What happens if you miss a day of creatine? Do you have to go back to the loading stage and start consuming more? Will there be an undesirable side effect? Will I feel weakness? Answers coming up.
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Creatine supplement is a synthetic version of a compound that is already present in the body in our muscles, kidney, and liver. Creatine may also be present in animal products such as meat and fish.
The majority of creatine in an individual’s body is mainly contained in the muscles themselves. Creatine is the source of energy for muscle contraction, and also helps develop new muscular tissue.
But does Creatine work like other supplements? Specifically, what happens if you miss a day of creatine? Will it cause headaches, dullness, and weakness in your body if you try to work out after skipping on creatine? Let’s look closely at this question in the article below.
What Happens if I Miss a Day of Creatine in Loading Stage?
Nothing will happen.
Creatine’s effects aren’t immediate. The muscles built due to creatine are built because you work out harder and stronger after taking it, and they take time to build. Anyway, creatine is present in foods like meat and seafood, so if you are so worried you can just take a bigger diet of these foods on the day!
Taking 20 grams of creatine per day for 5–6 days (typically known as the loading phase) will boost the creatine concentration in your muscles by roughly 20%, and you may then switch to a maintenance stage of 3–5 grams per day. There is a two- to three-week delay if you bypass the loading period and go directly to 3–5 g of creatine each day in the maintenance stage.
It doesn’t matter if you don’t take your creatine supplement on one day. It will take a week to a couple of weeks to fill your muscles with creatine. So, if you skip out on one day, there will not be any big fall in the creatine levels
However, because the goal is to maintain your creatine reserves, you should take your creatine both on workout days and on non-workout days.
You might like to read: Will Creatine Break A Fast?
What Happens if I Miss a Day of Creatine in Maintenance Stage?
Again, nothing will happen.
What if you quit taking creatine after you’ve topped out your creatine supply? Well, the creatine supply will slowly start to diminish but again, one day is not going to cause a major dent.
There was even a study conducted to test this. After a 20 percent rise in muscle creatine concentration during the loading phase, participants ceased supplementing with creatine altogether.
After fourteen days, the creatine concentration in the muscle had dropped by just 5%. So in all, they had gained a total of 15% from the beginning. It took almost a month for the subjects to reach back to their pre-supplement creatine levels.
For habitual creatine users, the wash-out phase lasts around a month. If you’ve stocked up on creatine, skipping one dosage won’t be an issue.
How Should I Take Creatine?
20-25gm per day during the loading stage. After that 5-10 gm per day during maintenance.
Firstly, make sure to talk to your doctor before starting a new supplementation program. Take creatine only as prescribed by your doctor, pharmacist, or another healthcare practitioner especially if you have heart, kidney, or liver-related problems.
Taking big doses of creatine for 2–5 days is known as the “loading stage,” during this stage you are filing up your muscles with creatine by taking 25-30gms per day.
You might like to read: Does Creatine Go Bad?
Loading is followed by lesser amounts, known as “maintenance,” here you are supposed to regularly consume 5-10gm per day every day.
This is a very popular strategy used by athletes. Athletes desiring a short-term boost in athletic abilities, such as those preparing for a sports tournament, have turned to this strategy for success.
Another way of using creatine includes administering smaller dosages over a more extended period during a training session. People who want to improve endurance via long-term exercises, such as bodybuilders, have employed this strategy.
If you take creatine alongside a carbohydrate-rich meal, you may get better results. Make sure you follow all of the instructions on the package. Creatine storage capacity in muscle tissues is limited.
Some things to keep in mind
- There is no advantage of using this product in dosages higher than this. In fact, it might end up causing problems related to kidneys and liver.
- Avoid taking creatine in many forms simultaneously unless your doctor tells you to. There is a higher chance of overdose is increased when several formulations are used simultaneously.
- Avoid dehydration and overheating by drinking enough water during exercise and hot weather.
- While using creatine, you may be more susceptible to dehydration, heatstroke, or electrolyte abnormalities.
Answers To More Questions About Creatine and its Dosage
How many days of creatine can you miss?
It is better not to miss a day, although nothing will happen. If you do miss one, then don’t increase your dose the next day.
Going back to the loading stage is necessary to reap the most advantage if you have missed more than three days; or else, taking the regular maintenance dosage will take a couple of weeks to bring your creatine levels back up to standard.
Is it okay to take creatine on your rest days?
It is ok to take creatine on rest breaks. Creatine also helps in muscle repair and maintenance, so taking it on rest days will help make your muscles better.
If you’re taking a reduced dosage of 3 to 5gm per day to keep the muscles saturated with creatine, you need to take it on your rest days as well.
Is it necessary to take creatine consistently every day?
No, but if you leave your creatine dosage for more than 3 days, it is best to start over with the loading stage. The decision is between having consistently more creatine levels in your muscles all the time or having them just in brief bursts.
At the same time, your exercise to achieve optimal efficacy rests in your hands. It is preferable to take the supplement daily for the whole period you want to use it (for example, 1–6 months).
Do I have to reload on creatine If I miss two days?
So, do you have to reload creatine after you’ve stopped taking it for some time? The short answer is that you do not need to fill creatine if you haven’t been taking it for two days. It is possible that loading creatine can help you notice effects more quickly, but it is never a mandatory step when utilizing creatine.
What are some of the other benefits of creatine?
Creatine has been used in alternative medicine as a potentially beneficial aid for improving athletic performance and boosting muscle development in persons suffering from heart failure, muscular dystrophy, and McArdle’s illness (a genetic disorder).
A Few Final Words
As long as your overall consumption from the days that you consume creatine averages out to about 3–5 grams per day, there is nothing to be worried about.
Many argue that three grams per day is plenty for most individuals, and five grams per day serves as a safety buffer. To put it another way, if you obtain 3.5 grams per day by splitting five grams five days a week by seven, you’re still receiving enough.
We hope we answered all of your questions! Let us know if we missed some of them, by writing to us in the comments section. And remember, we are here to receive both your compliments and your brickbats! So feel free to share our work on social media so that others can also benefit from the knowledge shared here.