Coffee is a magical drink where just one cup can provide a fantastic energy boost. With it comes a handful of benefits, a reduced risk of cancer, and many other diseases.
Now, many people drink coffee as a pre-workout drink. But how does coffee help you with your exercise?
A study published in the Journal of Psychology has the answer. According to a study, having a cup of coffee before a workout can turn training into something fun.
Caffeine is the central stimulant you will find in most pre-workout drinks and supplements. It boosts metabolism, which helps you burn fat throughout the day.
But most pre-workout supplements promise to increase your performance for exercise, but these products come with shady ingredients labels as “proprietary blends.” Instead of buying these unhealthy drinks or supplements, you can pick coffee from your pantry, and you are ready for your workout.
Short Answer: Any regular brewed coffee without added sugar or other additives is a good pre-workout drink like straight black coffee.
Read till the end to find out whether coffee is a good pre-workout drink and the best types of coffee for exercise.
What coffee is best before exercising?
Regular brewed or black coffee is best before exercising without any added sugar or other additives.
Flavored coffee that you get from cafes is most likely high in sugar and additives, which won’t benefit your body but rather harm it in a way.
You should always prepare your coffee at home instead of buying it from coffee shops. You can read more about black coffee in my other article that you can check out here.
Will coffee help you with exercise?
Coffee may help you with exercise by providing the additional energy boost you need for a successful workout session.
The benefit of drinking coffee before exercising
Drinking coffee can increase sports performance and may increase your strength, power, endurance, and alertness during an exercise or workout.
Caffeine in coffee can:
- Improve muscular strength, power, and endurance.
- Boost aerobic endurance
- Enhanced sprinting, jumping, and throwing performance
- Limiting glycogen and utilizing fat as the primary fuel source
- Increases focus and alertness
Studies have shown that coffee proves to be effective for exercise when consumed in doses of 0.9-2.7mg per pound of body weight.
Have a look at this video to see how coffee helps us lose weight during exercise:
When should you drink coffee for exercise?
You should drink coffee 45 minutes before an exercise as caffeine takes 45 to 60 minutes to reach its peak effectiveness.
Timing plays a prominent role in how caffeine helps you with exercise.
If you tend to work out early in the morning, don’t just drink espresso and run to the gym. It would be best to have a breakfast or snack hour before you hit the gym.
However, if you work out in the evening or at night, the best thing is to skip the pre-workout java. Why? Because the half-life of caffeine is only 5 to 6 hours. Drinking coffee at night is not a good idea. It can make you feel awake at night and disturb your sleep.
The thumb rule here is to take your caffeine coffee 6 to 8 hours before going to sleep.
Best coffee for exercise
Let’s dig straight into the best coffees you can have before exercise. Here’s a table to have a quick look at the best coffee for exercise.
|Coffee Type||Caffeine Content|
Black Coffee/ Tea
When you need to hit the cardio or need some extra boost for the day, black tea or coffee is the best option.
Take a cup 40 to 60 minutes before your workout.
However, if you tend to slump halfway through your workout, try drinking coffee 10 minutes before, so the peak effects set in about 20 to 40 minutes into your workout.
Best Black Coffee for Excercise: TheaFit
TheaFit™ is an all-natural, high potency, theaflavin-enriched black tea extract that is patented. It is clinically proven to reduce recovery time and increase sports performance. In clinical trials, TheaFit™ has been tested and the result shows it does produce significantly higher peak power output levels,
Moreover, it minimizes delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) that most of us experience after intense workout sessions.
This one is your best bet as it reduces inflammation, lowers cortisol levels, and reduces oxidative stress.
Cold-brew is a highly effective pre-workout drink and it has substantial mental and physical health benefits.
Best Cold Brew: BRUW
BRUW makes a great pre-workout, as the brand claim it has fat-burning properties. The coffee forces fat cells to be used as an energy source.
The BRUE manufacturer claims that cold brew is a specially made pre-workout drink. It increases metabolism and improves stamina and endurance not only for workouts but also provides energy throughout the day.
Instant coffee is a very effective and low-cost way to get the jolt of caffeine energy for your exercise session.
It contains 26 to 30mg caffeine per cup of coffee (100g of coffee). It is slightly less than regular brewed, which has about 70 to 100 in a cup.
Most coffee lovers tend to hate the idea of instant coffee therefore it is a big no for them. The taste gives them an awful experience. But if you don’t really care and just want something that can energize you before a workout, you can enjoy instant coffee as a pre-workout drink.
The bitter taste that makes instant coffee not so loveable for coffee lovers has come from turning coffee into powder. But you can deal with the flavor by adding some vanilla drops. After all, it’s the easiest and fastest pre-workout drink that you can make in your busy schedule.
Best Instant Coffee: Death Wish Coffee
Death Wish Instant Coffee is the world’s most caffeinated coffee that is now available in instant powder as well. Each pack of instant Death Wish coffee contains 300mg of caffeine.
I strongly recommend this only for people who can handle this much caffeine. Someone sensitive to caffeine should stick to low caffeine such as NESCAFÉ instant coffees that roughly contain 50mg to 90mg of caffeine per 2 gram of serving.
Any regular brewed coffee has a wide range of health benefits. It helps you focus and concentrate better. A study shows about 73% of athletes take caffeine to improve their training.
Moreover, many studies prove that coffee can enhance sports performance that can help you with endurance during tough workouts.
Best Brewed Coffee: Bulletproof Coffee
Silicon Valley entrepreneur and biohacker Dave Asprey collaborated to make this beauty. The brand is solely responsible for the butter coffee fad. The beans for bulletproof coffee are strictly vetted to reduce and eliminate toxins and molds.
Espresso is low in caffeine, but two shots of espresso can give you enough energy for the exercise.
Also, studies suggest that coffee does not only help as a pre-workout drink but also taking a cup of coffee after a workout can positively impact exercise and muscle soreness. It reduces muscle pain and perceive exertion.
Best Espresso: Coffee Bros. Espresso Roast
To enjoy your workout, you should enjoy your coffee first. Dull or bitter espresso will only ruin the mood. Choose Coffee Bros Special Espresso Roast. The medium roast creates bold, sweet, and rich caramelized sweetness.
Having a cup of coffee before a workout can force the fat cells to get used as an energy source instead of glycogen. This way, you get to burn more fat. Also, the amount of caffeine in coffee can help increase your metabolism, and that way, you can burn calories throughout the day.
Remember, coffee is not required for good exercise. It’s mostly a nice-to-have pre-workout drink. So, if you still enjoy your workout without any caffeine, then you are not obliged to jump on the bandwagon and start drinking it as others do.
Every person knows how their body works well and if a cup of caffeine can make them run to the bathroom, they should avoid it and enjoy their exercise session in peace.
But somedays when you can’t feel like doing a workout, and you need some pick me up, then the same cup of coffee can do wonders.