Whether it's biking trails or hiking trails, running or training, your most recent endurance adventure through the backcountry undoubtedly includes water and, or an electrolyte drink to fuel your exercise. However, you can't forget to fuel your adventure with your favorite cup of coffee from Vail Mountain Coffee & Tea. For years, studies have shown caffeine should not be discounted in relation to athletic performance. In fact, caffeine is shown to improve endurance, reduce the amount of perceived pain mentally, and reduce post-exercise soreness.

A study in the American College of Sports Medicine showed ingesting caffeine one hour prior to prolonged exercises, such as running and cycling, increased performance. Although there are some positive effects of short-term exercise, evidence supports that caffeine is most useful in endurance events. A cup of coffee increases the number of fatty acids in the bloodstream, and the muscles use those fats for fuel and leave carbohydrates for later when the athlete's need for endurance kicks in. In sum, the next time you're headed out for a half-day of mountain biking in the hills, plan to have your coffee close to your start time.

Mentally, caffeine can also help you to put in more effort while exercising. When reaching the end of your workout caffeine can help the athlete to invest mentally more in the physical effort. One study found athletes who did not consume caffeine reached exhaustion quicker than those who did.

Not only can it help with mentally motivating you through your workout, but caffeine is also found to reduce post-exercise soreness. In fact, between one and two cups of coffee can reduce your post-workout pain by nearly 50%. A 2003 study showed caffeine reduced thigh pain during moderate-intensity cycling. It's time to skip the ibuprofen and brew a fresh pot of coffee.

Here in Colorado, being active out in the beautiful backcountry isn't just a hobby but a way of life. Make Vail Mountain Coffee & Tea a part of it . Greet a fall sunrise by sipping on a favorite light, medium or dark roast and head off on your fueled adventure.

Written by Craig Arseneau