How Caffeine Affects Fat Loss, Exercise Performance, and Health

March 1, 2008

Have you ever wondered whether caffeine was bad for you?

I have used caffeine 30 to 60 minutes before my workouts for years and I have never felt any adverse effects. It actually has helped me burn off that last little bit of body fat on several occasions. Although it has worked well for me, I still had no idea whether ingesting caffeine was a good or bad thing.

I decided to do a bit of research on the newest studies and my findings are actually very interesting. If caffeine is taken in moderation, I believe the positives outweigh the negatives.

woman on bed drinking coffee
[Melanie is doing side crunches on the bed while drinking coffee. It is a bummer that she has white sheets!]

Caffeine Right Before Exercising Assists in Fat Loss

I always figured this was the case, especially when consumed in a fasted state.

What caffeine does is increase free flowing fatty acids from your fat stores allowing you to access fat instead of carbs or lean muscle for energy.

If you have a bit of stubborn body fat, a bit of caffeine right before working out can help you isolate it. If you do chose to ingest caffeine before working out, make sure and make the most of your workout. Push hard! Also…drink a bit of water, because caffeine is a slight diuretic and you don’t want to get dehydrated.

Caffeine May Not Be Great if You Want to Get Bigger

This is NOT a problem for me or others who don’t want to add size, but for those who do…you may want to back off on the pre-workout caffeine.

The problem lies in the fact that some studies have shown that caffeine in your system may reduce glucose uptake after working out. When you are trying to get bigger you want to eat a quick digesting protein and carbohydrate source right after working out.

This “fills” the muscles up with nutrients and helps with the repairing process. It also helps build volume in the muscle. This isn’t an issue for those of us who want lean dense muscles. It is more of an issue for those looking to add a substantial amount of mass. So for those trying to add a lot of mass, you may want to limit your caffeine intake.

Pure Caffeine vs Coffee

This is something that I didn’t know and this will be a “golden nugget” for those who like to ingest a bit of caffeine before a workout.

It has been shown that pure caffeine will improve performance in lifting and cardio better than coffee. Pure caffeine will also lead to a greater release of free fatty acids, which will be used as energy in your workout and lead to greater fat loss.

What is funny is that now I look back on it, I got to my leanest level when I took a 200mg caffeine pill before working out. I did this 3 years ago before a beach vacation. I didn’t want “coffee breath” when working out, so I figured a pill and a bunch of water would be a better idea.

I took a Vivarin tablet 30 minutes before each workout and burned almost every little last bit of body fat. Recently, I have been drinking 3 cups of Green Tea before working out…I may switch that up with a 200mg tablet of caffeine for certain times than I want to get extra lean. You guys might want to give it a shot and see if you notice a difference.

Caffeine to Increase Muscle Tone?

If you have been a reader of this site for any length of time, you will know that my big thing is that strong muscle contractions are what cause real muscle tone. Your muscles will display a greater degree of muscle tone, the better your ability to create strong muscle contractions.

You will also become stronger the better your nervous system gets at sending strong signals to your muscles to contract hard. Caffeine stimulates your central nervous system, so it increases the signals sent to the muscles. This causes stronger contractions, which will allow you to lift heavier weights.

This type of strength training is what will create muscle density…compact, efficient, and extremely defined muscles…NOT that puffy and rounded bodybuilder look.

Caffeine May Prevent Alzheimers’ and Parkinson’s Disease

A study of more than 600 men published in the August 2006 European Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that coffee drinkers may be protected from mild memory and thinking problems that come with old age. Another large study, published in 2003 in the Journal of Neurological Sciences, found that tea and coffee drinkers were protected from Parkinson’s.

Another study of more than 8,000 men in the Journal of the American Medical Association by G. Webster Ross and colleagues found that those who drank the most coffee (more than three cups a day) were the least likely to get Parkinson’s.

The evidence for caffeine reducing the likelihood of developing these neurodegenerative diseases is getting stronger with each study.

Some Negatives About Caffeine

It has been shown that caffeine does in fact elevate blood pressure temporarily, but to a much lesser degree with regular coffee drinkers.

In fact, it seems that caffeine’s bad effects diminish greatly with regular use. I’m NOT saying to go crazy and drink 10 cups of coffee per day, but for most people 2-3 cups a day is no big deal and may actually do some good.

People that mainly need to be careful are those people taking certain prescription medications, people with high blood pressure, or people with severe diabetes. Always consult your doctor if you have health problems.

