Creatine Benefits: the Best Muscle Building Supplement | Not Your Average Fitness Tips

Creatine Benefits: the Best Muscle Building Supplement

I’ve used my fair share of supplements over the years and I’m convinced that creatine is the best muscle building supplement.  That being said, my personal experience pales in comparison to the vast number of studies that have been done touting myriad creatine benefits.  In fact, Brad Pilon analyzed many such studies in How Much Protein and concluded creatine resulted in more muscle gains than post workout nutrition.  By supplementing with creatine, you can increase strength, increase higher intensity exercise performance, and increase muscle volume and growth.

Creatine is a natural component found primarily in the body’s skeletal muscle.  The most prevalent sources of ingested creatine are meat and fish.  After ingestion, creatine is transported to muscles to increase their energy levels by increasing the availability of ATP.  The increased ATP provides an extra kick during repeated bouts of intense exercise which helps the body build more muscle.

Benefits of Creatine

While creatine does help growth in muscle fibers due to the ability to lift heavier and more intensely, it primarily results in muscle volumization.  Muscle volumization is caused by fluid retention.  As muscles become saturated with creatine, they attract and retain water giving the muscles a fuller appearance.  When you first start taking a creatine supplement, you are likely to gain 5-10lbs in a month because of this water retention.  It doesn’t represent true lean muscle growth in my opinion but the gains are legitimately fat free.  Sadly, these gains in muscle volumization will disappear if you take a month off from creatine.  However, any gains in muscle fibers and muscle strength will be maintained.

This diagram shows that ATP/creatine is more important for anaerobic exercise (short, high intensity routines that involve “fast twitch” muscles) than aerobic exercise (long endurance routines such as steady state cardio)

Creatine Side Effects

The great thing about creatine is that it has been extensively studied and no major side effects have been found.  That being said, there are some minor considerations.  One potential drawback is that your weight will increase due to water retention.  This can be a concern for certain types of athletes.  Additionally, some people experience gastrointestinal issues such as stomach cramps or nausea.  Dehydration is also a problem.  Both gastrointestinal and dehydration problems are solved by ensuring adequate fluid consumption when you are taking creatine.

A more adverse potential side effect is kidney problems.  This is possible if you abuse creatine by taking too high a dose for too long a time.  Finally, I’d recommend checking with a doctor if you are on any other medications to make sure creatine supplements do not conflict, especially those on high blood pressure drugs.

John Barban of the Adonis Effect and Vince Delmonte of No-Nonsense Muscle Building discuss creatine:

To Load or Not to Load

Most creatine supplements recommend taking 20 grams of creatine for the first 4-5 days.  This is known as loading.  The theory is that you saturate your muscles with creatine as rapidly as possible.  However, at the end of 30 days, the results won’t be much different than if you just had the 5 grams per day maintenance level.  You will merely see results faster by loading.  One point of caution related to the side effects is that you are more likely to have an upset stomach if you take too much creatine in too short a time period without adequate fluids.

Creatine Supplementation: Before or After Workouts

Some people think it makes sense to have creatine before a workout because of the aforementioned strength building qualities.  However, most studies have found that creatine is most effective when taken after a workout.  There are also concerns with taking creatine before a workout, mainly dehydration.  After a workout, your body is primed to absorb creatine.  Some tout the benefits of taking creatine with a high glycemic liquid like grape juice, but simply mixing with water works just fine in my experience.  Don’t go out of your way to ingest extra sugar unless it happens to be part of your post workout nutrition.  On days when you don’t exercise, you can take creatine any time.

In general, you might want to take a month off from creatine supplementation to cleanse your system.  Additionally, cycled strategically, creatine can help you “shrink wrap” your muscles.  Click below and watch video #3 where Rusty Moore of Visual Impact Muscle Building describes a workout routine designed to do just that:

Creatine = Best Muscle Building Supplement

If you want to increase the strength and size of your muscles, look no further than creatine.  Creatine benefits are well documented and side effects are limited.  I would recommend using 100% pure micronized creatine monohydrate (I like Optimum Nutrition).  Mix it with water or a high GI drink.  Whether you load or don’t load, over the long run, you’ll still receive all the benefits of creatine.  Used correctly, creatine is the best muscle building supplement and can help you add 5-10lbs of fat free muscle.

