Early morning exercise and eating

By: Alexis Williams, Jul 17, 2014
  Question

I get up early every morning to work out. Should I be eating something before I exercise?

Should you eat before working out at the crack of dawn?

Eating a small morning snack will improve energy levels for an early morning workout after an overnight fast. The key is to eat something light enough that won't sit in your stomach and be heavy during the workout.

I recommend 100-200 calories of quick absorbing carbohydrates such as a banana, a glass of 100 per cent fruit juice or smoothie, a piece of toast, or a small bowl of cereal. If strength training, including a small amount of protein as found in milk, yogurt or peanut butter may be beneficial.

Be sure to follow the workout with a more substantial breakfast including both carbohydrate and protein such as a bowl of oatmeal with a side of egg whites and fruit.

Alexis Williams, B.A.Sc., M.A.N., RD, is a registered dietitian and certified personal trainer. She counsels all types of people, including athletes, on how to eat for better performance and to improve their overall health. Alexis uses practical eating and strategies to guide her clients toward achieving their goals. She believes that nutrition and activity go hand-in-hand to shaping a healthy lifestyle.