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Quick Tips for Beginner Bodybuilders

Quick Tips for Beginner Bodybuilders

Check your social media feeds on any given day, and you’re sure to see someone make a post about going to the gym, taking a hike, or trying out a new diet. If it seems like everyone you know is trying to get fit, it’s because they are. Over the last decade, the number of people with a gym membership has increased by more than 33%. The market for commercial weight-loss products and programs grew by nearly a half-billion dollars from 2016 to 2017. Americans everywhere are focused on changing their health and wellness habits and getting in shape.

But they’re not always successful. Even as the market for and number of gyms increases, Americans’ fitness levels are still low. There are obvious factors that contribute to this, like the easy availability of fast food, increased levels of stress and falling hours of sleep, and medications that have the side effect of weight gain. But there are also less obvious reasons. The same social media feeds that are flooded with images of people lifting weights can also intimidate others from going in the first place.

Axis Labs is committed to helping our customers build the best version of themselves. More than just providing high-quality sports and nutrition supplements, we also provide resources that you can use to get fit. So close that Facebook tab and dive into these quick tips for beginner bodybuilders.

Check-In with Your Doctor First

If you haven’t been to a doctor’s office for a while, probably the best first step you can make in starting your bodybuilding journey is to set up an appointment with your care provider. Even if you’re not sick or feeling unwell, your doctor will have some recommendations about diet and exercise that is tailored to your unique health history.

Not only that, but having a sense of where you are healthwise provides you with concrete datasets that you can measure as you get fit. As for tests to measure your cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure, glucose, and bone density. As you make progress, you can have these metrics measured again to see your changes over time.

Establish a Regular Training Schedule and Plan

Going to the gym just to be there isn’t doing you and your bodybuilding work any favors. You need to follow a routine that you carry out during every trip to the gym. You can find a variety of plans online, or you can work with a personal trainer or employee at the gym to establish a routine.

Set a few days each week that you’ll go and work out and stay disciplined about it. This will help you make exercising a habit and will prevent you from slacking off or creating excuses to go. Not only that, but following an exercise schedule keeps you from over-exercising, and ensures that you get adequate rest which helps your body recover.

Set Goals for Yourself

If you’re just getting started in bodybuilding, it’s likely that you’ve already got some goals in mind. But those goals are only useful if they’re SMART. Make sure your goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. When goals have all of these elements, you’re more likely to achieve them. You should plan on having several goals that you create and complete throughout your bodybuilding journey. Your goals will change in response to your progress and your interest.

Make Smart Dieting Decisions

Professional bodybuilders and sports nutrition experts alike all agree that diet is just as critical a part of the bodybuilding experience as exercise is. An easy thing you can do is to cut back on processed sugars and pre-packaged foods. While they might be convenient and tasty, they aren’t great for you.

Instead, focus on getting lots of vegetables and fruits and prioritize protein. Protein is a vital part of building muscle, and when you work out more, you’ll need more of it. If you’re looking to change up your eating habits, check out our blog series on the ketogenic diet. Axis Labs is a fan of this diet plan, as it encourages your body to burn the fats it’s stored up. This low-carb, high-fat diet can help you lose weight, which makes your muscle gains all the more apparent.

Remember that Rest is Required

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of bodybuilding, especially when you notice improvements soon after starting. As a result, some beginner bodybuilders fail to offer their bodies the rest they desperately need. Instead, they over-exercise, which can lead to injuries that can throw off your bodybuilding schedule.

The end goal is for sustainable, deliberate growth of your muscles and strength, and part of that process is resting regularly. If you’re feeling motivated, you can take “active recovery days” that still allow you to rest fully but give you the satisfaction of staying active.

Use the Right Supplements

Using sports supplements is a great way to optimize your efforts in the gym, and enhance the effects of your dieting. For instance, some supplements are designed to help your body recover more quickly from exercises, like Branched Chain Amino Acids. Others are crafted to help kickstart your body into exercise mode, like pre-workouts. Some, like our testosterone boosters, are meant to help you sustain your gains and help you exercise more effectively at the same time. You can even use supplements like CBD to help with a wide variety of aches, pains, and other issues.

