When to Take Creatine

Do you know the effects of creatine on sports performance? If so, you’ll be interested to know when to take creatine.
When to Take Creatine

Last update: 16 September, 2020

Creatine is one of the supplements with the most scientific evidence. In fact, it’s known to be useful for increasing the performance of athletes. Also, it could be effective in preventing the appearance of muscle injuries. However, it’s important to know when to take creatine.

Before we begin, it’s important to note that the use of ergogenic aids won’t prove helpful if you don’t follow proper training and nutritional guidelines. If you’ve got any doubts, you should put yourself in the hands of a specialist. You need to optimize your diet to notice the effects of supplements on your athletic performance.

When to take creatine in anaerobic sports

Creatine is a substance that participates in anaerobic metabolic pathways for energy production. To assess how to include creatine in your supplementation regimen, you need to identify the type of sport that you practice.

This ergogenic aid is especially effective in the context of anaerobic activities, as research published in the journal Sports Medicine states. Creatine can be a differential factor in the disciplines where the use of power and maximum strength prevails.

This substance makes it possible to delay the onset of fatigue, increase strength, and improve an athlete’s body composition. In addition, it’s a totally safe supplement, as recent scientific publications have shown.

A man training with a tire.

Reducing the risk of injury

When it comes to deciding when to take creatine, a wise option is to implement supplementation during peak workload periods of the season. This way, in addition to increasing performance, you’ll reduce your risk of injury. In team sports, this is critical.

Consider taking creatine for two months when you’re in a very demanding, maximum strength, or power training period, with little recovery time between sessions. This way, you’ll be able to maximize performance and muscle gains, while reducing the incidence of breakage of fibers.

Dosing protocol

Although the classical authors bet on carrying out loading phases followed by maintenance periods, the most effective is to propose stable doses. Today, the most used protocol in professional sports consists of taking 3-5 grams of creatine per day, post-workout. To improve assimilation, experts recommend taking the supplement with a serving of simple carbohydrates.

The most practical is to mix creatine with a carbohydrate and protein shake that athletes usually drink after a demanding training session. This way, you’ll ingest all the essential nutrients to promote recovery and muscle adaptations.

Creatine is also found in foods

Although people usually take creatine supplements, you shouldn’t forget that it’s a nutrient present in many foods. In general, meats are rich in this component.

In fact, experts estimate that you can ingest up to a gram of creatine through your diet, which helps to compensate for its use at the muscular level.

Steak with vegetables.

Consider including creatine in your diet

If you do anaerobic exercises, you should consider taking this supplement. A stable and continuous dosage may help you for up to two months. After this time, take a one-month break. Anyway, a nutritionist will give you more details depending on your goals.

Remember to match the intake of the supplement with the most demanding training and competition periods. This way, you can get the most out of the substance, capable of improving sports performance and body composition.

If you’re also an athlete who is easily injured, its benefits are enhanced. This is a substance that could help reduce the incidence of muscle tears. This is because, in many cases, they’re associated with defects in the replenishment of lost nutrients during exercise.

Finally, we should also note that creatine is an ergogenic aid that doesn’t cause side effects. However, if you have more questions about it, consult a nutritionist.

It might interest you...
Effects of Creatine Monohydrate on Sports Performance
Fit People
Read it in Fit People
Effects of Creatine Monohydrate on Sports Performance

Taking creatine monohydrate helps you improve your bench presses, jumps, and even body composition. Learn more about this in the following article.

  • Lanhers C., Pereira B., Naughton G., Trousselard M., et al., Creatine supplementation and upper limb strength performance: a systematic review and meta analysis. Sports Med, 2017. 47 (1): 163-173.
  • Kreider RB., Kalman DS., Antonio J., Ziegenfuss TN., et al., International society of sports nutrition position stand: safety and efficacy of creatine supplementation in exercise, sport and medicine. J Int Soc Sports Nutr, 2017.

The contents of this publication are written for informational purposes. At no time do they facilitate or replace the diagnoses, treatments, or recommendations of a professional. Consult your trusted specialist if you have any doubts and seek their approval before beginning any procedure.