While morning cardio has been a favorite among bodybuilders, exercise scientists have yet to reach a verdict on it’s fat burning effects. In addition, body builders like to do A.M cardio in the fasting state. They assert it mobilizes more body fat and burns more calories all day long.
The argument in favour of morning cardio goes like this:
* Upon waking, your body has been fasting for 7-10 hours and is glycogen depleted. Performing cardio in this state will burn more fat due to the lack of carbohydrates “floating around”.
* Fasting before exercise is superior because eating causes a release of insulin which reduces the amount of fat mobilized.
* There is less carbohydrate in the form of glucose in the bloodstream in the morning, thus you should burn more fat.
*Eating before a workout forces you to burn off what you just ate before you start on your stores of body fat.
* A.M. cardio raises your metabolism for a longer period of time as compared to evening training simply by extended afterburn. This is a function of having less waking hours in the evening.
While many exercise scientists disagree with the notion of morning cardio, there is still some good research to support it. These studies have unquestionably shown that endurance training after an overnight fast enhances fat oxidation.
Despite the fact this research exists, scientists are still skeptical. Some concede you do burn a greater mix of fat in a fasted morning state but they qualify it with “so what?”. “Does it really matter that much? Does it really increase real world fat loss?”
The answer is probably yes to a bodybuilder who needs every fat burning edge they can get and less so for the average fitness partcipant. It is simply not as important in a 24 hour time period when the average gym goer performs their cardio.
In conclusion, morning cardio in the fasting state does burn a greater rate of fat to carbohydrate than cardio performed at other times of the day. For most of us, however, the real life fat loss is negligible. This topic will continue to be one of debate and more research is necessary to find all the answers.
By Dr. Lanny Schaffer