Top Supplements for Size and Success

By David Sautter

Armed with your muscle-building workout and your gains-focused meal plan, you’re ready to bulk up. Getting big is a lot of work and you’ll want to give yourself every advantage you can.

When taken alongside a muscle-focused diet and exercise program, supplements are an excellent way to support your performance, recovery, and growth. Let’s take a look at the best supplement for size and success.

Best Muscle Building Ingredients

Whey Protein

Protein synthesis is the creation of muscle protein, and this process is essential for gaining size. When muscle protein synthesis is greater than protein breakdown, you have a positive protein balance and an ideal environment for growth.

Whey protein contains the full spectrum of amino acids, the building blocks of muscle tissue, and it has been shown in several studies to be ideal for promoting protein synthesis and muscle mass. (1

Branched-Chain Amino Acids

Often abbreviated as BCAAs, this supplement is made up of leucine, isoleucine, and valine. These amino acids are the product of protein digestion. As the building blocks of muscle tissue, branched-chain amino acids have been shown to trigger protein synthesis and support muscle growth.

One unique feature of BCAAs is that they are anti-catabolic or they prevent muscle protein breakdown due to intense training sessions, fasted workouts, and low-calorie diets. (2)


Creatine is naturally produced in the body from the amino acids glycine and arginine; however, it is quickly used up during physical activity since more than 90% is stored in muscle tissue. Creatine plays a unique role in helping you to build size because it is broken down into a usable form of energy called adenosine triphosphate or ATP.

Supplementing with creatine as a part of your pre- and intra-workout routine has been shown to increase strength and power output during your workouts. This boost in volume can support the workload needed to achieve muscle hypertrophy or growth. (3)

Zinc, Magnesium, and Vitamin B6 (ZMA) 

ZMA is a mineral and vitamin blend of zinc, magnesium, and vitamin B6, all of which have been shown to support muscle building:

  • Zinc is necessary for healthy growth hormone levels, a key factor in muscle repair and growth.
  • Magnesium can support protein synthesis and lower inflammation in muscle tissue.
  • Vitamin B6 helps with blood flow, nutrient delivery, and testosterone support.

All three of these ingredients are great on their own, but together they form a powerhouse of muscle-building nutrients. I’d argue that ZMA is far more important as a muscle builder because the effect it has on the quality of your sleep 

Remember that growth occurs when you are getting shut-eye. When you skip on sleep, you miss out on growth hormone release, muscle repair, and essential processes for growth. Taken 30 to 60 minutes before bed, ZMA has been shown to improve sleep quality and length. (4)


Have you ever taken a pre-workout supplement and felt a sudden tingling rush down the back of your neck? Chances are that your supplement contained beta-alanine, an amino acid that is famous for that flushed feeling.

Beta-alanine is a must when you want to build muscle. First, beta-alanine has been shown to increase levels of carnosine, a compound that helps exercise performance. Created from the amino acids alanine and histidine, carnosine has been shown to increase exercise capacity and performance, especially during high-intensity workouts. (5

Studies also show that when combining beta-alanine with creatine produces significant gains in lean muscle tissue. (6

Supplements for Size and Success

Pre-Workout: In order to hit that ideal hypertrophy set and repetition range, you’ll need energy. A balanced pre-workout supplement will include fuel for body and mind such as caffeine and huperzine A.

Whey Protein: As soon as your workout is finished, be sure to reach for a whey protein blend shake. As discussed above, whey protein has been shown to kickstart recovery and growth.

Recovery Supplement: Bedtime means grow time. Ensuring you get at least eight hours of sleep each night is a necessity to recover and see results. Taking a sleep support supplement can help to maximize levels of growth hormone and protein synthesis, both of which are essential for results.

Do you have a line of supplements on your kitchen counter in preparation for bulking season? Which supplements have produced the best results?

Let us know! @Cellucor on Facebook and Instagram. 

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Alpha Amino BCAA

Alpha Amino is the ultimate performance, hydration and recovery sports drink powder. Its premium formula is built on the power of amino acids and formulated with ingredients that promote healthy fluid balance. Alpha Amino has 14 Amino Acids including a well-studied 2:1:1 BCAA ratio. These Amino Acids support the body’s ability to fuel skeletal muscles, preserve muscle glycogen stores and reduce protein breakdown.

  • Performance BCAA’s with 0g Sugar
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C4 Sport! If you are a collegiate athlete or play sports competitively, C4 Sport is the perfect pre-workout for you because it is NSF Certified for Sport. C4 will help you tackle your training in the gym and on the field.

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  • 135mg of caffeine
  • Contains CarnoSyn® Beta Alanine, an amino acid, patented and clinically studied form of beta-alanine that has been shown to support muscular endurance
  • NSF certification is trusted by the MLB, NFL, NBA, NCAA, and everyday athletes alike
C4 Original

C4 Original! This is our best-selling pre-workout with more than 1.3 billion servings sold! C4 Original is perfect for you if you are new to the pre-workout game or you are seeking a lower stimulant C4.

  • Perfect for energy, focus and pumps
  • Good if you’re at the start your fitness journey/want to step up your workouts
  • 150mg of caffeine

Pro tip: If you are just starting out on a pre-workout, take half a scoop to assess tolerance level.*

Also available in convenient, bottled, ON THE GO formula!

C4 Ripped

C4 Ripped! If your goal is to lose weight, C4 Ripped is the perfect pre-workout for you.

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  • 150mg of caffeine
  • L-Carnitine Tartrate
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C4 Extreme! If you love energy drinks and are always on the hunt for higher caffeine levels, C4 Extreme is for you.

  • 200mg Caffeine Explosive Energy®
  • 2g CarnoSyn® Beta- Alanine
  • 1g Nitramax (NO3-C)™
  • 1g Creatine Nitrate (NO3-T®)
C4 Ultimate

C4 Ultimate! If you’re a seasoned gym goer who loves pre-workouts and you’re looking for a fully-loaded, high-impact pre-workout, C4 Ultimate has what you need.

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  • Per scoop: 300mg caffeine, 6g Citrulline Malate, 3.2g of CarnoSyn® Beta Alanine, 1.5g Nitrosigine®, 1.5g Creatine Nitrate, plus a powerful blend of nootropics
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  • Formulated for the ultimate – not entry level

Also available in convenient, bottled, ON THE GO formula!

BCAA Sport

BCAA Sport! If you are a collegiate athlete – or play sports competitively, BCAA Sport is a perfect stimulant-free option for you, because it is NSF® Certified for Sport®! BCAA Sport supports all day hydration & recovery, to maximize your workout results

  • All Day Hydration & Recovery
  • Supports All Day Hydration & Recovery
  • Zero Stimulants & Zero Sugar
  • 4G BCAA’s, 2.25G Added Amino Acids, 2G Added Glutamine, and Added Electrolytes
  • NSF® Certified for Sport®

CN3&trad; combines 3 forms of Creatine into a stimulant-free 3-in-1 Creatine complex! Providing 6.25 total grams consisting of micronized Creatine Monohydrate, Creatine Nitrate, and Creatine Hydrochloride. CN3&trad; is an amazing product to be taken before, during, or after a workout. Looking to amplify Strength & Pumps? CN3&trad; has got you covered!

  • Strength & Pump Amplifier
  • Stimulant free
  • Includes Creatine Monohydrate, Creatine Nitrate, and Creatine HCL
  • Unflavored or flavored

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  • Can be taken standalone, or paired with C4 Ripped (C4 Ripped contains stimulants)
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