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Caffeine workout supps and 5 levels of fatigue

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How effective is caffeine before a workout? During? After? We review what happens when energy drinks dress up like workout supplements, and the science around caffeine's effectiveness for each occasion.
We also review GreenEyedGuide's "5 Levels of Fatigue" and how this system helps people identify how much caffeine (if any) is truly needed per level of fatigue.

Published in: Food
  • This was really informative, thanks. Was curious if you had any other advice for recovery from morning workouts. I enjoy working out in the morning, but haven't been lately because I found that a hard morning workout just made me drag a bit too much throughout the rest of the a.m.
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Caffeine workout supps and 5 levels of fatigue

  1. 1. Caffeine in Supplements and the Five Levels of Fatigue Danielle Robertson aka Green-Eyed Guide
  2. 2. The Plan  About Me – Beachbody, Caffeine and Food Science  When Energy Drinks Dress up like Workout Supplements  The 5 Levels of Fatigue  Questions GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM2
  3. 3. About Me  Competitive gymnast 7 years  Energy Drink enthusiast circa 2003  BS Biochemistry - UC San Diego  MS Food Science/Food Biochemistry - UC Davis  Beachbody R&D 3 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  4. 4. When Energy Drinks Dress Up Like Workout Supplements  PRE-Workout  Too tired to workout? Caffeine to the rescue!  The ideal amount of caffeine from the variety of different studies on caffeine and athletic performance falls in the range 3-9 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram of body weight PRE- WORKOUT 4 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  5. 5.  Benefits  Significantly increased muscle endurance during brief, intense exercise (4–6 min) performed by recreational athletes  [6 mg/kg body weight of caffeine]  Significant improvement in performance compared with a placebo for competitive male rowers during a 2,000-meter time trial.  [The lower dose of caffeine (6 mg/kg body weight) resulted in the fastest performance times]  Significantly greater anaerobic metabolism and performance among recreational runners when consumed prior to a maximum effort run [5 mg/kg body weight]  Significantly improved endurance for healthy untrained subjects performing a maximal oxygen deficit cycling test [5 mg/kg body weight]  Limitations  While caffeine is often added to protein powders or protein drinks, protein is not the best nutrient to have right before exercise. Consuming a large amount of protein prior to a workout may lead to a lag or heavy stomach sensation during exercise.  Just because the 3-9 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram body weight was the right amount for the study participants (trained athletes), it does not mean that range will be the right amount of caffeine for your body.  For a woman who is 140 pounds/63 kilograms, the 3 mg/kg level dictates a dose of 192 mg caffeine. That’s more than two Red Bulls or a whole can of Monster Energy! When Energy Drinks Dress Up Like Workout Supplements PRE-WORKOUT5 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  6. 6. EFSA Says: “Single doses of caffeine up to 200 milligrams (mg) and daily intakes of up to 400mg do not raise safety concerns for adults.” When Energy Drinks Dress Up Like Workout Supplements PRE- WORKOUT GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM 6 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  7. 7. When Energy Drinks Dress Up Like Workout Supplements  DURING Workout  If your workout is LESS than 60 minutes and/or only mild to moderate intensity, you probably don’t need a during-workout/hydration supplement  Caffeine is better PRE – workout than during, but it can still improve performance.  The ideal amount of caffeine in a DURING workout supplement is the same range as a PRE-workout supplement: 3-9 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram of body weight  Determined “unlikely” that consuming caffeine* will results in fluid-electrolyte imbalances *IN MODERATION DURING WORKOUT 7 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  8. 8.  Limitations  During exercise, electrolytes like magnesium, calcium, chlorine, and especially sodium are lost through sweat.  Not a typical combo for energy drinks.  If you have to choose between caffeine and these electrolytes, choose the electrolytes.  Best fluid replacement during exercise is one with ~5% carbohydrates.  