64 Responses to “Creatine Benefits: the Best Muscle Building Supplement”

  • Okay, this is getting a little weird. I just wrote a post about the same thing, creatine as one of the only supplements that actually work!

    Oh well, at least we have different takes on this subject. Of course mine has to do with me being a goof and yours is more technical and informative! Good job! It’s like when a girl sees another girl wearing the same dress at the prom! Maybe we should call each other before hand.

  • Dave,

    I just started taking creatine a couple of weeks ago for the Visual Impact bonus phase. This is the first time I’ve ever used it in my life, but after reading up on it, I’m convinced that it is legit, if used correctly. Because it’s natural, I’m not really skeptical like I am with many other supplements.

    Alykhan

  • Cool topic explain a lot but whether it helps or not I guess there is only one way to find out.
    I think i’ll try it out for a month and see what happens.
    Since I don’t eat meat but some fish it might help to make up for those.
    Raymond

  • Kelly,
    Very amusing take on creatine. I wanted to delve into how worthless other supplements are, but had too much to say about how to get the best benefits of creatine.

    Alykhan,
    Hope the bonus phase for Visual Impact goes well. Creatine is one of the best researched supplements so health problems aren’t a big concern. Just keep drinking fluids.

    Raymond,
    Hopefully you have good results with creatine. It works for about 80% of people. Generally it’s less effective for people who already have a high meat/fish diet. Since you’re not a meat eater, I expect you’ll see good results. Just be cognizant that your weight will increase. It’s all fat free gains, but sometimes people get scared of the scale.

    Dave

  • Mark:

    I’ve been back on creatine for 3 weeks after being off it for years, already seeing massive results in strength and endurance, also muscle volume is very noticeable for such a short period of time.

    funny thing is, my creatine is 2 years out of date and all lumpy but still producing noticeable results.

    I’m getting some new stuff on payday though, just because it’s so cheap.

  • Yup. Creatine works and is proven. I dig it. I take 5g just about every day after my workouts. It makes a world of difference, especially if you’re lifting heavy. The visual results are pretty awesome, too.

    -Drew

  • Mark,
    It is impressive how fast creatine works. I’m glad you’ll be getting new creatine…no reason to use 2 year old creatine when it’s relatively inexpensive, especially given its effectiveness.

    Drew,
    You summed it up nicely…effective, proven, 5g per day after a workout and helps you get stronger and look better.

    Dave

  • Bob:

    Im realy ill at the minnet and always feeling tired and sleeping i just took some creatine and now im buzzing

  • eva george:

    Major side effect of creatine is kidney problems,for bodybuilding creatine monohydrate provides the best results compared to phosphates.
    reference: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/effect-of-creatine-on-kidneys.html
    High levels of creatinine in blood could occures due to kidneys dysfunction to eliminate this by-product of creatine.
    People who want to use creatine for bodybuilding must consult physician before using it and regularly go through medical checkups.
    Hope this info might be useful…

  • Eva,
    As I mentioned in the post, I’d say a potential side effect is kidney problems. I haven’t really seen a definitive study that says creatine causes kidney problems. In fact, I’ve seen a few that show no effect over the long term. However, as with any supplement, it’s best to check with a doctor and cycle on/off to avoid potential long term problems.
    Thanks,
    Dave

  • Toni:

    Dave,

    I went and bought a small box of 2.9oz. Protein Shots today. I’m getting sick of ‘stuffing’ myself with hard-boiled eggs and/or cottage cheese for protein. Anyway, the box said to take 1-3 vials per day depending on your training needs. I took one right after my workout. I think more than one vial is overkill for someone like me.

    The taste wasn’t as bad as I was expecting; it was grape flavored. Anyhow, do I need to take one of these daily or just on my lifting days (M, W, F)? I’m assuming it wouldn’t be on my maintenance days but I wasn’t sure.