Summary: A realistic intake of 2-3 cups of coffee or 5-6 cups of green tea per day actually has some long term health benefits. On workout days, you may want to take a 200mg caffeine pill to burn a bit more fat during your workout.

It has been shown to be most effective on an empty stomach, so it works well with what I recommend…doing all cardio on an empty stomach to get the best fat burning effects. If caffeine isn’t your thing, then that is great as well. From this point forward, the regular coffee drinkers can proudly drink their coffee “guilt free”. Just don’t overdo it.

One last thing…don’t load up your coffee or tea with sugar and cream…get used to the plain stuff if possible.

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{ 59 comments… read them below or add one }

Oz March 1, 2008 at 8:02 am

Hey Rusty,

Talk about timing. I recently started adding caffeine to my pre-workout, but I was wondering did what you researched mention anything about how many times daily it should be taken?

I workout in the morning for my cardio then in the evening I do my weights. Should I be taking 2 200mg pills then? As of right now I only been doing it in the morning. I think that would be too much right (doing it twice)?

john March 1, 2008 at 8:28 am

I am convinced that all those exotic fat burner pills are just mega doses of caffeine in a pill…that being said I believe that coffee can burn those last few ounces of bodyfat that seem to defy physiology.

AFDerrick March 1, 2008 at 10:31 am

I was taking “weight loss pills” a while back, from a local program called the Envision program. It’s a big deal here I guess. You bought their supplements and it ended up being you took 1 multivitamin, 1 (200mg) caffeine pill, and 2 (1g) Omega 3-6-9 fat pills. They said the fat pills were for muscle tone and apetite suppresion, caffeine for weight loss and energy, and the multivitamin to help absorb everything else. Should I have just taken the caffeine pill to help with the workouts?

Also, something to add, I did a lot of research into this stuff before i started taking these pills (mind you I have quit now) but make sure you stay under 500 – 600 mg of caffeine a day for men, and 400 – 500 for women (I can’t remember the exact number, sorry). Otherwise having too much caffeine in your body can kill you. Just something I read, not sure of its validity.

Mark McCullagh March 1, 2008 at 1:31 pm

I also have a coffee before a workout and have done so for years.

I have 2-3 cups per day and I really enjoy my coffee breaks and feel no adverse effects.

As a matter of fact, I just came in from having a coffee and I feel a little charged up. Time to write a post!

Helder March 1, 2008 at 2:38 pm

Here in portugal we’re big consumers of coffee, and yes you’re right 2/3 coffees a day if you don’t have high pressure problems is a very good thing, our coffee is like the italian, that very small cup with a very strong coffee, the expresso. Now based on medical opinions and some recent studies this time i’ll have to disagree with you on a few things, first of all caffeine or coffee on an empty stomach is a real bomb, it’s your fast way to get an ulcer with all the health problems related to it. The other thing i disagree is the quantity of caffeine you prescribe, those numbers are considered to be very dangerous, i would advise no more than 100 mg a day and if possible not all at once. More than that you’re asking for heart problems, high pressure and sleeping disorders. I know a few guys who use to take caffeine pills before the workouts and after a short period of time they had to stop, because their heart’s rhythm was having serial disorders. Another thing is that when you take those high amounts of caffeine you are in a much higher risk of having a heart attack, if you add that to a cardio training the risk rises even more. I know many people take and nothing has happened yet, but i strongly advice not to take caffeine pills, the risk is high. Drink coffee 2/3 cups a day if you have no issues and then yes it will be good for your health, but don’t take on an empty stomach, and don’t take it before a cardio workout. I trully believe you’ll be risking your Lives. It’s better to take a bit more time to lose those last pounds of fat than to lose Life. I know your intention in this post was the best Rusty, so don’t get me wrong, but i really believe in this advice i’m giving here, based on medical advice, on some studies i’ve read and in the bad experience of a few guys i know.

Jon March 1, 2008 at 3:25 pm

Rusty, thank you so much for this post! I had no idea about any of this! 😀

Maria March 1, 2008 at 5:27 pm


What is your usual post-workout meal then, if not “a quick-digesting protein and carbohydrate source”? I always thought it was a must for those who train with weights, but I’m willing to reconsider this, as I don’t want to get bigger either. Your advice would be much appreciated!

