Following on with caffeine, as mentioned it is a stimulant that has been shown to support enhanced performance through effects such as faster reaction times and more sustained high-intensity performance.
Typically, effective doses are in the 3-6mg/kg body weight range, taken 15-30 mins before exercise. Above doses of 9mg/kg, there is also the risk of tipping into banned levels of caffeine itself in urine (banned due to potential health risks)
We are all differentially sensitive to caffeine, so find the dose that works for you. If you feel nauseous or are jittery, you have gone too far!
And whether you take caffeine as coffee versus powders (e.g. preworkouts or pure caffeine powders) versus energy drinks depends on what you enjoy the most, and how specific you want to be in dosage.
Powder and energy drinks have a defined caffeine dose, whereas coffee will always contain a variable and undefined amount of caffeine.
However, many have additions such as BCAAs or taurine or other ingredients that do not have convincing performance impacts. And of course, the more stuff you add the greater the risk of contamination with a banned substance (for drug-tested athletes). So if you do compete in a drug-tested sport, choose a brand that is Informed-Sport tested.
Interestingly: the placebo effect of caffeine appears to be almost equivalent to the effect of caffeine itself. So perhaps a variable and potentially lower than the effective dose in coffee does not matter so much, as long as we believe there is sufficient in there.
Recipes of the week
- 100g uncooked pasta
- 100g chickpeas
- 50g ham
- 50g light mozzarella
- 50g cherry tomatoes chopped
- 1/2 red onion2-3 basil leaves (chopped)
- 2 mint leaves (chopped)
- Cook pasta as instructed and chop vegetables
- Once the pasta is cooking, leave to cook and mix all the ingredients together in a bowl
Note: Double the recipe to save time, salad will keep in the fridge once in an air-tight container. As an alternative to buying your own dressing, opt for a low-fat salad dressing if looking to reduce fat intake or regular dressing if trying to increase calories.
Download this recipe below:
Biscoff Protein Balls
- 2tbsp of Biscoff spread
- 6 Biscoff biscuits
- 50g oats
- 4tbsp milk
- 2 scoops whey protein (vanilla or chocolate will work)
- 3tbsp honey
- Blend all ingredients except the biscuits in a blender and crush the biscuits separately
- Combine the Biscoff crumb with the blended mixture
- Using your hands (it is best to wet them first), roll the mixture into approx eight balls
- Crush one more biscuit on top of each of the balls
- Leave the rolled balls in the fridge for 20-30 minutes before eating
- Keep in an airtight container in the fridge
Download this recipe below: