A more anabolic protein drink

Title: Timing of amino acid-carbohydrate ingestion alters anabolic response of muscle to resistance exercise.Researchers: Tipton KD, Rasmussen BB, Miller SL, Wolf SE, Owens-Stovall SK, Petrini BE, & Wolfe RR.Source: American Journal of Physiology Endocrinology & Metabolism. 2001 Aug;281(2):E197-206.

Summary: This study was designed to determine whether drinking an essential amino acid-carbohydrate supplement (6gEAA+35g carbs) before exercise results in a greater anabolic response than supplementation after resistance exercise.

Methods: Six healthy human subjects participated in two trials in random order, PRE (6g EAA+35g carbs consumed immediately before exercise), and POST (6g EAA+35g carbs consumed immediately after exercise). A primed, continuous infusion of L-[ring-(2)H(5)]phenylalanine, femoral arteriovenous catheterization, and muscle biopsies from the vastus lateralis were used to determine phenylalanine concentrations, enrichments, and net uptake across the leg.

Results: Blood and muscle phenylalanine concentrations were increased by approximately 130% after drink consumption in both trials. Amino acid delivery to the leg was increased during exercise and remained elevated for the 2 h after exercise in both trials. Delivery of amino acids (amino acid concentration times blood flow) was significantly greater in PRE than in POST during the exercise bout and in the 1st h after exercise. Total net phenylalanine uptake across the leg was greater during PRE (209 +/- 42 mg) than during POST (81 +/- 19). Phenylalanine disappearance rate, an indicator of muscle protein synthesis from blood amino acids, increased after EAC consumption in both trials.

Conclusion: These results indicate that the response of net muscle protein synthesis to consumption of an EAC solution immediately before resistance exercise is greater than that when the solution is consumed after exercise, primarily because of an increase in muscle protein synthesis as a result of increased delivery of amino acids to the leg.

Discussion: First let’s talk about what’s right with this study. Then we’ll tackle what’s wrong with it to keep things in perspective.

Here’s what they did right. These researchers measured systemic levels of amino acids after the drink, the amount of amino acids delivered to muscle tissue, as well as the uptake of amino acids into the muscle for protein synthesis. This way they were able to follow the effects of the protein drink from the time it entered the blood stream to its eventual incorporation into muscle protein.

What they found was that systemic (amino acids in the blood stream) levels of amino acids were the same whether you took the drink before or after training. Amino acid delivery to the leg increased during exercise, and remained elevated for at least 2 hours after training. This is the result of increased blood flow to the working muscle. This increase in blood flow peaks during exercise then returns to normal over the next 2 hours.

Here is where it gets interesting. Delivery of amino acids, meaning the quantity of amino acids delivered to the muscle, was significantly greater when they gave the protein drink before training and remained significantly higher for at least an hour after the workout, compared to drinking it immediately after training. The increased delivery of amino acids from drinking the protein drink before training increased amino acid uptake into muscle by over 250%!

The superiority of taking protein before training is obvious when comparing the percentage of amino acids taken up by the leg from the protein drink. When the protein drink was taken before training, ~42% of the amino acids in the drink were taken up into the muscle. The proportion was much lower when the protein was drank after training, only about 16% of the drink was taken up into the muscle. That’s over twice as much of the amino acids being taken up by muscle when it is consumed before training. It was estimated that ~86% of total uptake was incorporated into proteins whereas only ~48% of total uptake during the post workout trail was incorporated into proteins. That’s a huge difference.

As for the bad, this study only used 6 grams of amino acids! I can blow my nose and produce more than 6 grams of protein. These researchers had previously (1) used higher amounts of protein (40 grams) without carbs, so in this study they wanted to see if they could elicit a similar anabolic response with less protein and more carbs. Of course, anybody who’s serious about putting on muscle weight is going to need more than 6 grams of amino acids before their workout. I would suggest at least 20 grams before and another 20 grams after. Although they used only essential amino acids in this study, using a whole protein source is equally effective as long as it contains all the essential amino acids.

If you want the most muscle growth from your protein supplements, you must take one right before training, and the another right after. Although I alone have been recommending this for some time, you will surely see others making these recommendations in the near future. At least you’ll know you knew about it way before the rest of the world did. 

1. Tipton, KD, Ferrando AA, Phillips SM, Doyle D, Jr, and Wolfe RR. Postexercise net protein synthesis in human muscle from orally administered amino acids. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 276: E628-E634, 1999

Title: Effects of a 7-day eccentric training period on muscle damage and inflammation.Researchers: Chen TC, Hsieh SS.Institution: Department of Ball-Related Sports Science, Taipei Physical Education College, Taipei City, Taiwan.

