Do You Eat Breakfast Before or After Your Morning Workout?

I came across this article from LifeScript.com saying you should get in your cardio workout first thing in the morning before you eat breakfast. I’ve heard numerous back and forth articles on this case, to eat before your workout or not, so this article originally intrigued me.

They stated that a study done at Kansas State University proved that by doing your cardio first thing in the morning on an empty stomach would result in a higher calorie burn than if you were to eat first. The article also went on to state there was another study (although not mentioning who it was conducted by) found that fat loss also increased if participants exercised in a fasted state.

But why? While you are sleeping your body is fasting and your metabolism naturally slows down, your body does not need as much energy. So they said by exercising first thing in the morning this will kick start your metabolism tenfold.

Exercise and Eat BreakfastI then found another article from NYTimes Blog stating there was a study done in Belgium to prove this. They took 28 healthy, active men and separated them into 3 groups. All the men in every group were given a “truly lousy diet, composed of 50 percent fat and 30 percent more calories, overall, than the men had been consuming.”

One group was told to not exercise. Another was told to eat a carb-rich heavy breakfast before their 90minute 4times a week workouts, while the last group ate nothing and drank only water before the same workouts.

The study went on for six weeks and in the end, the men who worked out before their breakfast gained virtually little to no weight, even though their calories had increased by up to 30%. The men who did not workout gained the most weight of course. And the men who worked out but ate first gained weight as well, but only about half of what the nonexercisers gained.

Men’s Fitness states this worked because exercising after that 10-12 hour fast is “likely the most convenient way to stimulate fat oxidation.” Which is why this only works before breakfast and not before lunch, being that is usually only about 4 hours.

This was very interesting to me as I’ve heard you should eat breakfast beforehand to give your body the energy it needs to make it through your workout. Exercising before fueling your body would only leave you sluggish and lightheaded.

In the end, I think do what works for you. If you are doing a lighter cardio, go ahead and jump on that treadmill before you eat breakfast. Yet if you are doing an intense HIIT workout, I would suggest eating breakfast before to fuel your body and supply it with the calories/energy it needs to help you power through your workout. If you are slugging along in your workout because you are too hungry, you are not getting much out of it! Either way make sure you eat breakfast!

What are your thoughts?

Do you prefer to eat breakfast before or after your morning workout??

Written By: Jentry