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Would You Like A Little Caffeine With Your Workout?

Sometimes we all need a little boost to get us out of our chair and into the gym so what boosts are really beneficial to us before a workout? Coffee for one actually dehydrates you and if you do not drink enough water during your workout could leave you feeling dizzy and light headed.

Your best options are energy drinks like Lucozade which do contain caffeine but will keep you hydrated at the same time. Lucozade Energy drink also provides a higher carbohydrate content than most other energy drinks which is great for a workout. 

Here are some facts about caffeine:

  1. explosive athletes who do short duration sports such as power-lifting, sprints, ect. Do not appear to benefit from caffeine use
  2. endurance athletes such as long distance cyclists, runners, swimmers, ect. Can improve their performance with caffeine use.
  3. reaction time can be improved with caffeine use.
  4. the best dose of caffeine is around 3.0 milligrams per kilogram of bodyweight. Below that, little performance improvement is noted and above that, there will be a performance decrement.
  5. an athlete who uses caffeine after abstaining from it for several days sees improved performance.
  6. fat loss with exercise is increased when caffeine is taken prior to exercise.
  7. the half life of caffeine in your system is 2 to 2 ½ hours and it’s effects are of similar duration.
  8. caffeine intake results in increased alertness, reduced drowsiness and a reduced perception of fatigue.

With the above in mind, it would seem beneficial to use caffeine before exercise. Even those involved in powerlifting and sprinting can still benefit from the improved alertness and reaction time.

Now, something to point out here is that there are those who do not respond well to caffeine. About 20% of the population will exhibit adverse effects to caffeine such as cardiac arrhythmias, excessive urination, insomnia, withdrawal headaches and a type of anxiety called “caffeineism”. If your in the 20% who experience any of these effects from caffeine use, don’t use it! The benefits you get from it are not worth those side effects.

If you have ulcers you are cautioned against using caffeine because it causes a 400% increase in acid levels in the stomach.

The recommended dose of caffeine in coffee form is around two cups one hour before exercise.

The bottom line on using caffeine to help you perform better during exercise is, yes, it does have it’s benefits, but, it should be used wisely and only you can determine whether or not it’s helping your exercise performance and if it’s right for you.



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