Consuming the right amount of energy to train hard can be as important for maximising fat burn as the practice of training with moderate to low energy (blood sugar) for optimising fat utilisation during your workout.
The debate over whether to eat before training or not is still a very common question for most people we work with and is very much a personal thing, not to mention very dependent on training time of the day.
The factors to consider are:
- If training in the morning before breaking your fast then blood sugar will typically be lower than evening time which may be better for utilizing fat as the main energy source but worse for energy levels. So you’ll need to toss up whether having extra energy enables you to work harder for longer and making up for (and more) the intake of calories. Maybe lower intensity exercise can be fine for some people without food beforehand but higher intensities might require a small intake of carbs to get you through.
- If training late in the day then typically you’d have eaten during the day before hand, the question then being what, when and how much. Again, the same issues apply with having low energy/carbohydrate intake in the few hours before training having a two-edged sword conundrum of pro’s and cons which you’d need to work out which is better for you.
- Some people feel queasy eating before training and some people feel queasy if they DON’T. It may be a personal thing for you so find what works best.
- Ultimately, with personal difference taken into account and supposing you can choose either option, training longer and harder will supersede most energy intakes before training, so unless you are only planning a low intensity bout then having a small portion of carb and protein usually makes up more benefit than consequence in the long run.
Eat up to burn more fat.