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Benefits of Caffeine for Riding

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Benefits of Caffeine for Riding

Old 03-21-13, 01:33 AM
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CanadianBiker32
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Benefits of Caffeine for Riding

Do you think Caffeine has good benefits for riding. Even for a racing event. Would it be best to have some coffee or energy drink right before starting an event? or would it be ok to have some sips during to keep up energy output?
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Old 03-21-13, 02:24 AM
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I usually drink a small coffee with a muffin or banana before I ride, but never an energy drink. I tried it before a run before, and though I ran like I never ran before, it gave me a real bad case of the jitters. Probably caused by the carbonation spreading the caffeine, and whatever else are in them, throughout my body. Riding I just do water and usually some water with added electrolytes (I like the Camelbak Elixir tablets), gels / gel packs with and without caffeine, and some kind of granola/fruit bar here and there.
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Old 03-21-13, 03:28 AM
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According to Chris Carmichael (time-crunched cyclist) caffeine has a number of benefits. First, it is a stimulant and those taking it tend to feel less fatigued. Second it may encourage the metabolisation of fat during exercise. Third, (this is more speculative) there is apparently some suggestion that it may speed the replenishment of glycogen stores post-ride.

Not a bad argument for having a coffee both before and after you ride.
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Old 03-21-13, 12:47 PM
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Caffeine always works for me. It makes me feel more energized and motivated, and the gu with caffeine usually keeps me going during a ride.
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Old 03-21-13, 01:17 PM
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Not just yes, but hell yes.
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Old 03-21-13, 03:17 PM
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It takes about one hour for caffeine levels in the blood to reach a maximum. So if you are drinking a cup before a race, consider this in timing that dose.
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Old 03-22-13, 07:53 AM
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Caffeine is a relatively safe and effective stimulant for most people but like anything else, more is not necessarily better. Small to moderate doses improve alertness and may decrease the perception of pain and fatigue. Excessively high doses can cause vascular constriction (counterproductive when you are trying to get fuel and oxygen to muscles), rapid heart rate, increased blood pressure, nervousness and twitchy reflexes. Some people mistake this "amped" feeling for having extra energy when it really is of no additional benefit to athletic performance and could be a hinderance to being clear of head and smooth in your actions.

Moderation is the key. Enough to make you feel awake and alert is fine (unless you have some medical condition which makes stimulants contraindicated) but if you are talking at twice your normal rate and vibrating when you try to stand still, you probably overdid it.
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Old 03-22-13, 08:19 AM
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When I was preparing for my Sprint Triathlon I was listening to a podcast where they were comparing Price to Performance increase. They covered, aero bikes, deep wheels, training etc. Caffeine was near the top of the list. For price to performance increase it's pretty hard to beat - according to this podcast. Wish I could find it.
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Old 03-22-13, 07:24 PM
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I am rather sensitive to caffeine and it works wonderfully as stimulant. Chocolate covered espresso beans, black tea, or coffee (almost too much for me).
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Old 03-22-13, 08:01 PM
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Caffeine does a number getting your insides woken up and moving in the morning too.
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Old 03-28-13, 01:30 AM
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For getting in caffeine for cycling. Before a ride or event. Would taking Caffeine pills in proper moderation be effective as well?
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Old 03-28-13, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by CanadianBiker32 View Post
For getting in caffeine for cycling. Before a ride or event. Would taking Caffeine pills in proper moderation be effective as well?
You could, but there are so many delicious caffeine delivery systems.
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Old 03-28-13, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by CanadianBiker32 View Post
For getting in caffeine for cycling. Before a ride or event. Would taking Caffeine pills in proper moderation be effective as well?
I usually have a cup of delicious a few hours before the ride start, then a 100mg pill just before the ride. Cuts down on peeing, which can be a problem. There are two other interesting delivery systems. Starbucks VIA comes in little plastic tubes and works great in cold water. Just put it in a bottle, maybe half a tube. Hammer makes a delicious (IMO) gel with caffeine, Hammer Gel Espresso.

You don't want to overdo it, though. IME there's a "just right." Too much is not good.
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Old 04-05-13, 09:27 AM
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I rarely have caffeine. I usually drink decaf coffee, and if I have caf, I feel jittery.

However, I've been riding a nice loop that takes me away from the foggy, cold coast, and I stop and have a cup of coffee in the sunshine at the red arrow:



I figure it kicks in during the hill. I don't get the usual jitteriness. I think the caffeine helps.
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Old 04-06-13, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
I rarely have caffeine. I usually drink decaf coffee, and if I have caf, I feel jittery.
.....

I figure it kicks in during the hill. I don't get the usual jitteriness. I think the caffeine helps.
I can't handle the caffeine so much either but love coffee and a minor jolt. Something I've been turned on to in the past few months is "bulletproof"-style coffee. iie. coffee blended with grass-fed unsalted butter and a bit of coconut oil.

Most everyone thinks butter in coffee sounds gross until I make them a cup.

The blended/emulsified butter not only provides energy on it's own but buffers the caffeine so it's jolt is a bit more spread out. I use half-caf coffee, a couple of TBSP of butter, a tiny bit of sugar/honey and often skip the coconut oil.
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Old 04-09-13, 08:34 PM
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I always take some for of caffeine before a ride or workout. 90% of the time its in the form of a pre-workout N.O. supplement, love it, recommend it as it makes the legs feel phenomenal.
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Old 04-09-13, 09:15 PM
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I have recently discovered that "cowboy coffee", that is, coffee made by boiling the grounds in the water, is much more effective and satisfying, and I think the buzz is even mellower, than coffee run through a filter. I filter out the grounds with a fine mesh strainer before drinking. Filtered coffee is insipid by comparison. I read somewhere that a paper filter removes a certain substance from the brew, but I can't say exactly what it is. It was in a recent article about how coffee is made in Greece.
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Old 04-09-13, 09:26 PM
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^^Buy a French Press
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Old 04-09-13, 10:51 PM
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Originally Posted by sknhgy View Post
I have recently discovered that "cowboy coffee", that is, coffee made by boiling the grounds in the water, is much more effective and satisfying, and I think the buzz is even mellower, than coffee run through a filter. I filter out the grounds with a fine mesh strainer before drinking. Filtered coffee is insipid by comparison. I read somewhere that a paper filter removes a certain substance from the brew, but I can't say exactly what it is. It was in a recent article about how coffee is made in Greece.
I know what it is. It's cafestol.
cafestol is the most potent dietary cholesterol-elevating agent known
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0614162223.htm

Cafestol is present in any coffee, even decaf, that has not been run through a paper filter, which removes at least most of the cafestol. Cowboy coffee and French press are the worst. I lowered my cholesterol 10%. The only thing I changed was paper-filtering my French press coffee.
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Old 04-22-13, 10:11 PM
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Check out the Aeropress.
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Old 04-25-13, 02:04 PM
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if you are older just keep an eye on your caffeine because it can contribute to gout
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