard!

Deidre Bloomquist 

Functional Nutritionist based in Denver, Colorado. Certified L3 CrossFit Trainer who loves working with athletes on performance and health goals.  

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