I'm an experienced lifter, and I've used creatine before; I love the gains and the recovery but the two times I've taken it I experience tons of soreness, achy muscles and incredibly slow recovery after my maintenance period ends. My recovery is slower than when I'm not on creatine and soreness from my workouts seems like it lasts FOREVER.
For the two cycles I've done I've used the traditional cycle: 5-7 day loading phase (22g for me), 3-4 week maintenance phase (5g a day) and then off after that. Like I said during the cycle gains are great, and recovery is awesome but as soon as I end my maintenance phase the pain comes. I've reduced my volume back to what it was before my cycle, so I'm not overtraining.
My diet is good, my sleep is quality and I'm getting enough of it, and I'm doing all the usual (daily erection, multivitamin, workouts or active recovery). I don't think it's a hormonal thing, the only reason I could see for any drop in test is the drop in volume of training, but I'm still training 4-5 days/week. Has anybody here had a similar experience coming off creatine, or does anyone know ways to solve this problem?
Right now I'm thinking of trying to drink more water and get more fruits/veggies daily to reduce the soreness, try to get more anti-oxidants into the diet. Other than that I have no clue what to do.