Water alone can dilute the blood; too much sugar can cause gastrointestinal (GI) distress. It may be difficult to find an energy drink with this concentration of carbohydrates. “Hydration/energy drink hybrid” Source: http://www.caffeineinformer.com/caffeine-content/rockstar-recovery-energy-hydration When Energy Drinks Dress Up Like Workout Supplements DURING WORKOUT 8 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  9. 9.  POST-workout  When you’ve had a GREAT workout … but still have to survive the rest of the day, caffeine can help, but PROTEIN is CRUCIAL! When Energy Drinks Dress Up Like Workout Supplements American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found the following: “Current dietary recommendations for protein are focused on total daily intake of 0.8 g/kg body weight, but new research suggests daily needs for older adults of ≥1.0 g/kg and identifies anabolic and metabolic benefits to consuming at least 20-30 g protein at a given meal.” POST-WORKOUT9 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  10. 10.  Benefits  Can help you get the protein you need AND help you find the energy for the rest of the day after a grueling a.m. workout  Limitations  Many energy drinks contain high amounts of B-vitamins, but some may also contain other vitamins like Vitamin E or Vitamin C. Watch out for these two in particular because Vitamin C and E can hamper protein synthesis; including these nutrients in a protein post-workout drink is counterproductive.  L-carnitine is a common energy drink ingredient, but L-carnitine has to be consumed in gram amounts on a regular basis to contribute to improved exercise performance. When Energy Drinks Dress Up Like Workout Supplements POST-WORKOUT10 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  11. 11. The 5 Levels of Fatigue  Level 0 – Natural High  Level 1 – Boredom/Dehydration  Level 2 - < 90 mg caffeine, preferably tea-based  The thing about Red Bull… 5 Levels of Fatigue CaffeineInformer.com 11 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  12. 12. The 5 Levels of Fatigue “ The most dangerous part about Red Bull is the alarming frequency with which it is mixed with alcohol.” 5 Levels of Fatigue http://greeneyedguide.com/2015/03/12/energy-drink-of-the-month-march-2015/ 12 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  13. 13. The 5 Levels of Fatigue  Level 3 – Juiced, non-carbonated, <120mg/serving  The effect of carbonation… 5 Levels of Fatigue13 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  14. 14. The 5 Levels of Fatigue 5 Levels of Fatigue Carbonation irritates the stomach, so that a carbonated caffeinated drink will take effect quicker and feel stronger than its non- carbonated counter-part. Save the carbonated drinks for the higher level of fatigue. 14 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  15. 15. The 5 Levels of Fatigue  Level 4 carbonated, concentrated <400mg (the max)  The thing about shots… 5 Levels of Fatigue Don’t judge an energy drink by its cover. This drink has 240 mg caffeine, but… This energy drink has no artificial colors or flavors, no high fructose corn syrup or artificial sweeteners. It is sweetened by sucrose and glucose only, which accounts for its unique tarty sweetness. 15 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  16. 16. The 5 Levels of Fatigue 5 Levels of Fatigue Remember that scene in Pirates of the Caribbean where they thought they were cured of the curse? They all closed their eyes and waited. And waited… They didn’t feel any different, so Captain Barbosa took a shot. The problem with energy shots is people take a sip, and wait, and wait…and when they don’t feel any different, they take another shot. But caffeine takes ~20 minutes to kick in! By the time it does kick in, it’s too late to doo anything if you’ve had too much. By putting so much caffeine in a concentrated little bottle, energy shots become more easily abused through over-consumption. Serving size – half a 2 ounce bottle! (Better use an eye-dropper) 16 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  17. 17. The 5 Levels of Fatigue  Level 5 = Zombieville There comes a point at which no caffeine can save you. 5 Levels of Fatigue As some point, the only thing you can do is take a 20 minutes or 6-8 hour nap. 17 GREENEYEDGUIDE.COM
  18. 18. For more information on energy drinks and their ingredients, get your copy of Are You a Monster or a Rock Star: A Guide to Energy Drinks – How They Work, Why They Work, How to Use Them Safely (available wherever books are sold) 18

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