Source: Medicine and Science Sports & Exercise 2001 Oct;33(10):1732-8

Purpose: This study examined the effects of a 7-day repeated maximal isokinetic eccentric training period on the indicators of muscle damage and inflammatory response.

Methods: Twenty-two college-age males were randomly assigned to eccentric training (ET) and control groups (CON). The initial exercise was 30 repetitions of maximal voluntary isokinetic eccentric contraction (ECC1) on non-dominant elbow flexors with Cybex 6000 at 60 degrees.s-1 angular velocity. The ET group performed the same exercise for the following 6 consecutive days (referred to as ECC2 to ECC7) after ECC1. Upper arm circumference (CIR), range of motion (ROM), and maximal isometric force (MIF) were measured before, immediately after, and every 24 h for 7 consecutive days after ECC1. Plasma creatine kinase (CK), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), glutamic oxaloacetate transaminase (GOT), leukocyte counts, and serum interleukin-1beta and -6 (IL-1beta, IL-6) levels were assessed before; at 2 h; and at 1, 3, 4, 6, and 7 d after ECC1. Muscle soreness was measured before and for 7 consecutive days after ECC1.

Results: The ECC1 produced significant changes in most of the measures for both groups, with the exception of leukocyte counts. No indicators of increased damage were found from the second consecutive day of eccentric training to the 7th day for the eccentric training group.

Conclusion: Continuous intensive isokinetic eccentric training performed with damaged muscles did not exacerbate muscle damage and inflammation after ECC1. In addition, a muscular “adaptation effect” may occur as early as 24 h after ECC1, as shown by the ET group’s performance for 6 consecutive days after ECC1.

Discussion: One of the most controversial aspects of HST is the suggestion that people train in a predominantly eccentric fashion for two weeks straight. Heresy! they shout. Then when you ask them why it’s so bad to train a muscle more frequently or, heaven forbid, do negatives two workouts in a row, they say because your muscle can’t “recover” that fast. This study calls into question the belief that muscles can’t recover if trained again soon or even the next day.

They looked at a wide variety of markers for muscle damage including plasma creatine kinase (CK), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), glutamic oxaloacetate transaminase (GOT), leukocyte counts, and serum interleukin-1beta and -6 (IL-1beta, IL-6). Although both groups experienced a significant change in all these indicators (accept leukocyte count), no indicators of increased damage were found from ECC2 to ECC7 for the ET group.

What about soreness? For both the group who only did one training session as well as those who did seven in a row, muscle soreness developed 1 day after the first eccentric training bout, and remained through the 3rd day, then gradually diminished regardless of which group they were in. The group that did the eccentric sets every day experienced the same progression and subsidence of soreness as the group that did only one set at the beginning of the week. The soreness level was almost back to baseline on 7 day for both groups.

The results of this investigation indicated that repeated bouts of the eccentric exercise performed on each of the following 6 days after the first bout did not affect recovery from the first training bout. This is in agreement with a substantial amount of other studies indicating that muscle adapts effectively to physical load even when the loading is frequent or even continuous. Keep in mind that we are only talking about the physical recovery of the muscle. We are not talking about performance. After all, HST is “Hypertrophy-Specific” by design.

So once again, HST turns out not to be so outlandish, but instead, simply a derivative of the research. The results and the science, speak for themselves. 

In this day and age there is really no reason why people should be afraid of science. Science is what makes our world go round. Not only is science an integral part of our modern world, but it is the very foundation of any effective method for building muscle. So, we created theHS:Report to increase our readers awareness of the science behind modern training, diet, and supplementation.In 1978 I began lifting weights and drinking protein drinks. Decades ago, gyms were anything but high-tech. I remember one of the first gyms I trained at was in the back of an old laundromat. Most of the equipment was homemade (not to be confused with “custom made”) and rickety. Anything made of iron had a good layer of rust. It was dark, it was musty, and it smelled like old gym clothes that for some reason still unbeknownst to me were never actually washed.Man I used to bust my butt in that gym, dreaming of the day when I would look like Arnold and Lou. After my workouts I’d go home, pop in a rented copy of Pumping Iron (you couldn’t actually buy it yet) in the machine and throw back a horrendous tasting protein drink made by the Master Blaster himself. As I’d watch Arnold and Ed grimacing under the squat bar, I’d take a swig of the Blaster’s brew and you would’ve sworn by the grimace on my own face that I had just finished a “squat till you puke” set of squats right along with them. But you know what they used to say, no pain no gain. I just figured gagging down nasty protein drinks was just part of the commitment.