Start Your Fitness Journey With Axis Labs

Bodybuilding is all about crafting the best version of yourself, and we’ve got the products that do just that. Lab-tested, gym-proven, we have the products and stacks you need to make the most of your bodybuilding efforts. Browse our selection today!

Natural Ways to Boost Testosterone Levels

Natural Ways to Boost Testosterone Levels

Here at Axis Labs, some of the most pressing questions we get are from customers who are interested in boosting or maintaining their testosterone levels. As such, it's a topic we’ve covered before across a variety of blog posts. That said, there's always more to learn about this ever-evolving topic.

If you've already reviewed our blog on the reasons why you need to increase your testosterone levels, and have dispelled some common myths about testosterone boosting, then you might be looking for natural ways you can increase your testosterone levels. Fortunately, increasing your testosterone naturally is easier than it sounds. Check out what we found and see if the information below can enhance your health.

Get Some Sun or Vitamin D

Thanks to the conveniences of modern life, many of us spend more time inside than outside. While we might be comfortable inside, it's not doing our testosterone levels or health any favors. Several studies have found a link between vitamin D and increased testosterone levels. A study from 2011 compared two groups of subjects. One group was supplemented with extra vitamin D and the other was given a placebo. The supplemented group showed an increase in their testosterone levels, while the placebo group showed no significant changes. In addition to taking a vitamin D supplement, you can get this vital vitamin naturally by spending some time outside. Vitamin D is typically produced when the skin is exposed to sunlight, and the rest is gained from your dietary choices. 

Getting outside and enjoying the sun or taking a vitamin D supplement could be an easy way to help increase your testosterone levels naturally.

Avoid Estrogen-Like Compounds

In both males and females, you'll find testosterone and estrogen. These are the hormones that drive the growth and development of males and females through puberty. Typically, you'll find higher levels of testosterone in males than females, but as males age their testosterone levels decrease while their estrogen levels increase. This can lead to symptoms like a decline in muscle mass, fatigue, low libido, and increased body fat. While your body produces estrogen naturally, it's important to avoid adding any estrogen-like compounds into your diet or lifestyle. In order to do this, you should minimize your exposure to BPA, parabens, and the chemicals often found in many types of plastics. 

The sources of these estrogen-like compounds may surprise you. BPAs can be found in places like cash register receipts, keg liners, and plastic water bottles. BPA has been linked to prostate cancer, vitamin D deficiency, and other health complications. Other estrogen-like compounds, like phthalates, can be found in the synthetic scents used in candles and beauty products. They can also be found in laundry products, nail polish, and even vinyl shower curtains. To avoid these compounds, look for products that are BPA-free.

Change Up Your Diet

Whenever you ask your doctor for easy ways to improve your health, they will always come back to two things: diet and exercise. We’ll repeat it again here because it's very true for your testosterone levels as well. Simple changes to your diet can have an effect on your T-levels. First off, start by cutting out packaged, processed, or pre-prepared foods. While these are tasty, you pay the price in high calories, inflated salt and fat content, and loads of extra sugar. All of this leads to increased weight gain which can further suppress your testosterone levels. Not only that, the trans fat found in many processed foods has been linked to decreased testicular function.

Instead, mix up your menu by eating a balanced diet that includes lots of leafy greens, proteins, and carbs. If you're not sure what to include in your new testosterone-friendly diet, here are a few foods you can consider:

  • Ginger: A 2012 study suggests that daily ginger supplements for about three months can help increase testosterone levels by 17%. Other studies have found that ginger can have a positive impact on sperm health in other ways as well. It's no wonder that humans have used ginger for medicinal and culinary needs for centuries.
  • Oysters: Zinc plays a vital role in overall testosterone health. Oysters can offer more zinc per serving than any other food. If you're not one for oysters, you can also find high levels of this mineral in foods like shellfish, red meat, beans, and nuts. To ensure that your body is completely absorbing the zinc, make sure you're taking copper as well.
  • Pomegranates: Including pomegranates in your diet has been shown to increase testosterone levels in not only men but women as well. A 2012 study had participants drink dark pomegranate juice for 14 days. At the end of the study, both male and female subjects saw a 24% increase in their testosterone levels. As an added benefit, they also saw subjective improvements in their mood and objective improvements in their blood pressure as well.
  • Essential Fatty Acids: A study from 2017 suggests that the intake of omega-3 and omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids was connected to an increase in testicular volume. The study suggested that these essential fatty acids may have an effect on testicular function.

