Runner Cordyceps Mushroom Athletic Performance | Medicinal Mushrooms

Cordyceps and its History with Olympic Athletes

With the Tokyo Olympics fast approaching on the 23rd of July it’s nearly time to sit back and marvel at the athletic prowess of athletes from all over the world. 

Cordyceps medicinal mushroom, known for its ability to increase energy and athletic output has a legacy with Olympic athletes, being the catalyst for this medicinal mushroom’s splash into the mainstream spotlight in the 90’s.

In 1993 the world watched as members of the Chinese women’s Olympic running team broke numerous world records during competition. After much speculation as to what contributed to their unprecedented success the team was tested for banned substances and none were found. It was eventually revealed by the team that intense training at altitude and a special elixir with Cordyceps as the main ingredient was the secret to their incredible success. This thrust Cordyceps into mainstream consciousness and aroused a great deal of interest in Cordyceps' performance-enhancing capabilities fuelling a plethora of new studies and scientific research.

Today Cordyceps finds itself coveted to not only restore energy after times of physical exertion and illness but also by active individuals and athletes looking to elevate their performance.

Cordyceps and its Benefits for Athletic Performance

VO2 Max

Cordyceps is well-known for its energising effects that are derived from its beta-d-glucans which help deliver oxygen to all areas of the body on a cellular level supporting stamina and aerobic capacity. In 2016, a 3-week study with healthy individuals supplementing Cordyceps Militaris demonstrated an improvement in VO2 max, time till exhaustion, and ventilatory threshold[1]. VO2 max is a method to determine one’s fitness level, defined as the maximum rate of oxygen consumption measured during incremental exercise.

Fatigue Resistance

The reduction of muscle fatigue and support of anaerobic performance have also been demonstrated as a result of using Cordyceps mushroom. In 1998 a double-blind study was carried out at the Beijing Medical University Sports Research Institute revealing some interesting results with regard to Cordyceps and its benefits for muscle fatigue. Within the study, the test group using a formula that contained Cordyceps reported improved lactate clearance. During intense activity, our bodies produce lactase, a form of lactic acid. When we're working out lactase buildup causes symptoms we want to avoid like muscle weakness and debilitating cramps.

Energy Production

Cordyceps has been researched for its capacity to support the production of the molecule adenosine triphosphate (ATP)[2]. ATP is our body’s primary source of energy and is required to power our muscles and keep us moving through both exercise and day to day activities. Our ATP levels are responsible for our energy levels and determine our feelings of physical strength.

Cordyceps as a Pre-Workout Supplement

We reach to Cordyceps to support our daily workouts at Inner Atlas. For some of us, that's cardio and weight-based training, (we've got a couple of CrossFit warriors on the team!), and for others, it's dance and Pilates.

The best time to enjoy Cordyceps to help support athletic performance is pre-working out. It's easy to add ¼ to ½ a teaspoon to a pre-workout shake, an energising tonic, for inspiration check our Cordyceps and Turmeric Elixir recipe, or simply eat it from the spoon – there’s no shame here!

With its energy-promoting and fatigue boosting potential Cordyceps could be the tool to consider to give your workouts a lift. It's important to note that the majority of studies related to Cordyceps and energy support document its use over an extended period, rather than just on occasion, to achieve the accumulative benefit from its use.

Our Potent Cordyceps Extract

We source the one type of Cordyceps that produces a fruiting body, Cordyceps Militaris. Cordyceps Militaris sees a much higher rate of the all-important beta-d-glucans compared to another popular type of cultivated Cordyceps, Cs-4, which is grown in liquid fermentation tanks.

We are one of the few companies that test our mushies for beta-D-glucans with the Megazyme testing method. As a result, we can guarantee that our Cordyceps extract contains greater than 30% beta-D-glucans, which is higher than other Cordyceps extracts available in Australia, so you can be confident your mushies are active and potent.

Inner Atlas Cordyceps

  • Highly potent, containing greater than 30% beta-D-glucans.
  • Certified USDA & EU Organic.
  • Fruiting body only – 100% real mushrooms with no added fillers or mycelium.
  • Lab-tested for purity.



[1] Cordyceps Militaris improves tolerance to high-intensity exercise after acute and chronic supplementation

[2] Enhancement of ATP generation capacity, antioxidant activity and immunomodulatory activities by Chinese Yang and Yin tonifying herbs



  • Posted by Jackie on

    Hi is this available in the UK?

  • Posted by Jess ~ Inner Atlas on

    Thanks for dropping by our site Jackie. We do ship to the UK :) Jess X

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