    Also, what do you think of the shots as opposed to the whey powder or is it a matter of preference? The Muscle Milk seemed like glorified milk to me and kind of on the expensive side. Also, the protein powder eerily reminded me of baby formula and I remember the mess that used to create so I nixed that idea. Also, I heard some of the powders are godawful in taste so I didn’t exactly know which one tasted best. The shots seemed very convenient, easy to use and pleasantly-flavored. Plus, the price was decent considering how many vials they gave you.

    Thanks in advance.

  • Toni,
    My first question, are you sure you’re not already getting enough protein? Don’t buy into the bodybuilding mentality that more protein = more muscle. You can read the following article for more on that:

    http://www.notyouraveragefitnesstips.com/health-and-nutrition/how-much-protein-do-i-need-per-day

    Second, are you just drinking this as a post workout shake? If so, you could consider substituting with fat free chocolate milk if you like the taste better:

    http://www.notyouraveragefitnesstips.com/health-and-nutrition/post-workout-nutrition-what-to-eat-after-workout

    As usual, I’ve given you more info to read than direct answers. Overall though, if you like the shots, then stick with them.

    Dave

  • Toni:

    I KNEW you were going to caution me against them, lol.
    I don’t like chocolate milk for a variety of reasons. I’ll take into consideration what you said and make a more informed decision. Thanks.

  • Toni
    I wouldn’t say I cautioned against them…just no need to waste money if you’re already getting enough protein in your current diet. If you want to simply eat more calories, maybe it’s worthwhile although there are plenty of other healthy snacks that you could substitute (nuts, fruit, etc.).
    Dave

  • Toni:

    Oh, sorry, I didn’t mean to twist your words, Dave.

    Anyway, speaking of supplements, have you heard of Force Factor? A friend of mine sent me a link to their home page and I was absolutely floored. You HAVE to google them for a really good laugh. The bodybuilder that they use for the advertisement seriously looks like the Incredible Hulk jacked up a thousand-fold! He’s bald and veiny and just HUGE!! The. Most. Disgusting. Thing. Ever.

    I mean, listen, I’m all for taking a little help every now and then to help you safely achieve your fitness goals (in moderation) but THAT goes beyond anything rational or sane IMO.

  • Toni,
    No need to apologize. Just wanted to let you know you weren’t doing anything wrong by having extra protein. Just questioning whether you really needed it or not. Unfortunately I see the Force Factor ads everywhere…for some reason a lot of guys still think bigger is always better. Male dominance thing I guess!
    Dave

  • dave:

    taking 100% gold standard whey protein at the moment every day after training, i still getting tired after an hour in gym and i was thinking of taking creatine tabs before training to helo with my strenght. is this a good idea ?

  • Dave,
    I would take creatine after a workout. If you take it before a workout, you risk dehydration. It’s not really designed to give you instant energy for a workout…it helps you increase mass, strength, and endurance over time as it works its way into your system. After a month of taking creatine, you should see some really good increases and be less tired.
    Dave

  • anand:

    Hi there
    i have been taking creatine from past few days and i am ona loading phase , however i am drinking abt 5-6 ltrs of water in a day . But still i am worried coz i believe it will not give me an y kidney problems .
    and i dont feel much stregnth in work out when i do heavy dumble or bench press workout i get tired and i cant take more weights .
    is there any problem or is just that i have been taking this supplement from past few days and will take few days more to show up the results .
    pls reply.

  • Anand,
    You should start seeing strength and endurance gains over 1-2 weeks if you load creatine. It could take up to a month for your muscles to be saturated with creatine which will ultimately lead to gains in both size and strength. Drinking water is important so keep it up. If you’re not seeing any changes after 6-8 weeks, then it might simply not work for you.
    Dave

  • Dave:

    Hi, I am taking creatine at present and I am finding it difficult to drink the 6or 7 Ltrs I need everyday and I was wondering does the water I mix with my creatine and shakes etc everyday count as part of the 6 or 7 Ltrs that i need to be drinking each day. .. I also seem to be going to toilet a lot in fact all the water seems to b coming straight out again !… Is this normal ? Also, being training 5 nights a week for over 2 months mow and gains in size and strength are minimal, been on creatine for 3 weeks now too ?? I am totally committed to getting fit and putting on muscle, any advice ?? I am also taking gold standRd protein everyday and amino energy drink before training..

