Jana Drama 1: She's on Creatine

Jana holds balance of power
By Jenny McAsey
March 14, 2006

FUELLED by the controversial but legal protein supplement creatine, Jana Pittman will go into the Games muscled up and solid as a thoroughbred.

Balancing weight, body fat and muscle bulk is a delicate act for female athletes especially, and Pittman has yo-yoed her way to peak condition with the help of the amino acid powder that was also the supplement of choice for French tennis player Mary Pierce and American baseball sluggers Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa.

Six weeks ago, when she came last in the 400m at the national selection trials in Sydney, Pittman was like a shrunken version of the powerful athlete who won the 2003 world championship in the 400m hurdles.

She looked skinny and relatively small, lacking the bulk in the shoulders, upper arms, thighs and buttocks that had been a feature of her physique.

The strong, intimidating figure was gone after a period of intense, heavy training at her base at Mt Martha in Victoria during the past six months. At 66kg, Pittman was lighter than she had been since she was a teenager.

But for an athlete who requires a mix of strength, endurance and speed for the demanding one-lap hurdles event, she was sapped.

Then 10 days ago in Brisbane, when she ran her last race before the Games, the imposing model was back as she won in 54.49sec to confirm she is on target to defend the Commonwealth crown she won in Manchester in 2002.

Pittman had put on two kilograms and was up to 68.2kg, the same as she weighed in Paris nearly three years ago when she beat world record-holder Yuliya Pechonkina to win the world title.

Pittman revealed that on the advice of her coach and fiance Chris Rawlinson she had turned to creatine, which she had never used before. “It’s really helped me. I’m feeling strong again,” Pittman said.

She took 10g daily for two weeks and immediately felt energised.
“For example I hadn’t done any bench press for about two years and my PB (personal best) was 70 kilos. Before creatine I couldn’t lift 65, I was in the gym and got all upset about it. Then on creatine I lifted 75 straight away.”

Pittman is not taking creatine now and is aware there are documented side effects from the supplement, which it is claimed increases the size of muscles and is supposed to give users more energy and power. Creatine is a natural compound made up of three amino acids and occurs naturally in a range of foods including fish and meat.

One common problem with its use is water retention and subsequent unwanted weight gain, so athletes have to be careful to stay well hydrated. :stuck_out_tongue: [BULKING UP DUE TO WATER RETENTION IS A PROBLEM SO YOU SHOULD CONSUME MORE WATER, RIGHT, GO AHEAD :stuck_out_tongue: ]

“It is very good for strength but you have to watch your cramping and muscle gains particularly for girls,” Pittman said.

“We can put on a lot of weight because you get quite water retentive so you need :confused: to drink a lot.”

The supplement, sometimes called a legal steroid, is not on any banned lists because it is in so many foods.

Pittman expects to stay around 67kg to 68kg for the Games, and after several years where her weight has bounced up and down like a pogo stick, she believes that is ideal.

Two years ago she spent too much time in the gym and bulked up to more than 70kg - her fat season as she calls it.

"One or two kilos can make a big difference, it is huge for me but as soon as I get to 70 kilos I run terribly. You have to be really careful to maintain that balance.

“A lot of us females think if you are really lean you are going to run really fast but it is not really about that - it is if you are really strong you are going to run really fast. If you are too skinny you haven’t got any bulk so it is quite a fine line,” Pittman said.

The Australian

LOL. What a pile of misinformation, really shows the expertise of the writer (and Jana too).

“For example I hadn’t done any bench press for about two years and my PB (personal best) was 70 kilos. Before creatine I couldn’t lift 65, I was in the gym and got all upset about it. Then on creatine I lifted 75 straight away.”

This one must be straight from a supplement ad :smiley:

Everything with this Jana Drama is either A MIRACLE or a DISASTER: there is nothing in-between. She is living on a rollercoaster. And it has become nauseating…

Bench PB of 70 kilo’s??? quite poor

would figure she should have the strength in place to do more than that…

How much do the female athletes you know bench?

She told me personally that she would never take creatine because it made her bulk up too much and the only supplement she used was carnitine to loose weight. I hope she knows what she is doing…10g a day is loads. Perhaps she was just dehydrated :smiley: all along or more likely fatigued from lack of tapering and huge lactic sessions…

Well about bodyweight but have you ever seen Jana up close and personal? She is a beast!


results of female sprinters in my squad after our max strength phase…

Ath 1 - age 17 100/200m 73kg
Ath 2 - beach sprinter age 16, 68kg
ath 3 - age 20, 200/400m 2rm 180lb or 81.7 kg

to name a few

when she said “10g a day for 2 weeks” im supposing that was her loading phase. 20g is the norm in research articles. Not many can take 20g an end with gastrodistress, maybe thats why she did the 10g. current research says a 2day load is just as good to reach peak levels if peak levels are needed quickly, if not just take recommended dosages.

“Documented side effects” of creatine? Looks like a reporter taking liberties with anecdotal info. and calling it documented-unless there is some groundbreaking research that has recently been released.

I also never knew creatine was considered a “legal-steroid”… WHAT?? :confused: How is taking creatine controversial? Interesting…

tc, i would like to know why you think 10g it to much and what u do for your athletes.

i know that the top sprint stable in aussie were taking 30g/day in 98-2002

Impressive. How much do these girls weigh?
On my college track team our strongest non throwing female was a pole vaulter who weighed jus under 60 kilos and her max for 1 was 2.2 kilos.

I am a college strength coach and although I do not test the womens team personally I know that none of them have bench pressed that much weight. I think 38 kilos is the norm for reps with most girls.


ath 1 55 kgs
ath 3 61 kgs jump tests SLJ 2.37m, vert jump (hands on hips) flt time 0.536 sec height 37.2cm. outlifts and out jumps most late teenage male athletes in my squad…

happy to post to you some some programs if ur interested just PM me.

creatine? took creatine as a kid once. felt like I could lift a car…

Yeah, 75kgs isn’t very impressive considering her weight. My 17-year-old sister pressed 72.5kg at a bodyweight of 56kgs a few weeks ago AND she doesn’t even use creatine :rolleyes:

Yep, thats goold old aussie journalism for you! Bi carb soda is even controversial (which was actually front page news in the relative state and made all the current affair/news type programs)… Anything to grab a headline for the general public that know little of the difference between legal supplements and banned drugs.

Said writer is known for not being a fan of certain athletes and once you are on her hit list - Lookout!

There is a real ‘drug’ hysteria in the media in this country where I think many of the journo’s write like even the humble vitamin is somehow dodgy or unfair.

On the side: Aus Govt just created a new anti-doping body call ASADA http://www.asada.gov.au/ which not only conducts tests but is designed to enforce laws and even make recommendations on sanctions and has a host of other powers.

Also currently in Aust there is a hot story about AFL footballers testing positive with names not to be released by court order. Plus syringes being found at one of the Institutes of Sports, that are being tested as I write. So its topical I guess.

Keeps on getting better…


Runner to take caffeine
By Steve Larkin
March 16, 2006

AUSTRALIA marathon runner Scott Westcott has been castigated by a team boss for saying he’ll take a caffeine tablet before running.

Yea he should’ve just said he’ll have 2 pots of coffee instead of the caffeine tab. Or he could deny using caffeine and say he thought it was a b-12 pill…

Late breaking news: “Runner to run.”

Water is a diuretic. If your body senses a shortage, it will hold on to what it has. Id there’s always lots on hand, it will allow it to pass through. Still creatine must be watched carefully or you’re loking for an injury.