Many people drink coffee before running or working out because they think it improves performance and increases stamina. We know that coffee can pick you up after a short night’s sleep or in the afternoon slump at work, but can it really improve your athletic performance?
Coffee’s a Stimulant
The caffeine in coffee stimulates the nervous system to produce noradrenalin which has a stimulating effect. The effects of coffee are most acute 30 minutes after consumption.
It Has Some Positive Effects
Coffee is rich in antioxidants which boost the immune system. It also relaxes the mung muscles and opens air tubes that make breathing easier. This can help enhance your physical aerobic exercise. It can have a slight pain-reducing effect which can sometimes help when you’re working out and can be healthy for the heart.
It Has Some Negative Effects
Caffeine temporarily increases blood pressure and can cause your heart to pump faster. This is bad for people who suffer from high blood pressure. It can also stimulate bowel movements and increase anxiety levels. These can have negative effects if you’re working out.
Does Caffeine Improve Stamina?
The verdict is still out on whether coffee definitively improves athletic performance or not. But studies do show that drinking an espresso or black coffee before endurance training can marginally improve stamina and performance. See what works for you.