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Supplements for cold season runners

It was only after I was diagnosed with MS and started to have some challenges that I started running (slowly jogging)! I became addicted to the feeling of strength and power I got from even a 3-5km route.

In 2018 I participated in a sprint duathlon (I also love cycling). It wasn’t about winning, it was about reaching a personal best/goal and completing it! I trained for months and in the end, I did achieve my PB, I did complete it, and not in last place! However, I did end up injuring myself with a torn meniscus.


I have always aimed to treat my health and recovery naturally, so I started with physiotherapy and added some key supplements to my regime and was able to successfully recover without medications or surgery…and I am running again!

Supplements can have a significant impact on your running health.

For injuries or fatigued muscles, I use Bromelain, curcumin, and magnesium to help support my recovery. I already take a few anti-inflammatory supplements as part of my daily regime, which you can find at www.beingaunicorn.com/health.

As the weather is changing and people are craving options for exercise, running into the colder months is a growing trend, no longer just something only really committed runners do.


Whether you are already an avid runner or just getting started, knowing what supplements will help you recover and manage any deficiencies is key to having a successful running season.


While I have my own experience, I also received my certifications in general and fitness nutrition from the Canadian Academy of Sports Nutrition.


Through that training I have learned that there are key supplements that are recommended to runners in the colder weather, specifically: vitamin D, omega 3, antioxidant, zinc, and anti-inflammatories.

Let’s look at why they are important!

Vitamin D

Shared from CAASN, Vitamin D has many key functions including, but not limited to:

a. It increases the absorption of calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, and zinc. It is important for maintaining normal function of the muscles and heart.

b. It is required for a healthy immune system.

c. It may affect inflammation.

d. It is necessary for normal development of the bones and teeth.

e. It is important for normal function of the nervous system and blood clotting.

f. It is important for regulating blood levels of insulin.

Overall vitamin D can aid in strengthen bones, immune system, heart, and in balancing insulin, all of which will help you train better, longer, and recover faster.




Omega 3

Omega is an essential fat found in fish and plants. It is very difficult to get enough through diet alone.

As a runner or active person, omega-3 fatty acids can help protect the cells around your muscle fibers as well as act as an anti-inflammatory, which can aid in improved performance.

In addition, they can help support muscle recovery, avoiding injury from overtraining, and can help improve strength and endurance because it is also known as a heart health supplement.






Antioxidants

Many people still focus on taking vitamin c to help fend off colds. However, it can impact or inhibit your training, so it is not recommended for runners on a regular basis.

Instead, it is recommended to focus on antioxidants as it can help fend off colds, infections, as well as help with muscle recovery.

So, the key is to find one that works best for you. There are too many to list, but here are a few of my favs.




Glutathione is known for its ability to help muscles recovery from overtraining. It is extremely powerful and reduces free radicals better than most!


ALA (Alpha – Lipoic Acid) is very beneficial to athletes because it helps support Coq10, vitamin e, and glutathione, which help the body in producing energy. It is also known to help build muscle and help the BCAA (branch chain amino acids) be more effective.


Astaxanthin is a carotenoid and one of the most powerful antioxidants, coming in 500 times stronger than vitamin c. Its athletic benefits are:

1. protects muscles from oxidative damage caused by exercise.

2. improve blood flow to the muscles by increasing production of NO (nitric oxide).

3. Supports muscle recovery from strenuous exercises and can improve endurance


OPC-3 is a secret gem. I have been taking it for a few years now and it has helped improve by endurance and recovery. Its’ key ingredient is Pycnogenol, which is found in the maritime tree bark, helps oxygenate the blood vessels, is a powerful free radical scavenger helping to reduce inflammation, and it supports the heart for cardiovascular benefits as well.



Zinc

People are often surprised at all the benefits Zinc offers. People know they need it but may not be aware that it increases testosterone levels, supports blood foundation, assists in healing of both wounds and bone fractures, and helps fight free radicals and amplify the other antioxidants. A good multi vitamin can help provide zinc.


While none of these supplements will lead to immunity or are a cure-all, when taken together they can help runners stay healthy and injury-free. As always, the key is to start with a well-rounded diet, but adding some vitamins is also a good idea!

Also, if you are looking for support or motivation when it comes to running, check out my girl @rungirlfitness.

Happy running!

Jess

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Etobicoke,  Ontario

beingaunicorn1@gmail.com

416-627-7871

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