T Nation

Early Morning Training Help

The last few years I’ve been lifting after work and making good progress until recently when I switched jobs and now have to lift in the morning. Since then I’ve had to get up at 4:30a lifting by 6a and out the door by 7:30a problem is every lift so far has gone down, weights I’ve pushed for 5 now I have a hard time moving at all, it’s all I can do to finish an entire session, example today was deadlift/good mornings/curls 5/3/1 3x3 week I finished 2 sets of deads, couldn’t pull the last one at all, good mornings only made 4 of 5 sets and curls 3, felt like I was going to pass out afterward.

I started out trying fasted training, which sucked, so of late I’ve been eating 2 cups of oats before training and that doesn’t seem much better.
Think this be temporary? Should I maybe try some Surge Workout Fuel or something else prior to training? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Carb-up before bed.

You absolutely need to eat. You fasted for 6-8 hours while you slept.

1 cup of oats
8oz milk
1 tbs peanut butter
60-100g whey
fruit
creatine

All in a blender with some ice. Should come out to two big cups of food. Drink that in about 10 minutes as soon as you wake up. Get stuff together and go lift. Its going to be heavy so the sooner you drink it the better. Have everything in the blender in the fridge the night before and just blast it when you get up.

  • a caffeine pill

Or at the very least have your oatmeal and add a few scoops of whey somehow.

Serious question.

What’s wrong with fasted lifting? I mean, if it doesnt effect the numbers you touch while lifting…I can drop creatine,beta alaninembcaa and be good to go…is this detrimental?

I do fine without eating before my morning workout, but I do drink a Metabolic Drive shake during the workout.

Thanks for the help guys.

Matty I’m a former fat ass so carbing before bed I don’t think would be a good idea?

Bonez, I’m going to try that next training day (Thursday morning), sounds good.

dday, last year before Women’s Nationals I met with my coach at 5am for training before work once a week for a month or two. I am an afternoon/evening lifter. I ate 1-2 bananas during (like 1 before, 1 after squats), and protein + carb after lifting. Our workouts were intense - 2 hours for the three PL lifts, in equipment, near 1RMs. I did NOT carb before bed, and I was having to monitor my weight carefully for my weight class at that time.

My confidence in the equipment grew as a result of our sessions, but more than that, I was able to lift at any time, and not worry about whether I was “up” for it.

I exercise at 6:30 AM and I drink 2 scoops of whey in milk with creatine during the first half of my work out, then drink water.
Oh, coffee on the train on the way there.

As a definite non-morning person… I’ve just started lifting in the morning and actually love it once I get going. I usually wake up around 5:30am, have two servings of oatmeal, a smoothy with frozen fruit, a teaspoon of coffee, scoop of Metabolic Drive complete, yogurt, and milk. Let that sit for like 20 minutes or so… then I have one scoop of Surge and 1/2 scoop of the German creatine before I go.

Get home, have the other scoop of Surge, a scoop of creatine, head to work… and have a peanut butter and jam sandwich when I get to work. Then the rest of the day… just eating as usual.

I think it’s just important to get to bed early… get your 8-9 hours of sleep, and be able to stomach a good breakfast. Add some coffee or green tea in there.

I have been doing the morning thing for a while. I am still trying to figure out the BEST mix so I just want to see where this goes…

[quote]dday wrote:
The last few years I’ve been lifting after work and making good progress until recently when I switched jobs and now have to lift in the morning. Since then I’ve had to get up at 4:30a lifting by 6a and out the door by 7:30a problem is every lift so far has gone down, weights I’ve pushed for 5 now I have a hard time moving at all, it’s all I can do to finish an entire session, example today was deadlift/good mornings/curls 5/3/1 3x3 week I finished 2 sets of deads, couldn’t pull the last one at all, good mornings only made 4 of 5 sets and curls 3, felt like I was going to pass out afterward.

