Does a cup of coffee before a workout help or hurt you? Science explains.
You may or may not consciously do it now, but drinking a cup (or two) of coffee before a workout actually can help your body! That's right, having a cup of your favorite beverage may actually help your body prepare for physical exertion.
Let us explain.
As you probably know coffee contains something called caffeine. Caffeine helps stimulate your brain and body to perform at its peak. That being said it would make sense that a cup of coffee (or even black tea) could help you perform at your best during a workout session. Well, science backs this notion up. According to an article from the Journal of Applied Physiology, "Caffeine led to exercise being perceived as less difficult and more enjoyable." (By the test patients conducted in this study).
How did this study work?
Fourteen recreationally active participants completed a resting control trial, a placebo exercise trial, and a caffeine exercise trial in a randomized, double-blinded design. Meaning some of the test patients rested before their workout, others took a placebo and the final group consumed, what would be equal to, 2 cups of regular coffee worth of caffeine before their workout. As you saw above the patients who took the caffeine supplement felt the workout was less difficult and more enjoyable.
What does this mean?
While every person's body is different and some do not respond as favorably to caffeine it is possible that a cup or two of coffee 90 min before a workout could help you perform at your best! As always we recommend consulting your doctor before trying anything different in your workout routine and making sure your heart is healthy enough for exercise.