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National Coffee / Running Day

Posted by George Parker on
Runner vitamin vitamins for runners
All right. Five Minute Warmup. Welcome. Let's get started.

Today is National Coffee Day, and instead of National Coffee Day, they should just call it National Running Day, because if you're like me and a lot of runners, coffee is a huge part of running. And there's a good reason for that, because caffeine is proven, many scientific studies used regularly by Olympic athletes as a performance enhancing ingredient. And what I wanted to talk about today was why are there benefits to caffeine? And you probably already know this if you drink caffeine. If you don't, maybe you shouldn't start because you don't want to get addicted. But, if you do, hopefully this will help you feel not as bad about drinking caffeine.

So there's a couple things that caffeine helps with when you run. The first one is, it just gives you alertness, right? It just helps you wake up, helps you stay focused, whether you're running now, like I'm about to which is at lunchtime, or if you run in the morning, there's no question that caffeine just gives you that mood, focus, and enhancement. And that's a huge benefit to have in general, especially if your motivation's low and you can't get out the door, caffeine will get you started.

Now another really great benefit of caffeine is that it is a proven antioxidant. There's a lot of antioxidants in the coffee bean itself. And if you follow any of the work we do with Peracin and our runner multivitamin, which has three times antioxidants, that's a huge benefit to running. Running, any physical activity, running especially is going to increase the amount of free radicals you have in your body. And when you have the free radicals running around, they're looking to attack other things to get that unpaired electron and in doing so, that's when you can cause damage to muscles, to tissues and cause inflammation. And so having antioxidants in your body is going to help neutralize the free radicals and prevent all the gains that you get from your activity from going away.

So coffee is another source of antioxidants in your body, which is a good thing. But the final one, which I think is kind of cool is one of the reasons that coffee gives you sustained energy. And one of the reasons that you see a lot of people just living off coffee, it seems like. They'll skip breakfast, they'll just drink coffee, is because coffee contains certain acids, which increase your body's ability to utilize fat. And so you're less glycogen, less glucose dependent. Now, obviously that's a huge benefit when you're running, especially in long distance running, the more you can tap into your huge fat reserves that everybody has on the body, the more it's going to be. Remember a pound of fat is 2,500 ish calories, which is more than enough, almost enough to power a marathon. And so everybody's got fat on your body, but it's not always easy to tap into that.

Caffeine increases your body's ability to use fatty acids that you have as a fuel source, making you less glycogen independent, less glucose dependent. It helps your running and just gives you that energy boost because now your body has tapped into another fuel source. That's the one I think is the coolest. And that's the one that provides a lot of benefits to runners. So get your coffee, get your tea, whatever it is. And I hope you guys enjoy National Coffee/Running Day.

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