Multisport Magazine October 2018 | Page 33

almost anything you can throw at it.” running for extensively prolonged periods of time. For example, d in the multisport world, supporting large if he skips his morning coffee, or those later in the day, the lack Kokoda Challenge, parkrun Australia and of caffeine leaves his normally caffeinated body feeling lethargic . They were also proud to be the official and stagnant. Utilising a caffeinated gel during these lower o the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth periods makes a lot of sense, albeit carefully ensuring that enough 0 defibrillators for use at official venues energy is also replaced to combat its stimulating effects. This is imperative to avoid crashing and burning later. of our involvement with local community e message out regarding the importance CAFFEINE AND “So WOMEN sible AEDs onsite,” Scott continues. far Fascinatingly, studies are e had two successful resuscitations due to now coming to light about the role of caffeine on a woman’s body, nd access to an onsite defibrillator, which is and how the effect varies depending her hormonal status. hey are incidents on that could so easily end For example, information shows that the metabolism of caffeine during the first two weeks of a woman’s cycle to is sink similar men, but then in the second two weeks ssage we really want in is to to that not of wait women show higher peak ou act,” Scott concludes. “Be proactive, not levels following ingestion, meaning that the caffeine will stay in or her body for longer. This is also true r a death to happen in your workplace for many women certain forms of birth control. I would y purchase a defibrillator. We want using to stop recommend that if you are a woman and are sensitive to caffeine, ning in the first place.” begin to notice and of document its effects on your body at rillators, FAAE also provide a range different times of your menstrual cycle. You may observe that outh East QLD and Northern NSW including your low sensitivity this stimulant may go up and down with the ed resuscitation and voltage to rescue. changes in your hormonal at their Varsity Lakes and Coomera locations levels, thus requiring you to adapt your during ailable!) and can approach be booked online exercise. at CAFFEINE AND STRESS Some athletes are highly susceptible to pre-race exercise stress or anxiety. For these athletes, I would strongly recommend steering clear of caffeine prior-to, or in the early phases of a race as it has the potential to enhance the cortisol stress response. Too much stress too early on can lead to burning more calories than desired, leading to a potential deficit later in the event. CAFFEINE FOR PAIN Interestingly, one of the greatest benefits of caffeine during exercise is that is becomes a potent masker of pain. That is, during exercise, it can have an effect of similar proportions to that of taking two Panadol tablets. There have certainly been occasions when I have had to tap into this during the depths of a long, difficult ultra-distance run. For example, on one such adventure I had a sudden, sharp onset of ITB syndrome with symptoms of jabbing pain in the front of my patellar. No amount of hobbling helped and deep down I knew that this compensation would only make the problem worse. Within 10 minutes of consuming a caffeinated gel, I had not just climbed out of this hobbling hole, but the pain had completely disappeared! I believe that this was also due to my heightened ability to improve my motor patterning, once again tapping into the strength of my gluteal muscles that had become lazy and non-responsive due to mental and physical fatigue. Amazingly, I experienced no more knee pain for the remaining six hours of this long mission. In summary, caffeine certainly does have a role during exercise. It can help us to feel alert, agile and responsive to the demands of the challenges we have set ourselves, and not to forget its effects on pain. However, it is imperative to remember that it is a stimulant. For these reasons, I would urge all athletes to develop insight into how it affects them on an individual level, and also to consider keeping it up your sleeve as a trump card for later in the race. This will help you to experience that sensation of finishing with fire, whilst also helping to prevent digging energy deficits due to overexertion too early in an event. For all distance trail runners who want to Perform Wilder HANNY ALLSTON MULTISPORT MAGAZINE | 33