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People often ask me whether mornings of fasted cardio are the most effective way to burn fat.
It has been suggested that when you perform cardio fasted in the morning, you burn up to 20% more fat. This is because as you sleep & fast overnight your body conserves its carbohydrate stores & mobilizing fat for fuel. However, your body also breaks down protein into glucose overnight, so fasted morning cardio utilizes more fat, but potentially more amino acids for fuel, which isn't ideal if you want to build muscles.
The problem is that many studies on fasted cardio focus solely on how many calories are burned during exercises. But with HIIT, the real benefits come after training as it burns more calories & fat after a workout than conventional cardio exercises. In fact, studies have show that HIIT workouts lead to as much as twice the total fat lost. Even though conventional slow-pace cardio routines burned more total calories & fat during the actual workout, the HIIT programs somehow led to greater total fat loss.
If performing cardio exercises first thing in the morning is best for your schedule, then go for it, but try to have a pre-workout protein shake. If your goal is building muscle, then I highly recommend you have a protein shake & some unrefined carbohydrates, such as fruit, before the workout... The above is just a grossly simplified overview - please consult your PT for further advice.
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