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Starting a Fitness Program

In the new year, health and fitness are a concern for many types of people. Some of the most common resolutions are diet and exercise, but proper supplementation is important too! Exercising consistently is certainly healthy, but if your body does not have the proper fuel, you may lack energy or receive injuries from doing so. Whether you are starting an exercise program or are a competitive athlete, these following supplements are foundational & supportive for your health.

Multivitamins & Magnesium

Exercise requires electrolytes to move your muscles and increases demand for minerals to support your bones. Electrolytes are used for many things in your body. Your muscles use them for contracting and movement. Your bones need to use electrolytes to build them and make them stronger. If there are deficiencies with these, your muscles may cramp and become sore. Your bones may become weaker. In addition to a nutrient-rich diet, you may want to consider a supplement.

 Beginner: Are you having muscle cramps or trouble sleeping since you began exercising?  These may be signs you need more magnesium.  Try an absorbable magnesium supplement like OM Reacted Magnesium or Evolve Magnesium Glycinate every evening.

Athlete: We recommend a high quality multivitamin like AlphaBase along with your healthy diet.  

Vitamin D

Exercising can take a toll on the body, and it is important to keep your bone strength and immune health up. Vitamin D is needed for both. It helps you absorb calcium from your diet to build bones. Exercise can help strengthen muscles and bones, but if you are not getting enough calcium or vitamin D in your diet your body will not have enough to use. That means it will need to break down bones to get calcium which can increase risks for fractures or injuries.

 Many people are deficient in Vitamin D and do not realize it.  Even if you are outside in the sun often for your exercise don’t assume you have enough Vitamin D!  Vitamin D takes 48 hours to make and it can be washed off the skin by showering.

Beginner and athlete: Ask your pharmacist which Vitamin D dose would be right for you. Vitamin D levels can be easily tested with a kit available at some Hometown Pharmacy locations.

CoQ 10

Coenzyme Q10 is integral to your body’s energy production. CoQ10 depletion can cause low energy and muscle or body aches.  

 Beginner: Our CoQ10 levels naturally decrease after age 35.  Taking a statin medication for your cholesterol further depletes CoQ10, which causes many of the well-known side effects of statins.  I recommend 100mg of a quality absorbable CoQ10 supplement for anyone over 40 who exercises.

Athlete: You have high energy needs.  Consider a CoQ10 supplement.  Frequent headaches can be associated with CoQ10 depletion.  

High-Quality Fish Oil

Fish Oil is a well known supplement that people generally use for heart health. It also has anti-inflammatory effects. It is used by the body to synthesize natural anti-inflammatory molecules (Source: OrthOmega Webinar). High quality fish oil supplements are high in EPA and DHA, which are the compounds needed for these effects.

Beginner: For those who are beginning exercise programs to improve heart health, fish oil is an excellent choice. Fish oil works to naturally lower triglycerides and will help your progress on fitness.

Athlete: Working out long-term can lead to inflammation, either from a recent injury or from overuse. Fish oil will help lower the inflammation and will also improve joint health to help you exercise to the fullest!


Inflammation is a common problem that all people face. Those more prone to inflammation may end up using too many NSAIDs, which can lead to upset stomach and other long term health concerns. Traumeric is a high quality turmeric supplement that can naturally reduce inflammation. It contains all compounds of the turmeric root, while most supplements only contain one compound called curcumin. The complete turmeric root regulates enzymes involved in the inflammatory response, and improves joint and GI health.

Beginner: The toughest part about beginning exercise are the sore muscles and joints. Taking Traumeric will help keep the inflammation down, although it will not prevent short term inflammation from injuries.

Athlete: There are many chronic inflammation injuries that come from overuse, such as strain or tendonitis. Traumeric can help improve them and get you back to exercise fully!


Are you frequently having colds and other illnesses? When people talk about preventing colds, some of the common products have Vitamin A, Vitamin C, or Zinc. WholeMune contains parts of the cell-wall in baker’s yeast. This is taken up by the immune system and used to activate neutrophils, making their response faster. 

Athlete Testimonial

I am LaNea, a pharmacy student and a college athlete in cross-country and track. Competing at a high level without proper nutrition was very hard on my body, resulting in several injuries and low energy. I currently use many of these supplements for my health. First, I started taking the multivitamin Alpha Base since I was fatigued and having trouble with my workouts, and it made a tremendous difference. It is hard to get good nutrition with the college diet, and the quality and efficacy of the supplements are absolutely worth the price. I also take Vitamin D to give the multivitamin a boost. In the winter all I have exposed to sunlight is my face, which shows that even competitive athletes need the extra supplements. I also take WholeMune to prevent colds that may arise. Exercising takes a toll on the body and may make it more susceptible to colds, which also makes it harder to return to exercise. The WholeMune has helped me become healthier and I have had few colds after taking it. The Traumeric was also a game changer for me. I am susceptible to inflammation, which often shows up as forms of tendonitis. I had a similar injury, plantar fasciitis (inflammation of the arches) for almost a year. I took the Traumeric and the inflammation was resolved, even after standard therapy and NSAIDs had failed. It still helps me reduce other chronic inflammation that I get. Taking these supplements have helped me gain new grounds as an athlete, and I highly recommend them to anyone who wants to exercise.

*Article co-written by Sarah Bartel and LeNea Bartel

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Posted by Sarah Bartel
Sarah Bartel
Sarah Bartel
Pharmacist & Partner: Algoma Hometown Pharmacy and Kewaunee Hometown Pharmacy

Learn more about me and my pharmacies by visiting their pages here:
Algoma Hometown Pharmacy

Kewaunee Hometown Pharmacy