Does caffeine affect better sports performance?
Higher, stronger, further ... the Olympic motto, the motto of the Games and the International Olympic Committee. Three words that every athlete knows and implements. How to do it? Here is some evidence that coffee - or rather the caffeine it contains - improves sports performance and increases physical endurance.
For years banned ...
In 1984, caffeine was entered by the IOC Medical Committee on the list of prohibited means in sport. It was banned during the competition and the condition for a positive result of doping control was the concentration of caffeine in urine not exceeding 15 µg / ml. This dose was later reduced to 12 µg / ml. It was not until January 1, 2004 that the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) removed caffeine from the list of prohibited drugs . It is interesting that caffeine detected in horses during races is treated as doping.
Drink a cup of coffee before training
Coffee before training? A lot of us have heard, but not everyone knows why it works. Caffeine consumed in moderate amounts has a positive effect on mental and physical performance. It affects the body by blocking adenosine receptors, which in turn increases the secretion of adrenaline, dopamine and serotonin in our body.
It is recommended to consume coffee before training, because it increases energy levels and stimulates the body. Studies show that the best time to absorb caffeine is about an hour before training.
Drinking coffee after training is not recommended because caffeine inhibits mTOR kinase (mammalian target of rapamycin). This process causes an increase in muscle protein synthesis, so it can interfere with the increase in muscle mass. Drinking coffee after training can be beneficial if you want to burn fat - you can read about it in another article on our blog.
Caffeine and increased endurance during training
Researchers from Japan have proved that drinking coffee can increase blood flow in blood vessels by up to 30%, which, as a result of proper oxygenation of cells, improves endurance and physical condition. Regular drinking of coffee increases endurance and reduces fatigue after training.
According to Ori Hofmekler, coffee triggers a mechanism that releases BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor), which in addition to the brain is also produced in the muscles, where it supports the most important element called the neuromotor. Muscles without a neuromotor function like an 'engine without ignition'.
Dr. Terry Graham of the University of Guleph in Canada has shown that caffeine increases calcium secretion, which affects muscle tone.
In the following, I will present several studies conducted over the years on various groups of athletes.
Research conducted by David Costill in the '70s was the moment when interest in caffeine as an erogenous substance increased. The research was conducted on cyclists who were given a placebo substance and caffeine in a dose of 330 mg in the form of coffee. Athletes were randomly given a dose of caffeine or a placebo "capsule". The results of the experiment were as follows: cyclists consuming caffeine improved their ride time from 75 min in the case of placebo to 96 min after ingesting caffeine. The tests were carried out until exhaustion at the level of 80% of the maximum oxygen consumption .
Another study was based on the administration of caffeine at the beginning of training at a dose of 250 mg, and then during the exercise of assimilation of another 250 mg in 7 doses. The result was a 20% increase in work performed during a 2-hour bike ride .
Wiles et al. in the publication "The effects of caffeine ingestion on performance time, speed and power during a laboratory-based 1 km cycling time-trial" conducting a study on a group of 8 trained cyclists who were to cover 1 km distance on a bicycle ergometer proved that caffeine in a dose 5 mg / kg body weight improves driving speed and power. Compared to the placebo effect, caffeine increases time improvement by 3.1%. Average speed and power also improved