FIT TIP: Caffeinate Your Next Workout
Looking for a pre-workout pump? Skip the expensive energy drinks and reach for a classic cup of coffee.
That caffeine kick in your cup can elevate your next sweat session and here’s why:
Black Coffee Benefits
- If weight loss is a one of your goals, a little coffee could go a long way. A study published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise found that subjects who took in caffeine before their workout burned 15 percent more calories for three hours post-workout. How much joe? A 150-pound woman should drink about 12 ounces.
- Want to hit a PR at the gym? A study published in the British Journal of Sports Science found that coffee can play a role in athletic performance. Subjects who drank coffee before running 1500 meters on the treadmill finished an average 4.2 seconds faster than the control group. Caffeine can increase your energy and give you that extra push you need.
- Brew your muscle pains away. Researchers at the University of Illinois found that subjects who consumed the caffeine equivalent of two to three cups of coffee one hour before exercise experienced less muscle pains during their workout compared to the control group.
Cap Your Cup of Joe
While coffee has its perks, too much of good thing is, well, not always a good thing.
An excess of coffee, 4 or more cups a day, can lead to jitters, nervousness, headaches, and an upset stomach, according to The Mayo Clinic. And, while coffee does not lead to dehydration, good ole water should never be completely replaced by the black stuff.
Don’t Drink Away Your Workout
Before you pour yourself a cup, get a reality check on your coffee drink of choice. Are you enjoying a cup of black before a workout or one of those loaded Venti Caramel Macchiatos with whip cream that can pack more than 300 calories and cancels out your calorie burn? (Some coffee drinks – desserts really – have over 500 calories!) Remember that the benefits listed above are for black coffee. If you can’t go without a little extra something in your cup, stick to non-fat milk, a half shot of flavor and skip the whip.