Nutrient Timing

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"Do I eat before or after going to the gym?"
Well that depends on what you are doing!

Doing different types of exercise relies on different types of energy, and what you put in your mouth can determine how good of a workout you can get!
 

Weights

When doing weights, your body relies on an energy source called ATP. ATP is the fuel that makes you do big movements, with lots of power and force. Ideally before doing any weights you want to make sure you have plenty of energy in your system, not only to power you through the workout, but for recovery too.

Carbohydrates and sugars are what provide energy to the body and the brain, and if we don’t have enough, we won't be able to perform.
 

How long before training should I eat?

If you are eating a balanced diet, you will consume many Low GI and High GI foods. Timing is everything and if your energy is peaking at the right time, it will produce optimal results. Your Low GI should be consumed 1.5-2 hours before a session, this gives your body time for the energy to peak and sustain at your point of training. High GI between 45-30 mins prior to training will cause an insulin spike and produce an extra boost to your session. After you have done your training you have a 20 min window called your anabolic phase. This is when the body is pumping blood and switching from burning energy to hunting for energy, usually protein and carbohydrates are recommend in this window, any thing after can store as fat, and not be efficiently consumed.
 

Cardio

Cardio relies on a less efficient energy source, and you can solely perform on glycogen and oxygen. Your goal with cardio is to increase fat loss, not so much to perform to lift weights, but you still need to fuel your system. When we want to burn our fat cells, we need insulin levels to be lower, so it has the chance to burn the fat from exercise. Having food before cardio is not absolutely necessary, but before HIIT training it is recommended.
 

How long before training should I eat?

Prior to HIIT training making sure you have a meal 1.5-2 hours beforehand that is Low GI will insure there is energy in your system, but not too much to block your catabolic burning of fat.
Fasted cardio is another option, mainly done in the morning before breakfast, your body has a higher chance of burning fat stores, due to the lower blood sugar levels in the morning. Done at a low to medium intensity for no more than 45 min will insure that your body doesn’t go in to catabolysis, where your body burns your muscle mass for energy. In the morning your body is at its highest state of stress,  which means cortisol levels are high naturally, but putting your body under high stress from exercise can cause the release of extra cortisol if done for too long, and producing extra belly fat caused by the stress hormones, drinking a Branch Chain Amino Acid supplement well help keep your muscle intact, and not used as energy!
 

Summary

Weights
1.5 Hours before – Low GI
45 mins before – High GI
20 mins after - High GI & Protein

Cardio
1.5 hours before – Low GI
20 Mins after - High GI

Fasted Cardio
20 Mins after – High GI
 
 

Let’s Eat!