Pre or post workout eating

Ask and answer questions, discuss research and applications

Moderators: Ironman, Jungledoc, ianjay, stuward

Post Reply
MrWonderful
Novice
Novice
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 2:42 pm

Pre or post workout eating

Post by MrWonderful » Fri Apr 25, 2008 10:21 am

I generally workout around 6am. Typically I get up and rush to my gym (5 minute walk), workout (40 to 60 minutes), come home and drink some whey and eat breakfast. My question is should I be eating something prior to my workout or am I worrying about nothing? If you're wondering my reasoning for not eating prior to my workout it's that I only have a 2 hour window to workout (6-8 am) and also I don't like feeling bloated while lifting.

User avatar
TimD
In Memoriam: TimD
In Memoriam: TimD
Posts: 3129
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2005 8:04 am
Location: Va Beach, Va

Post by TimD » Fri Apr 25, 2008 10:40 am

Other's will probably tell you to have a small protein/carb drink prior to working out, and yes, it's a good idea. However, I usually work out upon rising, and just a cup of coffee works fine for me, and I chow down afterwardsMy feelings are, if you don't have problems working out on an empty stomach, fine, eat after. If you do, then get a small meal prior. The prior is most likely the more optimal, but it hasn't phased me in the least by going in empty.
Tim

corless319_
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 269
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 4:19 pm

Post by corless319_ » Fri Apr 25, 2008 10:46 am

I agree whole heartedly tim. I usually eat empty then chow down right after but my after gym meal is dinner not breakfast.

ironmaiden708
moderator
moderator
Posts: 1115
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 11:27 am
Location: Kibbutz Ketura

Post by ironmaiden708 » Fri Apr 25, 2008 11:15 am

If you want a quick little snack you could have a peice of whole wheat toast and a protein shake w/ 1/2 milk and water.

Chris_A
Associate Member
Associate Member
Posts: 407
Joined: Tue Apr 22, 2008 3:13 pm

Post by Chris_A » Fri Apr 25, 2008 1:26 pm

What are your goals to working out. If you are specifically looking for bigger muscles (bodybuilding as opposed to pure strength), then you are hurting yourself by not eating before a workout.

Studies have shown that consuming carbohydrates before a workout can modify your body’s hormonal responses to the training. In particular, glucose and insulin levels are above baseline which leads to an anabolic (grow) environment for your muscles. Further, the elevated glucose and insulin levels blunted the cortisol response (by 92%!) thus stopping cortisol’s catabolic (break down) activity on muscle. This resulted in a 19% to 22% greater gain in muscle tissue.

So, if you’re looking to build muscle fast, then you should have a pre-workout “meal”. A quick shake is fine. If nothing else, then have a glass of 1% milk which will give you both cards and protein. For even more carbs, put the milk in a blender with half a banana. Or, if possible, get a protein & carb powder and add it to your milk. That’s all you should need to see greater results.

Oh, and here is a link to one of the studies done on this.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11905937

MrWonderful
Novice
Novice
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 2:42 pm

Post by MrWonderful » Fri Apr 25, 2008 2:44 pm

Chris_A wrote:What are your goals to working out. If you are specifically looking for bigger muscles (bodybuilding as opposed to pure strength), then you are hurting yourself by not eating before a workout.

Studies have shown that consuming carbohydrates before a workout can modify your body’s hormonal responses to the training. In particular, glucose and insulin levels are above baseline which leads to an anabolic (grow) environment for your muscles. Further, the elevated glucose and insulin levels blunted the cortisol response (by 92%!) thus stopping cortisol’s catabolic (break down) activity on muscle. This resulted in a 19% to 22% greater gain in muscle tissue.

So, if you’re looking to build muscle fast, then you should have a pre-workout “meal”. A quick shake is fine. If nothing else, then have a glass of 1% milk which will give you both cards and protein. For even more carbs, put the milk in a blender with half a banana. Or, if possible, get a protein & carb powder and add it to your milk. That’s all you should need to see greater results.

