Eat Before a Workout?

OK, going to try to make this short and sweet today, I don’t think I accomplished that yesterday. 🙂

So this depends… what’s your goal and what details your workout.

Today I’ll focus on the goal of BURNING FAT.

Workout: Only Cardio
If your first thing in the AM is to workout and you want to burn fat, do up to 30 minutes of hard cardio (average 75-90% of max HR) without eating. Same goes for  cardio in the PM, you don’t need to eat. However!! Don’t pass that 30 minutes! Why? You just fasted all night and have little glycogen (carbs/sugar) in your muscles. This means that with a high intensity session, you’ll use that glycogen quick and convert to more fat use. After 30 minutes however, you body will tap into that protein of yours… and remember, we need to save that to feed our muscles after the workout.
  • The blue mark on the chart reflects where you are first thing in the AM, or with an empty tank in the PM.  Take advantage of that.
If you go longer than 30 minutes (people who want to work on their endurance) have a quick calories before your workout, up to 200. This will add some glycogen and extend your ability to perform well. In the PM, if you’ve eaten in the last 3 hours you’ll be fine. Longer though, and I’d grab a snack.

“What if I don’t eat and do cardio slower and longer? – well that’s fine, you can extend to let’s say 45 min of slow (boring) cardio… but you won’t hit that afterburn that will increase your metabolic rate (calories you burn in a day) Also, it feels great to push yourself and improve!  MOVE MOVE MOVE!  Read my prior posts on “Fat Burning Zone a Myth?” and “How to Burn that Fat” for more info on afterburn and your metabolic rate.


Workout : Lifting and Cardio

Don’t lift and do cardio on an empty stomach.

Do cardio AFTER lifting. Since cardio drains glycogen faster, you’ll be running on empty if you try to get a good lifting session in before. Weight training requires that quick energy, and for an effective workout and better results, you need to have that glycogen.

Best formula…. lift first, then do up to 3o minutes of high intense cardio. Burning most of your glycogen during weights so that you can tap that fat fuel, getting a good  session in of burning fat. As in having low glycogen stores when you awake from a night’s rest, lifting will produce the same effect;

Pair lifting with cardio 3x/week. Remember doing more isn’t always the best.

If you need help getting a workout routine that works, please contact me!

Be good to yourself!

angie                                 and, just for laughs…

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