Lorna March 1, 2008 at 7:08 pm

Hey Rusty,

This is a great read for me as I LOVE coffee (oh yeah, and give Seattle my thanks for making STARBUCKS! haha). Drinking it always gives me that rush which makes me work out harder and longer.


admin March 1, 2008 at 8:21 pm


In the morning would be the best time. No need to take them in the evening.


Yeah…they used to be Caffeine and Ephedera…now they are just caffeine for the most part.


I do my best posting after a few cups of green tea. It makes my mind work better! Keep posting like crazy buddy (Mark is part of a mastermind group I belong to…visit his blog by clicking on his name).


I love blogs because of the ability to discuss topics. Here is what I found in my research…

An average cup of espresso is around 100mg of caffeine as is a cup of coffee. Almost all of the research I came up with said that 300-400 mg per day were fine for the majority of people. That is equivalent to 2-3 cups of coffee per day.

I do like it that you brought up the point about consuming it on an empty stomach. It hasn’t ever given me any problems, but that doesn’t mean it is that way for everyone. Great counterpoint Helder…I hope people will do some deeper research if they have questions in their mind. Just type in “caffeine and exercise” in Google and you will find lots of great info.


You are welcome! I wanted to thank you as well for sending a lot of traffic my way. Your “livejournal” site must get a lot of visitors, because I have seen a steady source of visitors from your site for close to 5 or 6 months. I appreciate it!


Your HGH release is a bit higher if you don’t eat anything for an hour after doing interval training. If your main goal is to get lean, don’t eat anything for an hour after working out. If mass is your goal, then make sure and drink a protein shake or something like that as soon as you get home. I normally workout and then drink a bunch of water for an hour followed by a normal meal. There are times when I do drink a protein shake right after, but that is only if I feel like I had a spectacular lifting session.


I guess my hometown of Seattle did get the ball rolling in the U.S as far as Espresso is concerned. You can thank us for making coffee that costs as much as a meal 🙂 I actually have a Starbucks in my apartment building…I don’t even have to throw on shoes if I want the stuff!


alan k March 1, 2008 at 8:36 pm

5-6 cups of Green Tea per day? That is awfully foolish advice Rusty.
That much caffeine will place undue stress on the adrenals. Believe me, I’ve done it.

Sandy March 2, 2008 at 12:24 am


Interesting information on caffeine. Ive been taking Curvelle pills before my workout. They are all natural (green tea, elderberry). I have so much more energy when I take them before workouts. I think its from the caffeine in the green tea!!!

Helder March 2, 2008 at 9:42 am

Hi Rusty i’ve written to a coffee producer, one of the most consumed here in Portugal and they were really nice and answered me quickly. I was wrong about the quantity of caffeine in an expresso, it’s between 87 to 98 mg in each cup. I thought it was a lot less quantity, 25% of that or so, that´s what i had read before (i guess not all sources are reliable lol).

Therefore healthy people can drink 3/4 coffees a day with no problem, if you have high pressure or other heart problems you should check your doctor.

About the empty stomach and getting an ulcer is all about the stimulating effect caffeine has on your nervous system, the caffeine intake will increase your gastric acid production and if you have no food in your stomach, that extra acid will hurt your stomach.

I don’t know if those guys i’ve told about, took too many caffeine pills for too long, or if it was a bad brand, but i think the coffee is more safe in general, i might be conditioned by seeing those bad experiences with caffeine pills, but those guys really had problems.

I guess i love to drink coffeee lol, and yes blogs are great to change ideas and discuss topics, we always keep learning.

Jeff March 2, 2008 at 1:34 pm

Plain black coffee has helped my workouts. I don’t know if the fat loss is a result of more intense workouts or the greater release of fatty acids etc., but coffee does appear to work. I like to eat an apple and drink a cup of black coffee in the morn or an hour BF a work-just little extra bit of energy. It’s a strange combo, but it’s low calorie, all natural, and high energy-plus the apple helps kill the coffee breath! BTW I’m sure green tea blows coffee away in terms of health benefits and would prefer to drink it. I’m just too lazy-I mean busy to make it, bottle it up and carry it to work with me. Does anyone know of a more convenient way to get/make green tea, I certainly don’t won’t the sugary stuff in the bottle and don’t trust the diet version either.

admin March 2, 2008 at 3:56 pm


Green Tea has around 30mg of caffeine per cup. So 5-6 cups throughout the day is 150-180mg. About the equivalent to 1.5 to 2 cups of coffee. We have a large population of Asian people in the Seattle area, they drink a bit more than this and are quite possibly some of the healthiest people you have ever seen. I know it isn’t just due to green tea, but certainly it plays a role. I guess I don’t believe it is “foolish” as you say, but you are entitled to your opinion.