Include CBD Into Your Routine

The CBD and testosterone link is more complex than you might realize and this hemp-derived compound may help you raise your testosterone levels. By limiting your subjective level of stress and anxiety, you’re also limiting the amount of cortisol in your bloodstream. Cortisol can have an impact on your testosterone levels in a negative way. Additionally, CBD could be used to help you get a better night sleep. When you’re fully rested, research has shown that you have higher levels of testosterone. Finally, CBD can be used to help your body recover from injury or regular exercise. The natural anti-inflammatory effects of this hemp-derived compound can help you maintain your core body temperature, meaning you recover faster and help your body produce more testosterone.

Don’t Hesitate to Use a Supplement

In some cases, you may benefit from the use of a testosterone boosting supplement. At Axis Labs, we use lab-tested and gym-proven formulas that make use of natural ingredients like zinc, magnesium, vitamin B6, and ashwagandha. When these ingredients are balanced, the supplements can help enhance your testosterone levels.

 

Find Your CBD and Testosterone Boosting Supplements Today

Managing your testosterone levels is easier thanks to the CBD and testosterone boosting products offered by Axis Labs. Made from premium ingredients and lab-tested for purity and potency, our products can help you achieve your health and fitness goals. We offer a variety of testosterone-boosting stacks to fit your lifestyle and our CBD products come in forms like pills, tinctures, topicals, and even gummies, so you can easily fit them in your busy schedule. Check our complete product lines and in order your own today.

Work Hard: In And Out Of The Gym

Work Hard: In And Out Of The Gym

In Japan, there is a modern business trend that looks to the past for inspiration. Inside board rooms, workspaces, and factory floors, you’ll find employees at all levels practicing business bushido. Steeped in the ancient tradition of the warrior, business bushido preaches the value of hard work, loyalty to the company, commitment to quality, and personal growth. It’s a mindset that helped many Japanese businesses rise to global success in the 1970s and 1980s.

While we won’t encourage you to bring a samurai sword to work or the gym, we will encourage you to bring the same mindset you bring to your workouts into your next business meeting. Why’s that? It’s because study after study has found that regular and disciplined exercise can make you more productive and successful at work. Don’t believe us? Then it’s time to join Axis Labs as we explore how your reps could help boost your revenue.

The Importance of Fitness

In our day-to-day lives, fitness plays a larger role than many realize. More than just a lean physique, staying fit keeps us healthy, allowing us to do more and live longer. With regular exercise, you’ll have more energy to complete projects at work, and reps at the gym. You’ll feel mentally and physically stronger. Being a regular at the gym means you have a healthier immune system and you’re less likely to develop chronic illnesses like Diabetes. If nothing else, getting frequent exercise means you’ll sleep harder, meaning you're better rested for the next day.

That’s all fine and dandy in our lives outside of work and the gym, but if you’re looking to enhance your business acumen and turn heads at work, how does exercise help? Check it out.

Exercise Keeps You Alert

We’ve all been there. You get to work, eyelids still droopy with sleep and the last remnants of morning breath on your tongue. You stumble to the break room and pour yourself a cup of cheap coffee and start the workday. But by mid-afternoon, your demeanor hasn’t changed, no matter how many foam coffee cups now litter your desk.

We all struggle to stay alert at work sometimes, but the secret to finding the energy you need to focus can’t be found at the bottom of a coffee cup. Instead, it’s in the gym. Exercise stimulates blood flow to your brain. With more blood flow, your brain has the resources it needs to stay alert and focused. You’ll feel more awake at work, which means you can complete projects more accurately, saving you headaches later.

Another reason that exercise improves your mental acuity is that a certain part of your brain is engaged during your workout. The hippocampus is responsible for learning and memory. When you exercise, the neurons within this part of the brain fire up. An active hippocampus means your cognitive functions improve, which helps with spatial learning.

Quick Tips For Staying Alert at Work

When it’s already been a long day and you’ve only been at work for 20 minutes, don’t reach for an energy drink. Instead, grab a coworker and go for a quick walk around the office. Often, just a few minutes of light exercise is all it takes for you to regain your mental focus and clarity, helping you get through that stack of paperwork or loading up those shipping pallets.