  • anand:

    well i drink enough of water but sometimes i forget to drink coz of some work but i always make it a point to drink it on time.
    and after loading the creatine in my body for 4 days i felt a little difference in my strength .I mean i could do my bench press easily.
    when should i expect the full effects of creatine and take creatine 1 hour before my workout is that a good time or i should take it after my workout coz many websites says it should be taken after a workout.
    and if creatine doesnt show up any results in me does that mean any supplement i take will not be good for me or wont give me any results .
    i mean i take ultimate muscle juice everyday i have started 10 days before , i believe what i do is correct . I am totally commited pls help me .

  • Dave,
    It sounds like you’re getting plenty of water. A side effect of creatine does seem to be frequent urination. As for gains in size and strength, I’d have to know a little bit more about your training before ultimately determining why you’re not seeing size and strength gains. Generally creatine saturates your muscles within a month so I’d expect you to see increases in strength and endurance.

    Anand,
    The loading phase for creatine will help you see results a little faster but you’ll see the best effects when your muscles are fully saturated after a month. I recommend creatine after a workout because it has a tendency to dehydrate you. Additionally, your muscles are theoretically primed to absorb it after your workout. As for other supplements, just because creatine doesn’t work doesn’t mean others won’t. However, there are very few studies that support the effectiveness of other supplements.

    Dave

  • anand:

    well when i talk abt traning i train each part of my body everyday
    i dont do heavy workout as i was not able to do so
    but since i have done the loading phase it seems that i have got some stregnth in me .i workout 6 days a week
    for 1 hour everyday
    and do i need to workout with heavy weights as i am taking creatine ??
    i am hoping that creatine will help me to gain my stregnth and stamina .
    its been 13 days i have been takking creating 1st four days i took for 3 times as a loading phase and now since u have recomanded me i am gonna take it after workout .and then my protein shake and eggs and bananas . and are there any other ways to increases stamina and stregnth like jogging or swimming but i am afraid of doing these two exercises as i am bit skinny and i have a high metabolism i just dont know what to do to put on weight .
    pls help me dave

  • Anand,
    Do you mean you train a different part of your body each day? I’m not a big fan of that type of training, but if it’s working well for you then stick with it. Just make sure your muscles get adequate rest…they grow when they’re recovering. You don’t necessarily need to do heavy weight training when taking creatine. In fact, to maximize mass gain, you may want to consider high rep training with light weights and train your muscles to failure. If you’re focused more on strength, then do heavy weight, low rep training and make sure your muscles don’t fail during lifting. You can ease up on the cardio for the time being if you want to gain weight. Alternatively, you could continue doing cardio and just increase your portion sizes.
    Dave

  • anand:

    well thank you so much dave for ur reply.
    i have never done cardio exercise . what are the benefits of doing cardio .
    secondly if i train my muscles with light weights is it possible for me to grow my muscles .
    so as you said i should do high rep with light weights to gain muscle mass i will try that from now on .
    and dave one more question i feel that my left chest is bit smaller than my right chest and i am really tense abt this problem i mean its not noticable but if if u stare it u can make out that slight difference .
    is there any way to make it even .
    is there any exercise to bring my left chest up to the same size of my right chest.

    thanks.

  • Anand,
    I’m going to take a bit of a lazy approach in answering your first questions by directing you to some other posts I’ve writen.

    Cardio: http://www.notyouraveragefitnesstips.com/best-workout-routines/best-cardio-for-weight-loss-hiit-workout-routine

    Low Weight High Reps: http://www.notyouraveragefitnesstips.com/best-workout-routines/low-weight-high-reps-training-to-failure

    Strength vs. Muscle Mass Reps: http://www.notyouraveragefitnesstips.com/best-workout-routines/strength-reps-muscle-mass-reps

    As for your chest imbalance, the only way I could think to help correct that would be to do one arm pushing exercises like push ups. Frankly, I wouldn’t bother…just let your body develop how it develops.

  • anand:

    thanks dave

    i have gained lot of confidence after getting ur reply because i used to feel very low when i used to see my chest .
    there is a slight diffenence which used to make me demotivated but since u told me to go for one arm exercise i would try that.
    Or let it devlope how it devlopes because there is a slight difference which hardly matters.

    many thanks dave u r great.

