Maximising Creatine


Dosing strategies to maximise creatine’s performance potential

Creatine remains one of the most effective, safest and, most importantly, proven performance-enhancing supplements available on the market. 

According to the International Society of Sports Nutrition’s position stand¹: “Creatine monohydrate is the most effective ergogenic nutritional supplement currently available to athletes in terms of increasing high-intensity exercise capacity…”

Creatine is a natural substance found in the body that plays vital roles in energy metabolism, helping to boost power and strength output and support repeated bouts of high-intensity effort.

Boosting creatine stores with a supplement lets you train harder for longer, which is what ultimately delivers the performance benefit that builds more muscle and strength.

The many research-proven benefits include: 

  • Accelerated recovery between sets and workouts 
  • Increased strength
  • Higher work capacity
  • Greater strength endurance 
  • Aids muscle cell hydration
  • Protects muscle² against free radical damage

Picking the right creatine product

You can find creatine in various forms, including kre-alkalyn creatine, creatine ester, creatine citrate, creatine malate and creatine HCL. These products improve absorption or deliver a more concentrated form, but the additional processing and manufacturing steps add to the cost.

Creatine monohydrate products like Primal Nutrition Creatine 5000 remains one the most effective (from a functional and cost perspective) options to boost creatine stores in muscle cells and the liver. 

Different creatine dosing strategies

However, it is not just the products that have evolved over the years. The dosing strategies available to derive the best response have also advanced, with two scientifically-validated options at our disposal:

  1. The traditional ‘loading’ protocol: The approach was initially introduced based on research findings from a study aimed at proving creatine efficacy. This protocol includes a loading phase where up to 20g (roughly 0.3g/kg/day) is take over multiple doses for 5–7 days, followed by a maintenance phase of 3-5g (roughly 0.03g/kg/day) either for three weeks (if cycling) or indefinitely without additional loading phases.
  2. The maintenance protocol: This newer approach suggests taking 3-10g of creatine per day for a period of up to two months with no loading phase. It is, however, recommended that you cycle your creatine consumption  to reset your body’s response mechanisms to continue realising a benefit.

The best times to take your creatine

Whichever protocol you choose, it is ideal to split your intake into multiple daily doses and mix your creatine monohydrate with your favourite protein-carbohydrate drink or grape juice.

You can also maximise absorption with an all-in-one product like Primal Creatine Charge, which is loaded with the same potent 5g dose of creatine monohydrate per serving but also contain dextrose monohydrate and alpha-lipoic acid – no fruit juice required! Just mix 2 scoops (43g) with 300ml of cold water, shake well and drink up to charge your workout.

Following this doing protocol for optimal results:

  • Take one serving before training to stock up reserves. 
  • Take another dose after your session to replenish depleted stores. 
  • Take a single serving before breakfast on non-training days.

The exact timing isn’t that important because your muscle cells can store creatine for use when required.

Creatine Charge – 860g / Assorted

  1. Buford TW, Kreider RB, Stout JR, Greenwood M, Campbell B, Spano M, Ziegenfuss T, Lopez H, Landis J, Antonio J. International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: creatine supplementation and exercise. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2007 Aug 30;4:6. doi: 10.1186/1550-2783-4-6. PMID: 17908288; PMCID: PMC2048496.
  2. Cooke MB, Rybalka E, Stathis CG, Hayes A. Myoprotective Potential of Creatine Is Greater than Whey Protein after Chemically-Induced Damage in Rat Skeletal Muscle. Nutrients. 2018 Apr 30;10(5):553. doi: 10.3390/nu10050553. PMID: 29710855; PMCID: PMC5986433.