How to Take Creatine | Level-Up Your Workouts


How to Take Creatine | Level-Up Your Workouts

You’ve heard the experts, fellow gym-goers and athletes rave about creatine and you’re ready to incorporate it into your workout routine. But when and how should you use it? We’re here to answer your questions with our guide on how to make creatine a part of your daily workout ritual.

First Things First: What Is Creatine?

For a quick refresher, creatine is formed of three amino acids and supplies energy to your muscles. It’s one of the body’s naturally occurring sources of energy. Half of the body’s creatine supply is produced by the liver and kidneys to be delivered to your muscles for use, while the other half is sourced from your diet (think red meat and fish).

For a quick refresher, creatine is formed of three amino acids and supplies energy to your muscles. It’s one of the body’s naturally occurring sources of energy. Half of the body’s creatine supply is produced by the liver and kidneys to be delivered to your muscles for use, while the other half is sourced from your diet (think red meat and fish).

Is It Worth the Hype?

Why should you take creatine? Well, when you think creatine, think energy. Taking a creatine supplement increases the amount of stores in the body, which essentially means more energy. The supplement is therefore commonly used by people engaging in power sports such as lifting, bodybuilding and wrestling, in order to maximise energy levels during training. Creatine supplements can help to:

Improve exercise performance

Our bodies use ATP, or adenosine triphosphate, as an energy source during physical activity. Creatine stores can be used by the body to produce more ATP, which then helps to improve heavy lifting and high-intensity training capabilities. In other words, creatine helps the body create more energy, which aids performance during workouts.

Increase lean body mass

Creatine increases lean body mass in a few different ways. Firstly, creatine essentially causes muscles to retain more water, so in the initial stages of taking the supplement, this will result in bigger and fuller muscles (but only if you’re drinking enough water, too). Secondly, a creatine energy boost will help you to work harder and lift heavier in the gym, which will result in muscle growth and gains.

Aid and improve recovery post-workout

Another added benefit to taking creatine supplements is the potential decrease in post-workout injury and illness. Research has shown that incidents of muscle tightness, strains and pulls, and dehydration lessen when taking creatine, particularly if taken post-workout.

It’s also been suggested that creatine supplements may be most effective for our vegetarian friends, as those eating a meat-free diet aren’t sourcing creatine from food intake, so the added boost may have a greater impact on their stores.

The Main Event: How to Take Creatine


Now that we’ve got the basics under control, it’s time to look at dosage, as well as how and when you should take creatine.

When it comes to dosage, there are two options depending on whether you’ve already started taking creatine or if it’s new to you.

Loading Dose

If you’re new to taking a creatine supplement, we recommend that you begin by taking a loading dose. A loading dose is basically a high intake of creatine over a short period. The main purpose? To increase the body’s stores. A typical loading dose is 20g per day, for a period of 2-5 days. If you’d prefer not to take a large loading dose, you can also take 9g per day for 6 days, or 3g per day for 28 days.

Maintenance Dose

If you’ve been taking creatine already or you’ve just completed your loading dose period, you’ll now switch to a maintenance dose. This dose typically falls between 2-5g per day. It is recommended that individuals drink around 1.8L of water everyday, remember - your muscles will retain more water while taking creatine.


In terms of when to take your creatine supplement, the research says there’s a few options (read: the jury’s still out on this one, there’s no real right or wrong answer). Depending on your schedule and what you really want to get out of your supplement, you can either take creatine pre-workout, post-workout, or you can go with half-pre and half-post.


As creatine provides your muscles with the energy required for a high-powered workout, taking creatine pre-workout will ensure you maximise this energy hit. Just make sure you’re giving your body enough time to absorb the creatine supplement before hitting the gym. Hint: take it at least 30 minutes before physical activity.


Many experts recommend taking creatine post-workout. The theory behind this is that once you’ve exercised, your creatine stores are now depleted and your muscles are fatigued. It is thought that taking a creatine supplement post-workout is beneficial in both helping to top up those stores in preparation for your next session, and to help recharge your muscles. It’s also argued that your body is most receptive to absorption post-workout, making it the ideal time to take your creatine supplement.


Some research has shown that the best approach could be splitting your daily dose in two, where you’ll take half pre-workout and half post-workout. This is the best of both worlds approach; it’s thought that by taking a half-dose pre-workout you’ll still reap some of those energy-boosting benefits, and by taking the rest post-workout you’ll be giving your muscles that chance to recover and top up their stores.


Another key consideration: what should you take your creatine with? This will depend on when you’ve decided to take your supplement. If you’re taking creatine before your workout, it can be combined with other pre-workout supplements and shakes. Some pre-workouts contain creatine, but the experts note there’s usually not enough in these formulas to have any kind of impact. Pre-workout usually contains 1-2g of creatine per serving, which we now know is below the recommended daily dosage.


Whether you take creatine before or after your workout (or, both before and after), you can combine the supplement with your favourite snack or shake. It’s recommended that you combine it with a source of carbohydrates or protein to help improve absorption and help muscles retain creatine for longer.

Our 99.9% pharmaceutical grade creatine supplement comes in a naturally flavoured powder, which makes it easy to add to your pre and post-workout shake or snack. It’s also HASTA Certified, banned substance-free, vegan friendly, with no added sugar or fillers, so you’re getting all the good stuff and none of the nasties.

See our Range of Creatine Products.

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