Purpose: The present study evaluated the effects of creatine monohydrate (CrM) consumption post-exercise on body composition and muscle strength in middle to older males following a 12-week resistance training program.
Methods: In a double-blind, randomized trial, 20 males aged between 55 and 70 years were randomly assigned to consume either CrM-carbohydrate (CHO) [20 g days(-1) CrM + 5 g days(-1) CHO × 7 days, then 0.1 g kg(-1) CrM + 5 g CHO on training days (average dosage of ~8.8 g)] or placebo CHO (20 g days(-1) CHO × 7 days, then 5 g CHO on training days) while participating in a high intensity resistance training program [3 sets × 10 repetitions at 75% of 1 repetition maximum (1RM)], 3 days weeks(-1) for 12 weeks. Following the initial 7-day "loading" phase, participants were instructed to ingest their supplement within 60 min post-exercise. Body composition and muscle strength measurements, blood collection and vastus lateralis muscle biopsy were completed at 0, 4, 8 and 12 weeks of the supplement and resistance training program.
Results: A significant time effect was observed for 1RM bench press (p = 0.016), leg press (p = 0.012), body mass (p = 0.03), fat-free mass (p = 0.005) and total myofibrillar protein (p = 0.005). A trend for larger muscle fiber cross-sectional area in the type II fibers compared to type I fibers was observed following the 12-week resistance training (p = 0.08). No supplement interaction effects were observed.
Conclusion: Post-exercise ingestion of creatine monohydrate does not provide greater enhancement of body composition and muscle strength compared to resistance training alone in middle to older males.