I’m not a huge fan for the long-term use of caffeine pills. Something just doesn’t seem “right” about it. I will in the future probably just take them 2-3 weeks before a vacation or when I want to get extra lean for a special event, etc. That is great you contacted a coffee producer…I love the internet!


Do you have a microwave at your work or water bottle with the “hot” and “cold” spouts. I suggest just buying a box of green tea bags and make the tea as you need it.

Good comments guys,


Remon March 2, 2008 at 4:04 pm

Hey Rusty,

I starting drinking green tea about one and a half weeks ago. I hope it helps in burning a bit more fat! 🙂 What do you use as a sweetener in your tea (if any)? I don’t quite like the grassy flavour so I use artificial sweeteners in my tea because they contain zero calories.

What is your opinion about artificial sweeteners? I’ve read a while ago that they can actually cause weight gain because your body still tries to treat it as normal sugar and can thereby become less effective at breaking down normal sugars…


admin March 2, 2008 at 5:01 pm


I have heard from several sources that the study you are referring to is flawed. In the past I Have been able to get absolutely ripped while consuming a few cans of diet coke per day. I have since backed off on the diet coke, because I’m trying to eat and drink more natural foods.

If I was in your position, get in the habit of drinking green tea with artificial sweeteners first, but eventually try to get used to it in its natural state.

Have a great one!


Maria March 2, 2008 at 7:12 pm

Rusty, thanks for answering my question! I’m never hungry right after a workout anyway, even drinking those protein shakes is a bit of a struggle, so maybe I’ll ditch them altogether.

Remon, have you tried green tea with natural flavourings, such as lemongrass or jasmine? I find that they make green tea taste so much better by masking that “grassy” flavour. And you could also try white tea, which lacks that grassy aftertaste but has all the benefits of green tea.

Ron March 2, 2008 at 7:45 pm


You could always use honey or agave for sweetening tea.

And after reading a little more about agave (just now), I’d like to try making some whole wheat chocolate chip cookies with it (instead of sugar)!

Brandon March 3, 2008 at 9:42 am

I like to go one step further and add Ephedrine HCL from Primatine tabs and also Aspirin. I dont take more than 2 doses per day and have never had ANY side effects. If you compare the total cost of the ephedrine-caffeine-aspirin stack vs leading thermogenic, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Jules March 3, 2008 at 1:04 pm

Good to know! especially since i drink about half a pot of coffee on an empty stomach before my morning run…
(I consume way too much caffeine, but for some reason when I don’t have it, I have none of the typical coffee-addict symptoms of headache, happily)

Oh and a note about coffee on an empty stomach…often the discomfort people feel if they consume excessive amounts of caffeine is dyspepsia, (an uncomfortable/pain in the stomach and bloating etc) but not an ulcer. Ulcers actually are most commonly caused by a type of bacteria, are helicobacter pylori, that can be treated with antibiotics) and the over use of non-steroidal anti inflammatory drugs (aka aspirin and ibuprofen )
But everyone is different and so some people might find it uncomfortable to drink on an empty stomach..

Remon March 4, 2008 at 3:12 am


Yeah, thats true. I’ve tried sweetening my tea with honey but I needed a ton of honey to even begin noticing some sweetness. That was quite odd, because I needed a lot less to sweeten up my yoghurt.
Also, honey contains calories, and since i’m doing the strict version of the Warrior Diet now, I want to avoid them before my evening meal 🙂

Keep it going everyone! Seems that most of us here are doing great 😀

Remon van der Pol

admin March 4, 2008 at 2:20 pm


The ECA stack is definitely something that works, but there are risks involved. It is tough to find ephedrine…it is a controversial substance as well. It certainly works, but people have to be really careful with this stuff if they decide to use it.


I never have caffeine withdrawals either.


