More and more swimmers these days are looking for a pre-race boost to get pumped up. Many of them are turning to hard core energy drinks, red bull, monster energy etc… Many are also turning to caffeine supplements such as “pre-workout” or just the classic double shot espresso!
What are the different types of things people are taking for this boost?
- Healthspan elite tablets. This is a caffeine tablet providing a source of pure caffeine, typically 50mg per tablet.
- Energy Gels. This is a source of energy in a small sachet that is in more of a gel form that typically has around 75mg of caffeine per sachet.
- Caffeine shots. With around 150mg of caffeine these are a more liquid form of the energy shot coming in various flavours.
- The double shot espresso! For coffee lovers this is the perfect solution. Typically with between 60/65mg in a standard shot the double shot espresso seems to be very popular!
How much should you take and what should you take? This is down to personal preference. We would recommend trial and error through training and smaller meets before using at your major meet of the year.
So what are the effects of caffeine on the body?
Caffeine acts as a stimulant for the central nervous system and helps you feel more alert and allows athletes to train slightly harder for longer. Caffeine stimulates the brain and contributes to more clear thinking and greater concentration. This all mixed together can aid a greater performance in the pool or in the gym.
Whilst it can have good short term effects caffeine should be consumed in moderation. A moderate consumption of caffeine is around 250mg/day. Try not to become dependent on caffeine and only use when you feel you really need the boost. As the more you use caffeine, the less of an effect you will feel.We do advise that you check anything that anything you take is on “Informed sport” so as to avoid taking anything with a banned substance in.
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