Fitness magazines often contain a variety of supplement ads, but some may not cater to endurance athletes. It's important to note that not all supplements are solely focused on building muscle, despite the appearance of the models in the advertisements.
Endurance athletes engage in prolonged activity for several hours, such as running up to 50-60 miles per week, doing 10 30+ motos, biking over 200 miles per week, or swimming hundreds of laps. They need to pay close attention to their diet and supplementation due to the high volume of training and a few resistance-training sessions per week.
Endurance training requires a significant amount of physical, mental, and energy resources from athletes. Additionally, the time necessary to consume nutrient-rich foods to replenish energy can add to an already demanding schedule.
Endurance training places significant physical, mental, and energy-related demands on athletes' bodies.
The right supplement stack can improve prep time, performance, and recovery for endurance athletes. Consider these seven supplements.
Electrolyte powder, such as Hydro Power's Endurance Fuel, can be added to water in order to facilitate faster and more effective hydration during endurance activities, such as marathon running.
Electrolyte supplements and powders typically consist of a ratio of sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium and other electrolytes. These may also have carbohydrates, proteins, and additional caloric content to improve athletic performance and aid recovery.
To maximize performance, it is recommended to consume electrolyte powder before engaging in intense physical activity. Additionally, if you are running a fever, vomiting, have diarrhea, or are sweat excessively, drinking electrolyte powder can be beneficial.
Athletes sweat out from 1g-3g of electrolytes per hour and that's why it is so crucial to replenish them to be at peak performance.
Carbohydrates are the ideal vigor origin for cycling used by our body. We can keep (in the form of glycogen located in our liver and muscles) enough energy for about 90 minutes of exertion at a go. Anything longer necessitates securing supplementary carbohydrates consistently to prevent the loathed cycling exhaustion. It's almost as agonizing as hitting an actual wall, so it's something we do not advise.
Studies have shown that multiple carbohydrates provide better performance boosts than a drink with one single carbohydrate, as well as improved hydration and less stomach discomfort. Thus, new recommendations incorporate this discovery, noting that there are various carbohydrate needs depending on the type of exercise and the athlete's ability.
For rides that are especially intense, it is recommended to take in 60-80g of carbohydrates per hour. Some cyclists even consume 90g if they mix glucose and fructose together.
If you want to stay energized while exercising, Hydro Power's Endurance Fuel is the way to go. It gives your body important carbohydrates like glucose and fructose so you can keep going. They provide carbs in a convenient and easy-to-open packet, perfect for when you're on the go.
Creatine is usually associated with strength, speed, and power. It's a popular supplement for improving muscular strength and size, with many studies supporting its effectiveness. However, some believe that creatine has no place in endurance exercise supplementation. We disagree.
Creatine supplementation can provide indirect benefits to athletes such as runners, cyclists, and triathlon participants, beyond the direct effects of increased phosphocreatine stores, rapid ATP production, and improved anaerobic performance.
Interval workouts at lactate threshold, speed work, and hill training are commonly used techniques to improve running efficiency and performance times. Quality sessions of these techniques can lead to faster finishing times.
Studies have demonstrated that taking creatine can reduce recovery time and boost power output during repeated intervals, as well as improve speed, power, and running economy during training sessions. These benefits may lead to improved performance on race day.
The recommended daily dose for creatine supplementation is 3-5 grams, with no need for a loading phase. It should be noted that the initial weight gain caused by increased body water may affect performance.
Endurance athletes have historically utilized caffeine to enhance performance. Its capacity to offer an immediate energy boost during early morning training sessions, coupled with its potential to decrease the sensation of exertion and help prevent exhaustion, can make lengthier runs more manageable.
Several studies have shown that caffeine consumption can provide benefits for endurance performance, such as improvements in cycling and cross-country skiing performance, 8-kilometer run times, and faster time trials. Additionally, caffeine may increase fat oxidation, potentially aiding in weight management.
Studies suggest that taking caffeine approximately one hour before a race can enhance performance, without causing water-electrolyte imbalances or reducing exercise-heat tolerance.
The recommended dose is 1.3-2.7 milligrams per pound of body weight (200-400 milligrams for a 150-pound individual) to be taken 60 minutes before exercising.
Research has demonstrated that beta-alanine supplementation can enhance performance and reduce fatigue during high-intensity activity. However, it remains unclear if this is applicable to endurance athletes since they may also engage in high-intensity training.
Beta-alanine supplementation has been shown to have positive effects on endurance performance, including cycling and rowing times, as well as aspects of training such as tempo runs, race pace, and lifting to improve running economy, according to several studies.
