Crossfit of Fremont


September 26, 2012


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If you are looking for a good aticle on creatine (one that provides references) here is one written by Tammy Kovaluk

drink plenty of water....i just started re-taking creatine, and ive noticed those oh so fun muscle cramps, but my strength is up.

We are O-lifting tonight at 6:30 p.m.!

We will also be lifting on Saturday at 10 a.m.

Who's in?

A German company has a patented brand called Creapure which is meant to be the Rolls Royce of creatine, several brands sell it i.e. like Champion Nutrition, Optimum Nutrition, and Ultimate Nutrition

Some Common FAQ on creatine:
Will it wreck my kidneys? No. It's the most studied OTC supplement in history. It's safe. Your kidneys will be fine.
Doesn't it cause water retention? No. It causes skeletal muscle hyperhydration. There's a difference. Does it cause muscle and tendon injury? No. Not warming up, training stupid, and being dehydrated causes that. Don't I need to cycle it? No. "Cycling" is another bodybuilder-perpetrated myth based on the cycling of AAS due to down-regulation of hormones from exogenous sources; creatine intake, either from food or supplements, doesn't do this.
Key point: Since it causes intracellular hyperhydration, it *does* draw fluid from extracellular space to intracellular space. What does that mean? That means you need to stay hydrated. Be diligent about this, unless you want to turn into a pile of dust while doing thrusters. 99.9% of side effects associated with creatine are due to folks not drinking enough H20. Implementation/Changes: 5g PWO, and optionally 5g preWO, of creatine monohydrate. ; assess how you feel/perform and what effects this has on your weight. For HIIT athletes, we want the benefit of faster ATP turnover and intracellular buffering, but do NOT want excess weight. This seems to affect females more than males due to hormonal fluctuations and sodium/potassium differences.

skip the creatine and buy some man pants and some balls. both are on sale at WalMart

There are only a few supplements that I feel are worth buying. Creatine mono (new stuff doesn't do anything different, and no need to load it) beta alanine, caffeine, a good multivitamin, and some fish oil. Maybe a good protein (whey, casein) if you feel so inclined, but I like to eat my protein. Most of these are fairly cheap in comparison to some of the "super do everything" powders. Anything else, unless it's steroids, probably won't make a noticeable impact day to day. John Wellbourn had an article on what supplements he's used/uses and it seemed pretty informative.

Also: the additional gains made under the influence of creatine can be maintained with equal volumes of training after supplementation has ceased.

In other words, creatine can be used to increase strength gains, but the new tissue created is not reliant upon the supplemental creatine to survive. It will stay with you beyond creatine supplementation if you exercise it and feed it properly.

And so: creatine can be used to break through anaerobic training plateaus and discontinued after the ceiling has been broken without deleterious effects.

it's proven, it's cheap, go buy some already

^^^What does all this mean? It seems that creatine definitely increases the performance of the first of the three energy systems. FOR SURE.

The mechanisms are uncertain, but they are along the lines of what I described above involving increased CP and decreased recovery time of the phosphagen system.

The phosphagen system is a short-lived burst energy system that lasts around 8-10 seconds at the beginning of every movement. It is a system where fractions of a second can result in largely increased work capacity.

Is it worth it for a Crossfitter to spend a few cents a scoop to take some creatine every day? In an anaerobically biased sport where "every second counts," I think it is.

It's cheap. The science says the stuff works. I'd say try it out!

There are three energy systems in the human body: phosphagen, glycolysis, and oxidative. The first two systems are anaerobic systems, while the third is aerobic. The energy system which creatine (C) supplementation affects is the phosphagen system. The phosphagen system is used most during the first 8-10 seconds of ANY movement, whether it be overcoming inertia to get up off the couch or quickly snatching an Olympic bar overhead.

The simplified nuts and bolts of the phosphagen system are as follows: The body relies on the breakdown of muscular ATP into ADP, P, & energy for the first 2-3 seconds of movement. This reaction results in one phosphate (P) for every ATP broken.

Once muscular ATP is depleted, the system then relies primarily upon the resynthesis of ATP from ADP & creatine phosphate (CP) in order to continue working. The synthesis of ATP from ADP and CP results in one C for every ATP synthesized in this manner.

Once muscular ATP has been depleted and once the capacity for muscles to resynthesize ATP from ADP & CP has been exceeded, the body moves on to the glycolysis and oxidative systems and allows the phosphagen system to recover. The phosphagen system takes between 3-5 minutes to recover fully from maximal exertion.

Notice that P is a byproduct of ATP breakdown and C is a byproduct of ATP synthesis. When C and P combine, they become CP, the substance used to resynthesize ATP during exercise.

As such, increased availability of C through supplementation can affect this system in two ways.

First, increased availability of C in muscles MAY increase the work capacity of the phosphagen system by increasing available muscular CP. Remember, CP is used to resynthesize ATP from ADP & CP during the first 8-10 seconds of movement. By increasing the amount of muscular CP available from the start of exercise, the capacity of the system is increased. C supplementation ensures a good supply of base material for the production of CP, though it does nothing to address the availability of P for the reaction.

Second, the availability of C in muscles MAY reduce the recovery time of the phosphagen system by ensuring that there are plenty of C molecules to recombine with P to rebuild CP during and after exercise.

The idea is that C supplementation allows muscles to do more work using the phosphagen energy system before it fails by increasing the amount of CP available to recycle ATP, and after it fails by decreasing phosphagen system recovery time between bouts of exercise.


I started supplementing with creatine monohydrate last Sept. Within 5 to 6 months, I put on a SOLID 8 to 10 pounds of muscle, which was amazing considering that I've always struggled to put weight on. Unlike most people, I noticed nothing in regards to having an increase in endurance, power, or recovery. I have always taken it post WOD with a protein, carb, and fat meal. Everett and Wolf recently talked about combining it with beta alanine for even better results. Everett sells a product containing both supplements, which goes by the name of Podium Gold. He said it is the only form of creatine that he has ever benefited from.

Creatine Monohydrate is probably one of the most tested supplements in the universe, bar none.
I have used it, and it does help with improving power output. Drink plenty of water while you're loading, though, for maximal effect.
Most of the stuff I've read has pointed to improved interstitial leverage as the main component in the performance improvement.
On the opposite end of this, in my experience, is that low and ultra low carb dieting does the opposite (probably for the same reason).

Creatine is one of about three supplements that has any studies of merit backing it (beta Alanine and whey protein being the other two). Look at creative stores like a cup of water. While you can only have so much it easy to keep topped off...especially while supplementing. If You train could always use some topping off. It is used in all cell activity so it has benefits elsewhere. It's also one of the cheapest supplements out there...why not try! Just don't buy into anythinng but mono hydrate...all that other stuff is marketing.

We've actually just been talking about this in my Principles of Strength and Conditioning class. :)
My professor said that unless you're doing primarily short explosive exercises, most people don't need creatine supplementation and are just wasting their money. You're muscles can only store so much creatine, so if you're taking extra but you already have enough, you're body is just going to get rid of it.
At least that was my understanding. I have access to a bunch research articles through my school website. I'll see what I can dig up about this. :)


Been very curious myself about it. Can't wait to hear some good opinions or facts about it

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