Friday, June 27, 2008

Morning Cardio for Fat Loss

I've been wondering what a good approach is for burning extra fat. Should you do cardio before breakfast or after? Here's what I've found so far in my googling. I know this was also said in "Fitness Made Simple" by John Basedow. His does morning cardio routine (on an exercise bike) is done first thing in the morning, before breakfast. Also, the cardio workout should be somewhat light (no huffing and puffing, you should be able to carry on a normal conversation while exercising). This would probably be the "fat burning" heart rate zone, about 60% to 65% of your max heart rate.
Topic: "run before or after breakfast" Ref: Cory said: "Exercising before breakfast will burn fat faster because your blood sugar is so low that your body will be forced to target fat for energy. If you eat before you run, the simple carbs in your food will be burned before your fat is mobilized. The burning order goes acetate, carbs, fat, then protein by the way (so def. do not have a beer before your run). That doesn't mean you shouldn't have anything in your stomach. You should drink water, and - like GNB said - a protein shake would be ideal (with water, not milk or juice) to prevent further muscle catabolism." further down, getNbig said: "You can always do cardio after you lift because your glycogen levels will be really low so again your going to be targeting the FAT!"
Should I do cardio before breakfast? From: Short answer yes, long answer you bet. There is some concern however if you do cardio first thing you are likely to burn more muscle than fat. But that is not necessarily the case. here are the positives of cardio first thing.
  • You are in a fasted state, glycogen levels are low therefore you will burn more fat.
  • Because you haven't eaten insulin levels are low, insulin interferes with the mobilization and burning of fat.
  • If you eat before cardio you simply will burn what you just ate, not fat.
  • It releases endorphins making you fell good for the rest of the day.

The list goes on. But as I said there is a concern for muscle loss. If you are really paranoid have a protein-only meal 30 mins before your cardio but no fat or carbs. Losing muscle due to early morning cardio is simply a result of a bad diet overall and can be avoided if your protein intake is high.

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