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PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 1999 12:58 am 
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Location: Richmond, VA
To all: I am the father of a rapidly growing soon to be 16 year old son. He is over 6', lean, and now working out regularly in the gym. The results of working out are apparent as his muscles grow.

The problem? Yesterday he came home with two tins of creatine (Bill - it is EAS brand, "UniversityTested", from GNC at the mall). 'All his friends are taking it.' The recommended daily dose is '2 scoops' or 43mg X 2. As long as he sticks with the dosage I said ok. This is an unintended consequence of Mark M's 70 hr's.

How can I argue against it? On my bathroom sink is my lineup -
glucosamine/chondroiten, vitamin E, simethicone, tums, Zantac...........

If he does not abuse this stuff, what are the potential problems? What are your thoughts out there? Maybe I should join him and add to my muscle mass.

Rich


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 1999 4:36 pm 
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Location: Indialantic, FL, USA
Creatine monohydrate can indeed enhance strength training for those who participate in sports involving brief, explosive muscular contractions (such as in weight lifting). It has not been found to be useful for endurance activities (running, cycling, etc.).

Creatine will lead to an increase in lean body mass, but keep in mind that much of that extra weight is in the form of water (creatine increases fluid retention in the muscle).

The thinking is that supplementation might enable people to meet their goals more quickly, but won't allow any increase beyond that which could be obtained naturally. There is a genetic limit to how much creatine can be taken up by the muscles, so if your son already has naturally high muscle creatine stores he probably won't see much improvement. Those with the lowest body stores will see the most improvement.

Research suggests a maximum of about 20 grams per day, divided into four doses of 5 gm each, for 5 days. Then a maintenance dose of 5 gm/day is recommended to maintain creatine levels in the muscle tissue.

We don't yet know the long-term effects and risks of creatine. Cramps and muscle spasms are often reported among users.


------------------
Susie Harrison
Email: <A HREF="mailto:Sharriso@health-first.org">Sharriso@health-first.org</A>


[This message has been edited by Susie Harrison (edited 02-04-99).]


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 1999 9:16 pm 
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Location: Evansville, IN, USA
I personally have been using creatine for a couple of years now, and I find it to be great stuff! I read everything I could on it and it sees relatively helpful and especially non-harmful. What pleases me the most about it is that there appears to be some science behind why it works, as opposed to some other supplements which just kind of work, and people aren't quite sure why.

Osu!
Jason


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 1999 10:04 pm 
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Rich

Out of the closet I come....

First of all, we are lucky to have the input of Suzie Harrison. Great stuff!

Second, I take 5 g of creatine a day. Usually I take it with a high-glycemic index carbohydrate drink (that has aminos in it) within an hour after a weight workout. Lots going on in the thinking behind that; I'll reserve it for another day.

Third, Creatine is used by the muscle as creatine phosphate. Your muscles break a phosphate group off of ATP to get the energy to contract. Creatine phosphate is there to reload the ADP to create ATP again.

Fourth, Suzie already covered the bit about whether or not creatine supplementation helps, and what the incremental benefit would be. But in general you need to have INTENSE workouts (note how Suzie mentioned power as opposed to endurance activities) to take advantage of being properly loaded with enough creatine phosphate. It cannot make you strong per se. YOU must do the work, and the proper ATP loading helps make sure you have enough energy to go full blast.

Last time I checked, they did do randomized trials with weightlifters on supplementation with creatine, and there were increased strength gains in the treatment group. It helps if you are a person who "red lines" in your workout.

Bill


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 1999 1:12 am 
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Thanks for all of the good replies. I'll let him take it. Bill, I need you to look at this brand and see why they recommend such a large dose. It may be mostly filler.

Now, would it be of value to me? I spend about the same amount of time with aerobics as I do free weights. Also, I definitely redline a few days a week, but again, half of that is aerobic activity.

Anyone have thoughts on that?

