The function and use of Creatine

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I keep getting recommended the use of creatine as I stay consistent at working out. But apart from increasing protein, I don’t fully understand how creatine functions in the body and if it’s necessary in lifting weights.

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Anonymous 0 Comments

A super-short version is that your body has energy to use, immediately, in the blood stream. Blood-sugar, glycogen, etc. Once those stores are consumed, your ability to perform goes down substantially. Creatine saturates your muscles with more readily-accessible energy.

That’s the rub. Some claim it also helps with hydration, since the creatine saturation takes water with it. This results in the body looking bigger in the muscles — which is welcome in most. But most say the best benefit is being able to get a few more reps in. As the last reps, the ones you struggle on, seem to be the ones that matter the most, that leads to increased performance and increased growth stimulation.

Anonymous 0 Comments

one of the biggest benefits of creatine is that it is linked to shortened recovery times; this allows you to work out more frequently with more benefits………one main reason why you have a leg day; back day; arm day (or whatever mix and match) is because muscles need time recover and grow. if you need to give your muscle group 3 days off without creatine; on creatine you can get the same recovery in less time.

creatine is also an energy source inside the muscles which can aide in strength training and muscle use (other physical activities like sprinting)

creatine is a naturally occurring compound…..if you eat beef/pork/seafood/animal milk, one of the many nutrients is creatine. so in a way adding creatine is similar to adding protein powder to your diet

Anonymous 0 Comments

Your car (muscles) needs fuel (energy in the form of ATP) to run. If your car runs out of fuel, it has to stop for gas. Creatine is stored in your muscles and is used to make more energy, so in our metaphor, it’s like bringing a jerrycan of gasoline with you so you don’t have to stop as quickly or as often.

(ELI5 Caveat: This is a gross oversimplification and ignores other benefits that studies suggest Creatine has with regards to weightlifting)

Anonymous 0 Comments

Creatine is a chemical inside the muscles that stores phosphate. Why is that important?

Because the main chemical that your body’s cells use for energy is called ATP. It’s a compound called adenosine, with three phosphates (adenosine triphosphate), and the body “spends” the energy by removing one of the phosphates.

Creatine can spend its stored phosphate to put a phosphate back on the ATP, letting the body use it again.

Because of this, creatine gives you slightly more energy when you work out. It’s not a huge boost, but it helps you do a few more reps.

So then after the workout, high creatine levels also help you restore ATP levels quicker, to recover from the workout better.

It isn’t a huge change, but it’s positive. It isn’t strictly necessary, but creatine is really well-studied and there aren’t really any downsides of creatine supplementation at normal levels, unless if you took an excessive amount that’s more than your body can absorb, then the wasted creatine absorbs water and you might get some diarrhea. 5g per day is the normal routine dose. I’ve never had diarrhea from that.