So I absolutely looovvvvvvvvvvvvveeeee my cuppa coffee every day whether its drip from my house in the morn, or instant or a Starbucks treat!!I don’t often drink it before I run, the odd time if I happen to be running late (literally, which is usually rare!). I do not however find that it affects my running either way good or bad. but it did make me wonder about the benefits of coffee more than just “it perks you up” and all that mythical coffee stuff. Downsides, I know that it may dehydrate and cause upset stomach and cramps before or during a run, elevated blood pressure etc. But I have never experienced it, coffee and I are Amigas!!!
Hooray……Caffeine boosts leg and brain power, studies show. And here is some more info on what coffee does for us as runners.
Run Longer, Think Faster
In a study done last year, researchers gave cyclists an energy bar with or without caffeine (equal to one cup of coffee) before and during a long, hard ride. They found that cyclists who have caffeine ride farther and think faster on cognitive tests than the no-caffeine group—useful news to runners in endurance events and adventure races, where quick decision-making is key.
Increase Sprint Speed
Australian scientists gave fit athletes a 300-milligram dose of caffeine one hour before running five sets of 6 x 20-meter sprints. They found that runners who have caffeine sprint faster than those who don’t have caffeine. Researchers think the stimulant enhances reaction time and running speed.
Recover More Quickly
Runners know they need carbs postrun to rebuild their glycogen stores, but a recent study suggests caffeine may also enhance recovery. Cyclists rode hard for two consecutive days to drain their glycogen stores. They then drank a carb beverage with or without caffeine. Researchers found that having a drink with caffeine rebuilds glycogen stores 66 percent more than a carb-only drink.
Many people have heard caffeine causes dehydration. Most studies, though, show you can have up to 550 milligrams of caffeine (or about five cups of coffee) without affecting hydration levels. That means you can have quite a few caff einated sports drinks and gels while running without risking dehydration; more than 550 milligrams will have a diuretic effect.
Keep Bones Healthy
A few studies have shown a link between bone-mineral loss and caffeine—but a close look at the data reveals that caffeine itself doesn’t cause the mineral loss. Many coffee lovers may drink it in place of beverages rich in calcium (such as milk), and as a result, decrease their intake of this bone-strengthening mineral.
So don’t feel guilty coffee has its benefits like anything within reason, I guess!!Also I sometimes pop a bit of drip coffee into a postrun smoothie…yum. I feel great after it energized and rejuvenate
I hope all the new years resolutions are going well. Remember if you fall off the wagon don’t dwell on it just begin again in the morning tomorrow. Its not how long it takes to finish its having the courage to start in the first place 🙂 And sometimes we need to begin again to gain a fresher insight into what we need to do to get there, maybe take a different route or attempt a different way. Stay positive.
Happy safe 2013 running.xx