Caffeine and Exercise

by John Paul de Guzman, BS, CPTcaffeineblog

Corporate Fitness

Are you looking for something to boost your workout performance?  Have you ever wondered if trying a highly caffeinated energy drink is safe and effective?  Athletes have been using caffeine as a way to boost performance as far back as the early 1900s, and many still use it today to gain an edge.

There was a time, however, when caffeine was banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).  In 2004 the ban was lifted, but the substance is currently part of a monitoring program that assesses patterns of misuse.

While caffeine is considered a safe and effective supplement for enhancing exercise performance, some specifics should be sifted out before you go on a pre-workout coffee binge.  Studies have determined that caffeine is most effective for prolonged endurance events lasting more than 30 minutes but can also be beneficial for shorter, high-intensity events lasting 30 seconds to 3 minutes.  Caffeine has not proved effective for improving anaerobic exercise (e.g., weightlifting) performance.

Although caffeine may help boost your athletic performance, it is important to remember that since caffeine intake may have adverse effects – such as gastrointestinal distress, an increased need to urinate, and nausea – you should experiment with intake during training and not competition.


Journal of Applied Physiology

About the Author:

A Bay Area native, John Paul de Guzman earned his B.S. in Kinesiology at San Francisco State, and is a certified personal trainer.  He is an avid runner and participates in road races of various distances all over the Bay Area.  During this past summer/fall season, John assisted in coaching Nike’s 2013 Women’s Half Marathon training team; pacing runners on group runs, motivating participants through their workouts, leading dynamic warm-up and cool down activities, as well as offering advice and demonstrations on injury prevention.

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