Creatine supplies a little more energy in the gym to help you grind out an extra heavy repetition or two. Creatine does not cause you to gain or lose weight. If you wish to drop body fat, creatine monohydrate will not affect your efforts. Consult a health care practitioner before beginning any diet or exercise program and before using any supplement.
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Creatine monohydrate is a combination of amino acids that supplies energy during intense muscular contractions. The harder you train, the more your creatine reserves drop. You produce approximately 2 g of creatine naturally, but supplementing allows you to supply your muscles with more. According to a 1999 study published in "European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology," men participating in a strength training program while taking creatine noticed an increase in lean body mass without an increase in body fat.
To lose fat you must burn more calories than you take in. You do this by decreasing your caloric intake and increasing your activity levels. By lifting weights three times a week and performing cardiovascular exercise three times a week in between your lifting sessions, you can boost your metabolism every day. Resistance training is important, not only because it maintains lean muscle mass, but because it causes you to burn calories long after you have finished training, according to a 1993 study in the "Journal of Applied Physiology."
Begin by tracking your nutrient intake, and recording everything you eat and drink, including water. Calculate the amount of calories you eat, and check your weight regularly. If you neither lose nor gain weight, you know how many calories you need to maintain your weight. Subtract 250 calories from this per day to begin your diet. First cut out saturated fats such as those found in red meats and butter, and cut out sugary carbohydrates found in junk food and highly-processed cereals. After several weeks, if you remain unhappy with your progress, you can make further dietary adjustments.
When you train with weights in the gym, you should train your entire body every training session. Use compound exercises that use multiple joints and work multiple muscle groups, such as squats, leg presses and deadlifts to train your lower body. Bench pressing, overhead pressing, pulldowns and rows will work the rest of your body. Start using light weights to ensure good technique, but gradually add weight until you must work very hard to train in the eight to 12 repetition range. Training this way will help you to take advantage of your creatine supplementation. On opposite days, perform a method of cardiovascular exercise you enjoy and train for at least 30 minutes per session to lose fat.
- "European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology"; Effects of Training and Creatine Supplement on Muscle Strength and Body Mass; M. Francaux, et al.; July 1999
- "Journal of Applied Physiology"; Effect of Acute Resistance Exercise on Postexercise Energy Expenditure and Resting Metabolic Rate; C. Melby, et al.; October 1993