Luke is a fitness and health blogger at Ripped.me and a great fan of the gym and a healthy diet. He follows the trends in fitness, gym and healthy life and loves to share his knowledge through useful and informative articles.
Ask any avid runner or endurance athlete and they will tell you: post-workout recovery is just as important as working out. In fact, you could argue that the way you treat your body after a vigorous training session, especially as a distance runner, will not only set the stage for your next workout, but also determine whether or not you could encounter an injury down the road.
Keep in mind that sports injuries are cumulative, meaning that just because you haven’t sprained your ankle during your run doesn’t mean that your knees are not developing patellar tendonitis without any notable symptoms. This is why proper post-workout recovery is super important for every aspiring endurance athlete, and magnesium might just be the wonder mineral you need to keep your body fit and able for the challenges ahead.
Helps eliminate muscle spasms and cramping
Athletes hailing from all sports ranging in intensity, duration, and volume of training know all-too-well that one bad cramp can be a debilitating blow to their performance, if not their entire training week. Yes, when you’re training hard and when you’re running for the distance, your cramps tend to be a bit more severe than when you get off your butt after watching Netflix for three hours.
Needless to say, a cramp or muscle spasm is always better to prevent than treat, and magnesium can help you in both cases. In fact, magnesium is the key ingredient in relieving muscle cramps and spasms, and magnesium deficiency has been proven to increase the risk of muscle cramps in the lower body. As a runner, you cannot afford your lower body to suffer like this.
An essential nutrient in energy production
To keep things simple and to the point, glucose is your source of fuel the body uses for energy and it’s what keeps you going through the toughest of challenges. Now, given the fact that your needs to turn glycogen into glucose first, you need to understand that this process wouldn’t be possible without magnesium.
So much so, that magnesium deficiency or simply the lack of frequent intake will cause your energy levels to drop rapidly, and as a result, you will feel more fatigued, thus unable to complete your workout. And of course, if you try to push yourself under these conditions, you will risk injuring yourself. So just take ample amounts of magnesium prior to your next training session, and right after as well.
Improves muscle and CNS recovery
Out of all the health and performance benefits regular magnesium intake brings to the average athlete, improved muscle and CNS recovery has got to take the proverbial cake. However, keep in mind that because magnesium does have lower bioavailability (meaning how much you can actually consume from foods), supplementing with magnesium tablets is not only a healthy option but a prudent one for athletes looking to get all the benefits. (*not endorsed by Get Running or NeelyRuns)
When you supplement with magnesium, you can also tailor your nutrition around other crucial nutrients instead of trying to consume handfuls upon handfuls of pumpkin seeds. In any case, because magnesium is a potent anti-inflammatory agent, it’s excellent for reducing muscle and joint pain, CNS fatigue, and other post-workout inflammatory conditions that might hinder your next run.
Boosting explosive power and vertical movements
Every endurance athlete and professional player knows just how important it is to skim a second off your personal best, or increase your vertical jump by a centimeter or two – any little improvement can help you achieve better results. This is where magnesium comes in as a crucial element in force production and overall explosiveness from the ground.
By eating or supplementing with magnesium on a regular basis, you can not only ward off injuries and repair your body, but over time you can also add centimeters to your vertical, and if you’re a distance runner, improve your explosive speed to reach the finish line faster without fatiguing too early. Seeing as how there is no need to cycle magnesium, you can use it long-term to experience the cumulative benefits.
Helps you build lean muscle mass
Last but not least, building lean muscle mass should be one of your primary goals no matter if you’re a sprinter, a ninja warrior, or a bodybuilder. While you should build muscle according to your needs and aspirations, it will be crucial for your performance on the track to have as much functional mass as possible.
Remember, when combined with proper endurance training, the muscle can never be dead weight! Given the fact that your body’s insulin sensitivity increases with the amount of magnesium in your system, you can improve the fat-burning and muscle-building process while experience the aforementioned benefits as well.
Proper macronutrient and micronutrient intake is crucial for any athlete looking to become better at the sport and set higher goals for the near future. With that in mind, magnesium just might be the mineral that will help you take your fitness game to the next level and ensure a long and healthy career to boot.
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