Creatine is no joke. It works, it’s safe, it rapidly increases your strength and a huge amount of people is taking it. Yes, I know. You heard it causes water weight.
You might have also heard that the gains aren’t real and probably something else about how ‘once you stop taking it, your muscles turn directly into fat… Overnight’.
All of these things are not true. Not, at all. It might be from the people who do not have sufficient knowledge about Creatine.But, you already know this and after all you are here to understand the best time to be taking your creatine! So, let’s get through it.
The 5 Most Effective Times to Take Creatine
I am so much surprised by how little actual clinical research exists on this topic. So bear with me as I make conclusions based on both research and personal experience combined.
Best Time to Take Creatine – Pre and Post Workout
Post Workout with Food
Creatine with Breakfast Every Day (Or Your First Meal of the Day)
Creatine with Your Pre-Workout
- Not taking a pre workout supplement.
- Taking a stimulant-free pre workout supplement.
Take Creatine Intra-Workout (During Your Lift)
According to the most relevant research, taking 5 grams creatine monohydrate both pre and post workout is the most effective way to utilize creatine for strength and muscle gains.The current research says that taking creatine both pre and post workout is the most effective method. However, I believe that the reason doing so produced such great results, was because participants were also taking protein and carbohydrates, which, elevated insulin enough to make the creatine uptake significantly more effective.
This is my personal favorite time to take creatine – after a workout.You can take it with your post workout meal for better uptake. It’s a consistent time when your creatine levels are at their lowest. It is a time when your stimulant use is low, so osmotic flow promotes creatine uptake. For these reasons, it seems logical, and has been producing really good results.
This is one of the easiest ways to consistently take creatine. Either take it with breakfast, or with your first meal of the day if you practice intermittent fasting (which works).Taking creatine earlier in the day will offset the need to urinate overnight. It’s just better to start your day with some gains. For these reasons, creatine with your first meal of the day is a reasonable and effective time.
Pre-workout is inevitable when the majority of people take their creation. That is, unless you are either:
Why the bias? It’s all about uptake.
And the issue with mixing your high-stimulant pre-workout with creatine is that, it irritates your GI. When you irritate your GI, you’re not going to take in creatine very well. Even worse, you may be compromising the uptake of nutrients for hours.
For many of you, this isn’t an issue. Your stomach is an iron forge ready for any task.
However, for many of you as well – taking 5 grams of creatine monohydrate on-top of your Jekyll and Hyde pre-workout stack is the shortcut to disaster pants.
Lastly, is taking creatine in the intra-workout window. I do not view this as a feasible time to be taking creatine at all. First, it takes time to uptake, so you are probably not going to feel its benefits during your actual lift.
Second, creatine throws off water balance. Once you take it, this will draw water from your muscles into your intestines/blood. Which is bad for performance.
And lastly, intra-workout really isn’t the time to be eating unless you are in some form of long-duration endurance exercise. But even then, taking something, that affects water balance may not be the best of ideas.