If curling your coffee cup from coaster to mouth isn’t producing the gains or improved tone you were hoping for, it may be time to incorporate coffee into your workout routine in a different way.
Many of us vowed to get back to the gym in 2018, seeking healthy lifestyle changes to make us feel harder, better, faster and stronger every day. If you’re struggling to find the energy to follow through on your New Year’s resolution, we have good news for you – coffee can help! No, seriously – it can. Whether you go hard enough to break a sweat during the warm-up or just want to get your heart pumping with a nice, brisk walk, studies show that the addition of coffee to your fitness regimen can make exercise more effective.
Let’s break down the science behind incorporating coffee into your sweat sesh.
Coffee contains moderate caffeine, a natural stimulant that many of us credit as the fuel that keeps us going from sunup to sundown. Caffeine not only wakes up your mind, but it also gives an energy jolt to your muscles that can help you burn more fat. How’s that, you ask? Muscles run on a stored form of glucose, and when that runs out, your body inevitably slows down. Caffeine helps shift your muscles to an alternate source of energy – fat – which preserves the stored glucose and gives you the stamina to go the extra mile (and burn a couple lbs. while you’re at it).
Before you hit the weights or treadmill with a cup of joe in hand, check out these pro-tips to discover how caffeine can help you the most out of your workout:
- As far as timing goes, exercise experts recommend drinking a cup of coffee about an hour before you hit the gym to see if the buzz amps up your activity levels. This allows you to enjoy the stimulating benefits of your coffee-fueled workout right as your caffeine levels peak.
- Before you drink up, remember to keep a bottle of water next to your liter of java. Though coffee is 99 percent water, it shouldn’t replace H2O in your pre-workout ritual. Remember to stay hydrated before, during and after your workout for optimal results.
- For the early morning hustlers who hit the gym instead of the snooze button, consider adding a splash of milk to your pre-workout coffee. A quick hit of protein and carbs boosts your blood sugar, giving you just the right jolt to make exercise the best part of your day.
- If you’re a late-night gym rat, remember that caffeine can keep you going for four or more hours. Combined with exercise-induced endorphins, you may find yourself with eyes wide open at 1 a.m., regretting every one of those cappuccino crunches. If you’re looking for a more low-key option, try tea or a small amount of cold-brewed coffee as your pre-workout supplement– both contain caffeine, but at lower levels than brewed coffee.
So what say you, workout warriors? Give this workout hack a try next time you hit the gym, and let us know if it helps keep you pushing through to the final rep. And remember, for all the latest in the wonderful world of java, subscribe to the Royal Cup blog (below).