You’ll Feel Less Stressed at Work

When nearly every job listing out there casually states that you’ll have to work in high-stress environments, you have to wonder just how stressed out everyone at that job must be. But that doesn’t mean you have to be. Your trips to the gym could help you feel more relaxed at work, even when everyone around is pulling their hair out.

The workplace, whatever it may look like for you, is a source of stress. In fact, for nearly half of all Americans, it’s a significant source of stress in their lives, even when they’re done for the day. While you might have developed stress-management strategies to make your workday a little easier, organizing through calendars and color-coded folders will only do so much. But exercise can go a long way in helping you stay stress-free at work.

Exercise has a neurochemical effect on your brain. With regular aerobic exercise, your body starts to reduce its levels of stress hormones. Cortisol, in particular, is your body’s built-in warning system. When you get stressed, the amount of cortisol in your bloodstream increases, keeping your body in a heightened state of alert. That means you’ll struggle to calm down after a tense day at work. But exercise releases endorphins, which are neurotransmitters that your brain releases when you feel good. For the runners out there, they talk about hitting their "runner’s high" after a certain period of prolonged aerobic exercise. This means their brain has released the endorphins, which not only helps them feel mentally better but physically better too. Endorphins are natural pain-killers that help your body relax and recovery after an intense workout.

When you’re less stressed at work, you can more clearly identify problems and solutions. You’ll feel more level headed when dealing with Janice in accounting when she gets on your case about a late payment request, and you’ll feel more creative when working.

Quick Tips for Busting Stress at Work

If you’re working a fast-paced job or have short breaks, consider high-intensity interval training. These are collections of workouts that can be done very quickly and don’t require any special equipment. There are a ton of smartphone apps that can walk you through a HIIT workout while you’re waiting for your coworkers to get back from the coffee shop or after your lunch break. The rush of endorphins will help keep you feeling calm even on those crazy days.

Exercise Can Help You Learn New Skills More Quickly

Say you just got a promotion and you have to learn a new computer program. Or you suddenly have to learn a new task to get through the workday. Whatever it is, you’ll want to learn these skills quickly in order to stay on top of your workload. Detailed notes do their part to help you retain the information, but hitting the gym for a few extra minutes each week might be just as effective.

Studies have found that regular exercise can help increase your brain’s capacity for prioritizing tasks and projects and even improve your memory. Why is that? It’s for nearly the same reasons as to why exercise keeps you more alert. Your hippocampus controls the learning and memory parts of your brain. With time, your hippocampus begins to shrink. This is a natural process, but it has frustrating consequences, like shortened attention span or a sense of forgetfulness. But with exercise, you can actually help increase the volume of your hippocampus. This leads to improvements in learning and memory.

More than just beefing up your hippocampus, exercise helps repair your body in other ways. By reducing insulin resistance and inflammation in the body, along with encouraging growth in other areas, your body is more ready to learn and retain new information. That’s because your brain is developing new blood cells, which helps to maintain your existing brain cells.

Quick Tips for Improving Your Working Memory

Our brains are naturally ready to identify and play with patterns. That’s why having an exercise routine is so great for your memory. Consider exercises that involve slow and focused movements, like tai chi. By memorizing these distinct patterns and motions, your brain will be able to memorize other things at work more quickly.

So, How Much Exercise Do You Need to Get That Promotion?

While some of you are likely waiting for us to say something like "be able to lift five times your own body weight," or "run a marathon every day," the reality is that just doing a little more than many of us are already doing is enough.

Many researchers suggest that you get at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity five days a week. That’s only 150 minutes every week. Some already get much more than that each week, and if that’s the case, this isn’t a sign that you should suddenly dial back your training schedule. Stick with it.

In addition to how often you exercise, it’s also important to consider when you’re doing it. There’s a growing body of research that suggests that your brain will benefit from a work out when it’s completed before or even at the same time as a learning activity. A study found that not only did workers feel they performed better at work if they exercised during the work day, but they also felt better about their work and their general well being. So what does that mean for you? It means if you can squeeze in a few reps at work, you’ll probably feel better about that presentation you’re about to deliver.

