Phosphocreatine (PCr) content was measured by phosphorus nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy in the gastrocnemius muscles of pentobarbital-anesthetized rats during and after twitch stimulation at rates up to 0.75 Hz. The monoexponential time constant for PCr changes was similar at the onset of vs. during recovery after stimulation and was not significantly different for different stimulation rates (mean time constant 1.44 min). Steady-state PCr level during stimulation was linearly related to the product of stimulation rate times peak twitch force. These results are shown to be consistent with a simple first-order electrical analog model of oxidative metabolism that is applicable at submaximal oxidative rates. The model assumes equilibrium of the creatine kinase reaction, which is modeled as a chemical capacitor, with capacitance proportional to the total creatine level, and PCr level proportional to the cytosolic free energy of ATP hydrolysis.