A balanced diet is the key to own a pink health. However, it is not always possible to know if the food that we are taking is indeed full of the vital nutrients we require for sustenance. Ditching juices available in the market and eating whole fruits, avoiding processed meat and having fresh ones and the like definitely helps you to build up a good physique; however, to ensure that you are not missing out of any sort of nutrient, taking supplements becomes necessary, especially if you are a fitness freak. Supplements for runners are essential if they want to become conscientious eaters engrossed in highly active lives.
Nurturing yourself with direct nutrients from food is not only insufficient but also is not a good idea. It has been observed statistically, that in spite of having food that is nutrient dense, several people have suffered from a deficiency of nutrients, which could be checked by the intake of several supplements.
Table of Content
- 8 Supplements that Boost Your Running Performance
- Why Supplements for Runners is a Must
- Supplements are Runner’s Best Friend
8 Supplements that Boost Your Running Performance
Find out the top 8 supplements for runners that would boost your running performance and increase your endurance:
- Omega 3
- Vitamin D
- Whey Protein
Now, let us discuss in detail about the above mentioned supplements, Calcium, Fish Oil, Iron, Multivitamin, Vitamin D, Whey Protein, and Creatine in detail, as
You must eat well to absorb calcium from food directly as well as calcium supplements to boost our nutrition. The correlation between calcium and bone density is nothing new to us, and hence in order to ensure good growth of bones and their well being.
A low content of calcium in our body mostly leads to the fatal diseases like: osteoporosis, which should not be taken lightly. Osteoporosis makes your bones porous and eventually brittle. Osteoporosis can put an end to your regime of running as weak bones would not support intensive activity. And running in turn would make your bone even more weak and breakable.
However, several studies exhibit that too much or unplanned intake of calcium supplements has affected people badly with cardiovascular problems. Again, calcium must be taken along with vitamin D as the latter helps in the synthesis of calcium.
You must consult with your doctor and dietician before taking in calcium supplements, according to the need of your body.
2. Omega 3
Omega 3 found essentially in fishes like salmon and cod is very important for any normal human being. Apart from fishes, it is found in minimum quantities in almonds, flax seeds, walnuts and so on. Consuming fish oil may be an issue for people who are allergic or are vegans; they can take in flaxseed oils instead, although fish oil is the best source.
Even if you are a healthy and conscientious eater you would lack behind in these fatty acids as they cannot be absorbed much, directly from food. Omega 3 supplements can help runners, reduce inflammation in their muscles, absorption of other nutrients and also help to do away with fatigue.
Iron supplements are essential for everyone as they form the key part and parcel of blood content in our body. Iron is the key source of hemoglobin in our blood. Iron thus carries oxygen to various parts of the body like the brain, the liver, the pair of kidneys and the like.
Thus, it is obvious that if our iron content lessens, there would not be ample supply of oxygen to various parts of our body which would result too fatal for our system.
And runners lose a lot of iron in the process of running, as:
- Perspiration during running is a common issue and a lot of iron gets lost through pores and sweats that need to be replaced.
- Female runners suffer from a deficiency in iron primarily because of the natural and unavoidable process of menstruation. Thus, taking of iron supplement for them is a must.
- If you are a runner who is anaemic, you need not have better reasons to take iron supplements. Anaemia triggers malnutrition in anyone who is a runner or not and thus do not indulge in the risk of going low in iron content.
- Runners tend to lose a lot of iron due to a period of accumulation of running months through the stomach and intestine and that requires to be taken care of
- Footstrike haemolysis is common among runners that make you lose iron through running in high mileage. Red blood cells break down, lowering your haemoglobin content when your feet strike the ground.
According to statistical studies, it has been studied and observed that taking in multivitamins for a long span of time reduces your risk for cardiac arrests. Multivitamins fill in the spaces left by the gaps of nutrition. Besides, in cases of intensive physical activity like weight training and running, multi vitamins act as best supplements for runners and it is imperative that you opt for a liquid variety of a multi vitamin. This because they can be readily absorbed by your body compared to pellets and tablets and the like. Some of the best multivitamins for athletes are:
- Muscle Tech Platinum Multivitamin Supplement
- Amway Nutrilite Daily
- Natural Vitality Organic Life Vitamins
- Tropical Oasis Multiple Vitamin Mineral for Adults
5. Vitamin D
Vitamin D helps in the synthesis and absorption of another supplement for runners, which is calcium. It is a vital key to boost your endurance in running as well as in other forms of sports. A low content of vitamin D would affect your running performance and eventually compromise on your health.
Runners would get very strong and fast if they start taking vitamin D supplements. It helps to restrict brittle bones and osteoporosis. Besides, it is a fat soluble vitamin that readily gets absorbed into your bloodstream to be got transported to other parts of the body. It strengthens your immune system and lowers the risk of several diseases.
