Nutrition

How Can Caffeine Boost Sports Performance?

How Can Caffeine Boost Sports Performance?

As an athlete, you’ll understand the impact nutrition can have on your training, and you’ve probably been on the search for anything (natural) that’ll help you get the most out for your performance. When it comes to supplementing, there’s one miracle molecule that should be at the top of your list for performance enhancement…caffeine!

3 in 4 athletes are now supplementing with caffeine before sports competitions.

Caffeine is known as an erogenic aid; simply meaning it’s proven to give you a mental or physical edge while exercising or competing.  The benefits of caffeine come mainly from its effect on the central nervous system, by helping to reduce the perception of fatigue, pain or exhaustion, allowing you to work harder and longer. It’s this mechanism which explains why caffeine is now the go-to supplement for performance athletes.

So what exactly can caffeine do for you? Well, aside from perking you up, here are 5 proven ways in which caffeine can help you get more out of your training, and boost your performance when it really matters…

Improves Mental Focus

Increasing mental focus is the most common reason for consuming caffeine, which is why most people live off the coffee when it comes to deadlines or big exams. But studies have shown that even at low doses, caffeine can stimulate alertness, improve vigilance and enhance cognitive processes both during and after exercise.

Improves Speed

Wanting to hit that new pb? You’ll be happy to hear recent research has found caffeine to enhance sporting performance by increasing power output (speed) in high-intensity exercise (sprinting). Caffeine stimulates to the “fight or flight” hormone Epinephrine (adrenaline) designed to prepare our bodies for intense physical exertion. One study, on runners, found that caffeinated coffee increased VO2 max (maximum amount of oxygen your lungs can breathe in) and speed potential after being monitored on a treadmill  Move over Usain…

Improves Strength

Ever hit a wall while training in the gym? We’ve all been there – you’re physically and mentally exhausted and feel like you can’t go on any further.  Next time you’ve got a big training session, have a 95mg cup of coffee beforehand. Studies have so shown this can lower your rate of perceived exertion, meaning you can push yourself harder.

Improves Endurance

When it comes to endurance, your mental perception plays a huge role in your performance. Anything that prevents your brain from feeling the effects of fatigue will be hugely beneficial to your ability to sustain physical exercise. Caffeine blocks the neurotransmitter adenosine, this causes the amount of neurotransmitters like norepinephrine and dopamine to increase, essentially meaning you’ll to feel less tired.

Helps you recover faster

Consuming caffeine after an intense training session helps muscles refuel with glycogen – the bodys primary source of fuel. It’s glycogen stores which often become depleted after a competition or a training session. Research published in The Journal Of Applied Physiology showed that athletes who ingested caffeine with carbohydrates, after intense training had 66% more glycogen in their stores than those who consumed carbohydrates alone. Great news for tomorrow’s workout!

 

Getting the dose right

It’s really important to get the dose right when it comes to caffeine. Consume too much and you could see yourself suffering from headaches. the shakes and all sorts of nasty side effects. It can often be tricky to know how much caffeine you’re getting when you 1) buy it freshly made from a barista 2) make it yourself at home from shop-bought instant coffee.

Our new range of True Start coffee gives you assurance on the amount of caffeine you’re getting per serving. Each scoop contains a strict 95mg of caffeine; the optimum amount for full performance ability without any unpleasant side effects. Sourced from Colombia, True Start coffee is 100% natural with no added synthetics. Want to know the best part about it? It can be made with hot OR cold water – perfect for this beautiful summery weather!

Not keen on drinking coffee? TrueStart Hero Bars  are a great way of getting a natural caffeine boost in a tasty little bar to eat on the go. Click below to try!


https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4213371/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1478936/

 

 



Charlotte Cliffe

Charlotte Cliffe

Resident Nutritionist (ANutr)

Qualified nutritionist, health blogger and marketing executive who loves festivals and eating kiwi with the skin on...


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