T Nation

Is Creatine Essential ?


#1

hi i'm a beginner and have been weight training for only a few weeks.
I've read alot about creatine/creatine monohydrate and how its supposed to make your muscles bigger, stronger and improve endurance but i was wondering wether or not creatine must be taken when doing an intense workout to have better results or can good results be obtained without using it?
also i'm trying to lose weight so would Biotest Surge be good to use after an intense workout or should another brand be used (maybe with less carbs)?


#2

Creatine is good, but in no way essential. Particularly for a beginner.
-Matt


#3

yes

yes


#4

I agree with Matgic. There are literally hundreds of studies now on creatine use in a wide variety of sports. The majority show about a 10% improvment in power, especially over repeated efforts.

Like many other supplements, it's something that's not essential, though and is best cycled on and off as the months pass. (That is, it may help to consume a Tbsp. with sugary carbs/ protein after training... during intense phases of the year.)


#5

And for my money, that's not worth it, especially when you consider the unpleasantness it causes.


#6

Probably good if you're a competitive non-NCAA athlete.

BTW, how stupid is the NCAA for banning creatine because a couple of wrestlers abused it?


#7

bikemike, can you expand on that? To me, a 10% improvement makes creatine worth it... and the fact that it's only pennies a serving only strengthens this.

BTW-For those who don't know, gastrointestinal "unpleasantness" does not occur to everyone.


#8

I believe most anyone athelte or not will find some benefit to cycling creatine in their diet.

Some say creatine is inneffective in 1 out of 4 people.

Some use it all year.

I use it. I have seen gains in my training, size and strength. Most everyone recommends the 20g a day for 5-7 days then 5g a day thereafter. I've tried that and got results. I have since tried a way of loading Ian King talks about. 10g a day 1st week, 20g a day week 2, 30g a day week 3, 40g a day week 4, 40g a day week 5, 30g a day week 6, 20g a day week 7, 10 g a day week 8. This is probally a shock to a lot out there. It works. How is 20g a day for 5-7 days a loading and 5g maintenance?

Not starting a thread here.

And, not everyone gets GI distress.


#9

Um... what?


#10

Unless there's a recent development of which I'm not aware, I think the NCAA banned distribution of creatine by colleges, not the use of creatine.


#11

There are all kinds of creatine cycling methods out there from the classic 3-5 day "load" (20-30g daily) to the 1 Tbsp. post workout for a month approach (which I personally prefer). The one detailed in the post above, I have not seen, and based on urinary data, I can't say I understand it.

When I mentioned cycling on and off of creatine, I simply meant in a way similar to other supplements. That is, I wouldn't take any supplement daily ad infinitum. Strategically taking something according to meso-cycle goals probably both enhances effects while "on" and minimizes risks of overconsumption. It's a generality.

I did not mean that a loading phase was necessary every month or so. That's good marketing, not necessarily good science. I know from MRS data that I hold a creatine load for at least eight weeks, even without a maintenance dose. (In fact, I believe that paper was submitted to the journal "Muscle & Nerve".)


#12

I have never experienced any gastrointestinal discomfort from creatine. I just follow the manufacturer's suggestions on the label...1 tsp. = 5g.

Dump it into my Surge post-workout and it's all good.


#13

Huh? What unpleasantness? It has no flavor, and if you take it with food, there should be little to no stomach issues. I don't have stomach issues even taking it in pure water, but that's just me.


#14

Um..what----agreed!

Why make this more complicated than you have too. If you want to load--go ahead. I still think anything over 10g a day is a waste. Do this for a week or two and then scale back to 2-3 g a day after workout with gatorade or the like and reap the benefits.

As someone stated you may be a non-responder. Who knows. Gauge for yourself and see what happens.

That said--I can live without it.


#15

I'm trying a bottle of CE2 from MRI. It's the fairly new Creatine Ethyl Ester in pill form. There are no "unpleasantries" with it and it does not cause edema (water retention outside of muscle cells). In theory it should be some good stuff. However, as with certain other supps out there, the changes are too sublte to notice unless taken over a longer period of time, so I haven't noticed anything significant in my 10 days of using it, so far.
My 2 cents.

-daMOJO-


#16

Just curious, how many pills do you have to take to get the equivalent of 5mg creatine monohydrate?


#17

I've seen ads for that. They're pretty expensive compared to the creatine monhydrate, please keep us updated on how the new creatine works out.
Thanks


#18

Can someone please tell me where to get some scientific studies or data, showing that creatine needs to be, or there is any good reason for it to be cycled? Because as far as I know, there is nothing out there.


#19

For me, 10% isn't worth it. I feel, for lack of better words, terrible when I use creatine. I've never noticed any improvements while using it.


#20

dude...creatine blows...not only did I not get my 10% but I felt like I was going to shit my pants while working out on that crap...

the only way I would that creatine again is if someone paid me a good bit of money to ingest it...

of course I would have to wear depends all day too...

so after having my not so pleasant experience with shit-atine...I decided to poll some friends on what they thought of it...

not one of them takes creatine anymore because they all thought it was crap also...

all anecdotal of course...but these are some faily intense guys...shit, they would probaby inject battery acid directly into their eyeball if they though it would actually give them a 10% boost over a competitor...

but yet not one of them take creatine...

hmmmmmmmmmm