Women starting out on a new fitness regimen may be curious about what kind of supplements they should be taking to maximize their results. A lot of people just use the supplements that their buddies do or that are suggested in magazines or on internet forums. This approach might work, but a lot of these supplements may be unnecessary, depending on what your individual goals are. For people new to supplements, it’s best to start with the basics.
Almost everyone can benefit from creatine. This is one of the most recommended supplements.
It is so popular because of the results you can achieve from creatine supplementation. However, asking questions about what you put into your body and why you are doing so is always a good strategy. Women generally have the same basic questions about creatine.
What Does Creatine Do?
Creatine is used primarily as an energy source by your body. It is particularly useful during workouts because it restores ATP during your workout. It can also help you build muscle and strength, but only if your diet and workout program are designed with these kinds of results as a goal. Creatine alone will not have much of an effect on your strength or muscle mass.
What Type of Creatine Should I Use?
With so many different specialized creatine products on the market, this question is understandable. Women who are just starting to introduce supplements into their routines are better off sticking to basic supplements until their fitness goals and needs change. Creatine monohydrate is the least expensive form of creatine. Creatine monohydrate is one of the most powerful non-hormonal supplements.
Sticking to a supplement that is purely creatine is also best, especially for novices. It is unlikely that you will need any of the more specialized supplements just yet.
How Much Should I Use?
The body usually contains about 120 grams of creatine normally, most of which is stored in the muscles.
However, the body can store 30 to 40 more grams of creatine. However, once your creatine levels reach this threshold, anything more than that will be filtered out of your body as waste.
Once you reach threshold levels of creatine, two to three grams of creatine supplements will maintain that threshold. Many sources suggest using five grams or even more per day, but this is excessive.
How Can I Reach Threshold?
There are two ways to reach threshold. One is through creatine loading, which involves taking twenty grams of creatine for five days. This is a fast way to reach threshold, but it is not necessary to do this.
The other way to reach threshold is by taking about five grams of creatine for about three weeks. This is much slower than creatine loading, but it is just as effective in the long run.
When Should I Take Creatine?
Creatine gives you the best results when you use it daily, even on your rest or off days. On your workout days, taking your creatine about one hour before your workout and immediately after can maintain your creatine threshold during your workout and replace it after. On your off days, taking your creatine first thing in the morning will replenish your levels. Using the same two to three grams that you use on workout days will keep your muscles at threshold.
Creatine is easy to incorporate into your diet. It is also fairly simple to understand how supplementation helps enhance your workout and give you better results by allowing you to push yourself further than you otherwise would be able to. As you become more advanced and your needs become more specialized, you may be ready to stack your creatine with other supplements for even better results.