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I was recently given some as a gift and told that it helps to give you energy and speeds recovery between workouts.
This article does a great job of explaining the pros and cons of creatine. http://www.active.com/fitness/Articles/Creatine__Behind_the_Hype.htm.
Hope it helps! Good luck.
Thanks for the article. I wish there was more out there on Creatine though.
Since most supplements serve a certain purpose it would be nice to know what exactly the supp was that was given to you, and what sport you are trainig in.....
Basically I'm a runner. I lift weights and do some triathlons also. I'm never going to set any world records, but always trying to improve my times (and I like to beat my friends!!!).
The Creatine that I was given is Xyience NOX-CG3. I've taken it about 1/2 hr before a workout. I was told that it would give me energy in the middle of my workouts, which I don't know if it is true. Also, I've tried it a few times and I became a little queasy a couple hrs after the workout (I don't know if the creatine is the reason for this, but I don't have any other expanation.)
Any input would be appreciated.
Well Here is my input.
Many atheletes that require short quick bursts of speed supplement creatine. Creatine can make you alot stronger. The amount in the particular supplement that you are using is not really enough to cause significant strength gains but there is enough in there for WATER RETENTION. To keep speed during races atheltets will cycle off creatine to keep strength gains but loose the excess water, because that's added weight that will slow you down. So I would say that's your downside. You may be slowed down a bit due to some extra water....
Thanks for the input. The main reason that I would (I stopped after 3 times) is to help out with workouts. I really don't care about water retention (and I don't really know what that means).
Basically Creatine (what I'm taking) can give me energy during a workout, increase my strength and not really have a downside? Am I wrong but it sounds like a win win win situation.
What you claim is true. But the water retention is what I think will get you. Water retention is when your body hols onto more water than it needs to, therefore making you weigh more, and the more weight you carry in theory, the slower you will be.
Thanks for the responses Cody. The water retention may actually be good for me as I am terrible about drinking water during races .
Creatine is the most researched and documented sports supplement to date. It has been clinically proven to be effective in over 50 different clinical trials and is a benefit for any athlete. Creatine occurs naturally in muscle tissue and is an energy source for muscle function and supplementing creatine has been proven to increase the aerobic and anaerbic thresholds of muscle tissue. Creatine was first released as a powder in the early 1990's as Ceatine Monohydrate. This first creatine required a loading phase of 20 grams per day for 5 days and then a maintenance dose of 5 - 10 grams per day. Fluid intake also needed to be maintained to a minimum of 64 ounces, 1 gallon, a day to facilitate transport into the mucsle cell. This first version of creatine did cause interstinal bloating and that was the only most common side effect. Some reported creatine caused water retention but this is not exactly true. Creatine causes cell volumization which is not the same as water retention. Water retention occurs in the skin tissue whereas the cell volumization occurs in the muscle cells.
Creatine has evolved over the years into its newest compund by being esterified thus providing better absorption and no gastric upset. The new versions are all typically labled as creatine ethyl ester compounds and these are the premier compounds and are highly effective.
The product you have is a good quality creatine and should be taken as labeled. The great thing about the creatine ethyl ester compounds is that they are so easily absorbed by the body that they can really be taken anytime of the day or evening. I do not supect your stomach upset was caused by the creatine but I would give it another try and take it before bed or with your first meal.
Creatine is great at building lean mass for those interested in that and it is fantastic for endurance athletes because it increases your ability to exercise longer by providing additional fuel.
I did read in one of your posts that you poorly hydrate during events. Proper hydration before, during and after the event is essential to peak performance. Slight dehydation significantly impedes performance, so even if you decide not to try the creatine, your fluid intake really needs to be carefully monitored. You need to come in the race fully hydrated and continue to consume fluids throughout the event then rehydrate fully after the event. I am confident that with careful attention to your hydration program you could easliy beat your personal best without creatine supplementation. Adding creatine ethyl ester to a properly hydrated body will only imporve your results.
Creatine is the safest and most effective sports supplement on the market today.
WOW!!!! That was great and exactly what I was looking for. Thank you so much.
One question further though. Should I take it only on days that I workout (about 5 1/2 days a week) or everyday?
As for hydration, I've always said that water and stretching are for suckers:) . Actually, I have trouble drinking in the middle of a race. Trouble breathing properly and not getting a stomach ache. I kind of feel that any race under an hour I don't need to drink during a race. Am I wrong (I'm sure I am but.....)?
