Are you a runner or an athlete? Do you need supplements for running faster? We listed the most bangs for your buck supplements that athletes should consider using. While I do mention some brands, I don’t like getting too narrow because some options here in the U.S. are not available in other countries.
Some readers may be disappointed that the list is relatively short the reason is that more supplements don’t work and some are so ineffective that they are a waste of money. In addition to the list, I cover products to avoid and hint at the games companies still play with coaches and athletes.
It is a pure supplement for running faster list: meaning, if it’s not a pill or powder, I consider it a food product or a functional beverage. Also, many isolated food products like dried animal proteins and other products like gels and sport confectionaries are just calorie candies for ultra-endurance athletes who have a sugar luxury that many fitness and run and power runners don’t have.
We need to do more research on muscle cramps and either accept beta-alanine as effective or something that may work for some athletes. Also, the tingling sensation that some athletes manage is similar to the indigestion problems that sodium bicarbonate users experience.
Finally, some of the weaker supplements likely just mask a lack of commitment to sleep and dietary practices so don’t worry about missing out on the cutting-edge products. For example, take a look at bovine colostrum, a product that continues to create confusion like BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids) did for years.
Those two products are protein options that may show up in the research, but unless you consider the controls (nothing or water), they are not going to do much unless you are underrating.
For years, I was a huge fan of BCAAs as an alternative to sports drinks and thought they had a benefit for central fatigue, but the reality was that early research on most supplements for running faster is promising and makes it easy for coaches and athletes to want them to work. Nearly jaded, it is very hard for me to support most supplements as they never seem to hold up to the hype that comes with them.
I mostly include nutrients that are possible to get from eating well, but not in realistic amounts. For example, you would have to eat pounds of mushrooms to get the large dose of vitamin D you need, and eating enough fish or another food source high in omega-3s is just not something most athletes can stick to. If athletes don’t like the taste, even the dedicated ones will give up after a few weeks.
My most-loved supplement is calciferol, as I even have seen it virtually save athletes within the NFL World Health Organization perpetually struggled with muscle pulls and similar. While any training program can protect against injuries to hamstrings and ACLs, not taking vitamin D is like skipping leg day.
The research on contact and non-contact injuries and vitamin D are too strong to ignore, and major studies were done by the Giants, Steelers, and NFL Combine are enough for anyone in sport to mention calciferol may be a game-changer.
I prefer to think about vitamin D as a muscle hormone instead of bone support supplements for running faster. While coaches in most collision sports like rugby football and football square measure upset concerning fractures, for some reason muscle performance excites athletes far more than bone health.
Athletes with darker pigment levels need to take more vitamin D on average, especially if they live in northern climates and spend most of their time indoors. Trying to get enough sun as an athlete is futile since the world is now an indoor world and modern competition schedules force athletes to become athletic vampires.
Sleeping during the day because of night games and travel robs the modern professional athlete of leisure time in the sun, and taking a vitamin D supplement is now mandatory for anyone I work with.
Last, but not least, is the most talked-about supplement in the last year, for good reason. Gelatin has promised with joint repair, and most of the sports medicine and sports performance market is rushing to it as a savior for tendon injuries.
Keith Barr, an expert on molecular science, has been promoting gelatin recently and some skepticism exists as to how much it can really do for athletes. I am a little cautious, as tendons are more about total nutrients than gelatin and vitamin C.
The study performed was also specific on nutrient timing and genetics, so perhaps we shouldn’t be that hard on those who fought against just eating healthy. What is great about gelatin is that you can add juices to it and, while most of the nutrients are lost in the mix, some athletes have found that tart cherry and other healthy juices make great-tasting desserts.
To me, gelatin is a low-calorie option that seems to have enough science behind it to try, but I wouldn’t hedge all my bets just yet. Again, the supplements for running faster are little early in my opinion, and we need more studies to be really sure it does the trick.
Blood testing for magnesium won’t be a clear indication of adequate levels of magnesium because the body can recycle the bioactive element from the bones. Maintaining serum magnesium, even RBC magnesium, is not evidence to say that an athlete’s diet is rich in that nutrient.
A membrane takes a look at for metallic element exists, but the burden of testing that, as well as the research on magnesium being part of so many functions of the body, means supplementing makes the most sense.
Most athletes assume metal is a lot of necessary, but to me, magnesium seems to be more important due to the influence it has on hormones and muscle performance. Some forms of magnesium may create a little problem with loose stools, so taking it twice a day in smaller doses is a good step.
Most athletes will see ZMA available and simply take that instead of a pure magnesium option, and if that is more accessible because of NSF accreditation.
Every female endurance athlete should take iron supplements for running faster at least as an insurance policy, and even if you supplement, variables like gut health and inflammation may be a wild card. Male speed and power athletes, particularly in field team sports like football, ought to take into account taking iron as a result of its straightforward to possess a diet not fully fill the requirement for iron, even one with red meat.
Anemia is common with all athletes, and low iron can ruin an athlete’s season or even increase their risk of injury because it magnifies fatigue. Iron supplements don’t seem to be exciting, but if you are low on iron, your ability to transport oxygen is impaired.
