Should I cycle Creatine Use?
No. Quite simply, it just helps with energy, endurance, and indirectly performance in the gym. There is no benefit from "cycling on or off" with creatine. For further reading, check out the excellent Examine.com article on Creatine.
- Typical dosage is 5g / day.
- Loading phase may not be necessary in most people, but no harm in it.
General Creatine Facts
NOTE: some of them don't line up with Eric Kaufman's answer, but check the examine.com article I linked to for the list of studies they looked through to compile that information.
- Creatine in cooked foods is destroyed, so unless you plan on eating raw meat don't worry about creatine content in meats.
- Creatine is particularly helpful in people who don't get enough dietarily (e.g. vegetarians).
- Creatine has a strong correlation with increased power output, muscle creatine content, and weight (due to water retention). Each of these attributes are backed by "Robust research conducted with repeated double blind clinical trials".
That's a bigger topic, and unfortunately the answer depends on your current muscularity and training maturity. Even with bodybuilding emphasis, most beginner programs suggest 2-3 times a week with a full body training session each time. As you get to a good base level of strength and muscularity, you need more variation and more complex training splits.
Based on the questions you are asking, I'm going to assume you are in the beginner or early intermediate stages for your training. In that case, I would recommend sticking with one major compound movement 3x a week and add supporting assistance work. The compound movement work should be used to build strength and power, and the more isolation assistance work would be for the pump.
An example of a 6 day a week program, that fits both bills would be Paul Carter's Big 15 program. I have a review of it on my blog from when I ran it. You can find the details in Paul Carter's Strength, Life, Legacy e-book. You'll also find good recommendations over on http://bodybuilding.com for training splits for beginner and intermediate bodybuilding programs--as well as some examples of how to transition to bigger and more complex training splits over time.
Thoughts on High Frequency Training
High frequency training can have a very good effect on building muscle. The challenge is managing recovery. Many strong guys recommend two pressing days, two squat days, a deadlift day, and a general bodybuilding day. The layout would work something like this:
- 1st Squat Day: Back squat, 3x4-6 and lower body isolation work
- 1st Press Day: Bench press, 3x4-6 and upper body isolation work.
- Deadlift Day: work to 3-5 rep max and back and core work
- 2nd Squat Day: Front squat, 3x8-12 and lower body isolation work
- 2nd Press Day: Dumbbell incline press, 3x8-12 and upper body isolation work.
- General bodybuilding day: work on weak points.
You can swap out the main lifts on the day for something equivalent. The idea is to have one of the squat/press days go heavier and fewer reps, and the other to go lighter with more reps. They would also be different variations of the lift to work your muscles a bit differently. If your goal is physique, then you also have options with subbing out the deadlifts. Other options would be snatch grip deadlifts (more traps, upper body, and glutes), romainian deadlifts (more glutes and hamstrings), etc.
For an intermediate bodybuilder, this fits the sweet spot of building more general strength as well as building the volume of work to increase size. Don't forget to eat properly to gain muscle. The goal is to gain mass slowly, at an average pace of 3 lbs a month. That keeps you from regaining too much fat. Add in carbs and protein pre, intra, and post workout and you should do quite well.