As an acid produced naturally within the body that helps to supply your muscles with power during workouts, creatine is a vitally important part of every athlete’s health. Found mostly in animal products and supplements, the benefits of creatine for explosive workouts cannot be understated. It is one of the most commonly used supplements because of its ability to power workout performance while having very few side effects.
Primary Benefits of Creatine
Creatine is becoming more widely known within the scientific realm, as well as among athletes, thanks to its ability to improve muscle size and strength. The primary benefits of creatine include better recovery time, improved cognitive ability and function, better muscle size and strength after workouts, improved fat loss, and even sprinting and burst performance effects. It is, at is core, a precursor to ATP, which helps to power the muscles during short and powerful bursts of cardio or physical activity.
Enhanced Recovery Time
Creatine has been found over a number of studies, include ding those done on endurance runners, to have benefits for reducing recovery time in athletes. In a study of male runners who supplemented with this, researches found that indications of muscle damage caused by extreme activate were much less pronounced among those who supplemented with creatine vs. the control group. It seems to help promote recovery among endurance and strength-based athletes, so it can be effective in reducing downtime between gym sessions.
Muscle Growth Benefits
It’s been shown to help to boost muscle growth, size, and volume, leading to a greater “ripped” look or muscle inflation. This is because it helps to stimulate protein synthesis, helping you lift more and get a better looking body on the whole.
Physical Power and Strength
Creatine supplements have been found to boost strength and power over athletes who’ve used this product. A study done over 3 days found that subjects acquired greater lean muscle mass by 7% than those who didn’t supplement. This is due to creatine’s ability to improve anaerobic capability, letting you do faster, longer, and harder sprints on the whole.
One of the most understated benefits is that it can help to prevent muscular and neurodegenerative disorders. Surprisingly enough, in a study measuring the major effects of creatine on the brain, researchers found that the supplement helped to protect nerve cells from damage. Some chemical agents like peroxides, free radicals, and even oxygen molecules can contribute to nerve cell problems. It has been shown to reverse the effect of these toxins — and improve cognitive functioning as a whole. As a result of taking the supplement, you’ll likely find it easier to remember complex ideas, numbers, and facts, as well as explain them to your friends and family.
Who Will Benefit the Most from Supplementation?
Those who may find the greatest benefit from creatine are strength and bodybuilding athletes, those who have cognitive impairment or simply want to boost neurological functioning, and those who are trying to maintain powerful workouts while aging. Endurance athletes will also get a nice little boost due to the ATP-enhancing effects of this supplement.
Types of Creatine
The most commonly found types of this supplement include micronized creatine, creatine phosphate, and creatine monohydrate. Most products use creatine monohydrate as it is easiest for the body to take in and convert to energy right away. Micronized creatine is basically the same thing, but its molecules are divided and made much smaller (micronized). This lets them get absorbed more quickly and easily into the bloodstream, as well as making it more powerful as a stamina booster because it bypasses most of the metabolic processes it has to undergo in monohydrate form.
If you’re looking for a great way to supplement your workouts, creatine is a safe and effective choice. With few side effects and its ability to power you through your exercise sessions, it is an excellent performance enhancing supplement for endurance, strength, and power-based exercise routines. It’s available over the counter in pill form, or as a powder that you can add to protein shakes for an added boost. You’ll likely notice yourself having more cognitive clarity, energy, and positive mood as you go about your day. And of course, you’ll notice the main benefits of creatine in your exercise sessions, where you can power through quicker and easier than before.