Oh, and here is a link to one of the studies done on this.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11905937
I'm going for more muscle strength than size. I want to get bigger just not that much bigger while reducing overall bf%. I'm 5'9" 165lb right now at around 10-15% bf and would like to be around 170-175 at 5-10% bf.

User avatar
TimD
In Memoriam: TimD
In Memoriam: TimD
Posts: 3129
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2005 8:04 am
Location: Va Beach, Va

Post by TimD » Fri Apr 25, 2008 3:00 pm

With those goals in mind, it surely couldn't hurt. I just don't like having a lot in my stomach when working out, so I skip it. Plus, gaining excess size isn't right up there in my prioities.
Tim

Chris_A
Associate Member
Associate Member
Posts: 407
Joined: Tue Apr 22, 2008 3:13 pm

Post by Chris_A » Fri Apr 25, 2008 3:17 pm

If you’re going for pure strength gains, then I’d still advise a pre-workout shake. It will provide the fuel you need for very intense work with the iron. That way, you don’t burn through all of your glycogen stores which could lead to catabolysis of lean muscle tissue.

To gain strenght without major hypertrophy (larger muscles) keep your weights heavy and your rep range low. Pick a weight that will work you in the 4RM to 5RM range. That is, you should only be able to lift the weight 4 or 5 times before complete failure. Low rep range with heavy weight will lead to more neurological adaptations that will make you much stronger but without significant metabolic and cellular changes (hypertrophy and big muscles).

Here’s a good article on how your body responds to rep ranges.

http://www.freedomfly.net/Articles/Trai ... ning29.htm

Still if you don’t want to eat before your workout, then you can get away with skipping it. If you do so, I’d strongly suggest you get a post-workout “meal” ASAP though. This will help replace glycogen stores and prevent massive protein catabolysis where you might actually lose some of the lean muscle tissue you already have.

MrWonderful
Novice
Novice
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 2:42 pm

Post by MrWonderful » Fri Apr 25, 2008 3:19 pm

So it sounds like I should have a little something before I workout then. Would a slice of toast (wheat of course) with some peanut butter on it be fine? Also, my general philosophy up to this point concerning eating was just to consume enough if not slightly more to get me through my day while maintaining a good balance of protien and carbs in every meal with fats here and there.

Edit- Just saw that Chris was posting while I was typing. I do generally eat immediately post workout while, eggs, toast and coffee. I also have a whey shake (Mix plus water) premade to drink once I get home while making breakfast.
Last edited by MrWonderful on Fri Apr 25, 2008 3:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

ironmaiden708
moderator
moderator
Posts: 1115
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 11:27 am
Location: Kibbutz Ketura

Post by ironmaiden708 » Fri Apr 25, 2008 3:21 pm

Thats would be fine, (WHOLE wheat). Thats generally the idea eat enough to hold you over for a few hours until the next meal.

Chris_A
Associate Member
Associate Member
Posts: 407
Joined: Tue Apr 22, 2008 3:13 pm

Post by Chris_A » Fri Apr 25, 2008 4:00 pm

If you’re going to use whole food before a workout (toast with peanut butter), then try to eat it 30 minutes before your workout. That way it has time to digest and become available for use. For a liquid shake, it will digest more quickly, so 15 minutes before is ok.

TeeBee
Apprentice
Apprentice
Posts: 104
Joined: Tue Jun 20, 2006 3:37 pm

Post by TeeBee » Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:32 am

I wake up at 6, have some lowfat yogurt, then hit the gym. A three-block walk to the gym, and the meal's digested. I have found that this works best for me.

Maybe I'll try toast and PB or a protein shake one day. But I really recommend at least putting something in your belly before working out.

ironmaiden708
moderator
moderator
Posts: 1115
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 11:27 am
Location: Kibbutz Ketura

Post by ironmaiden708 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:55 am

have some lowfat yogurt,
Have full fat plain yogurt in its place.

Post Reply