Creatine Cycle

A Regular Creatine Cycle Will Certainly Get You Noticed

Using a regular creatine cycle has long been popular with male weightlifters, body builders, athletes and general workout enthusiasts. They already know the boost it can give to your workouts and muscle building results.

Image thanks to  Hairy+Jacques @ FlickrHere we’ll take a look at what a creatine cycle is, plus the broad recommendations of using creatine in a cyclic phase. But first let’s consider what is required from you in order to get the most from this highly effective supplement.

Things to consider before you begin using creatine

It’s important to understand what’s involved when using creatine (or any other supplement for that matter). You need to fully understand what the formula offers, what benefits you can expect, and what the potential downsides can be.

You also need to have realistic and clearly defined targets in mind during this cycle. These targets should allow some flexibility as it is important that you remain fully focused throughout this fairly intense period.

You must also be prepared to give this cycle your all in two important ways.

The first is to maximise workout sessions in the gym. This is a golden opportunity for you to make some excellent gains, and for you to step up in terms of your ability level.

The second area is equally as important, but far too often overlooked. This is in the kitchen. You really do need a clear and structured diet that will feed your body properly to give you maximum benefits. Once you have this you need to stick to it!

Suggested principles of a creatine cycle

Please understand that everyone is different. It is important that you do your homework before commencing such a cycle.

Below is simply a guideline as to the suggested phases of such a cycle. You should tailor your cycle specifically for your own personal needs.

Loading Phase – this is the first week of use

There are two routes here. Most recommend that you saturate your muscles with creatine by taking a high level of between 15-25 grams each day for one week.

There is however the other school of thought that says to skip this phase.

And the reason some choose to skip loading is because if you simply take the ‘maintenance dose’ which is around 5 grams per day, you should still expect to see the same results as if you load.

The difference being that it will take you 3 or 4 weeks before your system reaches the same saturation level it takes the loading phase users one week to achieve.

The benefit to loading is quicker results, not greater results. The possible downside is you might find taking this much per day causes some stomach discomfort.

Maintenance Phase – after your first weeks use

This second phase is where you will keep your muscles saturated, but with a much smaller dose of between 5-10 grams each day.

How long should this cycle last?

Most people cycle with creatine for between 6 and 12 weeks at a time, and then stop using it for a minimum of four weeks. After this ‘rest’ period they will resume their creatine cycle once more, and include any ‘tweaks’ to it they feel necessary.

It should be noted that many users do not cycle. They stay on creatine for long periods of time.

Which way you choose to go will depend on how your body reacts to it, and how much you miss the energy boost you get when not using it.

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