Creatine and glycogen depletion

Could creatine ‘substitute’ the glycogen stored in muscles?

The case is I have to be cutting long term so that I eventually get lean someday…
Can you use creatine to help with fatigue and becoming idle when on low carbs?

The point is I am a carb addict - it is often easier not to be near any carbs than do proper carb load when needed.
I also dont have the experience to know how much carb is needed (and strictly take that much) so I keep glycogen stores ok and still maintain caloric deficite (on a weekly basis at least).

It cannot substitute what glycogen is used for, but it can theoretically backfill fluid volume.


Consider aiming for a constant state of glycogen depletion, except for pre/intra workout only.
To accomplish this, your foods should be protein (ideally lean) and veggies, but fruits or fruit juices for pre/intra workout nutrition.

In theory, you will replenish your glycogen stores just in time for them to be needed for ‘optimal’ performance. As a byproduct of training like this, you will deplete the majority (if not all) of your stored glycogen, and return to a depleted state shortly after or during your workout.
I do this with about 125-150g carbs.

I want to be clear that everything I just said is fairly high level. In reality, you just need to control your eating and choose healthier foods. IDK how much weight you need to lose, but unless you’re already quite lean - you really don’t need to overcomplicate the process.

Find a diet that works for you, adjust it to accommodate for 1g/lb bodyweight protein, and stick to that.
Don’t consider it a “diet”, consider it a “lifestyle”. This is just how you eat now.

A macro based approach would look like:
Protein: 1g/lb bodyweight
Fats: 0.3g/lb bodyweight (less if using high EFA fat sources)
Carbs: to fill to caloric target.

You’ll notice that proteins and fats remain constant and that carbs are the only item adjusted. So if you eat the same foods and quantities every day for a week and lost no weight - reduce your carbs and reassess next week.

There’s a million ways to look good naked. They all involve controlling your diet.


So, workout nutrition (some carbs) is better than creatine to feel and perform better overally?
If one has to choose one over the other, the creatine alone will have less of an effect…

But might it be the case that creatine supplementation could help achieve the same state/ performance with less carbs and calories overal?

How much weight have you lost so far?

I don’t think I lost any - I do not count up to 2 kg fluctuations, cause of my occasional carb feeds and probably water retention.

Last time I lost weight (up to 15 kg for ~1+ year) was 6 yrs ago…
In order to do that, I was eating ALMOST THE SAME every day, so I can keep track of it…

So now I am ~ the same weight as I finish my previous diet.
I think I am looking a bit better at the same weight cause I started doing exercise, especially after pump :grin:

I suggest maybe we attack this problem first, before fretting about nuances like creatine :slightly_smiling_face:


It seems my cravings and occasional carb loads are just enough to keep the ~same weight without any calorie calculations and portions measuring…
So, just avoiding carbs MORE than I do now.
I dont want to eat the same meal everyday so I can calc the calories :pensive:

Creatine doesn’t substitute for glycogen.

But it does help your muscles uptake more glycogen when you eat. And creatine (maybe) helps you use up less of your muscles’s stored glycogen during intense exercise.

So it helps your body get “more” out of less carbs.

cutting or not i would use creatine daily and itd because it is one of basic bodybuilding strenght building supplement.Unless money is an issue which i doubt.Just take your creatine daily.

Experimenting with creatine daily :).
I do not feel godlike, neither it does magic when low on carbs/ calories.
A carb load gives more of a boost.
I am not able to fully cut carbs and adapt to keto to evaluate what creatine alone can do.
Now I guess I am a bit more hydrated and a tiny bit stronger than usual, but nothing significant.