What to Eat Before a Morning Workout

What to eat before a morning workout? This is not just a question but main talking point for people looking for healthy and fit life. They want to get maximum benefit from their time spent workout and so they have to know it.

Two things are most important for a healthy body – exercise and a balanced diet. It is said that for a healthy body, as much exercise and other physical activity is necessary, equally it is necessary to take balanced amount of nutrition.

In such a situation, people often only care about what to eat throughout the day, but very few people pay attention to what should be eaten before a workout. Let us tell here that pre workout meal is also most important for a healthy lifestyle.

As per mayoclinic ” Eating and exercise go hand in hand. What to eat and when to eat depends upon exercise you do.”

In this article, you will know what to eat before gym and why it is important to have the right diet before a morning workout. Let us see what is important to take before a morning workout.

Is it Required to Eat Before a Morning Workout?

There is no one word answer to this question. It depends upon your workout needs, duration and medical condition.

In many cases when you go for a morning workout, your body has low sugar level and you need to have a little snacks before starting workout.

If your goal is to lose weight it is better to go for morning workout without taking meal. To meet the required energy your body will burn stored fat and convert it into energy.

Also when you do workout for muscles growth or mass gain you should take some small amount of easily digestible food. As a result you will sustain workout for longer duration and high strength training.

What to Eat Before Morning Workout Cardio Training

Cardio workout is one of the many morning workouts most people prefer to do. However, Cardio workouts may be of three types – high intensity short duration, moderate to high intensity long duration and low to moderate intensity long duration.

Your meal before morning workout may be different in all three cases.

Meals Before High Intensity Short Duration Cardio Workout

For high intensity short duration cardio workout which lasts for about 30 minutes, your body uses stored glycogen as source of energy.

However, if you are doing work out before breakfast it’s better to some amount of carbohydrate intake. For this depending upon your preferences you can eat following foods.

  • Bread with butter
  • A Banana
  • Milk or Fruit beverage
  • Applesauce

Meals Before Low Intensity Long Duration Cardio Workout

For such type of workout you should have good energy level and so it’s better to have a small amount of snacks before starting them. Such workouts include

  • Running
  • Cycling
  • Rowing

During workout your body uses carbohydrate and fat as source of energy. But your body burns fat more slowly than carbohydrate to fuel the energy.

Therefore to sustain the long duration exercise it’s advisable to take 20-30 g of carbohydrate plus some protein before workout. For this you consume following food.

  • One glass milk and one banana
  • One egg and butter bread.
  • Oatmeal

What to Eat Before Morning Workout for Strength Training

In case of strength training you need use more power but not for longer period. However, if you don’t want to feel fatigued take small meal or snack before going for workout.

To be precise, you should take protein plus carbohydrate in your meal. Carbohydrate will give you energy for strength training and protein will grow and recover muscles.

My friend and Fitness Trainer and Dietitian Mr. Kunal recommends you take the meal or snack 1-2 hour before going for workout. But, if you don’t have more time it’s better get easily digestible snack before 30 minutes.

Following foods you can consume for a strength training.

  • A sandwich
  • Boiled eggs
  • One glass milk
  • Bread omelette
  • Oatmeal
  • Orange Juice

What to Eat Before Morning Workout for Weight Loss

Most of the people believe that they don’t need to eat before morning workout. Common belief is that when you workout without taking any meal your body will burn stored fat for energy and so you will lose weight.

But, this belief is not fully true. If you do exercise without taking any carbohydrate, you will have energy deficiency and your body will not take interest to exercise or you will not sustain for longer period.

So, the best way out is take small amount of carbohydrate diet before morning workout. Needless to say, please ensure that you don’t feel stomach pain.

Therefore, before morning workout you can eat following food depending upon you food preferences.

  • Oatmeal
  • Glucon D juice
  • Fruit
  • Milk
  • Egg

What to Eat Before Morning Workout for Muscles Growth

For muscles build up you need to strength training and supplement it with high protein diet. Protein grows and repair muscles when you perform various resistance training.

For muscles building you need to increase your workout load progressively. You should ensure that you are not hungry before going for high strength training.

In absence of protein diet your muscles breakdown and repair work may get disturbed. Although it is not necessary to eat before morning workout, you must be on a high protein intake diet plan.

Please ensure that you consume protein as per your body weight. For example, if your body weight is 80 kg you need at least 80 g protein per day to sustain your workout.

In absence of healthy protein rich diet you can supplement your diet with a good protein powder having no side effects.

The Bottom Line

Well, whether to eat or what to eat before morning workout totally depends upon individual.

Still, for general, if you are going for high strength training or cardio workout for longer duration your body needs to have that much energy to sustain.

So, for an exercise of 45 minutes duration or more you can get small snacks meal 1-3 hours before workout. Please ensure your meal is a combination of carbohydrate and protein.

However, for exercise of lower than 45 minutes you need not to have meal before morning workout.