Vitamin C-offee: Benefits of Caffeine for MMA Training

June 30, 2020

For most of us, reaching for a hot cup of coffee in the morning is almost a natural habit to do. It helps most of us start our day with an extra pep in our step. Along with this, there are also other reasons why caffeine can be useful.

But how does caffeine work?

Caffeine blocks part of the adenosine formulations (A2A receptors), which itself are responsible for giving you that sleep feeling when it’s almost time for bed. When you consume caffeine this receptor is blocked and thus your sleepy feeling will disappear like snow during the summer, especially with people that almost never consume caffeine. Caffeine also increases the dopamine levels, so you can experience a euphoric and energetic feeling when it’s consumed.

However, the group of people that consume caffeine holding beverages and coffee will hardly experience this feeling, why? Because the more caffeine you take daily, the more tolerance will be built up and thus preventing the dopamine levels from increasing. On another note, everyone can benefit and take advantage of the ‘anti-sleep’ effect that caffeine can cause.

What are the benefits of caffeine?

Caffeine increases the catecholamine signaling (adrenaline and dopamine) in the human body, which will not only make you feel good but also increases motivation and improves focus a lot. A caffeine dose between 100 and 200 mg is a reliable way to temporarily increase strength during sports activities. You will experience an ‘enhanced’ power out during strength training and your anaerobic training will improve, especially if you normally never consume caffeine. So it will:

Vitamin C-offee: Benefits of Caffeine for MMA Training

- Increase your performance in cardiovascular work

- Improve power production and output

- Improves your mood during training

- Improves focus

- Reduce muscle pain and soreness

- Increase cognitive functioning

Also, studies show that caffeine can play a role in post-workout recovery. Caffeine intake in addition to carbohydrates can improve the rate of glycogen replenishment. Which are relatively important for athletes who have several workouts in one day.

What are the risks and dangers of daily and high caffeine intake?

Video Credits: Science Insider

Most of us now know that caffeine can be a good way to be (temporarily) more energetic and focused. Which can, therefore, have a positive impact on performance during training and competition. But there also are drawbacks to consuming too much caffeine every day. (Over) Consumption has adverse effects on the recovery and functioning of the human body. It can cause:

- Decreased sleep quality

- Less sleeping hours

- Headaches

- Grumpy and irritated mood(swings)

- (Extreme) increases in cortisol production

- Restlessness

- Dizziness

- Anxiety

- Palpitations

- Strength loss

Quite a long list of adverse effects that will ensure that you as a person will function less optimally, both inside and outside of the gym physically AND mentally. And losing quality sleep itself is a huge downside, it will result in a lot of physical and mental problems.

If you regularly consume two or more cups of coffee (or energy drinks/pre-workout supplements) each day, you will already experience some side effects like lack of quality sleep. Caffeine will interfere with your circadian rhythm a whole lot if you abuse it. The benefits of caffeine are negligible because you will no longer experience the energetic feeling, improved focus and better concentration.

How much caffeine do you need?

Normally, 100mg of caffeine pre-activity should be enough for performance-enhancing effects. Don’t you experience this? Then it will be wise to go into a withdrawal cycle. After 9 days without caffeine-containing products you will be as good as “clean”, but don’t think it will be easy. You will experience serious withdrawal symptoms such as (muscle) weakness, bad headaches, fatigue, depression, etc. Fortunately, most withdrawal symptoms will come to an end after three days.

Should you take caffeine?

As mentioned above, 100mg of caffeine pre-activity can increase work output, focus, and concentration. But you should only use it on days that you are really tired, both physically and mentally. And maybe before important things like school exams, competitions, etc.

When to take caffeine?

Take caffeine about 30 mins before activity, this will ensure it’s taken up in the body thoroughly.

If you have any questions or feedback about this article or if you have any other questions about training, mindset, and lifestyle, feel free to send me a message!

Bart de Winter
Owner DEWINTER Personal Training
Licensed Personal Trainer & Lifestyle coach.

Also in Articles

The best MMA Shin Guards (2021) - Full Guide
The best MMA Shin Guards (2021) - Full Guide

May 24, 2021 180 Comments

What To Look For In A Good Pair Of MMA Gloves
What To Look For In A Good Pair Of MMA Gloves

May 07, 2021 201 Comments

How to train consistently without injury
How To Train Consistently Without Getting Hurt

April 23, 2021 43 Comments