Creatine Before Or After A Workout? Find Out Using Reasons
One should take creatine before or after a workout? As you already know creatine is one of the most popular supplements that increase performance during workouts and exercises.
There are plenty of studies conducted that clearly show creatine increases muscle mass and strength. Some extensive researches have also claimed that it is safe to consume. We already have seen many people use it as it is safe and effective, but there seems to be a little confusion on the time one should have it. Should we take Creatine before or after a workout? You will soon find out the best time you should consume it for effective results.
What Is Creatine?
Creatine is a molecule that is present naturally inside our cells. It is also an extremely famous dietary supplement to use as per studies. Taking creatine as a supplement may escalate the levels of creatine in your cells leading to many performances and health benefits.
Some of these benefits include improved performance while working out and improved muscular health. It also has certain neurological benefits like improved mental performance in older people.
Studies performed in weight training programs show that creatine can increase performance and strength gains by about 5 to 10% on average. These benefits after taking creatine are due to its crucial role in the production of cellular energy.
For all the individuals who are working on their strength and to promote their health overall, you should definitely consider taking supplements having creatine. But should we take creatine before or after a workout? This is a major concern and question of curiosity which we need to know.
Creatine Before or After A Workout?
On the days you go for workouts in the gym or home workout, there are mainly three options you should consider for taking creatine. You can just consume it shortly before you start working out, shortly after you are done with your workout regimen, or at any time that is not very close to your exercise routine.
Another option to consider for taking creatine is to split it into different parts to take throughout the day. Let’s see some commonly asked questions on creatine before or after a workout?
Should I Take Creatine After Workout?
Several researchers have tried using ways to find out the best time one should consume creatine supplements.
A study conducted previously, examined whether creatine (5 gm) was more beneficial for adult men before or after their workout. This was a 4-week study, all the participants involved were trained for nearly 5 days per week. Some of them took creatine before their workouts while others took it after their workouts.
At the end of this study, the results were quite clear. A greater increase in lean mass and a higher decrease in fat mass were observed in the group of participants that to creatine after they finished their workout.
Overall, as per the research given, it is not very much clear whether there is a great difference between both groups. The differences are not very evident in taking creatine before or after a workout.
It Is Best To Take Supplements Shortly Before Or After Workout
Through researches, it seems that consuming creatine shortly after or before the workouts might be more effective than taking it long after or before the exercises.
A 10-week study was conducted which provided a dietary supplement having creatine, protein, and carbs to adults that used weight training workouts. There were basically two groups into which all the participants were divided into. Among these groups, one group took the dietary supplement before and after their workouts while the other took these supplements in the morning and evening, not close to their workout regimen.
At the end of this study, the group of participants that took supplements close to their workout has built more strength and increased more muscle mass than the other group that took in the morning and evening.
Based on the results of this research, it seems better to take creatine closer to your workout timings rather than taking them long before your workout. For instance, you can take creatine after your workout or split your daily dose into two for taking one before the workout and the other one after finishing the workout.
Taking Supplements On The Rest Days
Taking supplements on your rest days is much more important than the timings of these supplements on your workout days. The goal of taking supplements on the days you rest is to keep the content or concentration of creatine elevated in the muscles.
When you are starting to take creatine supplements, a loading phase is mainly recommended. In this phase, a relatively high amount of creatine is taken for 5 days. This is approx 20 grams. This will quickly increase the creatine in your muscles over several days in a row.
After this, a normal dose should be taken ranging from 3 to 5 grams only. If you take a maintenance dose on rest days, the only purpose of these doses is to maintain the levels of creatine in cells and muscles. Overall, this does not make a huge difference. Also, it is important that you consume the supplement along with a meal.
How To Make Creatine Before Or After A Workout?
while the advantages of taking creatine supplements are established well, many people still look for ways to maximize these benefits. Many researchers have tried adding some other ingredients to creatine supplements like carbs, protein, cinnamon, amino acids, and several plant-based components for increasing the effectiveness.
Several studies have claimed that when you take carbs along with creatine, it escalates the extent to which it is taken by the muscles in your body. However, some other studies have shown that adding carbs to your diet along with creatine has no positive effect.
These studies used doses of carbs ranging from 100 gm or 400 calories. Overall, there might be many health benefits to taking carbs but at the same time, it increases your calorie intake every day making it difficult to manage the calories needed as per your schedule.
If you still wish to add carbs taking creatine along with your meal that contains carbs, but make sure you do not eat extra carbs than regular. Other than this, you may also add protein and amino acids to help increase the extent to which the body retains this supplement.
The Bottom Line
Creatine is an effective and undoubtedly safe ingredient or supplement to take when you are working out or performing strength training to increase your strength. But the time one should take it, is still a huge debate in the fitness world.
If we go with the research, then on workout days you must take creatine shortly after the exercise or before performing your workouts. One study has shown that taking it afterward has made the participants gain more strength.
Try not to consume creatine long after your workout or in the morning you wake up long before your exercises. It has shown to be beneficial but not as much.
However, on regular days when you do not want to work out or it is your rest day, it is more beneficial to take creatine along with your food as the timing is not very much important as it is on workout days.
Furthermore, consuming creatine with food items having carbs and protein might help you in maximizing the benefits you receive from these supplements on your rest days.
This was everything you needed to know about creatine and when you should consume it both on workout days and on your rest days.
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