If you’re exercising first thing in the morning, you may be inclined to go to your workout on an empty stomach. After all, not many people have a big appetite at 5 am. Is it best to train on ’empty’ or eat? If you eat, what should you have?
First of all, your body primarily uses carbohydrates for fuel. Fat contributes to fuel needs, but your main source of energy comes from glucose. After an evening of rest, your body’s stores of glycogen (stored glucose) is somewhat depleted. Your brain prefers glucose for energy as well. Given this information, for optimum performance and energy, it IS best to eat something prior to your morning workout.
Your best bet for a quick morning meal is some complex carbohydrate for longer lasting energy, mixed with a small amount of protein to moderate your blood sugar. You want to avoid an insulin spike at all costs (this means don’t eat only simple carbohydrates!). Depending on your energy needs you could try:
-a hard boiled egg and half a slice of whole wheat toast
-a cheese string and an apple
-a glass of milk and half a banana
Make sure to drink lots of water during your workout and follow up with a breakfast with complex carbs and protein.