Creatine is not actually a drug, but instead is a natural substance that our bodies produce. Actually, it’s a combination of three amino acids: glycine, arginine and methionine. We can also get creatine from our diets, mostly from animal products like meat or fish.
It helps the body do so-called “explosive” high intensity and repetitive exercise. This means that you can get a better workout when you take creatine, and you’ll feel better after your workout too, since your muscles can cover much more quickly from fatigue. It helps reduce the accumulation of lactic acid after your workout, which will help you avoid muscle soreness after your workout.
Although you are able to get some creatine from foods, supplementing will obviously increase your intake of this nutrient. Taken as directed, this can increase your exercise time and decrease fatigue and muscle strain. It can also shorten your recovery time between workout sessions. This is particularly beneficial for bodybuilders or those trying to amass muscle rapidly or achieve improved performance through longer and more strenuous workouts.
A substance called adenosine triphosphate, or ATP for short, simply sits in your muscles waiting for you to need it. When you need it, it is provided quickly and instantaneously, which accounts for the “explosive” benefit it gives muscles, in that you can do very intense workouts almost instantaneously.
Just remember that while taking creatine your body is going to retain more water in your muscles, resulting in the need for you to increase your intake of water to off set the rest of your organs. In short, be sure you drink enough when you’re taking creatine.
Creatine may facilitate longer, more strenuous and more frequent workouts than you would have without using it, helping you to amass muscle quicker. In addition, it can vastly lower the amount of post-workout muscle soreness, and as a result you’ll return to your workout earlier and feel better too.
However, it has some cons, too. You will experience weight gain because your body will retain water in its muscles. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but just be prepared for the higher number on the scale. You can experience dehydration and related side effects like nausea, vomiting or even seizures, in addition. Also, it is not advised to take Creatine if you have kidney problems due to the added stress that Creatine can cause to the kidneys.
But, simply put, no matter the supplements you take, your body’s not going to function right and your workouts aren’t going to be as effective or as efficient if you don’t eat right.
No amount of creatine in the world will help your workout if you still sit there and eat junk food in lieu of lean proteins, complex carbohydrates, fruits, and vegetables. Your muscles require something to build themselves with and junk food will not work. In order to have a more healthy diet it is as simple as adding lean meats, fish and complex carbohydrates as well as fruits and vegetables to your diet. Limit or eliminate trans fats, simple sugars and carbohydrates, and junk food in general.
When used properly, creatine can help you improve your workouts and in turn, your muscle mass, with these guidelines in place.