I started out trying fasted training, which sucked, so of late I’ve been eating 2 cups of oats before training and that doesn’t seem much better.
Think this be temporary? Should I maybe try some Surge Workout Fuel or something else prior to training? Any suggestions would be appreciated.[/quote]

Wake up and have some plain wheat bread and a shake. At least 30 minutes before you train.
Then take a colossal amount of stimulants (400mg-1.5g of caffeine) coupled with your preworkout supp. Train

[quote]BONEZ217 wrote:
You absolutely need to eat. You fasted for 6-8 hours while you slept.

1 cup of oats
8oz milk
1 tbs peanut butter
60-100g whey
fruit
creatine

All in a blender with some ice. Should come out to two big cups of food. Drink that in about 10 minutes as soon as you wake up. Get stuff together and go lift. Its going to be heavy so the sooner you drink it the better. Have everything in the blender in the fridge the night before and just blast it when you get up.

  • a caffeine pill

Or at the very least have your oatmeal and add a few scoops of whey somehow. [/quote]

Why the ice?

I take a stimulant, protein shake and beta alanine before I go lift. I do that as soon as I get up to get something on my stomach and then i lift 30-60 min later. I’ve found now that I’m stronger in the morning after a good nights sleep than I am in the evening. I’m up around 3:30 or 4 lifting by 5.

wake up about 15 minutes earlier, and take a hot shower. this will help wake up your CNS. like others said, try drinking some coffee as well. alpha gpc, aceytl l- carnitine or tyrosine could be helpful as well.

i personally don’t train fasted but if I ate a bunch of food pre workout that early, i would not feel great. i’d suggest a big dose of BCAA’s pre and during or maybe you could try some finibars or SWF. eat a big post workout breakfast.

it might take some time, but your lifts will improve. your body will eventually adapt to this new training time. good luck

[quote]babaganoosh wrote:

[quote]BONEZ217 wrote:
You absolutely need to eat. You fasted for 6-8 hours while you slept.

1 cup of oats
8oz milk
1 tbs peanut butter
60-100g whey
fruit
creatine

All in a blender with some ice. Should come out to two big cups of food. Drink that in about 10 minutes as soon as you wake up. Get stuff together and go lift. Its going to be heavy so the sooner you drink it the better. Have everything in the blender in the fridge the night before and just blast it when you get up.

  • a caffeine pill

Or at the very least have your oatmeal and add a few scoops of whey somehow. [/quote]

Why the ice?
[/quote]

Try it without and you tell me if you can drink it. All the warm ingredients will instantly overpower the milk and turn it into a room temperature sludge. The ice will thin it out a bit too

Don’t stress it, your body will get used/adapt to it pretty quick. I felt the same way when I initially made the switch to mornings.

Definitely “eat” like others here said. I do something similar to what Bonez recommends.

Surge Recovery and oatmeal in water
1 tbs almond butter
1 tbs honey

(I don’t blend it all though. Just use a shaker for the surge and oatmeal. Eat the AB and honey.)

I take a caffeine pill also but only because it is easier and quicker than coffee.

Now that all this is routine, I can’t wait to have it after getting up.

I wake up at 4:30am as well and am at the gym by 6-6:30. First thing I have to do is have some coffee on an empty stomach to help me come out of my comatose. After that, I get my peri meal made and head out the door. On top of what bonez suggested, I like to take out the peanut butter and add in some frozen blueberries. Shit is marvelous.

2:15am get up
2:25 eat 2 cups raw oats and whey protein. coffee
3am maltodextrin, bcaa’s, whey
3:30am train

I am hungry when I get up. Eventually you will adjust.

I usually get 6-8 hours depending on the day. I’m not much of a sleeper, with my previous job I would only sleep about 5hrs and still got stronger, didn’t gain or lose weight very easily but did get stronger.

Thanks everyone for their suggestions and recipes, I’m going to try them all.

I work out at 0500 on some mornings, in which case Ill get up at 0400. Right when I get up I throw down 2 FiNiBARS, then I have Surge Recovery during my workout, and 2 scoops whey afterwards. Thats an easy 900-1000 calories. You could not get up quite as early and still do this, but I like to let my back and joints loosen up for 45-60 minutes before I throw them to the wolves.