Rich


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 1999 8:15 am 
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Location: Washington DC
Gents,
I have lifted free weights for 22 years and during that time have spend big bucks on just about everything Weider and companies like his have offered as "the hot suppliment". You name it, protien powders, "Hot Stuff", multi-vit "animal packs", the list goes on. Creatine has been the one that really works. (What do I mean "works"?) As was previously stated, creatine forces a retention of water in the muscles, thereby making you "bigger". More importantly, however, (maybe placebo effect, I don't know, Bill would have to answer this) but, it seems that I can perform more reps without the muscle burnout, thereby pushing a greater combined weight per workout. I have also found that this works great for about 3 weeks, then I hit a plateau. Others have mentioned this same "leveling Off". I cycle off the stuff, probably out of boredom of taking a daily suppliment, but also because I see a stagnation of progress. For me, and others who aren't pro bodybuilders, I see ups and downs in my training. Diet, family committments, deployments, etc interupt my workouts. Roller coaster to be sure. I take 5mg of creatine a day, and a good, natural multi-vit pack. That's it. No more dumping hundreds into "the hot ticket" in the suppliment wars. Probably most central to any success I have is diet. I am not a strict dieter, but I make sure I eat often (at least 4 times a day), run a couple times a week (required for us Marines) and I lift HEAVY (for me, that is). Factor in genetics, lifestyle, work activities, etc and you get what you get. Sorry for the long post. Love to talk PT (physical training)
Best Regards,
Drew Doolin


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 1999 2:08 pm 
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Rich

I've seen a lot of literature out about how to use creatine. Most recommend a loading phase that has more than the usual 5 g per day, followed by maintenance of 5 g/day.

Again, creatine is a wast of money if you aren't the kind of person who busts his/her butt in the weight room. It only helps the intense folks work a little harder. It will not make you intense or make you strong if you don't have the desire.

Creatine will not help you on the step master. Sprinting, yes. Heavy lifting, yes. Lineman on a footbal team, yes.

I agree with what Drew wrote. 99% of the stuff sold as bodybuilding supplements is trash. Creatine helps a little. It's the ONLY thing I've taken that made any difference. And if a certain recommended dose works, taking more isn't going to help more.

Most of the stuff is out there to make Joe Wieder et al richer. Joe recruits winners from bodybuilding contests to pose with his products along side buxom, tan blonds in bikini thongs. The two of them are usually posed in front of an Italian sports car than neither of them can afford because they shun work and devote their lives to the gym. And these bodybuilders didn't get that size from Wieder supplements. Can you say modern pharmaceuticals?

[This message has been edited by Bill Glasheen (edited 02-05-99).]


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 1999 2:39 pm 
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Rich

As to the dose, check out and see what is in his stuff. It may have more than creatine in it. Most of the stuff that is pure, crystalline creatine gives you 5 g in a scoop that is about as wide as a nickel. I noted that the amounts you spoke of were in mg, not g.

Pure creatine is relatively tasteless and unoffensive, and mixes quickly with fluids. In fact when I'm on the run, I've actually just dumped a scoop of the stuff in my mouth. It's really not that bad. There is no need to put flavoring or emulsifiers or sweetners or anything else like that in it. If you want flavor, you can just dump it in a glass of juice. Anything extra - even if it is special supplement stuff - is not likely to be of any value to anyone but the guy selling it to you. All your son really needs is 5 g of pure creatine a day, and maybe a multivitamin/multimineral supplement.

Bill

Bill

[This message has been edited by Bill Glasheen (edited 02-05-99).]


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 1999 4:26 am 
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Bill : Ah yes, proper units. The dose is 43 grams. After reading the can, 33g is 'sugars'. Total creatine monohydrate per dose is 5.7g. Also contains other minerals. Has a high 'glycemic index.
Looks and tastes like lime 'Cool Aide'.

From what you and others have said, this is a reasonable product.
Rich


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