In the old days daily supplementation was needed due to poor absorption, but with the new formulations the same cellular creatine concentration can be achieved with half the dose and no loading phase. With that being said I do not believe skipping days will be detrimental, although I have not read any clinical studies evaluating the efficacy of daily versus training days only supplementation. If cost is not an issue, then daily supplementation should be your regimen when preparing for an event or while you are "in" season. Off season supplementation could be limited to training days only.
I have gotten advice from some fitness sages over the years and it has really helped me keep my supplement budget in line and my performance at its highest. The basic should be followed consistently before adding additional supplements as costs increase with each level and adding costly supplements without following the basics can impede the effectiveness of the supplement you are adding. Once you are consistently doing the basics, adding the intermediate and advanced supplements will take you to the next level. Here is my supplementation advice young Skywalker.
Basic supplementation - Doing this ensures you are getting the daily essentials and may increase your performance enough without spending any extra money or adding any other supplements.
Divide your total daily calorie need into five or six small meals evenly spaced throughout the day
Drink at least 1 gallon of water a day in addition to your other beverages
Take a multivitamin everyday
Take an additional b complex or stress tab daily
Eat a high quality protein and complex carb meal no later than thirty minutes after your workout- a meal replacement shake is excellant at this time
Add creatine to your daily routine
Add whey protein to your diet
Hydrate and rehydrate before, during and after the event with a glucose and electrolyte solution
Add a nitric oxide stimulator prior to all workouts and events
Carb depletion/loading phases before competition
Do not poo poo stretching and hydration. Stretching has been proven to increase sprint speed and recovery time, but stretching should only be done after your workout or after you have warmed up to a light sweat. Any other time stretching can hurt performance.
Dehydration can reduce performance significantly, slow reaction times and set you up for injury. When you sweat and do not replenish your water loss your cellular fluid thickens which slows down chemical process, decreases lubrication and reduces your cooling abilities. The rule of thumb for water rehydration is to weigh yourself before your event and immediately after then drink 1 quart of fluid for every pound of lost weight (or 1 liter for every lost kg). To be more precise you should weigh in minimal clothing to prevent the wet clothes from altering your after workout weight. Hydration during the event should be a few ounces every 15 minutes or so. Plain water is sufficient for events less than 1 hour and a glucose/electrolyte solution for events over 1 hour.
The bottom line is there is no magic pill and supplements are meant to assist an already established foundation. They are supplements to and not replacements for good nutrition.
Great stuff. Thank you, I really appreciate it. I've taken multivitamins on and off for years and I haven't noticed a difference. That said I'm going to try working on this stuff.
As for hydration and stretching I was kidding. I've compared the two to dental floss. Everyone knows that you should do it and do it often but many do it wrong and not enough if at all. I've been trying to go to yoga to work on my flexibility.....humbling to say the least.
My real problem w/ hydration is that I have to go to the bathroom just about every hour....the price one pays for health
Everyday I seem to learn something new that I could or should do for my health/body. I'd be in the gym for 16 hours a day if I did them all.
Glad to help.
I am going to assume you are male, so unless you have prostate problems which causes you to urinate frequently once you get properly hydrated, the frequent trips to urinate will subside. Most people stay in a state of mild dehydration. This dehydrated state increases the concentration of electrolytes (primarily sodium) in your blood and tissues so when you add water in amounts more than you are accustomed to your sodium level falls and to correct the sudden change the body sheds water. This water is primarily excess from your tissues so regular water intake will eventually equilibrate your electrolyte status in your tissues to optimal levels. Once done, in two or three days of consistant hydration, the urination frequency will subside.
There are reports of people losing 2-3 pounds in a few days simply by getting there fluid balance back in order. This weight loss is from retained tissue water due to the mild dehydration that existed.
I don't know about you, but I am really thirsty right now. lol
It will do nothing for an endurance sport at all..In fact the extra water you retain will make endurance activities harder. It helps only with explosive movements lasting 5-15 seconds. It retards lactic acid build up and will add a rep or two to your strenght. It does not give you energy so to speak rather a boost of power- one could say energy in as much as an extra rep or 10-15 lbs of power very quickly is concerned. Sports such as shot putting, power lifting, some foot ball positions would benefit. Loading is not necessary, thats only a way for the marketers to make money. It makes the muscles seem fuller and thicker.