Ep. 37 – Dedication to Education

We’ve covered the awesome effects of caffeine numerous times, but have you ever thought about spitting it back out once you’ve taken a sip?

Well, perhaps you might after today’s #D2EW.

But first, a super quick background: Caffeine absorption starts in the mouth after ingestion, more specifically through the receptors in the oral cavity. N.B. this is why caffeine gum kicks in within ~10 minutes instead of the traditional 45-60 mins as seen in capsulated for liquid form.

Under periods of muscular fatigue, muscle glycogen levels usually become lowered and subsequently hinder performance. Therefore, this could potentially be a nice alternative for a quick ‘pick me up’ if consuming carbs isn’t viable or if the time frame doesn’t allow for it.

To test this, Kizzi et al (2016) recruited trained cyclists to caffeine rinse whilst glycogen depleted. On an evening, the participants cycled until complete exhaustion which was followed by a Low carb protein meal. I.e. to ensure that glycogen stores were not replenished overnight.

The following morning, the cyclists jumped back on the stationary test bike to do 5 x 6 second maximal effort sprints with 24 seconds of active recovery. Here’s the cool thing, in between each maximal set, they ingested 25mL fluid containing ~ 80mg of caffeine and rinsed it in their mouth for 10 seconds before spitting. After 5 sets, they ingested and expectorate ~500mg of caffeine (6mg/kg/bw). To test if this actually worked, they repeated the same sprint test without the caffeine rinse….Well, did it?

Now, under periods of glycogen depletion, performance tends to hit the fan. When the cyclists rinsed with caffeine, they experienced a;

1) Reduction in Perceived effort. 2) Maintenance of Peak Power 3) Maintenance of Mean Power.

When compared to placebo (orange squash), they managed to offset the decrements in performance that was seen when caffeine wasn’t rinsed. This is perhaps due to;

1) Caffeine blunting pain so they could push harder. 2) An increased in voluntary muscle activation. 3) Enhanced cognitive control and alertness level. I.e. speed and accuracy.

Interestingly, there’s some evidence to suggest that the sprinting effect only lasts around 5 seconds, but the mental focus gained can last ~10 minutes. So, if you need a very quick ‘pick me up’ when you’re feeling very depleted and tired, this could work very nicely.

I.e. a technical phase of play, a final sprint, the final round in a fight?

BTW, do not do this with coffee…that would be quite the melt.

To be continued, this could be a game changer.

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