BCAA for Runners

Health and Nutrition

We want to explore BCAAs for runners because they help build and repair muscles. However, there is more to this supplement than just its muscle-building effects.

What is BCAA?

Branch chain amino acids are essential nutrients that the body needs to break down protein. This process is important for muscle growth, reducing muscle soreness, balancing hormones, and helping with metabolism.

  • 20 amino acids
  • 11 the body can produce
  • 9 essential amino acids that must be acquired through food or supplementation
  • 3 are considered branch-chain amino acids
  • leucine is the MOST important amino acid

When to Take BCAA For Runners

What you take really does matter when it comes to essential amino acids! More is not necessarily better, as anything beyond 10-15 grams per serving will be treated by the body like sugar. Therefore, it’s important to be mindful of how much you’re taking in order to ensure optimal absorption and utilization.

Although branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are metabolized in the muscles, they can act like a carbohydrate source and provide energy pre-run. In contrast, an essential amino acid (EAA) will not have the same effect.

Some people dislike the fact that BCAA’s are treated more like a carbohydrate and thus they only consume EAA’s during and after their workout.

BCAA’s Before Running

Drinking BCAA before a run can help improve your performance in several ways:

  • The BCAAs are like carbs in that they provide a good energy source for the body.
  • The potential for reducing dopamine levels in the brain could lead to a reduction in how hard people feel they have to work.
  • Having fuel in your system kick-starts the recovery process.
  • The sweetness encourages you to keep drinking, making it an easy way to ensure you stay hydrated before a run.

BCAA’s During a Run

While the benefits of drinking them before a run are numerous, doing so during your run can also be beneficial, but with a few more additions:

  • The amino acids valine and isoleucine may help to prevent muscle breakdown and promote faster recovery.
  • Tryptophan is an amino acid that helps the body produce serotonin, which is a chemical that can help reduce pain

BCAA’s Post Workout

The most common time to utilize BCAA supplementation is directly after a workout. Weight lifters have been doing this for years in order to help with muscle repair and growth.

  • Increasing the release of human growth hormone to help muscles repair and grow
  • A more rapid return to full strength.

Best BCAA for Runners

There are a lot of essential amino acid supplements on the market, and it can be tough to know which ones are worth your time and money. That’s why I’ve put together a list of my favorite essential amino acid supplements. I’ve personally tried all of these supplements and can attest to their quality. If you’re looking for the best possible essential amino acid supplement, then definitely check out one of the options on my list.

You can mix any of these with water and drink them like an electrolyte drink. They have a similar taste, so you don’t necessarily need to mix them into a smoothie or something else unless you want to.

  1. Vital Proteins Performance Recovery is the most affordable BCAA powder on the market. This upgraded version of their collagen powder is perfect for post-workout recovery, as it helps to reduce muscle soreness and replenish depleted nutrients.
  2. Thorne Essential Amino Acids are the highest quality BCAA (EAA) on the market. Thorne Essential Aminos are a complete EAA supplement that provides all nine essential amino acids in ratios that are optimally absorbed and utilized by the body. Thorne Essential Aminos also provide electrolytes, which are essential for hydration and proper muscle function.
  3. Kion Amino Essentials is a great product for those who are looking for an amino acid supplement. It is a runner-up quality product because it does not have all of the essential amino acids that are needed for optimum health. However, it does have a high concentration of branched-chain amino acids, which are important for muscle growth and repair.
  4. BodyHealth Perfect Amino is the best muscle-building recovery drink. It is packed with essential amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. This makes it perfect for post-workout recovery, as it helps to rebuild and repair muscles. It is also low in calories and fat, making it a great choice for those looking to lose weight.
  5. Ultra Clean Vegan BCAA Powder is the best powder for anyone who is looking to take their fitness and health to the next level. It’s a completely vegan formula that is ultra-clean and designed to help your body recover from intense workouts. BCAA’s are essential amino acids that your body cannot produce on its own, so it’s important to supplement with them if you’re looking to build muscle and performance.
  6. Designs for Health BCAA with L-Glutamine is the best supplement for anyone with stomach issues. This supplement provides the perfect balance of essential amino acids and glutamine, which help heal and repair the gut lining. In addition, this supplement also helps to reduce inflammation and improve digestion.

We generally prefer powders over pills when it comes to supplements like BCAA. Pills have to be broken down in the digestive system before the nutrients they contain can be absorbed into the body, which can delay the effects of the supplement. But another great way to get BCAA is from food sources.

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