  • Anand,
    Glad I could help. Let me know if you have any other questions.
    Dave

  • Dave:

    Hi dave,
    I have been on the creatine now for the 5 weeks , and on the tub it says I should go off it now for 3 weeks,, thing is I haven’t had any major gains and I think it partially because I didn’t drink enough water at the start and I also bought a different brand of the creatine, again mono hydrate only this brand is u s n and other one was ultimate nutrition, and this is 99.9% and ultimate nutrition 1 says 100% micronized, it’s more powdery looking whereas the u s n brand which I am just gone on is more like sugar looking… Probably the same difference but I was going to give it another week of this doing my usual 1 spoon before training and 1 after with new 1 to see if there’s any difference in performance… Is it in your opinion ok for me to do this for an extra week before coming off it for 3 weeks.. Tks for all tips so far, really helping me cheers

  • anand:

    If i have any questions sure i will ask u .

    Thanks.

  • Dave,
    I don’t know the specifics, but it might be best to play it safe. If the manufacturer says take 3 weeks off, then that may be the way to go. In general, I think you could do 2-3 months of creatine before taking a 1 month break. Maybe there’s something different about the brand you’re taking though. Usually I find that it takes a month just for creatine to fully saturate the muscles and experience gains. That’s just my thought though.
    Dave

  • Hitesh:

    Hi Dave,
    I’m a 5’7 tall guy and reduced my weight from 76 to 66 kgs to prepare myself for gym and weight training. I’ve been going to gym for the past 6 months and I can see results. But as now I am on the leaner side I was wondering if i should take creatine or any other supplement to increase muscle mass or no. I’m very strict with my diet and usually stick to home made food in addition with 8-10 egg whites, chicken soup, Juice each day. I’ve read about the effects of creatine and how it helps to increase your muscle mass, but is that all temporary ? will that all muscle mass fade away once you stop taking creatine ? How long are we suppose to take it ?
    Your reply will be highly appreciated.

  • Hitesh,
    Taking creatine right after you lean out is a great way to quickly add muscle mass and strength. However, after you stop, you will lose some weight due to the water retention that comes from creatine. You may also lose a little strength due to having less ATP in your system but should maintain most of the gains. I’d recommend doing 3 months on and then cycling off for a few months. If you’re not seeing the results you like after 6-8 weeks, then you can reassess whether it’s worth taking at all. It helps some people more than others. Your diet sounds excellent by the way so keep it up. The one thing I would caution about is drinking too much juice. Hope that helps.
    Dave

  • Hitesh:

    Thanks for the prompt reply. Since you mentioned, What effect does fresh juice(carrot or orange) have it on you ? Can you please also tell me what thing should i look out for when buying creatine, I mean there are so many sellers with as many product out there and would be hard for a man like me who doesn’t know much about supplements and creatine. How to choose a good one ?

  • Hitesh,
    I’d look for 100% pure micronized creatine monohydrate. My brand of choice is Optimum Nutrition.

    As for juice, the reason fruit is good despite having a lot of sugar is that it’s natural and contains a lot of fiber. By my understanding, the juicing process removes the fiber leaving the sugar behind. It’s one step above refined sugar, but you’d be better off just eating the fruit since the fiber slows down the sugar absorption. Plus, juice won’t fill you up as much as the fruit itself.

    Dave

  • Fernando:

    Looking for advice,

    I’m lean and run often. i started lifting more and seeing results however I want that “Shred” look and want my muscles to pop out. Will creatine/protein help with that or is there anything else I can do to help

  • Fernando,
    Creatine will help you get bigger and stronger. However, to get the shredded look, you’ll also have to maintain a low body fat. That means you have to watch your diet, both what you eat and how much you eat. Combined with heavy weight, low rep training, you can get lean, dense muscles. Happy to help further if I can.
    Dave

  • Sarah:

    Hi Dave, great information posted. I am wondering if using creatine is different for women than men? I am looking to get stronger and have been lifting more weights. Also what does creatine do if you don’t workout and is it beneficial to use creatine on days that I don’t workout?