Well, times have changed. I no longer workout in the back of an old laundromat, and I no longer gag down awful tasting protein drinks, but I’ve never lost my passion for bodybuilding and supplements. On the contrary, it has become my life’s quest to find out all that can be known about building muscle. Along the way I’ve spent countless hours in the gym, a small fortune on supplements, and 10 years in college just to make sure I didn’t overlook any of the finer details.

What was the result of this life spent on bodybuilding? Well, I’ve had the good fortune of training some really great competitors, writing for a few of the best bodybuilding magazines ever, consulting for some really great companies, and the high point of it all…was the chance to publish HST to the world and create the best supplements yet made.

When I published HST, I never imagined the effect it would have. Don’t get me wrong, I knew without any doubt it was the most effective way to build size quickly, I just didn’t think people would listen. To my pleasant surprise, it has sent out a wave of change that has covered the globe and produced literally thousands of pounds of muscle. And the supplements, well, they are something I am very proud of.

My goal with HST and the HS:APS has always been muscle hypertrophy, period. TheAdvanced Protein System (APS) was designed according to the absolute latest research on the anabolic effects of protein and training. Although research has led to some controversy as to exactly how much protein an athlete needs on a daily basis, there is no question about the need for protein immediately before and after your workouts.(1-5) So I gathered the highest quality proteins available and I designed a protein system that would lead to the greatest uptake of amino acids each and every workout, thus producing the fastest muscle growth possible without a prescription.

The results had by users of HST and the HS:APS have proven their effectiveness.

Here is a sample:

“Ok, today I finished my second cycle fifth week (5’s). My results seem too good to be true. Get ready for this: So in two cycles with a length of two and a half months I gained 7.5 kilos (16.5 pounds), and my waist went increased only 1.5cm! Bryan if you want to use my post as proof that HST works please do!”

— restless

“Just did my measurements following the 15s of my full body cycle of HST. Man, it is going insane, sure I know that some of the gains will be local swelling from the constant training, but I doubt that it totals all of it.

Bodyweight 93.6 to 95.5kg
LBM 77.6 to 79.1kg
Arm +0.45inch
Thigh +1.2inches!!!!!
Calf +0.4inch

Loads are feeling good, only just reached failure in one exercise (bench) and am getting psyched to get my lbm over 80kg, possibly even to the great 181lb mark (82.5kg) and all this with a constant cold that my kids gave me. Excellent stuff”

— Aaron_F

“Hi Bryan, I have just finished my first HST cycle and am very pleased with the results, to say the least. I have gained 8.8 pounds, put on 1″ on my arms, 1.6″ on my thighs and 0.8″ on my calves (even though I didn’t train them directly). My strength has gone up noticeably as well. I can now power clean the weights that I used to deadlift!”

— Jean-Claude

As always, Hypertrophy-Specific Training is FREE to everybody. Add Primer and Driver to your program and you can’t make faster gains without a syringe! I’m not kidding. The science has finally reached a point where real muscle gains in only a matter of weeks are possible. HSN and HST are the embodiment of that science.

Come to www.Hypertrophy-Specific.com and set up your HST program and get yourself the Primer and Driver Advanced Protein System. I guarantee you will see improvements that will change the way you train and the supplements you use forever. 

Research behind HSN Primer & Driver:

1: Tipton KD, Rasmussen BB, Miller SL, Wolf SE, Owens-Stovall SK, Petrini BE, Wolfe RR. Timing of amino acid-carbohydrate ingestion alters anabolic response of muscle to resistance exercise. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2001 Aug;281(2):E197-206.

2: Rasmussen BB, Tipton KD, Miller SL, Wolf SE, Wolfe RR. An oral essential amino acid-carbohydrate supplement enhances muscle protein anabolism after resistance exercise. J Appl Physiol. 2000 Feb;88(2):386-92.

3: Tipton KD, Ferrando AA, Phillips SM, Doyle D Jr, Wolfe RR. Postexercise net protein synthesis in human muscle from orally administered amino acids. Am J Physiol. 1999 Apr;276(4 Pt 1):E628-34.

4: Biolo G, Maggi SP, Williams BD, Tipton KD, Wolfe RR. Increased rates of muscle protein turnover and amino acid transport after resistance exercise in humans. Am J Physiol. 1995 Mar;268(3 Pt 1):E514-20.

5: Biolo G, Williams BD, Fleming RY, Wolfe RR. Insulin action on muscle protein kinetics and amino acid transport during recovery after resistance exercise. Diabetes. 1999 May;48(5):949-57.

6: Biolo G, Tipton KD, Klein S, Wolfe RR. An abundant supply of amino acids enhances the metabolic effect of exercise on muscle protein. Am J Physiol. 1997 Jul;273(1 Pt 1):E122-9.

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