Taking branched-chain amino acid supplements may decrease fatigue during prolonged aerobic exercise, maintain muscle mass and aid in muscle recovery after exercise, according to the International Society of Sports Nutrition’s position stand on protein and exercise. Examples of branched-chain amino acids include leucine, isoleucine and valine. You can also get all your essential amino acids by eating high-quality, complete proteins found in lean meats, poultry, seafood, eggs, soy and dairy products; but amino acid supplements may be more convenient for athletes to consume prior to, during and immediately after athletic events.
ENERGY FOR ATHLETES
Although amino acids and proteins play a crucial role in muscle development, maintenance and repair after workouts, carbohydrates are actually an athlete’s main fuel source during and after exercise. According to Brown University, carbs should make up 65 percent of an athlete’s total calorie intake, or about 488 grams of carbs per day for an athlete who eats 3,000 calories a day.