  • Sarah:

    Also I noticed that it can make you gain weight, I want to loose 5 to 10 pounds and gain muscle and just be lean and stronger overall.

  • Sarah,
    From my understanding, creatine works the same for both men and women in that it will increase your strength, endurance, and muscle mass. You’ll definitely need to exercise to get the benefits. You should take creatine every day to ensure your muscles stay saturated but you will really experience the benefit on your workout days when you should be able to lift at a higher intensity.

    Creatine won’t help you lose fat but it will help you add muscle and strength. There is weight gain associated with creatine because of water retention. So you might see the scale increase due to that and muscle gain.

    Make sense?
    Dave

  • shrisha:

    hi,
    i want to tighten my muscles and not put on my weight. Right now m 69,(height- 5.7). Whether creatinine helps in this???

  • Shrisha,
    Usually creatine will lead to weight gain because of added water retention and lean muscle. If your goal is to just tighten your muscles, then I would recommend heavy weight, low rep training.
    Dave

  • shrisha:

    Dave,
    ya sure.. thank you very much :)

  • Amir:

    Hi, I’m 15 (5’10 155 pounds) been working out for about 8 months would creative be safe and effective for a 15 year old?

  • Amir,
    Creatine may be safe but I’m not sure I’d recommend it. You’re still a little young for any supplementation. At your age, I think you’re better off avoiding it since your body is in an anabolic state already. Just my opinion though.
    Dave

  • Dave:

    Hi Dave
    My name is Dave I was going to the gym and taking UN creatine, gold standard protein every day for last 5 months, but I had to stop because I was losing to much weight.. I don’t over train and I eat as much food as I can but older losing weight. My I am 6ft 2 and weigh just 12 stone.. I need to put on lots of weight have you any ideas, is there any weight gain products on the market that actually work… Cause I have been told there are a lot of so called weight gain products that are a waste of time…

  • Dave,
    How much exercise are you doing every day? Even if you’re not overtraining, you’re obviously burning more calories than you’re taking in. Consider cutting back on some of the exercise if possible. If you’re looking to gain weight through diet, whey protein shakes are good. Have more than one per day if you’d like. Throw in a casein protein shake before bed as well. You can also start eating caloric dense food like nuts. That being said, I’d take the weight gain slow. If you try to increase your weight too quickly, you’ll likely add fat along with muscle. Just keep adding in calories when you can until everything balances out. That’s about the best I can offer.
    Dave

  • Jim F:

    Hi, i have been searching for info on creatine. My son will be 15 in July. He’s been playing football, baseball, wrestling since he was 5. He is 6′ tall and 215#. Well built. He’s been lifting weights for about a year. We went to Supplement Warehouse in our town and the guy set us up with a protein powder for him to take immediately following workouts. He also recommended a creatine supplement to take. He said he has tons of high school football players taking it with no problems. What are your thoughts? (yes, i did read your response above to Amir, but am giving you a little more info i think) All i can remember is years ago some hub-bub in the media about creatine being bad. Everything i’ve read so far online and the folks at supplement warehouse telling me, do it right-> 5grams/day, drink lots of water etc and you won’t have health problems. He also said take it 15 minutes before your weight lifting and/or immediately after in your protein shake.

  • Jim,
    Thanks for all the information. First, while I’m sure you can trust some supplement employees, I think most are biased in that they are trying to sell you the product. That being said, creatine has proven to be safe for the most part. I just worry about starting these supplements at a young age, especially when the body is anabolic enough on its own. The last thing you’d want to do is screw up your son’s natural production of creatine. If you’re just doing it for 2-3 months at a time and taking 2-3 months off, that might work.

    I would not advice taking it before weight lifting though. Creatine can result in dehydration and the last thing your muscles need before a workout is to be dehydrated. Take it after or separate from the workout. Also, you don’t necessarily need to drink protein shakes immediately after a workout. If your son is looking to gain a lot of mass, I suppose it helps, but if he starts gaining fat along with mass, then I’d point to the shake as the reason. Calories are calories.

    Regardless of your choice, just make sure he keeps up a good workout routine. That will go a lot further than creatine or protein. Best of luck to him with all his athletics.

