How long does it take to lose the tolerance to caffeine? I'm looking to give it up just long enough to completely lose the tolerance so that I can use it to get a kick for an event I have going on next month.
I never lost it. Had to quit for about six months because of a health issue but it never got back to the point where a cup could keep me awake. Then again 10 cups can't keep me awake either. It can send me into caffine narcosis but that takes a whole lot(not that it stops me). I think its different for everybody.
Watch out. Had some friends that went cold turkey and when they got back to drinking their consumption went way up.
I would think you would want to give up caffine all together for the race anyway because it dehydrates you. Why don't you give the guys at RunTex((512) 477-9464) or TXCyclesport(if its bikes) a call and see what they do..although they are all fitness junkies and I doubt many drink coffee in their regular life. I'm sure they know of some funky herbal crack that will get you going for the first few hours at least.
You got the wrong idea about coffee and runners (there is usually a pot brewing at the RunTex store). The dehydrating effects are in doubt. Even if it does dehydrate you, you just need to be sensible about replenishing the fluids. Often I'll finish my coffee just minutes before I start my run. I've never gotten dehydrated from it. Of course I do realize that the humidity in Leadville hovers around 10% and so people quickly dehydrate there without knowing it before it's too late.
With regards to tolerance, I have no idea. But I feel a difference after just a few days of not drinking coffee. I did find this:
"A further question is whether prior withdrawal from caffeine may enhance performance even more when caffeine is then reintroduced. The limited data to date suggests that caffeine withdrawal poses no additional benefit and therefore appears unnecessary. Furthermore, the effects of caffeine do not tend to differ between regular caffeine users and non-users. "