Enhance Your Workday Workouts With Axis Labs

When you’re ready to take your performance at the gym and at work to the next level, you’ll need all the support you can get. Offer your body the supplements it needs with the pre-workout and recovery products offered by Axis Labs. Carefully researched and crafted, and lab and gym tested, our products can help you make the most of every workout. Browse our complete lineup of products then order your own today.

While you’re at it, check out our exclusive Facebook group, All Axis Pass. Not only will you find a great community of fitness enthusiasts, but you’ll also be the first to know about exclusive offers and new product releases!

Is Your Work Life Affecting Your Health?

Is Your Work Life Affecting Your Health?

You clock out, make the long commute home, and drag yourself into your home. Dumping your work bag by the door and casually kicking off your shoes into the hall closet, you slump down into the nearest chair, completely worn out. You were only at work today, so why do you feel so tired? It’s because work may be having an effect on your health and wellness and you don’t even realize it.

Here at Axis Labs, we’re all about keeping our clients healthy and informed. We recognize that fitness doesn’t stop and start at the gym. Staying fit and healthy is a holistic approach and can be done at work too. So let’s explore how your job is affecting your health and what you can do about it.

How Work is Weighing On You

We’ve all felt a little burned out at the end of a hectic workday, but when you seem to be having more stressful days than good ones, it can start to take a toll on your health. Physical and emotional turmoil can make your life outside of work a chore and can keep you from pursuing the things you enjoy. So to have a better sense of how to address these issues, it’s always a good idea to understand how work is affecting you.

Work and Your Stress Levels

Does it ever seem like your friends and family are always griping about work? They’re not alone. The American Institute of Stress ran a study in 2006 that asked people what were their greatest sources of stress. The study found that for 46% of people, their workload was the major source of stress in their lives. But that’s just the work that they were doing. In fact, work consumed nearly all of the participants. 6% of the participants found that a lack of job security was their main stressor. Another 20% struggled to find a balance between their work and home lives.

That means that nearly 3/4s of the participants in the study stated that something to do with work was their main source of stress in their lives.

But where is all of this stress coming from? Studies have shown that Americans are working longer hours and putting in more effort while they’re there. The International Labor Organization made the argument that Americans are putting in almost an extra 40 hours worth of work every week. But outside of work, Americans are also more worried about their job security. They feel that if they aren’t working more hours and doing more in those hours, they might lose their jobs.

While this stress might be rewarded by a nice paycheck, what cost are Americans paying to get it?

The Effects of Work Stress On Your Health

It’s easy to dismiss the effects of stress. It’s only temporary, right? You’ll be less stressed once you finish this project, right? Well, only kind of. The fact is, stress can have short- and long-term effects on your well being.

Stress has an impact on your body, your mood, and your behavior. Left unchecked, your stress might transform you into someone you don’t even recognize.

Those who deal with chronic work-related stress often report feeling headaches or muscle tension or pain. Chest pain and upset stomachs are also a symptom of stress. Beyond the board room, you might experience issues in the bedroom as well, as heightened stress levels can disrupt your sleep patterns and even affect your sex drive.

While stress can manifest symptoms in your body, it can also get in your head. Stress displays in a variety of moods and emotions. You might feel anxious, overwhelmed, and unable to focus. Some feel restless, angry, or irritable. On the opposite end, others feel despondent, sad, or even depressed.

When your body and your mind don’t feel great, it reflects in how you act. You might find destructive ways to cope with your stress levels. Some eat too much or too little, while others turn to substances like drugs and alcohol. While some retreat from their family and friends, others lash out at them. All of these things can interrupt your normal lifestyle, and even add more stress to your life.

Work and Your Physical Health

The way we work has dramatically changed over the last century. Where our grandparents and even parents likely started in careers or jobs that had them up and moving all day, more and more American workers are spending more of their time in offices and cubicles. In subtle ways, our work can have a pronounced impact on our health.

Sitting

Every now and then, a local news outlet or an alarmed friend on social media will share a story declaring sitting to be the "new cigarettes" in terms of its negative impact on your health. You might chuckle in derision as you kick back in your reclining work chair, but you might want to sit up straight and keep this in mind.

