Got no bucks for supps? There's hope yet. Use these six tips to stretch your budget and keep your gains on track
May 25, 2009
>> For nine, effective money-saving supplement stacks, read "Supps on a Budget" in the July issue of FLEX, on newsstands now.
While by now, many of you are probably stashing money in your mattress as your preferred method of "saving," you should remember that the best approach is to watch how you spend it - penny saved, penny earned and all that jazz.
Here are six ways that you can save on your supplement expenses which, for some bodybuilders, can be significant each month. Hopefully, these lessen the blow to your bank account.
1 BUY BIG TO GET BIG
Buying larger containers may end up costing more up front but they are cheaper per serving and will save you more in the long run. For example, skip the cheap 2-pound jug of protein and get at least a 5-pound. For capsules and tablets, the bottle with more of them in it is always the cheaper by in the long run.
2 LEARN TO CHECK LABELS
There are many good brands that have ingredients you're looking for for tens of cents cheaper per dose than others. But watch dosing of the ingredients you are looking for, especially in supplements that stack ingredients. If "BRAND A" NO booster is $10 cheaper than "BRAND B," but "BRAND A" only has 1 gram of arginine per dose, while "BRAND B" has 3 grams, the $10 saving will only save you from adding any muscle.
3 SHOP AROUND
Maybe one store is selling a particular brand of whey protein for $15 cheaper this month. It takes some work to price out real life stores but browsing online sites makes it much easier to compare sites for their prices of certain brands.
4 CONSIDER SHIPPING COSTS
When buying online, your grand total of products may be more than you expected due to shipping costs. If site A is selling a brand of whey protein for only $30, but they charge you $5 for shipping, that's $35 total for the whey. That's not a savings over the same whey you can purchase on site B for $32, but offers free shipping. Some sites require you to purchase a certain amount to get free shipping, so plan your buying of all your supplements wisely (or just head to the store).
5 DIY STACKS
Often when you buy supplements that stack many ingredients in one product, you pay a premium for the convenience of taking all three as one product. Buying all three as separate ingredients and rigging a "do it yourself" stack by taking them at the same time, might cost more at the outset but can save you money in the long run as the ingredients tend to be cheaper by themselves for the same total amount.
6 GO CLUBBING
We don't care if you're afraid of commitment. Signing up for member discounts could save you boatloads of dough. Many supplement store chains and websites offer incentives to repeat customers or those who join their club. Members are often notified of certain sales and are often given savings (for example a $20 off coupon on your next purchase) when they have racked up a certain amount of spending or points.