Intense training sessions can accumulate hydrogen ions in the body. These ions can lower pH and cause fatigue. Beta-alanine is an amino acid derivative that can increase the body's ability to buffer hydrogen ions. This can delay fatigue, improve exercise performance, training volume, and reduce perceptions of fatigue. Studies have shown the potential benefits of beta-alanine.
The recommended daily dosage is 3-6 grams, taken in 800 milligram increments throughout the day in order to alleviate the symptoms of paresthesia, a temporary tingling or numbness similar to the sensation of a limb falling asleep.
Sodium is an important electrolyte that can carry an electrical charge when dissolved in bodily fluids such as blood. Electrolytes are required by the body in large amounts. (For more info about electrolytes, see Overview of Electrolytes.)
The majority of sodium in our bodies is situated in the blood and fluids around cells. It helps to regulate our body's fluids, as well as influencing muscle and nerve activities.
Research has demonstrated that sodium can increase aerobic capacity and endurance by improving the delivery of oxygen to the muscles via red blood cells. Furthermore, studies have shown that maximal oxygen uptake and ventilatory threshold can be improved through the use of sodium.
Branched-Chain Amino Acids, also known as BCAAs.
BCAA supplements can be useful during long runs or bike rides to prevent central fatigue caused by free tryptophan crossing the BBB. Tryptophan can release neurotransmitters like serotonin, impacting arousal, mood, and fatigue.
BCAAs and tryptophan compete for the same protein carrier, thus increasing BCAA concentrations can decrease tryptophan crossing the BBB, which may delay fatigue. Additionally, the metabolism of BCAAs has been found to decrease lactate production, potentially increasing endurance exercise capacity.
Research has shown that BCAAs may have the ability to decrease breakdown of protein in skeletal muscles and improve recovery and immune response following exercise (sources 21 and 22).
The recommended dose for consumption before or during exercise is 3-6 grams. Studies have found that a ratio of 2:1:1 leucine:isoleucine:valine is the most effective.
Endurance athletes require protein for muscle repair, construction, and maintenance, regardless of their dietary preferences such as gluten-free, low-carb, low-fat, paleo, or other trends. Though carbohydrates are often prioritized, protein remains essential.
During prolonged exercise, the body utilizes protein as an energy source, highlighting the significance of consuming enough protein to prevent muscle tissue loss.
Research suggests that consuming protein supplements with carbohydrates may lead to improved rates of protein and glycogen synthesis.
The recommended daily protein intake is 0.5-0.7 grams per pound of body weight, and it may be beneficial to increase it to 0.9 grams per pound during intense training for maintenance and repair of lean body mass.
Glutamine is an amino acid that is naturally present in the body. However, intense physical activity can deplete glutamine stores faster than they can be replenished, leading to muscle breakdown and a weakened immune system. To prevent this, some people choose to supplement with glutamine.
Research has indicated that glutamine supplementation can promote recovery and improve immune function following extensive exercise. A study published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology surveyed over 200 athletes and found that 81% of those supplementing with glutamine reported no infections after intensive training, compared with 49% in the placebo group. This study suggests that glutamine supplementation may potentially decrease the risk of infections after prolonged exercise, allowing for improved training and recovery.
The recommended daily intake is 20 grams.
As an endurance athlete, you know that peak performance requires top-quality nutrition and supplements. That's why I'm excited to announce the launch of Hydro Power's newest flavor - fruit punch. This endurance supplement is designed to help you push past your limits and achieve your goals with its delicious and refreshing taste.
To celebrate the launch of our fruit punch flavor, we're giving away three tubs of our product to three lucky winners on April 28th at 9:45am. This is your chance to be one of the first to try Hydro Power's newest flavor and experience its benefits for yourself. Enter Here
But that's not all - we're also holding a giveaway for designers! If you have a talent for graphic design, we want to see your Hydro Power-themed creations. The top three designs will receive three tubs of our product, and the first place winner will even get free merch featuring their winning design. You can either enter the giveaway from the paragraph above or here.
At Hydro Power, we're committed to helping endurance athletes achieve their best performance, and we believe that our supplements are a key part of that equation. So whether you're gearing up for a big race or just looking to push yourself to the next level, we've got you covered. Don't miss out on this opportunity to try our newest flavor and see what Hydro Power can do for you.
Do you have any questions about our giveaway or our product? Let us know - we're always here to help.
- The study conducted by Cottrell, Coast, and Herb in 2002 found that recovery interval had an impact on multiple-bout sprint cycling performance after acute creatine supplementation. The results were published in The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, volume 16, issue 1, pages 109-116.
