What's The Difference: Creatine vs Pre Workout?
Creatine vs pre workout: creatine and pre workout are workout supplements that enhance exercise performance.
That being true, there are significant difference between the two supplements. Most notably, creatine and pre workout do not serve the same purpose.
Creatine is a supplement used to increase creatine stores within the muscles which improves ATP production. In other words, creatine gives the muscles more energy during exercise.
There are many other benefits of taking creatine that will be discussed later on.
Pre workout is a supplement that is typically high in caffeine meant to wake/amp you up before a workout.
In addition to caffeine, pre workout contains a variety of ingredients that improve energy, alertness, motivation, muscle pumps, and more.
What Is Creatine?
Creatine is a non-essential amino acid produced naturally by humans. The overwhelming majority of creatine exists within the skeletal muscles.
Creatine plays a key role in ATP synthesis. ATP generates the chemical reaction necessary for energy within muscles.
An increase in creatine stores within muscle cells allows for increased muscular capacity, which is the primary reason it is used as a supplement.
Weightlifters and athletes use creatine supplements commonly.
Creatine can be obtained in relatively small amounts from meats, fish, and other dietary sources.
What Is Pre Workout?
Pre workout is a supplement that improves exercise performance by increasing energy, aiding muscle recovery, and enhancing muscle pumps.
Let’s inspect some of the more common ingredients found in pre workout supplements.
Caffeine is a stimulant that can help with focus and alertness and can give you energy.
Beta-Alanine is a supplement that enhances muscle performance and muscle recovery. Beta-alanine lowers fatigue and improves recovery.
Branched-Chain Amino Acids (BCAA) promote muscle growth by helping muscle repair post-workout.
Creatine is contained in many pre workout supplements. As stated previously, creatine boosts ATP production, which gives the muscles more energy during high-intensity exercise.
Pre workouts contain a variety of other ingredients which aim to improve exercise performance and recovery.
Is Creatine Safe?
Overwhelming amounts of data collected over the decades conclude that, for the average and healthy adult, creatine is safe.
Creatine is often put into a similar conversation as steroids. However, this claim could not be further from the truth.
While creatine can improve muscular performance, the similarities pretty much end there.
Creatine is produced naturally by the body and has no adverse health effects.
Considering the statements above, it remains necessary to consult with a doctor before starting any new supplement. Each person is different and may have varying medical conditions.
Is Pre Workout Safe?
When taken in appropriate doses (no more than one serving daily) pre workout supplements are considered generally safe.
That being true, consult your doctor before taking a pre workout supplement.
According to Mayo Clinic, 400 mg is considered safe for the average healthy adult. Pre workouts usually contain around 400 mg of caffeine, although that varies from product to product.
Follow instructions given by your doctor and do not take more than the recommended amount of pre workout to avoid adverse effects.
Other than that, ingredients tend to be considered generally safe.
What's The Difference: Creatine vs Pre Workout?
Creatine and pre workout are both exercise-enhancing supplements. However, they are quite different.
Pre workouts contain a variety of ingredients that serve to improve your workouts in the following ways: increased energy and alertness, improved muscle pumps, enhanced muscle recovery, and capacity, and more.
Creatine allows the muscle to produce more ATP, which increases muscular capacity. In other words, creatine supplements give your muscles more energy during intense exercise.
Creatine is often contained in pre workouts because of its proven benefits.
Creatine vs Pre Workout: More About Creatine
Scientifically Proven Benefits of Creatine
How To Take Creatine
How should I take my creatine? A commonly asked question before beginning with a creatine supplement.
First, let us consider the forms creatine supplements come in.
Most commonly, creatine comes in powder or pill form. Depending on which factors you consider the most important, pills or powders might make more sense for you.
To solve this dilemma of which form of creatine would be best for you, click here.
Now, let us consider when to take creatine. To be frank, the time of day you take your supplement does not matter a whole lot.
More importantly, you should remain consistent with your supplementation; avoid missing days.
If you are looking for the optimal time to take creatine, some studies suggest that taking creatine before a workout yields the best results. However, sed studies are inconclusive.
Finally, let us consider what to take creatine with. Ideally, creatine is consumed alongside some form of carbohydrate or protein (or both). When combined with carbs, creatine absorption improves.
Creatine vs Pre Workout: Related Content
Does Creatine Break A Fast?
Since creatine yields no caloric value, it does not break a fast.
Learn more about this question here.
Is Creatine Natty?
Creatine is 100% natural and is not a steroid. There are major differences between creatine supplements and steroids.
Learn what those differences are here.
Can Creatine Cause Bloating
No, creatine does not cause bloating contrary to common belief.
Creatine does lead to additional water weight although this occurs within the muscles and is not bloating.
Learn more here.
Can You Take Creatine On An Empty Stomach?
In a pinch, it is okay to take creatine on an empty stomach.
However, it is not ideal. Learn why this is here.
Buy Creatine & Pre Workout
- National Library of Medicine – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6279854/
- My Protein – https://us.myprotein.com/thezone/supplements/creatine-pills-vs-powder-which-better/
- Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children – https://www.arnoldpalmerhospital.com/content-hub/should-i-let-my-teen-use-creatine
- National Library of Medicine – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4528343/
- Off-Season Athlete – https://offseasonathlete.com/benefits-of-creatine-for-teen-athletes/
- American Academy of Pediatrics – https://publications.aap.org/pediatrics/article-abstract/108/2/421/63924/Creatine-Use-Among-Young-Athletes?
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- National Library of Medicine – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8840086
- Mayo Clinic – https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements-creatine/art-20347591#:~:text=Creatine
- National Library of Medicine – https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18373286/
- WebMD – https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/health-benefits-pre-workout-supplements
- Mayo Clinic – https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/caffeine/