The reality is that we sit more than we realize. Living a sedentary lifestyle like this can have a lasting impact on our health. The Mayo Clinic found that individuals who "sat for more than eight hours a day with no physical activity had a risk of dying similar to the risks of dying posed by obesity and smoking." By spending more time seated, you’re at greater risk of weight gain, developing illnesses like type-2 diabetes, and contracting heart disease.

Snacking

As companies begin to make their workspaces more attractive by offering things like free drink machines, beer taps, and a variety of free snacks, it’s easier than ever to graze your way through the workday. But before you pick up that free donut, consider this.

The saying that "you are what you eat" isn’t just a fun ditty for kids. It’s evident in numerous workplace health studies. One study found that employees who had a poor diet were nearly twice as likely to call in sick than their healthier coworkers.

While a healthy snack like fruits and vegetables can offer you a quick boost of energy when you need it, snacking on the wrong treats can actually make it harder for you to concentrate throughout the day. A 2011 study found that what you choose to eat can affect your working memory. This is what’s been called the "glucose memory facilitation effect," which is a really fancy way of saying you should offer your body healthy sugars if you want a healthy paycheck.

Smoking

While more Americans are aware of the health effects of smoking, many still choose to take advantage of any smoke break they can get. For those who are stressed out at work, a quick smoke can feel like a welcome break from the routine. But stress from your job can actually prevent you from quitting smoking. This, in turn, makes it more difficult to find a less stressful job.

Sick Days Taken

You’re correct in assuming that sick days will improve your health. Taking advantage of sick leave if available, or even a sick day when you need it is a great way to care for your body. What’s concerning isn’t so much your choice, but the choice of your coworkers. The Office for National Statistics has noted a fairly remarkable decline in the percentage of employees taking sick days every year. In 1993, the average employee took 7.2 sick days annually. Compared to just 4.1 in 2017, this is a marked drop.

That means that more employees are coming into work, even if they are sick. Researchers suggest a variety of causes for this. It could go back to that stress about job security. It could be a result of low wages. It could be a symptom of larger workplace issues. Whatever it is, the health of your coworkers plays a role in your own health.

Don’t Panic: Exercise Can Help These Problems

The change from working the local iron mine to mining for Bitcoin means our relationship with physical activity has changed. Now, instead of being integrated into our day through our work, we have to do it separately.

If you need to make a change in your work life ala "The Office," more power to you. But if you’re not so daring, or don’t link your mental health solely to a red stapler, there’s good news. Exercise can help you address many of these health concerns, and even help to reverse some of their effects. In fact, "The Harvard Business Review" even suggests that employers should encourage their staff to exercise more. With regular exercise, employees report benefits like:

    • Better concentration
    • Improved memory
    • Increased learning speed
    • Enhanced focus
    • Lower levels of stress

    All of these things make you more productive and can help you establish a better work-life balance.

    So how do you fit more exercise into your day when eight or more hours are devoted to the office? It’s actually easier than you think.

    10 Easy Exercises to Do at Work

    You can actually easily integrate a few exercises into your work day. While they probably won’t help you reach the recommended 30 minutes of moderate activity every day, if you’re not moving at all during the work day, it’s a great start.

      1. Leg planks: Sit on the edge of your chair and extend one leg fully. Hold it parallel with the floor for 10 seconds. Repeat the pose with your other leg. Perform this five times for each leg.
      2. Shoulder raises: Raise your shoulders up toward your eyes, hold the position for 10 seconds, then relax. You can do both shoulders at the same time, or alternate. Practice this 5 times.
      3. Chest opener: Press your hands together behind your back, sit up tall and hold this pose for 10 seconds.
      4. Go for a walk: Even if it’s just around the cubicle farm once or twice, or getting up to talk to a coworker instead of emailing them, a short walk is a great form of exercise and breaks up the workday.
      5. Take the stairs: The elevator might be nice, but taking a flight or two of stairs a few times a day is an excellent way to get your heart pumping and to get some more exercise in.
      6. Calf raises: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Stand up on your tip-toes, hold the pose, then slowly yourself down. Repeat this for three sets of 15.
      7. Wall sits: With your back against the wall, bend your knees and lower yourself down until your thighs are parallel with the floor. Hold this position for 15 seconds.
      8. Back twists: While seated, put your right arm behind your right hip. Twist to your right side and hold for 10 seconds. Repeat the exercise on the other side and do three sets.
      9. Desk chair core twist: While seated on a swivel chair, hold onto the desk in front of you. Using your core muscles only, twist and swivel the chair under you from side to side.
      10. Toe taps: In a rhythmic fashion, gently tap your toes under your desk. Doing so keeps your ankles from getting stiff and keeps blood flowing to your feet.

