Have you been going to the gym for a short while and ready to start taking it a little more serious? This stage of the fitness journey often comes with questions about the right supplements to fuel your progress. For beginners, the dynamic duo of Creatine and Whey Protein stands out as a powerful combination to amplify your gains. In this guide, we'll unravel the benefits, optimal dosages, timing strategies, and potential side effects of stacking these two staple supplements.
Benefits of Creatine and Whey Protein Stacking:
Fuelling Your Muscles: Creatine, a naturally occurring compound in the body, and whey protein, a fast-absorbing protein source, complement each other seamlessly. When stacked, they create a potent synergy, supplying your muscles with the energy and nutrients needed for optimal performance and recovery.
Enhanced Strength and Endurance: Creatine, with its enduring strength-boosting capabilities, propels you through longer, more intense workouts. Simultaneously, whey protein swoops in after you've completed your formidable exercises, ensuring your muscles receive the vital nutrients they need to appropriately recover and grow.
Optimal Dosage and Timing:
Creatine Dosage: For beginners, a standard creatine monohydrate dosage of 3-6 grams per day is a solid starting point. Some people also like to experiment with whats called a 'loading phase'. Although not essential, you could 'load' with 12-20 grams per day for 5-7 days, followed by a maintenance phase (3-6 grams per day). The purpose of a loading phases is to simply saturate your muscles faster. If you'd like to investigate this further, we recommended reading 'Creatine - What does it do and how safe is it?'.
Whey Protein Dosage: You should aim for 20-25 grams of whey protein per serving (or more specifically, 0.4 g/kg/meal), typically consumed post-workout or as a convenient snack throughout the day. Note that you don't have to be quite as strict with protein per serving as you do with creatine - tailor your protein intake based on your daily protein requirements and nutrition goals.
Optimal Timing: Creatine is versatile and can be taken at any time of the day, but many find benefits in pre or post-workout supplementation. In my personal experience, creatine mixes particularly well with warm drinks so I put mine in my morning coffee. Whey protein, on the other hand, is ideal post-workout to capitalise on the body's heightened protein synthesis state.
Potential (Honest) Side Effects:
Hydration: One common concern with creatine is dehydration. Counteract this by drinking lots of water and electrolytes, ensuring your body maintains the necessary balance. The NHS recommend 1.8 - 2.4 litres per day (6 to 8 cups or mugs).
Digestive Sensitivity: Although uncommon, some individuals may experience digestive discomfort with whey protein. Experiment with different brands or try a whey isolate, which often contains less lactose and fat. If you're unsure on the difference between Whey Concentrate and Whey Isolate, give this article a read where we decode the key differences between both.
Monitoring Creatine Loading: Depending on the purity and density of your creatine, some may experience gastrointestinal distress. If this occurs, consider reducing the dosage or worst case scenario, changing brands. Should you change supply, you should check the certificate of analysis. You can find an example of ours here, which denotes our creatine to have a purity of 99.91% (According to this study, the industry average is 87.1%).
In the realm of sports supplementation, the marriage of creatine and whey protein offers a winning combination for beginners and professionals alike. Stacking these two powerhouse supplements can elevate your workout sessions, accelerate recovery, and pave the way for significant progress. Remember, individual responses may vary, so it's essential to listen to your body and adjust your regime accordingly.
As you embark on this journey, consider Tailor Wheyed for high-quality creatine and whey protein options that can be fully tailored to your personal fitness goals. Check-out the Tailored range for yourself here.
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[Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Please consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplements or making significant changes to your fitness regime]