Schubert, M. M., Astorino, T. A., & Azevedo, J. L. (2012). The effects of caffeinated “energy shots” on distance running performance. Presentation 2788 at the 59th Annual Meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine, San Francisco, California; May 29-June 2, 2012.

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"An emerging trend in sports nutrition is the consumption of energy drinks to improve performance. An even newer group of supplements now emerging are “energy shots”, which are smaller in volume and calories than energy drinks but lack sugar. Due to their small volume, availability, price, and convenience, energy shots may prove to be a viable ergogenic aid for endurance performance. Caffeine, a widely-used ergogenic aid, is the main ingredient in these substances."

This study investigated the effects of two commercial energy shots on 5-km treadmill running performance in well-trained male runners (N = 6). Ss completed three trials separated by a minimum of five days, during which 59 mL of placebo (PLA; 0 mg caffeine), Guayakí Yerba Maté Organic Energy Shot™ (YM; 140 mg caffeine), or Red Bull Energy Shot™ (RB; 80 mg caffeine)] were ingested 45 minutes before exercise. During each trial, Ss performed a self-paced 5-kilometer time-trial on a motorized treadmill. Subjects were able to control their pace via the treadmill interface, but were unaware of speed, elapsed time, and distance until the final 800 m.

There was no significant effect of energy shot intake on performance compared to a caffeine placebo.

Implication. Energy-shot ingestion did not improve high-intensity (~96% VO2max), moderate duration (< 18 minutes) running performance in trained runners in a laboratory setting compared to a caffeine placebo.

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