Forget your morning coffee – spend 10 minutes walking up and down some stairs instead.
It sounds like a nightmare to anyone who’s struggling to get fired up after a mid-week night out.
But according to new research, that little bout of exercise will do far more for your energy levels than if you were to take the elevator while slurping on a soda or a cappuccino – and saves you some money.
“We found, in both the caffeine and the placebo conditions, that there was not much change in how they felt,” said Patrick J. O’Connor, a professor in the department of kinesiology at the University of Georgia who co-authored the study.
“But with exercise they did feel more energetic and vigorous.
“It was a temporary feeling, felt immediately after the exercise, but with the 50 milligrams of caffeine, we didn’t get as big an effect.”
One can of Diet Coke contains 42mg of caffeine, while a latte contains around 77mg.
The study aimed to simulate the hurdles faced in a typical office setting, where workers spend hours sitting and staring at computer screens and don’t have time for a longer bout of exercise during the day.
For the study, participants on separate days either ingested capsules containing caffeine or a placebo, or spent 10 minutes walking up and down stairs – about 30 floors total – at a low-intensity pace.