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Pre- Workout Meal?

I lift early in the mornings. I’m typically in the weightroom one hour after I wake-up. I drink a protein shake right before I go to sleep at night. My question is whether or not there is any benefit from not eating before I lift, if not, what would someone recommend to eat that close to working out. Thanks.

Run a search, it’s been discussed before.

I also work out in the AM, first thing. In a perfect world some preworkout nutrition is probably a good thing, but it’s primarily what your body is used to ( I think ) I can get up at 6:15, drink coffee, start a work out at 7:00 and go heavy, drinking coffee through the whole thing and follow up with surge. For a while I used to drink a highly dilute MRP like in Quart of water but didn’t see a real benefit from it and gave it up.

Hi, CDeck. I can’t work out early without my coffee (black). But in answer to your question, if nothing else, chug down a protein shake. 20-30g of pre-digested whey protein would be ideal. If not, you realize you’re starting out in a catabolic state to begin with and compounding the damage, right? No one in the know (that I know of, anyway) here on T-Mag recommends lifting weights out of bed, in a fasted state, without taking in some nutrition before. 'Tis not the way to maximize your gains.

20g of whey and a banana does it for me…some times a cup of green tea for a little energy boost

Hi Terry,

What about if you’re interested in fat loss primarily? Would you still recommend consuming a preworkout meal? And if so, can I being lifting right away? Does this apply to cardio days too? I basically wake up, go into my basement and start working out (either weights or cardio). My main goal right now is fat loss (I’m at about 19% bf).

Hi, TL. I’d ESPECIALLY recommend that you eat a meal before lifting weights if your goals were fat loss. The fight is to hold on to every bit of lean muscle mass possible while dropping fat. So the focus is always on promoting anabolism and reducing catabolism.



Where you can deviate a bit from my recommendations above is early morning, fasted-state cardio. There are still those who disagree, but the benefits probably outweigh the negatives.



How quickly can you start working out after eating? Well, if your meal were straight, pre-digested whey protein versus meat, eggs or an MRP with casein (which provides more of a sustained release protein) and possibly some carbs, I’d say between half an hour and an hour. That’s my best semi-educated guess. It doesn’t have to be a big meal.

Thanks for input, Terry.

What exactly is ‘predigested whey’? I use Grow and Myoplex for MRPs currently, and also some Optimum Whey powder for low carb meals. I’m not quite sure what or where you get predigested whey. What specifically would you recommend for a preworkout meai?

I train also first thing in the morning and I always have my half serving of surge pre workout.

In short, the answer is yes.


For the reasons why the answer is yes, check out what my man JB has to say P>

I use a MPR like Grow or Whey Protien 1/2 before I work-out in the morning. I also bring my breakfest to the gym so why I am done working out I can eat right away. I have 4-5 egg whites bowl of oatmeal, whey protien shake, and some fruit. If I am not dieting for a show a GROW peanut butter flavor.

As the Buc fan Tampa-Terry so knowledgeably alluded to: pre-workout meal prior to lifting? Always. Prior to cardio? Not in all cases–particularly to TL. At a relatively higher percentage of bodyfat, I would recommend the fasted state cardio, and I would also recommend lower intensity, longer duration (i.e. 60% MHR). The latter recommendation (i.e. lower intensity) would apply to anyone who performs aerobics in a fasted state.

JB’s advice is solid, as always, and that about sums it up. In addition, if you can get up an hour before training, you could consume some hydrolyzed whey (i.e. partially pre-digested) and some natural, unprocessed, grainy carbohydrate like oats. You could then implement a during workout shake, and follow-up training with a similar post-workout shake (or just split one in two: half during and half after).

I am a firm believer that the pre/during/post workout nutrition and timeframe is one not to be messed with to optimize gains and recovery.

Before any workouts, I always drink a protein shake, and eat a bowl of plain oatmeal. I find that the oatmeal gives me the energy I need to get me through my workout.

Sorry to hijack the thread, but I saw Timbo’s name…is this the same Timbo I used to talk to all the time on here? WELCOME BACK!!! I was wondering what happened to you…haven’t seen you on here forever!

Teddy, oh Teddy-Boy…'tis me, Timbo, T-Bo, T-Rock, all of the above. Times are always busy with Grad School and all, but I’ve had a recalling to my roots: T-mag, baby. I’m going to do my best to allocate some free time here, so I look forward to more interactions with you and the gang. Thanks, Teddy…I mean Monty Python:-)

I also do the morning workout thing. I’m in the gym about 75 minutes after I wake up. It’s Tea, a GROW shake as soon as I’m up. I also mix in PowerDrive to my shake. I’m not 100% if this has any interaction w/ Grow but it works well for me. I also eat a PBJ sandwich (organic hypergrainy bread and natural Peanut Butter) for energy.

As soon as I’m done with my workout, after I’ve showered, it’s SURGE time.

I can’t hold much (in food terms) during my workouts. If I’m squatting hard I feel like hurling most days, so I try to ingest the shake at least an hour before I get to the gym and an hour and a half before I squat.