Cardio can be effective whether it is done while you are fasted or not. However, research shows that if your goal is fat loss then the best time to do cardio is in a fasted state (before breakfast or at least 4 hours after a meal. ). I personally do cardio 5-6 times a week every morning before breakfast and I have seen dramatic changes in my physique so I know that this research is true.
It also doesn’t take hours upon hours of intense, heart-throbbing painful cardio to lose fat as most people may imagine in their minds; a simple one hour walk on the treadmill at a speed of 3.5 mph five days a week, while following a healthy diet, can totally help transform your body over time – the key is remaining consistent with your diet and cardio and the results will come.
Whether you do cardio in a fasted or fed state, the calories burned will essentially be the same. The difference between the two is where your body will get its energy from. If you do your cardio in a fasted state the body will break down stored fats in order to fuel the work out. In this situation, your insulin level is low and will not interfere with lipolysis(fat burning process), thus allowing you to access and burn more stored body fat for fuel.
When you eat and then train within the four hour window (before you are considered fasted), the body will have already converted foods into glucose (sugar) which increases your insulin levels, which then in turn suppresses lipolysis. The reason for this is because lipolysis actually takes longer to initiate than glucosis (process of turning foods into sugar for fuel) so the body will use glucose because it is the fastest way to get energy to satisfy workload demands since it is readily available.
Research has also shown that fasted cardio increases the efficiency of lipolysis by 20% more compared to doing cardio in a fed state. Although in both cases one’s metabolic rate will be revved up for the next 24 hours, more stored fat will be burned when doing cardio in a fasted state.
Even though there is really only a small difference, say, 120 calories (13 grams) of fat burned off per day when doing fasted cardio, these losses will eventually add up to almost a pound of pure fat burned off in a month. If you stick to this simple yet effective method, pounds of fat will be melted off in the following months simply because you chose to do your cardio at the best time possible.
The human body prefers to take the easy way out of things because it wants to conserve energy and maintain homeostasis (regulation and balance of its functions). It hates when things change. That is why when it come to changing your body, such as building muscle or losing fat, one has to FORCE the body to change; which is why getting results takes time, patience, and perseverance, and why most people fail to stay the course and achieve the body they want.
Just imagine yourself changing by implementing this simple yet powerful knowledge into your cardio routine and sticking to it for months. Try it out and see for yourself. You have nothing to lose but your unwanted body fat.
Angelo John Gage | Elite.
I personally love doing cardio fasted, I don’t do it year round, just when I’m cutting, it’s not for everyone, but you might want to give it a go.
Anddddddd… If you are worried that you are burning precious muscle, read up this next paragraph:
Multiple studies show that “most people start to lose muscle mass after 24 to 48 hours of fasting” so no need to worry about that 🙂 Just go home and eat your regular breakfast right after.
“Normally, the body will only start to use muscle tissue for energy in the case of starvation. If you have an eating disorder such as anorexia nervosa or engage in long-term fasting, however, or if you are sick with a chronic disease, such as cancer, and you are unable to consume a balanced diet that contains sufficient calories, your metabolism changes. That means the rate at which you burn calories for fuel changes. Over time, as your body chemistry is altered and you continue to be undernourished, you may lose muscle because your body resorts to breaking down its own tissue in search of fuel”
By Molly McAdams from live strong.com