      Reach Your Health and Wellness Goals With Axis Labs

      While doing these exercises at work is a great way to get some movement in during the day, if you’re serious about taking care of yourself, you’ll want to hit the gym or workout on a regular basis. You can hit your fitness goals faster with the help of Axis Labs products. Lab tested, gym proven, our line up of pre-workout and amino recovery products are designed with your performance in mind. Order your sports nutrition products and supplements from Axis Labs today.

      While you’re at it, check out our exclusive Facebook group, All Axis Pass. Not only will you find a great community of fitness enthusiasts, but you’ll also be the first to know about exclusive offers and new product releases!

      Stacking Success: Your Guide To Supplement Stacks

      Stacking Success: Your Guide To Supplement Stacks

      In life, there are lots of things that are great on their own but are so much better when paired with something else. Like peanut butter and jelly, burgers and fries, Batman and Robin, piña coladas and getting caught in the rain. The same can be said for your sports nutrition supplements.

      Supplement stacks work together to offer you the best results possible. But if you’ve never tried a stack before, or even know what they are for that matter, the idea of taking a bunch of supplements all at once might be a little daunting. Don’t sweat it, because do you know what else makes for a great pair? You and Axis Labs. So let’s take a look at supplement stacks and what you need to know.

      What Are Supplement Stacks?

      Much in the same way that Them Crooked Vultures is a supergroup of rockstars from Led Zeppelin, Foo Fighters, and Queens of the Stone Age, supplement stacks are the supergroups of the sports nutrition world.

      Simply put, a stack is a collection of supplements that are used together to enhance your performance. Stacks feature a variety of products that are meant to work together to enhance your energy, aid your endurance levels, and assist you in recovering faster. To achieve these effects, you’ll find that many stacks use three or more products to cover all of your bases during your workout. While a supplement stack may not turn you into a rockstar, it can help you crush your fitness goals and feel like one.

      It’s All About Timing

      Your workout goes through phases as you exercise. That’s why you’ll want to include supplements that offer you different vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that you need during different parts of your workout.

      Pre-workout Products

      If you read our article on using your pre-workout effectively, you already have a good sense of what these are, and what they do for you. Basically, pre-workouts are meant to offer you the energy you need to get through your exercise routine. You’ll find a stimulant of some kind in your pre-workouts, like caffeine or creatine.

      Intra-Workout Products

      These are to be taken during your workout. Generally, you’ll find that an intra-workout product makes use of Branched-Chain Amino Acids. These help you increase your body’s capacity for exercise, and help to boost your body’s fat burning abilities.

      Post-Workout Products

      All the exercising in the world means nothing if you can’t sustain your gains. That’s why it’s vital to have a post-workout supplement too. You’ll often find proteins and carbohydrates in your post-workouts, as they enhance your muscle growth even after you’ve finished your workout.

      Which Supplements Should You Stack?

      A quick trip to the health and wellness store, even a walk down the vitamin aisle at the grocery store can lead to decision paralysis. There are just so many options to choose from that it can be hard to tell which supplements you need the most for your stack.

      Don’t lose your cool. Below you’ll find some of the most important supplements to utilize in your stack.

      Creatine

      As you’ll find out in our previous blog post, creatine naturally occurs in the cells of your muscles. Your body stores this naturally in the phosphocreatine that is found in your muscles. By supplementing with creatine, you can increase your body’s ability to produce adenosine triphosphate, which is your body’s primary energy molecule.

      You can get more creatine through your diet, but to get the amount you need for the demands that rigorous exercise puts on your body, supplementation is the best way to get it.

      Caffeine

      Caffeine is a natural stimulant and offers your body extra energy when you need it most. But more than just extra energy, studies have found that caffeine can enhance your performance by limiting your perception of muscle pain.

      When used in a pre-workout product, caffeine can increase the intensity and length of your workout. That could mean greater gains in less time.