One suggestion I have is to take iron with a banana and vitamin-C-rich drink. I tend to have athletes drink watermelon juice with their iron pills because one serving is enough to help with absorption and refreshing enough that they want to drink it.
It isn’t expensive to blood test ferritin levels and tracks hemoglobin levels, and if you don’t do it as (or for) an endurance athlete, you are playing Russian roulette.
Fish oils and other sources of omega-3s seemed to have lost momentum 10 years ago, and then the company Brain Armor and the research on concussions really revitalized interest. Omega-3s were something I felt was important, but the research was very light on evidence.
Most nutritionists agree on the value of omega-3s as safe and useful, but the supplement only became fast-tracked to something more than just a heart-healthy option for seniors after the NFL started to have some controversy.
Now algae supplements are growing in popularity, due to the fact they have no aftertaste and don’t need to deal with fish allergies. Still, the fish oil industry isn’t going anywhere, and there is growth in sustainable and more earth-friendly options.
Use of the Omega Index, a blood test to evaluate consumption or compliance of omega-3s, is also growing with nutritionists wanting to ensure athletes are, in fact, taking their supplements for running faster. There would different rising edges with omega-3 fatty acid analysis, like time interval and vision, and down the road, we are going to see what quantity impact there are in the sport.
The biggest mystery to me in sport is why caffeine seems to be forgotten all the time. Perhaps because caffeine is so cheap and readily available, it doesn’t get the love that creatine and other supplements do.
Also, caffeine is not just a great stimulant like creatine below; it should be considered a brain nutrient. Coffee is technically not a supplement, but due to its strong ergogenic benefits, I consider it part of supplements for running the faster program as it’s so powerful. While concussions are obvious worries with athletes, they should think about other general brain health risks, such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.
Coffee also creates a dilemma for those wanting a boost when stacking supplements, as the use of a beetroot product is negated when consumed with caffeine. Therefore, those using beetroot products with caffeine are wasting their money.
Most athletes will not give up their morning cup of joe, and the taste of beetroot juice isn’t for everyone. While I agreed with the Martin Buchheit summary on beetroot supplementation, some athletes do respond better to N02 supplements while others don’t respond at all. I prefer vasodilators for relaxation benefits after heavy training as they match parasympathetic activities rather than acting as boosting agents.
While most athletes can get enough protein from whole food sources, powders are convenient. They’re also great for larger athletes who simply have a harder time-consuming protein. Additionally, a good protein powder, even a pricey option, is still inexpensive compared to fresh meat sources.
Whey protein, for example, has plenty of other health benefits besides repair, so protein powders don’t just build muscle they build bodies. The portability of protein powders also makes them indispensable for athletes with rough schedules or recreational athletes who are pressed for time.
The only reason I own blenders is to mix proteins, as powder extracts are great for those who need more calories from trying to grow in size and practice long hours. A modern football player in college may train twice a day, and fueling those workouts can be a challenge. Other protein powders exist, but if you have a shake two to three times a week during peak periods, that should not create food allergies.
Creatine was all the rage, and then over time, like most tried-and-true supplements, it was replaced in this case, by newer options such as tart cherry juice. Creatine is safe, effective, and very inexpensive, on average. Some speed and power athletes feel that water weight is a problem, and I agree.
We use creatine during early training periods and get off it during the late spring and early summer. We have never had a cramping issue with creatine and, in fact, the research is supportive that it may actually reduce cramps.
While creatine may be a better supplement for running faster for cramping (it still needs research), I find that fatigue is more of a variable than nutrition with cramping. Don’t read amino acid as simply a muscle enhancer; instead, see it as a body nutrient with repeated power benefits.
It will never be a maximal strength product, but it adds a few extra gallons to the gas tank. Still, doing more work and a higher quality of work will add up at the end of a season, so creatine is one of these staples that any speed and power athletes ought to think about, particularly if they require to feature muscle mass.
Carbohydrates are your muscles primary energy source. If you’re training at high intensity your body needs a supply of this quick release fuel to perform. This is especially true if the exercise you’re doing is anaerobic.
If you deplete your tank of stored carbs (glycogen) during your workout, you’ll find yourself hitting “the wall”. A depleted supply of stored carbohydrates means increased fatigue, decreased focus, power, and strength.
It doesn’t matter if your goal is to gain muscle mass or lose body fat – this is all about increasing performance and seeing better progress in the long-term as a result.
If you decide to try re-fueling during your workouts (and you should), the best way of doing this while out on a run is dissolvable liquid carbohydrates that you can carry and drink on the move.
The efficacy of Beta-Alanine as a supplement is backed by major peer-reviewed studied on humans. Beta-Alanine acts to increase your capacity to train harder for longer, boosting muscular strength and power output, increasing muscle mass and improving muscular aerobic and anaerobic endurance.
The amino acid does this by targeting biological processes that prevent us from reaching our full potential during exercise. If there’s a stopper placed to prevent your muscles from reaching maximal overload, you’re not going to reap the maximal benefits of your training.
