Who takes on caffeine before a run? How much and how long before you set off? How does it affect you?

I take pro plus on days when I'm feeling unfit (which seems to be a lot). I don't know if I feel run down like this because of taking on caffeine before runs or what. Is it best just not to have any caffeine at all? (This is the only time I have caffeine - I don't drink tea or coffee or coke or anything like that).

I've read the 'reader to reader' thing on it, and just wondered what others have to say on the subject...



  • Welsh AlexWelsh Alex ✭✭✭

    I take it sometimes.

    I drink a 'Red Rooster' which is a sort of 'Happy Shopper' Red Bull.

    Taken 25 mins b4 a run I have no idea of whether it is doing anything but seem to go ok on it. Not that I am better without it but it gives a bit of a confidence boost more than anything.

    Have had one @ mile 17 of the FLM. Here it really felt great and I felt as if it picked me right up.

    I drink piles of coffee regularly.
  • I just drink incredible amounts of tea and coffee
  • I have heard that caffeine give you a crash after about 2 hours after drinking it.

  • Coffee before a morning run cretainly helps me....but I LOVE coffee. Wouldn't take pro-plus ever.

    Red Bull was being dished out at the refreshment stations at the Berlin marathon towards the last few miles!! (didn't try it though - yeuch!!)
  • I tried drinking some Red Bull before a run, and it gave me a real boost of energy that actually lasted! I don't want to get addicted to stuff like this, I heard it's really bad for you. Does anybody else feel the need to have some sort of energy drink, like if they don't have any they'll not be able to run well? If I get up on a morning I just can't run well at all, even if I've got a slice of toast and jam inside me.
  • Hi,

    I think that you will feel better if you eat anything before an early morning run. It's normal to get up tired and not to want to go out running straightaway. If you eat something and give your body sometime, you will be OK. It doesn't need to be caffeine.
  • I like a cup of coffee or ten, but I've never thought of myself as a "user".

    Wibble :oS
  • NessieNessie ✭✭✭
    I "use" caffiene in the form of a strong coffee on a weekend morning to encourage me to "go" before I head out. Saves looking for a loo en route.

    Given the amount of coffee I'm consuming at work this week, I think the term "abuser" would be more appropriate than "user".
  • OK, I guess because I don't normally have caffeine except when I need energy that it has a much stronger affect on me... I had two cans of Red Bull before my run last night, and today I feel shocking. I feel sick, have had a headache all day, I'm really tired (probably because I could not get to sleep last night!) and I feel really low. This is probably why I think it's bad!
  • Nick LNick L ✭✭✭
    I cant stand red bull - and a friend of mine had a seizure as a result (it is likely) due to drinking the stuff on a stag night out - he doesnt drink any tea of coffee normally so has zero tolerence for caffeine.

    I try to cut out or cut down on tea and coffee before a 'big' race...but have heard of people taking caffeine with asprin to give them a boost prior to races.
  • Yeah, that's what I've heard people do.

    Did your friend mix it with alcohol when he had a seizure? Was he OK?
  • Nick LNick L ✭✭✭
    Yes he did mix it...which prob didnt help things, but as he isnt accustomed to it that wouldnt have helped either!

    He spent the night in hospital, and has had lots of brain scans and whatnot...and since has been suffering a bit with panic attacks as he fears it could happen again. IT does seem to have shaken him up a fair bit, but I dont see him often, so cant really judge.

    My personal opinion would be avoid things like redbull & proplus - but if you want the caffeine fix/rush take a more natural form like 'proper' coffee rather than a synthetic type. Thing is if it works for you though...then fair enough!
  • I am Little Lizard and I am a coffee-aholic.

    I love the stuff and could not kick-start myself in the morning without it, gets me going a treat before a run or the gym. During a marathon I have a cuppa a couple of hours before then every hour into the race I take lemsip max capsules which contain caffeine along with paracetamol which seems to keep the cramps away.

    Filter coffee is better than the powdered stuff as it contains more caffeine.

    I limit myself to 3 big mugs a day, but if I had my own way, I'd slurp twice that amount. I also make sure I hydrate properly. Sorry, but I exercise loads, hydrate well and eat an extremely healthy diet full of fruit/veg/fibre/chicken/fish etc, don't smoke and drink once to twice a month, so deserve a little vice somewhere!
  • You've made a very good point there, Lizard. I too am very healthy, eating plenty of the good stuff all the time, loads of veg and fruit, plus loads of water - so you're right, surely having that caffeine is allowed :)
  • Too right sr, glad someone else thinks the same way :-)
  • ps, if you want to feel a little less guilty, try the Douwe Egberts skinny lattes. You can get packs of them from Tesco. They are low in fat, contain less caffeine than filter and also contain fibre! 3g a cup, or for me, 6g for a big mug!
  • Having said that, I had a bottle of lucozade before my run this morning. And now I feel awful. Got a bad headache and feel really nauseous. So annoying!
  • Yeuch, sugar crash, not good. Stick to our good friend caffeine!

  • Nothing quite like a run on a cup of Earl Grey, Carruthers.

    I have ingested more serious caffeine (strong black coffee or red bull) before weight training and found it delayed fatigue. Down side was I was still awake at 2 am..
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