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  • creatine

    Has anyone experimented with creatine? I am thinking of giving it a go. haven't seen any research saying its harmful in anyway, except the odd person having explosive diareha .

  • #2
    Some people get kidney stones if they don't drink enough water, and if you use a certain type it can lead to bloating. I've used creatine hydrochloride and it worked pretty well. GNC sells it and it's called amplified creatine, you take a tiny amount compared to usual dosages. I found that I could work out harder, and longer, and recover quicker. I haven't used the stuff for about a year though. I figure Grok wouldn't have used it, so I probably shouldn't either. When I did, I felt like I needed it or my workout wasn't worth as much, and I don't like that dependence.

    It probably won't hurt to try it, but I'd say you probably don't need it. Practice and protein will get you there just fine.

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    • #3
      I looked into it briefly. What I found seemed to suggest that it would bring strength/endurance gains, but only whilst you are taking it (i.e. the gains are not permanent). Also there seemed to be a suggestion that taking it for a prolonged period of time was not ideal. Therefore unless I was training for a specific event or competition I personally wouldn't bother.

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      • #4
        I've been taking it pretty consistently for a year or so. It does seem to help me get more reps on some exercises. I don't think it directly boosts my max strength.

        My first experience with creatine was when I was in college and I made several bowls of oatmeal each with a good scoop of Body Fortress brand protein powder. I did not know that it had creatine in it. After eating the oatmeal, one of my calves felt reallly achy and swollen. I had given myself compartment syndrome basically. Fortunately it went away after an hour or so. Compartment syndrome can be very serious and cause tissue death from the pressure if it is not relieved. Sometimes it requires a fasciotomy. Pretty gruesome stuff. Moral of the story: don't do megadoes. And read the label on your whey. I take no more than 5g a day now.

        @zilog: Where did you read/hear that taking it for long periods of time is not ideal? I'd be curious to read more about that.

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        • #5
          This is the stuff I was talking about. You can get it a little cheaper if you shop around, but you're going to end up spending around a buck a day.

          GNC Pro Performance® AMP Amplified Creatine 189™ - GNC PRO PERFORMANCE - GNC

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          • #6
            @zilog: Where did you read/hear that taking it for long periods of time is not ideal? I'd be curious to read more about that.
            reading one of the (many) creatine threads on bodybuilding.com

            it's not that's it's dangerous to keep using it (it probably isn't) but it may well be more optimal (not to mention cheaper!) to "cycle" it and take a break every now and then

            All your creatine questions answered in here - Bodybuilding.com Forums
            Is there truly a need for daily creatine supplementation? - Bodybuilding.com Forums

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            • #7
              Originally posted by zilog View Post
              reading one of the (many) creatine threads on bodybuilding.com

              it's not that's it's dangerous to keep using it (it probably isn't) but it may well be more optimal (not to mention cheaper!) to "cycle" it and take a break every now and then

              All your creatine questions answered in here - Bodybuilding.com Forums
              Is there truly a need for daily creatine supplementation? - Bodybuilding.com Forums
              Thanks!

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              • #8
                It's useful for strength and endurance, but also puts on some water retention. Like the above poster said, most people like to use for a few weeks, and then take some time off.
                Here's some good resources:
                Does creatine work: How Does Creatine Work? | Get Muscle Lose Fat
                Post workout: Best Post Workout Supplements - Get Muscle Lose Fat

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                • #9
                  Thx for the thoughts. The fact that the gains aren't permanent make me think its pointless now.

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                  • #10
                    I use creatine. The stuff works great, I would definitely recommend it. All you need is about 5g a day. No cycling required. It will help you put on some size fast.

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                    • #11
                      Where are u getting this info that the strength is not permenant? The size isn't because the water will leave your muscles but, once you gain strength it doesn't "disapear".

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                      • #12
                        ok, with the caveat that I am certainly not an expert, but I have done a lot of reading because I've had the same questions as you:

                        1) the effect of creatine seems to be to increase the energy available to the muscles
                        2) this will probably enable you to lift extra weight/do extra reps
                        3) if everything else is right (eating enough/sleeping/resting etc) this may mean you put on more muscle. However unless you are very advanced you will be able to build this muscle eventually anyway without creatine just by sticking to your programme.

                        When you stop taking creatine the extra energy effect will also stop so obviously your lifts/reps will be less. Yes, any muscle you put on whilst taking it will stay, but how much of that was actually down to the creatine? no way to tell.

                        As you said there is significant and immediate bloating of the muscles due to extra water. Do not underestimate the psychological effect this will have.

                        I would be wary of anyone saying "I took supplement xxxx and got massive gains" without hard scientific evidence. This sort of person is the reason that companies selling supplements are multimillion dollar businesses. Again do not underestimate the psychological effects on someone who's spent a lot of money on tubs of powder and wants to justify it.

                        This is not to say that creatine doesn't work because evidence suggests that it does have an effect. But how much of an effect will it have on you, and is it really worth it? I suppose you won't know unless you try.

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                        • #13
                          I use it. About a year ago I decided to stop taking it because I figured it didn’t make any difference. But lo and behold it then became noticeable I wasn’t able to lift as much. So this was just another self experiment that taught me something. I don’t cycle, I just take some every day. I did a bunch of research before I first bought some and my conclusion was that it’s very safe. And it’s a hell of a lot cheaper than eating steak every day.
                          “You may have thought you heard me say I wanted a lot of bacon and eggs, but what I said was: Give me all the bacon and eggs you have.” - Ron Swanson

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                          • #14
                            Are you able to quantify the difference that you noticed when you stopped taking it?

                            And it’s a hell of a lot cheaper than eating steak every day.
                            Good point, actually. This is the same reason I use whey powder.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by zilog View Post
                              Are you able to quantify the difference that you noticed when you stopped taking it?

                              No not really. It was subtle, but I did notice. Keep in mind some people are "non responders" to creatine. But there's only one way to find that out. I take it because I need all the help I can get. Mine is one of those bodies that does not want to put on muscle. It much prefers fat.
                              “You may have thought you heard me say I wanted a lot of bacon and eggs, but what I said was: Give me all the bacon and eggs you have.” - Ron Swanson

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