The way in which Beta-Alanine overcomes this problem is by boosting the concentrations of Carnosine found in the body. Increased Carnosine concentration allow type 2 muscle fibers to soak up more H+ ions, keeping muscles in their optimal pH range.
Post-workout supplements are supplements for running faster. This is because they provide your muscles with the nutrients they need for growth and repair immediately after exercise. Naturally, building muscle is excellent for increasing your strength, power, and speed.
However, if you’re on more of a budget a chocolate milkshake often works just as well. You could even aim to get a meal in immediately after training, though many people struggle to eat much that soon after a tough run.
It’s probably best to play around with your post-run re-fuelling to find your best fit, you’ll know when you’ve got it right.
One of the most important things for runners to take care of our joints. All that impact of footfall can cause some major wear-and-tear, so what can you do to help your knees and hips?
Cod Liver Oil:
Omega-3 is an essential fatty acid that is scientifically proven to be excellent for your joint health. It is also hugely beneficial in supporting your brain and cardiovascular health – which is an asset for runner and non-runner alike.
Fish are a great source of Omega 3s, but most of us are not eating enough salmon and tuna to reap the health benefits. Therefore, extra supplementation of cod liver oil capsules can be incredibly useful.
Chondroitin is often recommended by doctors as a supplement for patients suffering from osteoarthritis. Chondroitin itself can be a bit hit and miss and should be taken alongside glucosamine for the best results.
Glucosamine and Chondroitin supplementation should lead to some improvements in the nondescript pain and stiffness that is experienced by many runners.
Vitamin C and Gelatin:
Supplementation of vitamin C and gelatin acts to increase collagen production. The ability of muscle, tendons, ligaments, and bones to facilitate movement and withstand physical stresses is largely dependent upon the collage-rich extracellular matrix that surrounds them.
Vitamin C is essential to produce collagen. When this micronutrient is taken, alongside gelatin which contains amino acids prevalent in collagen, proven increases in strength and function of muscles and tendons has been seen in lab models.
As damage to the extracellular matrix is common, there is never any harm in acting to increase the production of collagen, reducing repair times.
There are a variety of pre-exercise nitric oxide formulas that claim to promote vasodilation and better muscle pumps during exercise. Most contain the amino acid arginine which is involved in the synthesis of nitric oxide.
Nitric oxide is a substance that is made and released by the cells that line your blood vessels. When released, NO causes a potent dilation of blood vessels, which translates into the increased blood flow.
Some studies have shown higher vas perform when essential amino acid supplementation in folks with impaired tube-shaped structure perform, but positive effects in young healthy athletes are less clear.
High doses are required to impact NO, probably above 3 grams. Other common ingredients claimed to enhance dilatation embody essential amino acid AKG, Arginine Nitrate, Agmatine, L-Citrulline, L-Norvalline, and L-Tyrosine.
Arginine is classified as a non-essential amino acid since our bodies can produce it. But, because it becomes limiting in many circumstances, it’s usually referred to as conditionally dispensable. Arginine is the rate-limiting amino acid in the synthesis of NO. Increasing the bioavailability of No improves the dilation of blood vessels and reduces blood pressure.
Emerging proof suggests exercise potency and performance could profit yet. In one study, healthy men who consumed 6g of arginine reduced the amount of oxygen required (i.e., increased efficiency) to perform the exercise, and increased time to exhaustion by 26% during high-intensity cycling.
Some studies have shown better blood vessel function in people with impaired vascular function after arginine supplementation, but positive effects in young healthy athletes are less clear.
In another study, a combination formula consisting of arginine (7g), HMB (1.5g), glutamine (7g) plus taurine (3g) resulted in striking improvements in body composition.8 Compared to a control group who received a placebo, healthy young men UN agency supplemented with the essential amino acid band formula throughout twelve weeks of serious resistance coaching showed a 10-pound bigger increase in lean body mass.
Raspberry ketones are aromatic compounds that chemically resemble capsaicin, the “hot” substance in red peppers. Studies on capsaicin indicate it promotes thermogenesis in a dose-response manner by increasing epinephrine secretion, indicating it works by enhancing sympathetic nervous system activity.
In humans, several studies have reported that capsaicin acutely increases energy expenditure, reduces food intake, enhances fat oxidation and decreases body fat.3 In animal experiments, raspberry ketones have proven effective in preventing obesity in response to a high-calorie diet.
Raspberry ketones specifically promoted increased norepinephrine-induced fat breakdown, enhanced thermogenesis, and inhibited the absorption of dietary fat. Together these effects contributed to a profound reduction in whole-body fat as well as fat in visceral adipose tissue and the liver.
D-aspartic acid could be a non-essential organic compound that plays a job in energy metabolism and androgenic hormone levels. In one study, healthy men who supplemented with 3g of D-aspartic acid for 12 days showed a gradual increase in testosterone of 16% after 6 days and 42% at 12 days. There was also a 33% increase in luteinizing hormone after 12 days.