I used to take creatine. Maybe I can start taking that again. I’ve even started thinking, “God. I want to lose some weight around the love handles. What if I took a fat burner?”
But then I always think, “What in nature is a fat burner?” Instead of taking a pill fat burner, couldn’t I just start eating healthier and more nutritious meals? Also, I’m on and off again with the energy drinks. I keep needing them before a workout, but I’d really like to kick that habit too. They’re not actually natural.
Pre-workout energizers, fat burners, creatine. The supplements so many athletes use are not whole foods. In fact, they’re not food at all. They’re pills.
Creatine works for some people and it doesn’t work for some people. Personally, I didn’t really see results, which is unfortunate because, despite it not being natural, I was hoping for a shortcut to better muscles tone. A friend of mine used creatine and worked really well for her. She looked great. She put on some muscle which is really hard for her.
I ended up taking creatine. Unfortunately, if you’re going to use it, you need to cycle it. Do it for a month and a half to 2 months and then take a month or so off. Then you can pick it back up. I might do it again after the race and see if I notice any differences this time. Maybe if I honed and cleaned up my diet a little more, I could see big results.
Choosing your Creatine
Finding the best source of creatine is all about where it’s derived from. Supplementing with creatine can sometimes mess with your brain function, so having a reliable and high quality source of creatine is not just important for your body now but for the future. I can’t remember the exact chemical breakdown of it but basically, if you’re getting creatine from a purely vegetable based diet, you may have some trouble later on.
When I started working out at age 18 I used creatine all the time. Who knows what I was putting into my body and brain at such a young age. The problem when you first start trying to work out is that you do what other successful people are doing. You see someone else at the gym taking certain supplements and you think you should be taking them too. You think, “Oh, well. I don’t want to not do it if that’s what everyone’s doing. I don’t want to be the one left behind.”
Our muscles are made of branched-chain amino acids. That’s what they are. There’s another problem with the supplements people take after a workout. Quality. If you don’t know where the materials were sourced and where the product comes from, you could be doing your body more harm than good.
I’ve read weird things like horse’s urine and bull urine being used in some of these muscle building supplements. They may work in the short term, but what are the long term side effects of something like this? Plus, it’s gross. If you don’t know exactly where those things are coming from, avoid using the supplement.
When I first started getting into shape and experimenting with supplements, I didn’t really know where BCAs came from. I hadn’t been in a biology class for many years. Now, it’s been 8 years. At the time I was running 3 miles a day and doing yoga as well as pilates. I haven’t thought about that period of time for a while.
Now, I’m in chemistry and take all of this very seriously. I had intuition about what would be healthy and what would be unhealthy, but now I have it confirmed with real information. You come to learn quickly that you need to be asking more questions before you take any supplement. It’s still unclear if your body treats synthetic supplements differently than getting them naturally through food.