- The article titled "Oral Creatine Supplementation's Decrease of Blood Lactate During Exhaustive, Incremental Cycling" was authored by Oliver, J.M., Joubert, D.P., Martin, S.E., and Crouse, S.F. in 2013 and published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism.
- Desbrow et al. (2012) conducted a study examining the impact of varying caffeine doses on endurance cycling time trial performance and published their findings in the Journal of Sports Sciences.
- The study conducted by Glaister, Pattison, Muniz-Pumares, Patterson, and Foley in 2015 examined the effects of dietary nitrate, caffeine, and their combination on the performance of a 20-km cycling time trial. The findings were published in The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research.
- Bridge and Jones (2006) conducted a study on the impact of caffeine intake on 8 km running performance in a real-life setting, which was published in the Journal of Sports Sciences.
- The study conducted by Stadheim et al. (2013) found that caffeine intake improved performance in a cross-country double-poling time trial exercise, as reported in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.
- The article "Caffeine, fluid-electrolyte balance, temperature regulation, and exercise-heat tolerance" by Armstrong, Casa, Maresh, and Ganio was published in the Exercise and Sport Sciences Reviews journal in 2007.
- The study conducted by Van Thienen et al. (2009) found that b-alanine supplementation can enhance sprint performance in endurance cycling. The research was published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, volume 41, issue 4, pages 898-903.
- The study conducted by Baguet et al. (2010) highlights the significant impact of muscle carnosine on rowing performance, as published in the Journal of Applied Physiology.
- The study conducted by Jordan, T., Lukaszuk, J., Misic, M., & Umoren, J. in 2010 examined the effect of beta-alanine supplementation on the onset of blood lactate accumulation during treadmill running. The study utilized a pre/post 2 treatment experimental design and was published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, volume 7, issue 1, page 20.
- The study conducted by Harris et. Al (2006) investigated the absorption of orally administered β-alanine and its impact on muscle carnosine synthesis in the human vastus lateralis.
- The study conducted by Howe et al. (2013) investigated the impact of Beta-Alanine supplementation on isokinetic force and cycling performance in highly trained cyclists, and was published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism.
- The study conducted by Folland, Stern, and Brickley in 2008 found that trained cyclists who underwent sodium phosphate loading experienced improved performance in laboratory cycling time-trials. The study was published in the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, and involved a sample of 11 participants.
- The article titled "Effects of Phosphate Loading on Metabolic and Myocardial Responses to Maximal and Endurance Exercise" was authored by Kreider, R. B., Miller, G. W., Schenck, D., Cortes, C. W., Miriel, V., Somma, C. T., ... & Hill, D. in 1992 and published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition.
- The study titled "The influence of sodium phosphate supplementation on VO2max, serum 2, 3-diphosphoglycerate level and heart rate in off-road cyclists" was conducted by Czuba, M., Zaj?c, A., Poprzecki, S., & Cholewa, J. in 2008 and published in the Journal of Human Kinetics.
- A study published in the Journal of Sports Science & Medicine (2009) investigated the effects of sodium phosphate loading on aerobic power and capacity in off-road cyclists.
- The study conducted by Kreider et al. (1990) examined the impact of phosphate loading on various aspects of exercise performance, including oxygen uptake, ventilatory anaerobic threshold, and running performance. The findings were published in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise.
- A study published in The Journal of Nutrition, by Blomstrand (2006), suggests that branched-chain amino acids may reduce central fatigue.
- A study conducted by Matsumoto et al. in 2009 demonstrates that branched-chain amino acid supplementation increases the lactate threshold during incremental exercise tests for individuals with a high level of training.
- This journal article examines the effects of branched-chain amino acids supplementation on exercise capacity and lipid oxidation following muscle glycogen depletion. Additionally, the results of this study were published in The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness in 2011.
- The study by Matsumoto et al. (2007) found that supplementing with branched-chain amino acids and arginine can reduce skeletal muscle proteolysis in young individuals during moderate exercise.
- A study published in The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, conducted by Negro et al. (involving physical activity of athletes) found that brached-chain amino acid supplementation did not improve athletic performance but did influence muscle recovery and the immune system.
- Phillips and Van Loon wrote an article in the Journal of Sports Sciences in 2011 about the role of dietary protein in athletic performance, covering everything from minimum requirements to optimal adaptation.
- The article titled "Does glutamine have a role in reducing infections in athletes?" by Castell, L.M., Newsholme, E.A., and Poortmans, J.R. was published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology in 1996.