Anyone know anything about creatine?

I’m considering taking creatine as a supplement to my workout. Does anyone have any first-hand (or second) knowledge about whether or not it works and/or how well? I have read loads of reports on it’s effectiveness, but none first-hand. Also, how much working out is necessary to see improvements? I work out 3 times a week, and also exercise daily (walking, blading, biking, etc.)

“Minds are like parachutes; they work best when open.”

-Lord Thomas Dewar

Is that the stuff Mark McGwire was taking? I heard it makes you grow breasts.

Mark McGwire was taking androstenedione, commonly called “Andro.” He may also take creatine. Andro is an anabolic steroid, which may increase muscle * mass * but has shown little effectivness on * strength * Creatine (IIRC) stimulates the thyroid to produce HGH, Human Growth Hormone, which in some men can leads to bizzare secondary sex characteristics, such as breasts. Some people swear by Creatine, but I am suspicious that anything beyond a placebo effect is at work here. If you took pills of encapsulated cow manure, and someone told you that it would make your workout more productive, you might actually have a more productive workout, but that doesn’t mean that anything more than psychological happened.

Jason R Remy

“No amount of legislation can solve America’s problems.”
– Jimmy Carter (1980)

Actually, Jason, “Creatine is a compound that is naturally produced by our bodies to supply the necessary energy to our muscles. Creatine is produced by the liver and then taken to the muscle cells by the blood where it is converted to creatine phosphate. Our bodies usually produce about 2 grams of creatine per day.” ( I have done research on it as far as it’s medical background, but just don’t have any first-hand knowledge of it’s effectiveness.

“Minds are like parachutes; they work best when open.”

-Lord Thomas Dewar

But does anyone know if it has similar effects as melatonin, where you can take supplements but unless your body is sort on it they’ll get flushed right out.

Formerly known as Nec3f on the AOL SDMB

My boyfriend took it for a while last year. It did put some weight on him, but I think it was just water retention. His face got all puffy and he looked funny. He was lifting pretty hard 3-4 times a week and taking the stuff. I wouldn’t recommend it.

I do not have first hand knowledge. Personally I would not take anything to try to enhance my workout.

Second hand knowledge, I believe this is what Sammy Sosa and Ken Griffy Jr. take. They take something similar to Andro, but slightly different.

Also, Bill Goldberg of WCW and former Falcon has a gym in Atlanta, they sell the Creatine online and I would guess at the gym. I would therefore assume that Bill takes it himself. He is huge.

That is about all I can offer.


I started taking it about a month ago, and it really works. I have had been able to increase weight in every exercise I do. I take that, plus I take two of Twin-Lab’s Ripped Fuels before I work out. The Ripped Fuels are basically caffeine and ephedrine, and they really give me a kick before and during my workout. It has also helped me cut down my body fat from 18.3% to 12.5% in 6 weeks. Here is a great site that explains the benefits of ripped fuel and creatine. This site is the best one I’ve found so far.

I use creatine. It is really great stuff! It takes about 10 days or so to kick in, but I really noticed a difference in my fatigue levels from extended exercise, and the ability to do more exercise. Needless to say, this helps you develop more quickly. I have been using it for about 2 and a bit years now.

My understanding of how it works is simply that it reverses the process of muscle fatigue. Specifically, IIRC, it reverses lactic acid back to its original state so that it can be “burned” again by your muscles.

Guys, guys!

I’m not very good at biology, but I have it on good authority (a specific magazine article and almost exactly the same thing from an AP Bio teacher I was friends with) that creatine essentially makes it easier for the muscle to get energy. It plays a part in getting the muscle ATP to burn. To really dumb it down to where I can understand it, it raises your blood sugar (not really, but anyway…) so that the muscle can go longer before fatigue. This means that you can do more intense sets and therefore build muscle faster per month etc.

I was told in a “nutrition” shop that it helps build red blood cells, but that’s a load.

About a year and a half ago I used creatine for a period of about 8 months. I had hit a plateu in my workouts and for the firrst 4-5 months it made great strides, up 50 lbs. for squats and also higher in my other exercises. I hit another plateau and after another couple months of it not working decided to stop using it. Like any of these products you should probably not use it on a constant basis, maybe for 4 mo. then off for another 4 mo. I never had any noticable sideffects, but decided not to bother with these type of products. Now I just take a multivitamin with some extra B-complex.

Thanks all for the info - what sort of exercise regime would you recommend? I’m not hardcore (3 times/week) and I don’t really want to be. Life is to complex to try to work and go to the gym every day as well. Will it be detrimental to me to use creatine and not work out intensely? Or should I not bother taking it if I’m not going to work out almost every day?

“Minds are like parachutes; they work best when open.”

-Lord Thomas Dewar

First I would like to say this is not Holly. This is her husband. I feel I need to clarify that, so you don’t think she’s a big musclehead. I personally have taken Creatine Monohydrate in it’s pure form. I believe it was almost 100% pure, and I personally had increase in size and strength. I’m the type of person who has a high metabolism; therefore it is hard to gain weight. In less than 1 month I gained 15lbs. I don’t have a long term scenario for you ,but I do know it works well on a short term basis. Alot of the professional athletes use creatine. The only bad thing I heard about it was that with long term use you may get cramps, but it’s not proven that it’s the creatine that causes them.

Note from Holly: Eric’s statement is clearly based on anectdotal evidence. Also keep in mind that he took creatine when he was working out regularly and he hardly conducted a double-blind study. Now Eric’s mad at me. Also note that creatine may cause problems with spelling and grammar. Ha! Take that!

IMO, creatine would be useless for you. Creatine (monohydrate) really is meant, I think, for people who do a lot of exercise and want to be able to raise the intensity even higher. I know a few people who tried creatine and didn’t exercise much and felt that it really didn’t help much.

Remember, that it essentially restores the bio-chemicals that allow your muscles to continue to work (I am simplfying). And since creatine is naturally produced by the body, well… if you aren’t burning through your initial supply having more around won’t make much difference.

if you’re only working out 3-4 times a week, i’d recommend against taking creatine. a number of guys on my team (lacrosse) take it, and those who don’t work out enough simply gain mass, not muscle. those who do work out seriously, though, report a good gain in muscle and reps for the first few weeks, and then a plateau. i haven’t used the stuff myself, so this is all second-hand.