6. Whey Protein
Protein suffices for 17% of the weight of your body and its significance is nothing new. Protein is a nutrient that you can never cut off your diet as our muscles would grow very weak. Proteins not only regenerate our cells but also hydrate our body and maintain a balance of other fluids in our system.
A normal person requires a supply of 0.36 grams of protein per pound of one’s body weight. But, you are a runner and you require a better supply of proteins in terms of weight than a physically inactive person. Whey protein is ideal for you, enthusiastic runners as they are easily synthesized and absorbed in your body and also do not add calories unnecessarily to your body system.
Whey protein works in the following way:
- It boosts your performance as a runner.
- It breaks down other forms of proteins that are taken in
- It builds up lean tissues
- Recovers your muscles overall
If the protein content in your body is very low, then you become very prone to injury as lack of it would decrease the muscular mass and also makes you feel fatigued.
Consulting your trainer, you may take about 40 grams to 60 grams of whey protein for your protein boost up.
It is ideal to have whey protein mixed with smoothies or juices or shakes about 45 minutes post workout.
We are in an oblivious myth about creatine, that it is solely meant to be taken by bodybuilders, and is strictly a no-no for runners.
Running is an intensive cardiovascular regime which triggers inflammation of muscles and damage in cells. Amino acids in creatine help to regenerate such worn out and degenerated muscles by boosting them up with a pump of energy. It is certain, that the amount or dose of creatine that bodybuilders take in and that you as a runner should take must differ.
This helps in the distribution and working of the water content in your body. While running thereby regulating your rate of sweat, the rate of heart beats and you thus feel at ease to run even in extreme conditions of heat or cold.
Creatine, again, reduces the levels of VO2, which tend to soar to their sub maximal levels.
A runner must take in creatine as a supplement in two levels-
- about 20 grams per day for the initial five days or the loading phase and
- about 5 grams during the latter part of the course.
Creatine for runners must be taken along with spikes of insulin and thus try having fruit juices by sipping bit by bit while consuming creatine, post workout.
Amino acids are the building blocks of our body. From protein to muscle building, amino acids play a major role. In fact, amino acids are vital supplements for runners and that’s why we insist them to indulge in glutamine! Glutamine is rich in amino acids and protects the body from infections. Also, runners who perform heavy workouts and run for marathons are more prone to fall sick. Reason- low glutamine levels. and henceforth we suggest every runner add glutamine supplement in their diet.
It is ideal to take glutamine after a strenuous workout.
Why Supplements for Runners is a Must
If you still think you are not convinced enough, then go through the significant reasons we furnish for you:
1. The Myth About Dairy Products And Grains
The myth about dairy products, grains and legumes are that they are very nutritious when they actually are very low in nutrient content. The primary purpose of nutrients is to nourish our body which in terms would nourish our mind. Grains, legumes, along with conventional and modern forms of dairy are not food in the conventional or the technical sense of the term ‘food’.
Legumes and grains carry harmful compounds like phytic acids which not only intervene with the absorption of nutrients but also cause damage in the intestinal parts. Dairy products are conventionally inflammatory and they often carry mycotoxins which mostly have inflammatory components. These mycotoxins are basically moulded toxins which are harmful to our well being.
If you think that you are safe or would safe if you have already left or are planning to leave eating them, you are wrong. This is because they have already damaged your digestive system, which lacks behind in nutrients. The only savior to your rescue at this point of time is nothing but endurance supplements.
If you lead the active life of a runner, then you are in great need to start taking running supplements as fast as possible if you have been fooled by the myth about dairy products, legumes, and grains.
2. Water Depletion
Water needs to introduction to be pronounced as a key ingredient in sustaining. Water is everywhere, but not all the drops are meant to be drunk. Owing to our awareness about the emerging contaminations of deadly substances like arsenic and chlorine, we have started using water filters to curb the possibilities of falling sick due to those elements.
It is true that most water filters manage to eliminate the harmful elements as much as possible; however, in the process of filtration, some important nutrients like magnesium also get filtered out. We cannot do in our lives without magnesium and runners would fall quite ill if they suffer from low magnesium content in their body.
Magnesium helps in the occurrence of more than three hundred biochemical reactions within the system of our body. Filtered water again is rich in calcium, and without magnesium in water alongside, our body becomes prone to suffer from ischemic heart problems as well as myocardial disorders. Thus, it is essential to know about the best supplements for runners as well as non-runners.
3. Soil Depletion
Lack of proper practices in farming and the unpopularity of cross farming at some places deplete ad deteriorate soil of their nutrients to a great extent. Plants growing in such soil automatically grow without the proper supply of minerals, vitamins. Good microbes and other necessary elements. Being the consumer of such poor quality fruits, vegetables, and pulses, we too do not get an abundant supply of nutrients.
