New Study Claims Exercise Perks You Up Like Coffee

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You can be a coffee achiever without the coffee.

Caffeine is one of the most widely utilized stimulants in the world, if not the most widely used. It’s definitely nice to just swig a cup of coffee and feel clarity return to your mind in the morning (or mid-afternoon). What might surprise you, though, is that it’s possible to get that same clarity without emptying your wallet for Keurig pods. All you need is to work up a good sweat.

According to a new study from Nature Scientific Reports, a single session of vigorous exercise can provide boosts to one’s mood and cognitive capability similar to caffeine. The study compared improvements to subjects’ working memory after exercising versus imbibing caffeine.

Two groups of participants, the first using a treadmill for thirty minutes and the second drinking something caffeinated, were given memory tests to determine their mental clarity. The second group was also tested a second time after they were kept off of caffeine for twelve hours. Based on the results, the boosts in clarity were roughly the same for both methods. The difference is that those suffering from caffeine withdrawal had their cognitive capabilities heavily impacted.

The takeaway here is that you can get all of the mental boosting you want with a fun run without having to deal with all of the side effects of caffeine and withdrawal. Plus, y’know, exercise is good for you in general, so I’d call that an objective improvement.