We know that eating healthily, buying supplements and retaining a gym membership can soon start to add up, putting you between a rock and a hard place.
We are in the same position as you, so we thought that we would share a few tips and trick we use to save money here and there!
Supplements – Know what you are buying
Never assume anything. Make sure you know what powder you are buying – whether it is a lean protein, lean gainer or mass gainer. Gainer powders are cheaper in comparison to lean protein powders – their relative composition is lower in protein (expensive to produce) and higher in carbohydrates and fats (cheaper to produce). So make sure to clarify that the powder you are about to buy is, in fact, what you want.
Lean whey protein is generally marketed in 2 forms – CONCENTRATE and ISOLATE.
- Isolate is of 90-95% protein concentration
- Concentrate varies between 25-89% protein concentrations (generally around 80%)
(There are other differentiations between concentrate and isolate – I will address these fully in another article)
The % protein is calculated as protein per 100g powder. For example, a powder that contains 70g protein for every 100g powder is said to be of 70% protein concentration. This is displayed in the ‘Nutrition Facts’ box, alongside calories, total carbohydrate, total fat etc.
Always, always, always check the nutritional information and constituent ingredients
So when buying a whey protein concentrate, make sure to check the concentration of protein you are getting – generally speaking, the higher the protein concentration, the better.
By law, the companies should also have to list the constituent ingredients. CHECK THEM. They are listed by composition in descending order eg. The ingredient that makes up the most significant proportion of the products is listed first, the second most significant listed second and so on.
In lean whey powders, make sure the first ingredient is whey, not an inferior source of protein such as soy.
In mass gainers, the key first ingredient should be a high molecular weight carbohydrate (usually waxy maize) or dextrose, not fructose or even worse, high fructose corn sugar (HFCS).
It’s not all about the brand
Try to stay away from major brands when buying protein powders. These companies play on their advertising, reputation and exposure to enable them to charge sky high prices on tubs of whey protein – and even more for protein/carbohydrate gainer powders. We’re NOT saying these companies are pedalling bad products – just that their products are expensive in comparison to products of similar or better quality. Look into newer or less mainstream brands, you will find their tubs of whey selling for around £35-40.
Think about it, Read about it
Take a step back and think about it, before pulling out your plastic. Do you so tired that really need a pre or intra work out supplement? Do you really need that ‘test booster?’ Are you buying a product just because it is endorsed by a particular body builder or fitness model?
Read up on if that pre-work out anything other than caffeine and beta-alanine or that intra, BCAAs and creatine. It can be cheaper to buy the constituent ingredients and make your own supplements – this also gives you the advantage of tweaking the doses so that you get the maximum effect!
I’ve seen first-hand, bodybuilders laughing, when asked what products the use, replying ‘I only use products from (insert sponsor-company), of course.’ There are often a lot of other ‘factors’ as to why body builders are as monstrously large as they are.
There are a lot more websites around than you might be aware of. Here are a few of ones we use…and have exclusive LDNM Discounts for.
Click here and Enter Code ‘LDNM’ for 12% off your order.
I also recommend signing up to these companies newsletters/Twitter/Facebook as well, to get the lowdown on deals as and when they appear.
DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK
Always ask (politely!) for companies to throw in free samples when you place orders – either do this by phone or fill in the ‘special instructions’ box during the online ordering process.
If you regularly place large orders from the same company, it is worth calling them and trying to negotiate a discount. Setting up a discount works in favour of both of you, guaranteeing the company your business in future and saving you money on your orders.
Alternatively, if you are regularly ordering products of a specific brand, it is worth going straight to the producer/distributor of said brand and asking if they will sell straight to you. This often requires you to put in larger orders, but cuts out the middleman – saving you a small fortune.