Cory March 6, 2008 at 12:47 pm

Wish I could still use Caffeine, would make all this a little easier I think. But, one of the things I decided I had to give up. I was a Caffaholic, loved coffee in about any form, drank sometimes about 2 pots a day, and drank on average about a 6 pack of Mt. Dew a day. If I took a no doze or something I didnt even notice it. But, I developed severe Migranes, and equalibrium issues and the docs said the caffeine had to go. From what I found out Caffeine is about the worst thing you can take for migranes over time it causes them to get worse and worse. So I went through a few weeks of caffeine withdrawal and here I am Caff free. I will have a cup of coffee once in a while if I go somewhere that doesnt have decaf but other than that its all caff free for me now. Its amazing I couldnt function in the mornings until I had a couple dews or a couple large coffees in me before, but now that Im caff free, I actually wake up better and dont have the morning fogginess. The only reason I wish I could still use it is for the fitness benefits but, I am doing fine without them. Great post again.

admin March 7, 2008 at 12:26 am


You will do fine without caffeine. It just makes things a bit easier. I would miss the occasional morning coffee for sure.


Matt March 7, 2008 at 12:56 am


Thanks for the post! I’ve started experimenting with Vivarin about 1 hr. before working out and so far it’s worked out very well. I’ve noticed an improvement in my energy level(and hopefully the fat burning will follow- I’m trying to work off those last stubborn 10 lbs.) and unlike the ephedra based energy supplements of old, I don’t think 200 mg of caffeine poses any health risks.

admin March 8, 2008 at 3:15 am


You will be fine with a Vivarin before working out. I have found it to be a very effective way to break past a fat burning plateau.


Morgan March 17, 2008 at 1:42 pm

Hi Rusty

Great article…I have actually been wondering about this myself. One of my good friends in a trainer and teacher at my gym and she is in phenomenal shape (she’s a figure competitor). I swear I could break my nail on her ass! Anyway, not the point…but I asked her about drinking a diet energy drink before a workout and she thought it was a great idea. What do you think about that versus a pill? Also, would you recommend No-Doz as a caffeine pill to take before a workout?

Your fellow FitConnect member

admin March 17, 2008 at 10:01 pm


I like to drink an occasional Diet Rockstar before working out, but it gets spendy. Much cheaper to take a Vivarin or No-dose. I need to give Fitconnect a plug again…

For people who haven’t joined…Fitconnect has more down to earth attractive people than any social site I have seen. I know the readers of Fitness Black Book are sexy as hell…or soon will be, so join up already! Then add me to your “fitsters” (friends) list.

Join here:

Have a great one…see ya over at fitconnect!


Brad April 30, 2008 at 10:32 pm

Hey Rusty, I know I’ve asked you this way in the past but I forget now. How many calories were you taking in when you were losing all that weight years ago? And did you spread them over 3 meals or one or six????????

And how long did it take you before you finally got to your goal weight?

If I remember right you said you rarely cheated on your diet and became a little obsessive till you got where you wanted to be.

I’m thinking this is what it will take for me to lose these last 5-8 pounds.


admin May 1, 2008 at 5:14 pm


The diet I did to lean out was kind of obsessive. A protein shake in the morning, a protein shake in the middle of the day, and a chicken breast salad at night…and a fuji apple for dessert. So 3 meals a day. I was eating around 1,500-1,800 calories on most days (but I was trying to lose a bit of muscle, so this is a bigger deficit than most people need).

It took me 4 months to go from 225 to 195 (I wasn’t extremely strict on my diet to get to this point). I held that weight for a while and then decided I would look a bit sharper at 185. Those last 10 pounds took another 3-4 months. I actually lost those last 5 pounds in 21 days, but that was before a vacation…I did that 2 shake and chicken salad for 21 days in a row without straying.

I was ridiculously obsessive to go from 190 to 185. I had a tropical vacation coming up and I wanted to get really lean. I got rid of those last stubborn 5 pounds in 3 weeks.

The nice thing is that I now stay around 190 most of the year and then diet down for a vacation for 21 days. I’m always 21 days away from being really, really lean. That picture of me in the James Bond swimsuit, I’m actually at 190 which is the weight I hold most of the year. I was recovering from a back injury so I couldn’t get quite as lean for that trip.

Hope that helps,


Brad May 1, 2008 at 10:51 pm

Wow, that is some seriously great stuff! Thanks for all the info…..I will apply some of those tactics to my own routine!

How did you have enough energy to get by on so few carbs when you were doing the protein shake for breakfast and lunch and the chicken salad for dinner?

I’m getting really close to having to try and lose the last few stubborn pounds so I’m really curious to know exactly what your training routine was during those last 5-10 pounds.

