As a runner, I can attest to the power of supplements. I certainly notice a difference when I’m not taking them. I’ve been running for off and on since high school, but never regularly until about twelve years ago, but when I started running, I went all in. I started running half marathons, and soon after that jumped straight into the world of ultra marathon running.
I’ve found that certain supplements went a long way in aiding with my recovery and making me an overall healthy runner. Since runners are constantly putting their bodies under stress, it only makes sense that supplements can provide a huge benefit. So, here are my top five supplements for runners.
My Favorite Supplements for Runners
Electrolytes are a must have for any long distance runner. Trail Runner Magazine has a great article that will teach you all you need to know (mostly). But to make a very complex thing simple: you lose electrolytes in sweat when exercising, so it’s important to replace them as you are running, especially long distances. Products like Tail Wind and Scratch are great for replacing electrolytes, and Tail Wind Nutrition even gives you all the calories you need for your long runs (no solid foods needed).
Omega-3‘s – Great for your heart, lungs, and joints. Omega-3’s are also aid in reducing inflammation. Fish is the best source of Omega-3’s, but there are also fish oil supplements. If you are Vegan, flax seeds, hemp seeds, and walnuts are also great ways to get your omega-3 needs. Runners are stressing their heart, lungs, AND joints almost daily. So it makes sense that Omega-3 should be a huge part of their diet.
Magnesium – Women’s Health says this: “Magnesium tends to fly under the radar as a mineral and electrolyte. Yet it plays a crucial role in many processes that translate to athletic health, including energy balance and metabolism, oxygen and electrolyte uptake and helping to decrease muscle cramping. It’s also very important for heart health.”
I’ve personally found that magnesium helps with sore muscles. It’s said that even marginal deficiencies of magnesium can result in unwanted oxidative stress in the body, thus making this a great supplement for athletes that are constantly putting their bodies under stress.
Protein Powder – Protein is an essential nutrient in everybody’s diet, but especially for runners. Athletes actually need more of the recommended daily dose of protein because of the extra break down occurring in the body. For an athlete, a good starting point for daily protein intake is .8 grams per pound of body weight. That much protein can be hard to consume in a day. Protein powder in a smoothie or a drink is a great way to get the daily amount of protein you need.
CBD Oil – CBD Oil is like the runners “silver bullet.” It helps reduce inflammation, improves recovery times, and also helps with sleep which is crucial to better recovery.
Benefits of CBD Oil for Runners
But in all truthfulness, CBD is not a magic bullet, but a VERY beneficial tool for any runner or athlete.
There is loads of anecdotal evidence that suggests CBD helps reduce pain and inflammation. Many runners are ditching their NSAIDS and other pain relievers in favor of CBD oil.
Essentially, CBD helps runners bounce back faster so they can have more quality runs. It’s especially helpful for the aging athlete that struggles with recovering from workouts, especially more intense workouts, like long runs. Some runners experience being less sluggish after their long runs, and are back to running again faster, even the next day in some cases.
Many athletes with chronic injuries are even seeing massive benefits. Since CBD helps with pain and inflammation, it’s helping athletes to be able to focus on strengthening and stretching without being in pain, and sometimes even helps with getting better workouts in due to the reduction in inflammation and pain.
I’ve personally seen marked improvement in my chronic Achilles tendonitis since taking CBD oil, and other injuries I get seem to clear up faster as well.
No matter what supplements you take as a runner. It’s important to always be checking in with your own body. If something feels off, consider adding supplements or making dietary changes to compensate.
But it’s also important to remember that none of these are a magic bullet. They are all simply tools to help us to more o the things we love.