If you’re trying to lose weight, logging hours in the gym is hard enough. Now, there is research that suggests WHEN you exercise could give you a boost and make your goals more achievable — see when you should be hitting the gym below.
According to a new article in The New York Times, working out in the morning is best, because you have an empty stomach, and you’re in what scientists call “a fasted state.”
The article cited a 2010 study done in Belgium where men increased their calories by 30 percent and their fat consumption by 50 percent for six weeks.
There were three groups: one group did not exercise, one group worked out after breakfast, and one group worked out first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.
The group that did not exercise gained an average of six pounds. The after-breakfast exercisers gained an average of three pounds. However, the real finding comes in the group that worked out “in a fasted state” — they didn’t gain any weight.
Although we don’t recommend increasing your calorie and fat consumption like they did in this study, it does give hope to a “cheat meal” here and there without worrying about gaining weight.
Peter Hespel is a professor at the Research Center for Exercise and Health at Catholic University Leuven in Belgium and the author of the study cited in the Times article. He says:
“The optimal strategy to prevent increases in body weight is obviously to combine a healthy, well-balanced diet with a physically active lifestyle.”
If you do cheat, like the participants did, you can conclude “that early-morning exercise in the fasted state is more potent than an identical amount of exercise in the fed state.”
Thus, an empty stomach workout may burn more fat and help you reach your weight loss goals faster.
HollywoodLifers, do you work out in the morning or at night? Or not at all?