Not sure if supplements should be part of your nutrition regime? Women who are serious about their fitness results can benefit greatly from not only the right nutrition program, but also from adding a few supplements to their routine. Despite the many benefits related to your muscle building, there are many myths surrounding their use. Keep reading to discover the truth behind these common myths.

Myth #1 – A pre-workout product is just as effective as a cup of coffee.

Although coffee can deliver an energizing dose of caffeine, and caffeine has been shown to have many ergogenic benefits when it comes to your workout, including increased energy, focus and reduced time to fatigue, pre-workouts can also provide you with a few more benefits. A pre-workout supplement can deliver a blend of other performance ingredients that can work on many pathways. A proper pre-workout supplement can enhance nutrient delivery, increase performance, stimulate muscle building, improve strength, power and optimize energy during workouts.

The best part about a pre-workout is that you don’t need to buy a bunch of single ingredient supplements; many pre-workouts come packed with compounds that work on these pathways. Choose supplements that don’t use proprietary blends and provide the full dose of researched ingredients. Look for a pre-workout that contains: beta-alanine and betaine for enhanced endurance and reduced lactic acid burn out, creatine for increasing strength and muscle, BCAAs for keeping muscle nitrogen retention, and citrulline for muscle pumps.

Myth #2 – Protein powder is not necessary if you’re following a proper meal plan.

The truth is that eggs, chicken breasts, steak and yogurt are great sources of protein, and in fact they are some of the best. They deliver all the necessary and essential amino acids you need to build and maintain a lean body, but so does protein powder. Both whey and casein protein powder are derived from dairy protein. Whey protein actually has a higher biological value over many foods including chicken and eggs, because it is fully absorbed and utilized by the body. If you are trying to add some muscle or even maintain your current muscle, you should be getting in at least 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per day. That means if you are 120 pounds, you should get in 120 to 180 grams of protein per day, divided over five to six meals. Getting that much protein from food alone can be a challenge. Protein powder can be a convenient way to meet your daily protein needs. Use a fast digesting whey protein powder during the day, and use a slow digesting casein protein in the evenings to help sustain your muscles during the sleep recovery process. Protein powder can also be added to your smoothie recipes, baked good recipes or to make delicious protein pancakes.

Myth #3 – Creatine can make you big and bulky!

Not true. This highly researched supplement is by far the most researched on the market. This supplement can help increase strength, performance and lean muscle mass, but not to the extent of making you big and bulky. Creatine works by increasing the availability of energy to working muscles, which means you can train longer and push more weight! Creatine does not work on hormonal pathways of muscle building, and can’t increase your level of testosterone, so you can be sure you are not ever going to get big, just add lean and trim metabolic muscle. Women tend to have higher creatine stores than men, which means you need to supplement with less. Use 3 grams of creatine per day either before or after workout for at least eight weeks to get the maximum benefit.