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early morning fueling

Not sure if there is a definitive answer to this but when should I eat when early morning training .its either a swim or commute on the bike not more than 40 mins of either and I currently go out empty and eat a decent breakfast after. I have no idea if this is best or have I got to get up earlier and eat first but is it a good idea going straight out with a full stomach.


  • risris Posts: 1,002

    i guess it depends on how your body responds to having breakfast sat in there while you train. i commute by bike most days by bike and normally scarf my breakfast down about 40mins before i head out. because it is my morning commute i don't tend to batter it that hard as i don't want to arrive at the office too manky.

    morning swims are similar - brekky 30-40mins before hitting the water. i don't suffer with any problems, but that could just be me. 

  • Andrew4Andrew4 Posts: 190

    I tend to scarf down breakfast and take my short commute (I can't count this as training) pretty soon after and then will do a wattbike/swim/run circa 35-40 minutes after breakfast. This works fine for me. I do tend to plan one "fasted session" each week (usually a longer wattbike or run session) and its noticeable in these sessions that performance is down between 5 and 10% (the legs just won't go) which is expected (see the recent fasted training article). I would therefore be wary of doing all your training before you eat anything as you may not be getting the most bang for your buck and might find you can deliver a higher quality session with less ache and a similar heart rate.

  • Hi Andrew, can you post a link to the fasted article please as I can't find it - thanks!


  • Thanks for the help. Guess I'll have to get up a bit ealier.
  • For the last year, I've been having a large glass of water in bed 10 mins before getting up to either swim, bike (turbo) or run for 1-1.5hrs, drinking only electrolyte drinks (low/zero calorie) during the session. Once finished I then quickly have a recovery smoothie (milk,oats, frozen berries, banana, melon). I feel completely fine during those sessions and don't feel like I need to eat. I started doing this in the hope of burning some fat off my stomach (like most blokes that's where is all resides), however after a year, I might have lost a couple of % of body fat but nothing significant (I train around 10hrs a week). For 2015, I've started having a mouthful of yoghurt and nuts before each session to see if having some food in me makes any difference. I honestly can't say I've noticed any and my body fat % seems to be unaltered either. I guess the one benefit is when it comes to race day, it's usually early morning and I don't feel the need to eat too much (usually a bowl of porridge and banana a couple of hours before) yet I still feel strong enough to go longer with just a carb drink on the bike and a few gels or bars. So, to conclude, I've no idea what works best either, I seem to be able to train equally well for an hour whether I've eaten or not. To coin a phrase used often in any article about training, diets, nutrition, what ever works best for you is best. Sorry, I know this isn't particularly helpful but my point (for me at least) is having tried various approaches, I can't say I've noticed any significant change either way. Regarding the body fat, I could probably eat less during the day and see if that helps lose the fat, as I suspect my overall intake is more than it needs to be but I love to eat and I'm always hungry so that's another challenge completely!  

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