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Is caffeine really that potent?

Old 06-28-20, 08:38 AM
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ZHVelo
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Is caffeine really that potent?

I was gonna do my longest ride yet, including highest elevation metres, so I took two caffeine pills that I still had, and I felt like I was flying, at least for the first 50-60km I could put out some good watts in a high-ish gear and my legs just felt great.

I normally don't consume caffeine at all.
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Old 06-28-20, 09:10 AM
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Uh, yup. On long rides, I take 200mg every 3 hours. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition...ase-metabolism
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Old 06-28-20, 09:21 AM
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Feels like cheating though.
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Old 06-28-20, 09:49 AM
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Around here, the surfers take meth.
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Old 06-28-20, 02:49 PM
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I don't use caffeine pills, but I like drinking coffee. On longer rides I will stop and buy iced cappuccino or iced coffee. Sometimes I will bring my own homemade drink which contains instant coffee.
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Old 06-28-20, 02:55 PM
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caffeine can hurt too... it's blood type dependent believe it or not. If it's beneficial for you (which it is for most) then it's best used only when you need it. As in if you drink coffee everyday it's not going to help as much.
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Old 06-28-20, 02:57 PM
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When on multi day rides and camping, I have thrown a couple of tablespoons instant coffee into one of my bike bottles. The taste is not for everyone, but I have acquired a liking for it. You don't need to heat the water to dissolve the granules if you're not cooking breakfast anyway.
At this point in my life, caffeine just gets me up to where I can function reasonably well.

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Old 06-28-20, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by spdntrxi View Post
caffeine can hurt too... it's blood type dependent believe it or not. If it's beneficial for you (which it is for most) then it's best used only when you need it. As in if you drink coffee everyday it's not going to help as much.
Taking high doses of caffeine such as caffeine pills and using energy drinks is harmful...Drinking few cups of coffee is beneficial....The problem is that humans have a flawed logic, they think that if a little bit of something is good then more must be better. Too much caffeine will lead to addiction and dependence just like with any other drug.
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Old 06-28-20, 07:13 PM
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not blood type.. dont know what I was thinking. The is a certain DNA marker for it... so if you get a DNA test you can find out what genotype you are.
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Old 06-28-20, 09:34 PM
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I think so. My evening commute is made or broken by it. Or lack thereof....
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Old 06-29-20, 05:21 AM
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Taking high doses of caffeine such as caffeine pills and using energy drinks is harmful...Drinking few cups of coffee is beneficial....The problem is that humans have a flawed logic, they think that if a little bit of something is good then more must be better. Too much caffeine will lead to addiction and dependence just like with any other drug.
You really think so? When I bought these, it was for a specific even and I wanted to beat a friend who at the time was close to me in performance so I wanted every boost possible. I read up on it, and did not find anything about it being harmful if you take it seldom. Sure, I guess every day would be bad. Agree about energy drinks though, godknows what is in those, but these pills it literally is just caffeine and it's taken before long physical exercise maybe once or twice a month. So I will probably keep using them on very long rides, but not even normal, longer Sunday ones.
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Old 06-29-20, 06:17 PM
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Excessive caffeine has done nothing but give me massive, debilitating cramps in longer races. Also doesn't seem very effective in shorter races.

The biggest difference I've found in "feel" has been from training during weight loss (so seemingly perpetually on the edge of a bonk) and then properly fueling and excessive consumption on the bike (especially with something like maltodextrin). Malto in the bottles after periods of training and weightloss feels like NOS.
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Old 06-29-20, 07:26 PM
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I don't get cramps from it, but I just don't care for any caffeine during a ride. I drink coffee all day long if not riding, but I avoid it and other caffeinated beverages before and during a ride.

I do agree that maltodextrin does seem to replete spent energy quicker while riding than other carbs I've used. So if NOS is a Nitrogen Oxide System on a race car, then that's a fair analogy.
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Old 06-29-20, 11:37 PM
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Caffeine has quite a kick the first few times if you're not a regular drinker of coffee, etc. I remember buzzing like a hummingbird the first time I started drinking coffee in the Navy. But after a couple of weeks I barely noticed any effect. It still worked but was more subtle.

That initial buzz could be unpleasant and can provoke a blood sugar drop, but that effect seems to subside with regular use. I remember bonking hard during an uphill group run in military training after drinking way more coffee than usual and a bunch of donuts in addition to eggs and bacon. The sugar buzz was great for a few minutes and then I crashed, hard. Only time that's ever happened. I never tried that combo again before PT.

