Caffeine Before Workout: Yes or No

caffeine before workout

Caffeine is a naturally occurring stimulant that can have a positive effect on speed, peak power, average power, and endurance during prolonged exercise.

An effective dose of caffeine is 3-9 mg per kg of the athlete’s weight (for a person weighing 70 kg – min. 210 mg). Some subjects, especially those who rarely and do not use caffeine, complained of confusion and an inability to concentrate when using the highest dosage. The peak level is reached 60-90 minutes after taking caffeine and lasts several hours.

caffeine effects
  • Very large doses of it, especially on an empty stomach, can cause indigestion.
  • Recent studies do not confirm that taking caffeine before exercise can contribute to dehydration.
  • Caffeine in doses above 9 mg/kg can lead to urinary caffeine levels that exceed the doping threshold for many sports organizations.

Caffeine (caffeine-sodium benzoate) separately from pre-workout complexes can be purchased at a pharmacy (available on prescription) or at sports nutrition stores.

An athlete weighing 70 kg can receive an effective dose (210 mg) from two cups of brewed coffee.

Caffeine has an exciting effect, due to which there is a narrowing of blood vessels, which leads to an increase in blood pressure (BP).

Scientists have evaluated the effect of drinking two cups of coffee on blood pressure in initially different volunteer conditions. In hypertensive patients, the result was predictable, i.e., there was a jump in pressure; it approached a critical one. In volunteers with normal pressure, it became a little higher and only 15-30 minutes.

Caffeine and strength indicators

caffeine and its effects

It has been proven that taking caffeine before exercise increases anaerobic strength. One experiment showed that taking caffeine an hour before a workout increases the one-shot maximum in the bench press with experienced lifters. In the case of beginners, no such effects were observed.

Coffee and weight loss

It is scientifically proven that taking it before low-intensity aerobic training stimulates lipolysis (fat burning) due to the increased release of norepinephrine and adrenaline. ⠀

Coffee and performance

Since it is a central nervous system stimulant, it has a pronounced effect on energy and concentration. A recently published meta-analysis showed that it reduces the level of perceived stress during and after exercise by 5.6% compared to placebo. Taking it before training significantly increases endurance in those engaged in aerobic and anaerobic sports.

At the moment, it is reliably known that you can benefit from it by taking it an hour before your workout. Unfortunately, the dose of caffeine taken was not exactly established, however, a recent study found that a dosage of 3 mg / 1 kg of body weight taken an hour before a workout significantly increased the maximum explosive force in squats and bench presses.

It is not recommended to take more than 400 mg. it per day, equivalent to about three cups of espresso.

caffeine in coffee

The semi-lethal dose (LD50) of caffeine, when administered orally to rats, is 192 milligrams per kilogram. The LD50 of it for the human body depends on individual sensitivity, but it is estimated to be approximately 150 to 200 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. Although it is extremely difficult to get a lethal dose of regular coffee, fatalities from an overdose of it in tablets have been reported.

In addition, you have a great chance to get to know first what are alcohol effects on a bodybuilder.

What is more, we’ve prepared a guide on what are the caffeine effects on cognitive functions.