Do you think you could give me a detailed outline of what your cardio and weights looked like during the week and how long those cardio and weight sessions lasted?

Your the best Rusty, I appreciate your detailed response about you’re diet! You have no idea how much that helps. I might try the protein shake and chicken salad approach a couple days a week when I go really low carb, there is no way I could do that everyday like you did! Thats crazy, and impressive! Take care man!

admin May 5, 2008 at 12:10 am


Ah…I must save some things for the books and reports I’m coming out with 🙂 The “Vacation Body Blitz” is going to have my exact routine that I used to get lean for my Mexico trip…it will also talk about mistakes I made in the past trying to get lean for summer, etc.

As far as having enough energy goes…I found I had more energy with less calories. Ori Hofmekler talks about this in his book “The Warrior Diet”…it is a weird, but common phenomenon.

Have a great one,


Brad May 7, 2008 at 7:34 pm

Hey no problem, I understand that completely. I just appreciate all the help you’ve given me up to this point. I’m sure the Vacation Body Blitz report will be awesome, best of luck with that! Thanks for everything!


Angel July 9, 2008 at 12:30 pm

Has anyone had any problems with nausea in regards to taking a caffiene pill (such as vivarin) on an empty stomach. I would like to try and do that for an AM workout, but I worry about upsetting my stomach without a least a little in there along with the pill?

admin July 9, 2008 at 11:41 pm


Have you tried it? It doesn’t bother my stomach at all. If it does make you sick then just have a cup of black coffee instead.


Angel July 15, 2008 at 3:11 pm

I tried vivarin years ago in high school while chearleading and got sick off it. I suppose that could have been a combination of things or possibly that I took too much. It’s worth another shot – because while I love coffee, I’d prefer to avoid the stains on my teeth and coffee breath 😉

John December 17, 2008 at 11:42 pm

Hey, Im a first timer to this site and wanted to ask your input on Hydroxycut have just turned 18 in october and want to lose body fat before the spring any thoughts would be greatly appreciated seems like you have a great site here.

Thanks for your time

Hugh December 25, 2008 at 9:56 pm

Hi Guys, just wanted to mention has anyone considered the fact that most stubborn fat problems are related to estrogen…and caffiene increases estrogen in the body dramatically also diminish the body’s effect of eliminating estrogen. This makes caffiene a no win situation when it comes to stubborn fat loss.

admin December 26, 2008 at 10:02 pm


I haven’t heard of caffeine raising estrogen levels for 2-3 days during each mentrual cycle, but not throughout the month. I haven’t heard of any similar effects of raising estrogen in men. I will have to do a bit more research. Thanks for the heads up.


David August 15, 2009 at 1:09 pm

Rusty, I am trying to build a little bit of mass while shedding that last 3% of body fat.

What should i do?

Dave August 16, 2009 at 11:41 pm

I don’t drink caffeine often, and when I do, I can’t sleep. I have stayed up well over 30 hours after drinking caffeine. Will this go away if I drink more often? Also, I thought caffeine causes an increase in cortisol. Doesn’t cortisol cause fat storage around the waist?

Chase September 17, 2009 at 11:47 pm

I buy rishi green tea. In a small box at whole foods. It’s about $9.00 a box. It has little packets of instant green tea you add to a water bottle. Its pure green tea, nothing else so tastes like grass water, but its healthy and just dissolve it in a bottle of spring water. It isn’t that Lipton or other stuff with the lemon and sugary crap. Its good stuff! I just can’t stand green tea, or any tea for that matter plus I hear that coffee is higher in antioxidants anyway!

Jan November 5, 2009 at 12:44 am

Hey rusty,

Im a big follower of your blog but i read this the other day and wanted to know what you have to say about this..

Aiden XX June 22, 2010 at 6:59 pm

Hi Rusty (and other people!)

I take creatine at the moment for my workouts to get bigger muscle growth and recovery (as well as protein shakes) but I have to cycle this to stop me getting tolerant so I cycle one mont on, one month off.

Ive read ‘NOT TO INJEST CAFFEINE’ whilst taking creatine so i dont anymore (it stops the effectiveness of creatine) but now im on my ‘off’ month i wanted to try caffeine 200mg tablets (which i just bought 500 for £10 or 15dollars i believe)

is it benificial to take a pill before heavy weights for strength + energy etc. and what would i do on the days when i do cardio in the mornings and then weights in the eve (i dont want to over do it).. THANKS!!!!!

