Are There Benefits to Exercising on an Empty Stomach?

Picture this: It’s dawn, the world is just beginning to stir, and you’re lacing up your running shoes. But here’s the twist – instead of the usual pre-workout snack, your stomach is as empty as the quiet streets you’re about to traverse.

Believe it or not, this seemingly peculiar habit of exercising on an empty stomach may not be so peculiar after all. This practice, known as ‘fasted training’, offers an array of potential benefits that are gaining recognition in the world of health and fitness.

Imagine, for instance, our friend Alex. He was struggling to shed those last stubborn pounds that refused to budge. Then he tried fasted morning jogs, and lo and behold, he found his scale moving in the right direction. This anecdote sheds light on one possible benefit of empty-stomach workouts – enhanced fat burning.

So, the next time you ponder about hitting the pavement before breakfast, remember Alex’s journey. Are there benefits to exercising on an empty stomach? The answer might surprise you as much as it did Alex!

Should You Eat Before or After Working Out?

OverviewWhether you should work out on an empty stomach depends on various factors. Fasted training (working out in the morning before eating breakfast) is believed to aid weight loss. But working out after eating might give more energy and enhance performance.
Weight LossWorking out on an empty stomach, known as fasted cardio, is believed to increase fat loss as the body uses stored fat and carbohydrates for energy instead of the recently consumed food. A 2016 study among 12 men found that those who didn’t eat breakfast before exercising burned more fat and reduced their caloric intake over 24 hours. However, a 2014 study found no significant differences in body composition changes between groups who ate or fasted before working out. More in-depth research over a longer period is required.
RisksWhile there’s some research supporting the benefits of working out on an empty stomach, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s ideal. Working out on an empty stomach may lead to burning valuable energy sources and less stamina. Low blood sugar levels may also leave you feeling lightheaded, nauseous, or shaky.
What to EatFollow a balanced diet to enhance athletic performance. Include healthy carbs, fats, and proteins from natural foods. If you decide to eat before working out, choose an easily digestible meal containing carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Eat about 2 to 3 hours before your workout. If you’re pressed for time, snack on an energy bar, peanut butter sandwich, or fresh or dried fruit. Certain foods can improve and speed up your recovery after training. Eat foods containing carbs, protein, and fiber within 30 minutes to 2 hours of finishing your workout.
When to EatThe type of activity you’re doing can help determine whether you should eat before your workout. For light or low-impact exercises, such as walking, golfing, or gentle yoga, you may not need to fuel up beforehand. However, you should always eat before exercise that requires a lot of strength, energy, and endurance. This includes tennis, running, and swimming. It’s especially important if you plan to work out for longer than an hour. There are certain times you may want to eat during strenuous exercise lasting more than an hour, such as during a marathon. This is necessary to maintain blood glucose levels needed to continue moving. It also helps you avoid using up stored energy in your muscles, which can help you build muscle mass.
RecommendationsIf you do work out on an empty stomach at times, don’t sweat it, but it may not be best for strenuous or long-lasting activities. You are your own best guide, so listen to your body and do what feels best for you. Stay properly hydrated, maintain a balanced diet, and live a lifestyle in line with your best health interests. And remember to talk to your doctor before starting any new exercise program.
Bottom LineWhether to eat before or after a workout depends on your personal fitness goals, your planned workout, and any underlying health concerns. Your body’s responses to exercise can differ based on whether or not you eat before exercise. Exercising fasted increases your body’s ability to use fat for fuel. However, research does not show that this translates to a greater loss of body fat. The majority of studies do not show a clear benefit to eating before short-duration aerobic exercise or intermittent exercise like HIIT. However, some studies have shown that eating before exercise improved performance. While some mixed results have been reported, eating before long-duration exercise is probably beneficial.



, ,




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *