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Timing Is Everything for Workouts and Eating

By HERWriter
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I have always said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but what if you like to workout first thing in the morning? I will honestly have to say that during most of my 175lbs. weight loss, I did my cardiovascular activity first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. A new study supports my training regimen, stating that if you want to burn more body fat, you should exercise on an empty stomach.

The study, published by Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, the journal of the American College of Sports Medicine, looked at the effects of cyclists training on an empty stomach in relation to their fat stores. The findings yielded a greater ratio of fat being burned by those who did not eat prior to their ride as opposed to those who did eat. According to Professor Peter Hespel from the University of Leuven in Belgium where the study was performed, the reason for the higher breakdown of fat is due to both a higher adrenaline level and lower insulin level. Hespel says that this creates a more optimum environment for your muscles to break down fats.

The reason for this is fairly simplistic, your body does not have the carbohydrate stores to burn, so it taps into your fat stores instead. If you had already eaten, your body’s ability to reach into those stores would be compromised for several hours. I recommend this type of cardiovascular training prior to breakfast. However, I do believe your body needs the necessary fuel from breakfast prior to doing a strength training regimen. Here are some great breakfast options which can be eaten after cardiovascular activity or prior to weight training from my Fitness Answer Meal Plan:
½ Cup of Fresh Blueberries
1 cup of Greek yogurt
1 scoop of vanilla whey protein
¼ Cup of Low-Carb Granola

Mix vanilla yogurt with whey protein. Layer the berries, yogurt and granola in a dessert glass

½ Cup of Fresh Strawberries
1 cup of Greek yogurt
1 scoop of vanilla whey protein
½ Cup of Kashi Good Friends Cereal

Mix vanilla yogurt with whey protein. Layer the berries, yogurt and granola in a dessert glass


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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.


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