But the body adapts quickly and I don't notice any buzz. After awhile it becomes more of a necessity just to get moving in the morning. There's also some minor withdrawal symptoms for heavy users -- headaches, etc.

I've cut back a bit on my morning coffee, but all of my usual road snacks and gels have caffeine. My favorites are Clif mocha gel shots, and Cool Mint Chocolate energy bars. Both have about 50 mg caffeine. That's about equivalent to half of my usual mug of coffee. On a hard workout ride I'll use about one gel per hour and it helps. There's a bit more kick than the caffeine free gels and bars.

Occasionally I'll vary snacks but I have no problems with those two Clif products so I usually stick with them. I don't think I've ever had problems with any gels, but have with bars that contain sugar alcohols -- comically ferocious gas. Well, comical for me, not for anyone following me.

I take a bunch of supplements, some unproven, and it's probably just making expensive pee. But if I could keep only one, it'd be caffeine.
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Old 06-29-20, 11:53 PM
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FWIW....if I drink a lot of coffee my BP will be in the 160/100 range. No coffee and it's around 120/80.
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Old 06-30-20, 02:09 AM
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Caffeine has quite a kick the first few times if you're not a regular drinker of coffee, etc. I remember buzzing like a hummingbird the first time I started drinking coffee in the Navy. But after a couple of weeks I barely noticed any effect. It still worked but was more subtle...........................
As a youngster I always enjoyed the smell of coffee while growing up but after having a sip I said NO WAY!!! will I drink this garbage. In 2015 at 65 still never having had a cup of coffee I tried a DOUBLE ESPRESSO and absolutely no reaction. Finished it and had another. Always have CLIF Shot Double Espresso 100mg caffeine gels on rides.

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Old 07-06-20, 08:34 AM
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Caffeine works for me but too much makes me jittery and any after letís say 2pm can impact my sleep. Genetics plays a role in caffeine metabolism. Genetically, I am a fast caffeine metabolized.

My research into caffeine and athletic performance indicates that studies have shown caffeine improves both aerobic and anaerobic capability. If one is interested search US NCBI data base for articles.

Whether it works for an individual is up for grabs as evidenced in the small sampling of posts here.

As for cheating, to cheat at something, one has to break a rule. Globaldro.com indicates for US athletes, USADA, that caffeine is not prohibited in or out of competition. For Switzerland, Globaldro.com does not indicate cycling as a sport of interest ,who knew, and lumps it with other sports and caffeine does not show up.

The fact that it is not on the WADA list is indicative that it may be inconclusive as to its performance enhancing ability or is harmful to athletes health. And it may be that it is so engrained in society in Europe and the US that putting it on the list would further limit anyone wanting to participate in the sport or be able to escape ingesting it. Hence one could never get a negative result.

TL;DR If you like coffee / caffeine drink it/use it if you think it adds value to your cycling.
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Old 07-06-20, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by rubiksoval View Post
Excessive caffeine has done nothing but give me massive, debilitating cramps in longer races. Also doesn't seem very effective in shorter races.

The biggest difference I've found in "feel" has been from training during weight loss (so seemingly perpetually on the edge of a bonk) and then properly fueling and excessive consumption on the bike (especially with something like maltodextrin). Malto in the bottles after periods of training and weightloss feels like NOS.
My breakfast before hard rides is malto and whey protein, same for recovery drink if any, and my on-bike food is the same, but only 7/1 ratio on the bike. Yes, it's good fuel. Got the idea from Hammer - tried their product first, then made my own mix. 50# bags of malto from a homebrew wholsaler. Strength of mix depends on ride length, 750 calories/bottle for Serious Rides, extra powder in the saddle bag.
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Old 07-06-20, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Hermes View Post
Caffeine works for me but too much makes me jittery and any after letís say 2pm can impact my sleep. Genetics plays a role in caffeine metabolism. Genetically, I am a fast caffeine metabolized.

My research into caffeine and athletic performance indicates that studies have shown caffeine improves both aerobic and anaerobic capability. If one is interested search US NCBI data base for articles.

Whether it works for an individual is up for grabs as evidenced in the small sampling of posts here.

As for cheating, to cheat at something, one has to break a rule. Globaldro.com indicates for US athletes, USADA, that caffeine is not prohibited in or out of competition. For Switzerland, Globaldro.com does not indicate cycling as a sport of interest ,who knew, and lumps it with other sports and caffeine does not show up.

