Here are 5 key essentials that will help you not miss out

Get the most out of your 2019 "Get Fit" regimen

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Kicking-off the new year with the new you? I'm sure you are well off to a great start with your new health program, breaking a sweat every day, eating the healthiest meals, or maybe even intermittent fasting. Then life is golden right? …. maybe not so much. Whether you haven't had time to stay consistent or you haven't quite started yet, life happens. But sticking to your new year's resolution is going to take commitment. So, this means coming up with a plan and sticking to it. And regardless of when you jump start into your goals, try to keep in mind no matter what you do in the gym or what you eat, the other key essentials that will put a bow on your health program would be the supplements you take to compliment your workouts and healthy lifestyle.

Here are 5 key supplements, you may want to contemplate adding to your routine:

1) Whey Protein

Whey protein is a milk protein that absorbs into the body quickly. When your body digests the protein, it will start to stimulate the repair of the tissue. For years studies have shown taking whey protein immediately or up to 30 minutes after is essential. This 30-minute window is known as an "anabolic window", which means it is a short period of time in which your muscles are like a sponge for protein. Although there are more and more recent studies coming out that suggests the 30-minute window is longer and may not be limited to after exercise. Let's face it, we all forget sometimes after a workout to drink protein. And when we do remember it is not always in that 30-minute time frame. While there are many forms of protein out there, whey protein contains a wide range of amino acids, which are absorbed quickly. And when you consume a protein like whey immediately after your work out, you're supplying the body with amino acids they need to repair and grow when it is most beneficial. Studies have shown that it can help with losing body fat, help increase strength and muscle gain. Whey protein also contains bioactive that may offer other health benefits.

2) Pre-Workout

Although there is a slew of pre-workout supplements on the market, you-have-to-do-your-research-here! For the record, I am a super fan of pre-workout, but hey it works for some people better than others. And I am a fan of it on certain days. Not everyone is going to be in the best mood to work out every day after a long day at work or whatever it may be. Sometimes we all just need that kick start to get in the mood and get going. So, on those days… yes pre-workout is a must. For those other days that I am dying to get into the gym and get my work out, I stay away from the pre-workout. One of the reasons, like most supplements, pre-workout formulas are not regulated by the FDA for safety. Also, only if the product is certified through a third-party regulatory body, like NSF or informed choice, will you know that the product contains what it said it contains. Those organizations follow a strict vetting process to verify the quality and purity of supplements. There are also ways to fuel to body with the right foods that give the body similar "pre-work out" boosts. A banana or a sliced piece of bread with some jam can give you 15 grams of carbs, and that slight boost you need.

3) BCAAs

Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are the building blocks of muscle. Three of the nine essential amino acids are leucine, isoleucine and valine which are eventually condensed into powder form for consumption. However, some protein-rich food products like dairy products, fish, meats, and eggs contain many BCAAs. These amino acids are super important to maintaining the muscle you have or are building. They help prevent your body from breaking down muscle and using it as energy (catabolism). The awesome part is you can drink BCAA's any time of the day, before work out, or after work out.

4) Beta Alanine or Casein

Onto another amino acid, beta-alanine. Beta alanine promotes and maintains muscle endurance and output, supports muscle capacity, and fights muscle fatigue. According to the International Olympic Committee, they have earmarked beta alanine as a supplement that can directly improve sports performance.

Casein is protein that is slowly digested into the system. This is primarily due to its structure since its coagulation in the stomach slows the rate of gastric emptying. When you sleep for a long number of hours your body is fasting. During your sleep your body is breaking down muscle fibers. If you are taking casein, it will help rebuild those tissues, as you sleep and as you lose muscle fibers from training.

5) Vitamins

While there are many vitamins out there, here are my top 5 for a healthy lifestyle:

Vitamin A- Healthy eyes, growth and development, teeth, skin

Vitamin B-Energy, Immunity, iron absorption

Vitamin C- immune system, repair of all body tissues, formation of collagen

Vitamin D-Strong healthy bones and teeth, great source of calcium

Vitamin E- healthy skin and eyes, blood circulation

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Houston stays hot at the plate

Astros overpower White Sox in series opener

Abraham Toro made a loud return to the Astros' lineup on Thursday night. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

With a two-game sweep of the struggling Rangers behind them, the Astros welcomed in a much fiercer opponent in the Chicago White Sox, owners of the best record in the AL, for an exciting four-game set. It was all Astros in this one, as their offense would once again propel them to a lopsided win.

Final Score: Astros 10, White Sox 2

Astros' Record: 40-28, second in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Jose Urquidy (5-3)

Losing Pitcher: Dylan Cease (5-3)

Houston builds a big lead

Houston wasted no time in the bottom of the first, getting two on base on a single and an error to set up a three-run home run for Michael Brantley, putting them ahead 3-0 before Chicago and Dylan Cease could record an out. They extended the lead in the bottom of the fourth, putting two on base on a walk and hit batter before an RBI ground-rule double by Carlos Correa brought in one. That left runners on second and third, and Abraham Toro took advantage by scoring both on a two-RBI single, then with one out, Jose Altuve hit a sac fly to make it a 7-0 lead.

Urquidy brings the good stuff

Meanwhile, Jose Urquidy was cruising through Chicago's lineup. He allowed just one hit through the first five scoreless innings but would let the White sox get on the board in the top of the sixth after a leadoff double and two-out RBI single. They added one more on another single, making it 7-2 before Urquidy could get out of the inning.

Jose Altuve got one of those runs back in the bottom of the inning, hitting his fourth home run in three games to make it a six-run game at 8-2. Urquidy returned to the mound in the top of the seventh, getting a quick 1-2-3 frame to end his successful night. His final line: 7.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 93 P.

Astros take the opener

In the bottom of the seventh, Houston pushed the lead to eight runs with a leadoff single, setting up a two-out two-run homer by Toro, bringing him to four RBI on the night. With Urquidy's night over, Brandon Bielak came in as the first reliever out of the bullpen, sitting down Chicago in order. Ralph Garza Jr. came in to get an inning of work to finish off the game with Houston's large lead. He made it a quick one, with Chicago going down in order one more time as the Astros took the opener and notched their fourth-straight win.

Up Next: Game two of this entertaining series will be another 7:10 PM Central Start on Friday. Carlos Rodon (6-2, 1.89 ERA) will try to help Chicago even the series, while Luis Garcia (5-4, 2.98 ERA) will try to put Houston up 2-0.

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