      Glutamine

      You’ll find the amino acid glutamine in your skeletal muscles, where it helps your body synthesize protein and move nitrogen around where it’s needed. Glutamine also helps your immune and digestive systems stay healthy. While this amino acid is "conditionally essential," which means your body usually produces enough for your daily needs, you can quickly deplete your body of glutamine during strenuous exercise. That leads to the breakdown of your muscles and your immune system to weaken.

      Supplementing with glutamine can help keep your muscles strong and your immune system at its peak.

      Protein

      Within any good supplement stack should be a source of protein. Your body makes use of protein to develop, repair, and maintain your muscles. But our bodies can’t store extra protein, so when you exercise, you often exhaust any protein you have in your body.

      That makes protein a critical part of any post-workout supplementation. Studies have found that when taken after exercise, protein can help to accelerate recovery times, improve the functioning of your immune system, and stimulate the development and maintenance of lean body mass.

      BCAAs

      Leucine, isoleucine, and valine make up your essential amino acids or your Branched-Chain Amino Acids. These are "essential" because your body doesn’t produce them naturally. You have to get these amino acids through the foods you eat or the supplements you take.

      BCAAs are broken down during exercise to produce energy. When used before, during, and after your workout, you offer your body all of the energy it needs to keep exercising and then recover more quickly.

      Build Your Own, or Buy Off the Shelf?

      When it comes to using supplement stacks, you’ve got a seemingly endless litany of options. There are a ton of ways you can DIY your supplement stack to get the exact results your interested in. Or you can buy a premade stack. Both come with their advantages.

      Roll Your Own Stack

      Making your own stack offers you precise control over which supplements you’re using, how much you’re using, and when you’re using it. This allows you to mix and match the products that you know work best for your level of activity, your fitness goals, and your lifestyle in general.

      To get the most out of building your own stack, you’ll want to do a few things.

      • Start with quality supplements. Don’t just pick anything off the shelf at the grocery store or sports nutrition shop. Take the time to read the nutrition labels and understand what’s in each supplement. We take the quality and potency of our products, that’s why you’ll find an exhaustive label on the back of each Axis Labs product.
      • Work with a physician or trainer. If this is your first time building your own stack, a little guidance is never a bad thing. Working with a physician or personal trainer will help you pick the right supplements and quantities that meet your fitness goals.
      • Try the stack for a month before making any changes. You want to have a sense of how the combination of supplements in your stack affect you before you make any changes. At the end of the month, you can make a change, and repeat the process. Taking it slow allows you to make the perfect stack.

      Buy a Premade Stack

      If you’ve never used a supplement stack before, it’s not a bad idea to try a premade stack. Many sports nutrition companies will offer their own collection of stacks that target one set of exercise or health and wellness goals.

      But if you can tailor your supplements by making your own stacks, why would you want to buy a premade stack? It’s simple.

      • You already know the supplements work well together. When you build your own stacks, you run the risk of accidentally doubling up on certain supplements. For instance, if you take a stack that has nitric oxide and another with caffeine, you’ll find yourself experiencing jitters throughout the day. Premade stacks are offered together because the company already knows that they work best when taken together.
      • You get a high-quality product. Another advantage of buying a premade stack is that it takes the guesswork out of your supplementation regimen. If you already like one brand and you trust them, why wouldn’t you use their other products?
      • You save money. An obvious benefit for anyone. When purchased individually and from different brands, you might find that your stack of supplements gets expensive fast. This could keep you from using your stack as often since you aren’t ready to stomach the costs of buying another round of supplements. When you buy a premade stack, you're getting a package discount on the products. In fact, Axis Labs even offers a recurring order discount, so if you like the effects of a certain stack, you can ensure that you’ve always got it on hand and that you get it at a lower cost.

      Get Your Supplement Stacks Today

      We weren’t just making things up earlier when we said that you and Axis Labs makes a great pair. That’s because we’ve got a supplement stack for just about any health and wellness goal you can think of.

      Trying to lose weight? There’s a stack for that.

      Looking to get shredded and lean? Yup, there’s a stack for that.

      Want to boost your testosterone? You know the drill, there’s a stack for that too.

      While we’ve got our own stacks to offer, we’re confident you can pair our other products together to create the ideal supplement stack for your needs and goals. Check out the complete lineup of Axis Labs products today!