The fact that it is not on the WADA list is indicative that it may be inconclusive as to its performance enhancing ability or is harmful to athletes health. And it may be that it is so engrained in society in Europe and the US that putting it on the list would further limit anyone wanting to participate in the sport or be able to escape ingesting it. Hence one could never get a negative result.

TL;DR If you like coffee / caffeine drink it/use it if you think it adds value to your cycling.
WADA has a maximum caffeine blood level, over that is a violation. Interestingly, that blood level is the same level at which caffeine ceases to be beneficial. I agree with the idea that it's legal because it's so ingrained in the culture and because it's not only harmless, but beneficial, and freely available to anyone, over the counter as it were, which is a hard combo for the cycling authorities to rule against. One of the benefits, and perhaps the major benefit, is that it improves the oxidation of fatty acids in the mitochondria, which is responsible for much of the improved performance. https://www.sciencedirect.com/scienc...28869X1200010X
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Old 07-06-20, 11:34 AM
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I look at caffeine a s a drug. Read about it as such in 1977 when I was starting my most serious year of racing and put it and white surgar/sucrose on the forbidden list. (I took pride in riding clean and feeling clean.) At that time, I"d never had good coffee and my love for it aw years off.

About 6 weeks into the regime I tried some white sugar on a ride. Wow!. Yes, in my clean body, a true drug! Rush, perfornance increase for a few hours, then a crash to below where I started. Eye opener.

Now, that summer I did more than a few very long day rides. Two each of 160 and 175 miles. That first 175 was 25 more than planned (I got lost) and included a 2 mile steep climb just because "Oh, I am at the base of Pack Monadmock which I have seen many times fror its big sister but never climbed". With 50 miles to go, I was running low on gas. Stopped at a fast food and had a cup of black coffee with 2 packs of sugar. Rocket fuel. Got me all the way home.

Now I drink a powerful cup of Italian coffee every morning. (Italian brew, American cup.) A cup of drip coffee still has real effect on me (drip coffee - what an efficient way to extract caffeine from the bean and inject it into our system!) but nowhere near what that cup did years ago.

Ben
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Old 07-06-20, 12:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
WADA has a maximum caffeine blood level, over that is a violation. Interestingly, that blood level is the same level at which caffeine ceases to be beneficial. I agree with the idea that it's legal because it's so ingrained in the culture and because it's not only harmless, but beneficial, and freely available to anyone, over the counter as it were, which is a hard combo for the cycling authorities to rule against. One of the benefits, and perhaps the major benefit, is that it improves the oxidation of fatty acids in the mitochondria, which is responsible for much of the improved performance. https://www.sciencedirect.com/scienc...28869X1200010X
Go to globaldro.com which is the global website that allows one to look up countries, athlete type, sport and then the drug. It incorporates WADA. Caffeine is not a banned substance and is allowed in and out of competition. It used to have a limit. You can also check, which I did, WADA 2020 list and search caffeine. Globaldro always carries foot notes such as blood levels and notes such as whether injection is okay or not. Infusion is always prohibited unless administered in a hospital setting after being admitted.

Caffeine is in the footnotes as shown below.

Bupropion, caffeine, nicotine, phenylephrine, phenylpropanolamine, pipradrol, and synephrine: These substances are included in the 2020 Monitoring Program, and are not considered Prohibited Substances.
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Old 07-06-20, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Hermes View Post
Go to globaldro.com which is the global website that allows one to look up countries, athlete type, sport and then the drug. It incorporates WADA. Caffeine is not a banned substance and is allowed in and out of competition. It used to have a limit. You can also check, which I did, WADA 2020 list and search caffeine. Globaldro always carries foot notes such as blood levels and notes such as whether injection is okay or not. Infusion is always prohibited unless administered in a hospital setting after being admitted.

Caffeine is in the footnotes as shown below.

Bupropion, caffeine, nicotine, phenylephrine, phenylpropanolamine, pipradrol, and synephrine: These substances are included in the 2020 Monitoring Program, and are not considered Prohibited Substances.
Thanks. I see that they stopped the ban entirely in 2004. Surprisingly to me, they also stopped the ban on pseudoephedrine. High urine levels of caffeine are still banned by the NCAA.
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Old 07-06-20, 10:49 PM
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By the time I ride in the morning, I've had at least 5 hours of caffeine half life.

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Old 07-10-20, 01:12 PM
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No comment until I have had 3 cups of coffee.
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Old 08-01-20, 08:41 AM
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Caffeine is even more effective when combined with citrulline. Most legit pre work out mixes have both. Citrulline relaxes your circulatory system and increases blood flow.
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