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If I’m an athlete, does taking creatine help me improve my athletic performance?
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It appears that creatine works best when athletes have already burned through their normal (aerobic) oxygen reserves and are relying on anaerobic energy to push further than they could before. The optimal dosing for creatine is 5 grams 4 times daily for 7 days, followed by 5 grams for 8-10 weeks. Keep in mind, this showed no effect on aerobic exercise, only when all the available oxygen reserves were exhausted and athletes started using anaerobic sources of energy did the creatine really start making the difference. With no real side effects, this should be standard supplementation for most competitive athletes.
1. Mielgo-Ayuso, J. et. al. Effects of Creatine Supplementation on Athletic Performance in Soccer Players: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Nutrients Volume 11 Issue 4 10.3390/nu11040757.
2. Soares Freitas Sampaio CR, Aidar FJ, Ferreira ARP, et al. Can Creatine Supplementation Interfere with Muscle Strength and Fatigue in Brazilian National Level Paralympic Powerlifting?. Nutrients. 2020;12(9):E2492. Published 2020 Aug 19. doi:10.3390/nu12092492.