Did you know that not getting enough magnesium can prevent you from reaching your workout goals?
It doesn’t matter how hard you work if your body isn’t also getting the nutrients it needs. A lack of magnesium will hinder your ability to perform, and make the recovery process slower.
The importance of magnesium for athletes has been thoroughly studied, and the results are clear: you need it to perform your best, no matter what kind of athlete you are.
Fortunately, it’s easy to get magnesium into your body using supplements, diet, and topical treatments. Here we will discuss why this mineral is key for recovery, and how to make sure you’re getting as much as you need.
Why Magnesium for Athletes is Important
1. Prevents Muscle Spasms
Depleted magnesium levels have been scientifically proven to cause cramps in the legs and other muscle groups. The dehydration caused by exercise makes the effect even more intense. Adding a magnesium supplement to your diet will help prevent uncomfortable cramps and is key to helping spasming muscles relax.
2. Provides You With Energy
When you exercise, your magnesium levels drop rapidly. The reason for this is that when you sweat, this mineral is removed from your body, and of course, you sweat the most when you’re working out.
During an intense workout, magnesium actually enters the red blood cells in order to help sustain your energy levels. This is because intense exercise depletes the oxygen in your blood cells, so magnesium is your body’s way of balancing out that loss to sustain energy.
This means that if you’re doing high-intensity workouts, especially if they are in a hot environment, you’ll need magnesium to keep providing your body with the power it needs.
3. Aids Muscle Recovery
Magnesium is an anti-inflammatory, allowing for reducing any swelling, joint pain, and other post-workout inflammation. You may even help prevent future arthritis when you take magnesium supplements.
Magnesium for athletes is essential because it is what allows muscles to go from a contracted state to a relaxed state – faster.
Without enough of this mineral, your muscles will stay tense for too long, which is why magnesium deficiencies can cause cramps. The lactic acid buildup caused by intense exercise can also be combatted with magnesium.
4. Helps You Perform Better
When you exercise, your body turns glycogen into glucose, providing your muscles with fuel for the workout. Magnesium is necessary for this process to work. When you aren’t getting enough of this mineral, you’ll feel fatigued more easily and will struggle to complete your workout.
Every athlete knows the importance of protein for performance. But did you know that magnesium also helps you metabolize protein better? This means you’ll get the most power from your protein, giving you strength for your performance.
5. Builds Lean Muscle
Your body’s sensitivity to insulin goes down when magnesium levels drop. This makes it more difficult for your body to lose fat and gain lean muscle. With higher magnesium levels, you’ll build the muscle you want much faster.
Ways to Get More Magnesium
There are a few reliable sources of magnesium for athletes.
Making changes to your diet is one way to get more magnesium.
Spinach is one of the best-known sources of this mineral. However, you can also get it from pumpkin seeds, kelp, almonds, cashews, buckwheat, and a number of other food sources. Foods that have a lot of fiber also tend to have plenty of magnesium.
One of the easiest ways to incorporate many of these ingredients is by blending them into a smoothie, along with some fruit. This allows you to consume larger amounts of these foods quickly and easily.
Magnesium supplements are one of the simplest ways to aid your workout recovery.
Most oral magnesium supplements will need to be taken twice a day. It can be hard to get enough of the mineral through food, so a supplement helps you get what you need without hassle.
3. Topical Treatments
You can actually get the benefits of magnesium by applying it to your skin, too. A bath that uses magnesium flakes is a great way to help speed up post-workout recovery.
Although Epsom salts have traditionally been used for a magnesium-rich bath, magnesium flakes actually provide more powerful benefits. After your workout, a warm bath with these flakes added helps your muscles recover quickly.
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Reach Peak Performance Now
Science has shown that magnesium is key to attaining your best athletic performance. Without enough of this essential mineral, the recovery process is slower and more painful, and your performance won’t be at its peaky what it needs. The best approach is often to use all three tactics to make sure you reach full recovery after every workout session.