Susan March 28, 2011 at 1:24 am

I just started using caffeine as part of my work out at 6am. Recently I’ve been feeling tired and don’t know if I’ve been working out too hard or getting addicted to the effects of coffee?

Laura April 5, 2011 at 8:10 am

Hey Rusty,

is there any advantage in taking a thermogenic over caffeine pills? The thermogenic contains caffeine and some other stuff, but it seems like the caffeine pills would have the same overall effect…

By the way, I live in Brazil and totally loved your blog! Everyone here wants me to be bigger (especially in the lower body) and I just want to be long and lean! So, thanks for all the tips!

asma June 17, 2011 at 12:10 pm

well today i took those energy tablets ., it says its natural its jamieson , do u think ill be ok , cuz i heard that i u take vitamins and drink water it will have reverse effect , i need to loose some weight i a month and doing cardio with a fitness center , the energy tablets i am using states
wheat grass ………..41.6 mg
ginseng…………………33.3 mg
vit b 12………………….83.3
pls tell me ok

Kevin July 18, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Helder, please don’t scare people especially if you are not knowledgable about macronutrients.
I am a resident at a hospital, caffeine is a very safe stimulant.
First you said that you shouldn’t ingest more than 100mg of it, then you stated you should drink 2-3 cups of coffee a day.
Fact: the average cup of coffee contains 100mg of caffeine. 2-3 cups is 200-300 mg of the stimulant.
You can safely ingest 600 mg of caffeine a day with out any adverse side effects, for a person just starting caffeine therapy, please note that the first few days you may feel light headed and have a few head aches, this is completely normal as your body adapts to the stimulant.
Caffeine is also known for it’s disease fighting characteristics, do. Some research online and take a look for yourself!! Good luck everyone.

Wilson August 12, 2011 at 11:53 am

Like most food and drink that has people proclaiming its effects on the body, the answer usually lies somewhere in the middle. If you wake up every morning and have 2 pots of coffee, you may feel some side effects. On the other hand some studies, such as the one’s the article mentions on Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s shows that coffee in moderation may be good for you. The same has been said for coffee as one of the heart healthy foods, as studies show it reduces the likelihood of getting heart disease.

In the end, every person will have their own response. It’s important to know your body and understand how caffeine effects you.

tomson October 12, 2011 at 4:30 am

Hi what about caffeine in those Green tea? isit much better than coffee 🙂

Doug December 13, 2011 at 9:05 pm

How many caffeine pills could I take a day when trying to get really lean?

cindy February 21, 2012 at 4:02 am


Amruth April 22, 2012 at 5:11 pm

Its very common to drink black coffee in the early mornings , here in india. Doing it for generations. And i can tell this website justified the cause. I am slightly over weight and i have tried workouts with and without coffee. And with it. Shows great improvement. Thats final.

Seth July 20, 2012 at 8:29 am

To answer your question cindy, its not bad at all, it just slightly changes how much you could inturn burn if you only had black coffee.

angel nobles July 21, 2012 at 9:15 am

caffeine has helped me lose a lot of weight in shrunk 4 sizes in a matter of three months, without exercise or any aerobics i still achieved this. Without switching any of my regular eating habits for healthier choices, i ate what i wanted drank what i wanted, i didnt over eat though only three meals a day but no discretion on what the meals contained.

zainab mohammed August 1, 2012 at 9:48 pm

I want to grow slim without coffee and caffeine is it possible.

XK September 4, 2012 at 10:19 am

I read the article on this page and it’s great and then I read this:

I am so confused now…!! Does coffee/caffeine support or hinder weight loss?

Betty Rocker September 18, 2012 at 8:48 pm

Great information as always, really appreciate how your combine personal experience with research – thank you Rusty.

I also experience better fat burning when I include caffeine with my workouts. Because I am not really trying to lose fat right now, I have also been experimenting with drinking it post-workout instead. I usually work out with plenty of energy already and get such a great endorphin boost from the workout, the post-caffeine allows me to carry that feeling farther into the day.

Just a personal observation.
-Betty Rocker

legend of_zen September 25, 2012 at 11:20 am

I actually prefer energy shots over all other forms of caffeine, you just can’t beat the convenience. Why pop pills or drink coffee when you can just pop a shot and go? Just my thoughts.

I agree with you that caffeine has a lot of beneficial aspects, I personally would never go without it for my late night workouts (only time I can fit it in)

– Kyle

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