    Dave

  • cindy:

    hello there.

    thanks for your article. i found it very informative.

    I have been taking creatine for 6 weeks now and next week i will be off it then start the cycle. the only complaint that i have is that i feel bloated all the time (due to water retention) as a woman i dislike this side effect. I am off season this year and next year i plan to compete again. this year i have completed 2 marathons and planning to keep running. i have been able to mantain muscle. having said that, i haven’t increase muscle since i started taking creatine but only water retention and the constant feeling of a bloated stomach. however; i wonder if once i stop taking creatine will the water retention will disappear? i know each and every individual is utterly different. our

  • Cindy,
    The bloated feeling from water retention seems pretty common. Once you cycle off, the problem should go away. As for muscle mass, has your training just been marathon running? That type of exercise can result in muscle loss. You should see your weight lifting increase by using creatine because it allows you to train harder and longer. Those gains would generally remain after you stop taking creatine. Hope that helps.
    Dave

  • Hitesh:

    Hi Dave,
    I took creatine 6-8 months ago after consulting yourself. However i didn’t notice any gains as it’s a known fact that the results may vary from person to person. After consuming about 1.5 pack (10.5 oz each) i discontinued it. Since then i have been working out regularly and have been getting ‘slow’ results. But now i feel i have come to a stage where my power has become stagnant and am not gaining anymore. I have even increased my diet but that didn’t do any good except that i had gained 4 kgs. I was thinking to restart consuming creatine this time by loading (previously taken under maintenance) Do you think that the result may differ this time…..?

  • Hitesh,
    If you didn’t have success before, then I doubt things would necessarily change the second time around, even if you loaded (that just gets it into your system faster). You could consider trying kre-alkalyn which supposedly offers better overall absorption. I’ve never used it though and can’t speak to its effectiveness.
    Dave

  • dustin:

    hi,i just purchased creatine, I was just wondering how many should i take in one day? i usually go at the gym every other day. and my goal is to put up weight by doing heavy weights with low reps.

  • Dustin,
    Usually the bottle has recommendations but 5g per day should be fine. Take it even on off days. You initially “load” as well by taking 20g per day for the first 4-5 days. Results shouldn’t be any different than if you just did 5g per day from the start.
    Dave

  • dustin:

    i am currently loading,8am-one capsule (after breakfast),11am-one capsule(after intense workout),4pm -one capsule and 8pm-one capsule. is my intake routine fine? I only weigh 138 lbs,(im a little bit skinny)and my ht is 5’9. How long should i load?is it okay to take creatine together with just water?The information stated in the bottle explains you should take it with apple juice grapejuice etc..

  • Dustin,
    I don’t know how many grams the capsules supply since I use powder form. I’d only load for 5 days and then go to the maintenance dose. Creatine with water should be fine. Some people say to take it with sugary drinks to assist in the delivery but research doesn’t seem to show that it makes any difference.
    Dave

  • duncon:

    Hi Dave, I stopped using Creatine after taking it for 2 weeks because it makes my face “Plumpy Face or Chubby Face”.
    Is it something wrong with me? I usually took 5g per day after my workout. Any idea how can I eliminate this problem?

    TQ

  • Duncon,
    It depends on the circumstance. It could just be bloating due to the increased water retention. It could also be a more serious problem if you find that it happens right after you take it (possible allergic reaction). Might be best to avoid taking it to be on the safe side.
    Dave

  • Hitesh:

    Hi Dave,
    If creatine is not giving me desired results is it implied that if i take supplements with creatine as one of the ingredients in them (eg neurocore, nitrotech etc ) the results will be no different for me ???

  • Hitesh,
    Again, it depends on the type of creatine used and how well your body absorbs it. Some of these other supplements claim to have other ingredients to help you get in shape but that’s up to you to decide if they’re worth. Generally, caffeine and creatine are what these products end up mixing.
    Dave

  • SportsGuy:

    I like the chart you showed. I think increasing your muscle creatine concentration, you decrease the amount of lactic acid produced. At least, that matches up with what this article says Creatine benefits – less lactic acid

  • I responded really well to creatine at 4-6g/day. Noticed I was able to lift heavier that’s for sure! Thanks for the great info

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