Some of us might argue that farmers make sure to use fertilizers to ensure the proper growth of plants; however, it is not widely known that those fertilizers and chemicals add to the sustenance of the fields only and they do not benefit human beings in any way.
Besides, by the time we get those fruits and vegetables from the market, they lose even more nutrients by travelling a lot in trucks and vans, being stored in cold storages and arriving in the markets. Even though people who do not run at a regular interval may pass the intake of minerals and vitamins, however, they should not), others must know the best multivitamins for runners.
4. Poorly Nutritious Non-Organic Options of Food
Most of us, across the globe, find it difficult to buy organic food; there are either unavailable or they are too expensive and exceed our budget. Non- organic food is full of pesticides and chemical fertilizers which are very harmful to us if we consume. Again, pesticides also cut down the nutrient content of the crops while trying to drive pests away. Consume such food low it nutrient cannot suffice if we are regular runners.
5. Myth About Low-Calorie Diet
Many of us think that low-calorie diet is ideal, or perhaps, is beneficial in order to stay fit. However, this again is a mythical belief that needs to get corrected; rather we must become aware of the amount of calorie needed for sustenance.
It is a misconception that starving yourself to some extent would help you reduce fat when actually it makes you fat. Starving makes you malnourished and eventually, you tend to grow fatter as if your carb intake is lower than necessary, then your rate of metabolism gets disoriented. You can increase your metabolism rate with foods like fibre rich foods, eggs, green veggies and much more.
6. Quality Of Meat And Dairy Product
Just like grains are harmful for our digestion, as well as nutrition, it is the same for cattle as well. The cattle that feed on grass are far more nutritious than that which feed on grains.
Again, skimming milk of its fat makes the milk low in nutrients, as most of the nutrients in milk in contained in the fat or cream of the milk. Besides, pasteurization diminishes a lot of nutrients that we require. Thus, proteins and calcium that we cannot derive from animals or dairy must be substituted with supplements.
7. Exposure To Toxins
Owing to the increased rate of pollution, our bodies are subjected to a wide range of toxins. Most of us lead a life where we cannot avoid coming under the influence of toxins; nutrients are the weapons with which we can defend our body. A number of nutrients available directly from food are not sufficient to protect our body and we need to intake externally.
8. The Problem Of Ageing
With aging, the production of digestive enzymes along with hydrochloric acid diminishes. The rate of absorption of nutrients is far more in the young people than old ones. You cannot avoid taking supplements during old age in order to lead a healthier life.
9. Nutrients Hungry Active Life
If you are a physically active person, if you hit the gym regularly or are perhaps a runner, you cannot possibly cut down on supplements. Once you are indulging in rigorous physical exercise you deplete your levels of energy which needs to be substituted as fast as possible so that you do not fall sick.
Best supplements for runners, like calcium, fish oil, iron, multivitamin, whey protein, eat better, and creatine must be taken in to ensure you a sturdy protection against all sorts of depletion of nutrients while engaging in running or other forms of exercise.
10. Nutrients Increase Your Life Line
When you are deeply nourished by intake of supplements, your body naturally becomes strong enough to protect against several sorts of immunity breaking agents. Automatically, you are given a boon to extend your lifetime on earth for few more years than usual, as statistical studies showcase.
11. Myth About Expenditure Of Supplements
It is a myth that supplements are too expensive to be bought, when actually it is the opposite. Food is more expensive than supplements. Besides, the price you pay for your malnutrition due to food is not justifiable.
For instance, the salmon that is farmed is not only lacking behind in omega 3 but also is full of parasites and bacteria. On the contrary, supplements that are hygienically packed, be it omega 3 or otherwise, are not as unhealthy or expensive as real food.
Supplements are Runner’s Best Friend
Having gone through the article, you must not think otherwise that they are not best friends of runners; for it is hard to argue so. If you are a runner who shuns from taking supplements or detest them, make you your own foe.
Running already makes you appear a diligent person as it appears you are concerned about your fitness, health and well being, however, adding best supplements for runners in your diet would not only enhance your performance but would eventually boost your moral being; because it is known that a healthy body and physique are keys to a healthy and happy mind.
However, it is advisable that you consult with your trainer or doctor or dietician before taking these supplements. Because unless and until you know what are you allergic to or in what proportion you must take those supplements, you must never indulge in these. It might prove fatal for your body if you carry on taking them that you are allergic to and in the long run, you might be able to get cured due to the damages caused by them.
That is a reason to get afraid of because these supplements are mostly engineered in such a way that they would suit most of the body types. But a risk, in this case, is not worth taking and visiting a professional is harmless.
You would come across a wide range of products for dietary supplements for runners and sports persons in the market belonging to different price ranges. Thus, would be able to choose and buy from them. If your local market does not have a good variety or supply of such products, you may always buy them online, getting delivered at your doorstep.
So, what are you waiting for? Visit your dietician and run effortlessly without fear.