I’m just curious how significant of a difference are the 2 on fat burning? I understand that your glycogen stores are lower after you haven’t eaten since the night before. But how much difference is there between that and your glycogen stores post-training? I can’t really seem to find an answer online. I find a lot of comparisons of fasted cardio to later in the day but not fasted cardio to post training. Just wondering…?
Another great question. There is not a perfect answer for this question but here is my take on it.
the two best times to do cardio is post workout and first thing in the a.m. reason, your glycogen stores are depleted. After a nights sleep, you have basically fasted what say, 6 hours or so. When you get up to do your cardio, your body doesn’t have to initially burn through glycogen before it gets into fat burning. Same as post workout, your glycogen stores get depleted during your workout, as all yoru glycogen is used as energy to get through your workout, and then you step on a machine for cardio and again, you move into fat burning quicker. Now just looking at the facts…
nights sleep— 6 hours fast
post workout— been eating all day, get a great workout, glycogen stores depleted but still wasn’t a 6 hour fast… Have more meals in you that maybe haven’t been burned through… But then again you just had a ridiculous workout so are burning that glycogen up quicker than a nights sleep where there is no activity other than your bodily functions… See how it is really a hard topic.
Those are the two best times to maximize efficiency but it can be a sticky subject. Either way, it is better to pick one of the two times over eating a meal and jumping on the treadmill.
Another thought is when you start doing two a days, even when you aren’t pre contest, when you want to pick up your metabolism twice, maybe 20-25 in the a.m. and 20-25 in the p.m. (less at once but twice a day), it gets you into the routine of maximizing both most efficient times to do cardio!
If you are pre contest, getting up for a.m cardio gets you in the routine of when you will be doing a.m. and post workout cardio so that also is nice to already get adjusted.
On another note, I am just such a firm believer in starting your day right and getting up, getting your heart rate up, digging into those fat stores quicker, getting that natural adrenaline going and endorphins flowing. Endorphins put you in a euphoric state and if you can get those going first thing in the a.m., you will start your day off on the right foot, feeling amazing, and from there that maps out the rest of your day!!! The energy you carry from your morning is the energy you carry with you for the rest of the day so getting those endorphins flowing ensures your day is that much better!!!
Hope that helps.