I usually drink coffee before running or doing any exercise in the morning. Drinking coffee has always been a habit since my teenage years. Today, I drink plain black coffee without any sugar, cream, or other additives. However, is it okay to take any caffeinated beverages before doing a morning or afternoon run?
Pros When You Drink Coffee Before Running
Drinking a cup before a run has favorable effects. It enhances performance and endurance by improving mood, mental alertness, and blood circulation.
If you are running to burn more calories for weight loss, having a caffeine boost can increase your chances of covering greater distances.
Running can burn 400 to 600 calories per hour on average. If you cannot last more than 30 minutes on the track, then perhaps a coffee boost may help.
Caffeine has also been shown to decrease muscle pain, making it possible to endure high-intensity runs. A study from the University of Illinois shows that coffee drinkers experience less muscle pain during exercise.
Caffeine is a metabolism booster as well. High amounts of it in black coffee can cause your body to burn fat as fuel and increase your stamina during exercise. This means that you will have more energy to run even longer.
Cons When You Drink Coffee Before Running
Of course, coffee also has its list of adverse effects on the body. First of all, it is a diuretic. It causes the body to increase urine production, which may affect your running experience. You may have to go to the bathroom more often.
To make sure this does not interfere with your runs, drink coffee early on to have ample time to go to the bathroom before running. It is also important to get hydrated before drinking coffee. The diuretic effect can last for hours so be sure not to drink too much water before running.
If you run in the afternoon or at night, drinking coffee may not be a good idea. Caffeine is a stimulant and can cause insomnia when taken before bed. Remember that getting high-quality sleep is an essential part of healthy living.
Unless you habitually sleep late at night, do not use coffee as a performance enhancer for exercise. If you can, re-schedule your running sessions in the morning so you can enjoy the benefits of the drink.
Drinking Coffee on an Empty Stomach
Caffeine takes effect almost immediately, especially if you take it on an empty stomach. However, drinking coffee on an empty stomach can increase acidity and may cause gastrointestinal issues. If you have a history of digestive disorders, it is proper to drink your coffee after a meal.
While it is discouraged to ingest caffeinated beverages on an empty stomach, you can minimize the ill effects by drinking a glass or two of water first. Another way to reduce these effects is to add milk to the brew.
To Drink or Not To Drink Coffee
As long as your body does not have any issues with drinking caffeinated beverages on an empty stomach, it is okay to drink coffee before running. You can definitely benefit from its performance-enhancing effects.
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