It goes without saying, creatine has taken the market by storm since it’s introduction in 1993. It has become a staple in most lifter’s supplement programs and with good reason – creatine works! There are currently quite a few versions of creatine out there, each one trying to outdo the original.
This is one of the newer versions of creatine designed to be easier to use – no sugar, no loading, easier on the system – no bloating or gas as reported by some users of creatine monohydrate, usable in smaller amounts, 2 grams per serving on average compared to 5 grams of regular monohydrate. Creatine ethyl ester itself is actually creatine monohydrate with an ester attached. What does that mean? Esters are organic compounds that are formed by a process known as esterfication, which is when an alcohol and a carboxylic acid react together to form an ester. The ester is attached to creatine mnonhydrate and allows more creatine to be absorbed meaning you then need less creatine per serving to get the same effect and also, the potential for side effects goes way down. Does all of this sound complicated? It doesn't need to be – it's simply a process that allows better absorption of creatine monohydrate, which then makes it more effective and easier on your system.
- Gains in lean muscle mass
- Strength gains
- Improved endurance
- No bloating, gas, excess water retention
- Easier to use, quick absorption.
While ethyl ester has all the benefits of regular creatine, it's additional benefits are in the ease of use, superior absorption and elimination of side effects. The benefits of creatine are well documented in this supplement guide series but bears review nonetheless: creatine is one of the most effective natural supplements available. It has been time tested and time proven, and has become a cornerstone product since it's introduction back in 1993. While many people do not understand the benefit of forcing water into the muscles causing them to swell in size, this has developed into a theory of muscle growth referred to as sarcoplasmic hypertrophy. This is not simply water retention, you are actually causing the muscle to grow.
It does need to be understood, there are other theories of muscle growth as well, and one does not operate at the exclusion of the others. What this means is that, if you are doing everything right, your body is utilizing any and all workable theories of muscle growth. However, to get the most benefit from sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, there is a training/nutrition and supplement protocol that is suggested and this aspect of training is not going to result in big strength gains. Nonetheless, you can certainly train for strength and still employ an approach designed to promote the “swelling” that can come with creatine, in fact I believe that, no matter what training approach you use, you should always have a core of strength exercises that you use in your routine.
One question that often comes up in regards to creatine use is whether or not you should cycle creatine. Really, the main reason to cycle it is that your body can build up a tolerance which means results will slow. Taking a break of 4-6 weeks will allow you to go back on it again and see fresh results. Another somewhat overlooked aspect to products primarily designed to promote muscle mass is, simply, your nutrition! While I've talked a lot about the specialized uses of supplements it should also be noted that proper calorie intake and macro-nutrient profile is essential for getting the best results from not only your supplement program but your training program as well. Finally, a topic that sometimes comes up with regards to creatine has to do with what else should be taken with it. Well, first of all, creatine is a cornerstone product along with things like protein powder and mutli vitamins. If you can't afford anything else, buy those three! From there, many of the specialized formulas that contain creatine, such as pre-workout and post workout drinks, are ideal additions to a mass gaining program. You can add individual products as opposed to going with a formula product, for example, adding nitric oxide to creatine makes a great combination.
While there are many current versions of creatine, ethyl ester is one of the most popular. It's available as a stand -alone product and as part of numerous formula products. It's available in tablet, capsule and powder versions. Creatine in general can be part of virtually any supplement, often the version of choice is ethyl ester. Timing is usually twice a day on an empty stomach, separated by 6-8 hours with the dose being only 2 to 3 grams.. As to formulas, timing and dose is dependent on the product-type. As usual, read the label completely before purchasing and using.