Home Chat General Chat

Caffeine loading

Has anyone tried this? You avoid caffeine completely for, say, a week, before an event, then take quite a bit on just before. There was a report on it in Tri 220 a while back, I think. Would be interested to hear from anyone who has tried it or has thoughts on the subject.



  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    hey tony,

    I do this all the time when i race or do a marathon. I even do it when I have an A-priority speed training. This really helps; it's scientiffically proven.

    But beware, likeeverything else, try this before, not on race day for the first time (which is really stupid, but apparently people keep making this mistake).
  • Hmm...might give it a try. I generally have no caffeine in my diet apart from the odd cup of black tea at work which certainly wakes me up!

    Doesnt it dehydrate if you load up with it?
  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    Yeah hound,

    dehydration used to be the thought out there in the older days; recent different researches have shown there is no dehydration(doses for this should equal way too much[&:]), but I would think twice about drinking 2 steaming cups of hot coffee when is a sahara out there. You could avoid this with cold coffee[:'(] or cafeine suplements. I take a suplement that equals 4-5 cups some 15 minutes before race.

    One downside is the effect it has on me is it speeds up toilet visits(the bigones). I use it in my benefit; I drink a regular cup of coffee 2 hours before race, thismakes me go to the toilet for sure within the half hour, with makes me safe during race.

    Try it Dog, the extra boost will lift you up!!!
  • Caffeine gives me runners trots. I think for everyone elses safety and enjoyment it is best if I avoid it. Does that put me at a disadvantage? Should I be campaigning to get caffeine added to the banned substances list?[:D]
  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    yeah caz,

    i suppose we all should campaign for that[;)][:D].
  • Yeah, the pros and cons of caffeine use in exercise are hotly debated topics, with some scientific evidence showing that caffeine does not act as a diuretic and other research showing that it might ... or might not ... depending on you particular reaction. It is not unusual for scientific studies on the effects of caffeine to point out that there was a 400% (or more) range of reactions in the test subjects (in other words, the highest results were 4 times that of the lowest results in the people tested), which is a pretty wide range of reactions. As we can see from this forum and most anecdotal discussions about caffeine, we all have our own personal histories with caffeine, and we all need to be in tune with those if we plan to use it in our training - just the same as if we were trying out a new gel or energy drink or what have you.
  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    Another thing: if you can't handle 2-3 cups of coffee for whatever reason, don't give up. You should also try the caffeine that comes from Guarana, which can be found in highly dosed supplements, but a lot more peopleseem to put up better with this. Doesn't hurt to give it a try; it can really give that extra push.[:@]
  • I drink a lot of coffee on a daily basis and find that it does wake my up slightly if I am feeling a bit tired before a session.

    However, red bull is the stuff, if you want to perform better in a race. I think it is a bit of a cheat though as it is a drug that is enhancing your performance.

    I knocked 2 mins of my 10 cycle TT after 2 cans of red bull. Gives you the shakes though, so not good on hilly bike courses. The fizz can also give you a stitch!

    The best answer is just to train smarter and you will get the results without the drugs!
  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    hey sarah,

    why do you think the high amount of caffeine in Red Bull is a drug?? Because in enhances your performance? I'd say:if it isn't on the list, it isnt a performance enhancing drug.

    Drinking during exercise enhances your performance, which doesn't mean that water is a drug.

    About the coffee; if you are are regular coffee user, you should hold off the black stuff for a few days before usein race or practice. Just to allow the effects to be bigger again.
  • I agree completely. If its not on the list its not a drug. People will say caffine is mood enhancing therfor its a drug. True but I find fresh air very mood enhancing too. Is this a drug? If so should it be banned. Maybe people should worry about catching the people doing illegal blood transfusions and epo and worry about caffine for the time being.

  • I think we have a bit of an issue in understanding what the term 'drug' means.

    A drug is any chemical or biological substance made outside the body that alters mood or performance. Just because caffeine isn't illegal doesn't mean that is isn't a drug.

    Caffeine is a stimulant which increases heart rate, breathing and blood flow all of which are required in triathlon to enhance performance.

    I know my good performance on the bike was down to the caffeine and not that I'd suddenly got much fitter, so is this cheating? I would say so but that's my opinion.

  • Im with Sarah on this one 100% Although not illegal, definetly enhances performance.

    Personally I prefer to see what I can get out of my body with as little "extra" help as possible, but wheres the line? Isotonic? carb gels? hmmm....[>:]

    Can the person who crosses the line loaded with caffiene claim to be a better athlete than second over the line without?

  • tony btony b Posts: 57
    Benny, how do you get your caffeine before an event? In coffee (if so, how much) or another way? I can't stand Red Bull so would look at something else. Mind youo, I don't relish the thought of coffee before training or a race either. I'm still in two minds whether to try it. Interesting hearing all your opinions.

    I don't profess to know a lot about drugs and banned substances but I know it's a very fine line. The banned substances don't necessarily have to be formed outside the body; they could be from within, just at elevated levels, in which case an athlete could be caught. Look at Floyd Landis in the 2006 Tour. He's claiming that his high levels of testosterone were natural, not artificial. Who knows?
  • BoycieBoycie Posts: 189
    Tony B,

    One easy way of taking on board caffeine is in energy gels, many of them now have versions with caffeine added. I'm not sure what quantites of caffeine they contain and I would use these during the race not as a way to load up before. I tried them once and felt no different than when taking a normal gel, but it's a option you could try.

  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    @Tony: I take it in a pure liquid guarana supplement, because apparently this doesn't give me the negative side-effects. And hey what about Rutger Beke, who's EPO-suspension was unfair? Maybe Landis is alike, but I doubt it.

    @hound dog: In my opinion the first person is the best, because he did everything in his (legal) power to win. The caffeine gives you a benefit, but so does eating, sleeping, training,... As long as you follow the rules that are set for everyone, I'm ok with it.

    Whow, quite an interesting thread this one[:D]

  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    A big document on research on caffeine, you'll find lots of info here:

  • TTX PROTTX PRO Posts: 225
    oh ye nothing like a caffine combined with an adrenalyne rush.you go like a flippin rocket.what i find is evryone has different ways and methods wich work for them.Its a kinda personal thing.one persons method might work wonders for them but not for anouther.me,well i tend to do is wait about 6/7 days have a very strong coffee[;)]in the morning then wait about 3/4 hours.then you get very exited and raring to go,then shove a can of relentless down.then when you hopp on your bike your full of adrenalyne and caffine and to keep it up have a water bottle full of lucazade with caffine boost and the othe lacazade hydroactive.that works for me[:D][:D][:D][:D][:D]
  • Although some of it got a bit too technical, that was a really interesting link you posted Benny. It goes to show, you dont have to lay off caffiene for very long to get that rush. As I hardly touch the stuff, I think ssix cups and a lucozade would blow my socks off!!! [8D]
  • bennybenny Posts: 1,314
    Okay, six cups[&:] is definetely enough to pull your bike into a 100 pieces.
Sign In or Register to comment.