Fasted Cardio - What is it?
On the surface, it seems to make sense. Exercise first thing in the morning on an empty stomach and your body should burn more fat. After all, without food intake for eight to 12 hours, you’re in a fasted state. With glycogen stores depleted and low morning insulin levels, your body has to turn to other energy sources to power through your workout, and it’s more likely to turn to fat for fuel.
What it is Fasted Cardio?
Many people think fasted cardio is simply training on an “empty stomach,” which they usually think is simply a stomach that “feels empty.”
Well, they’re wrong. Fasted cardio is cardio done while in a “fasted” state, wherein your stomach is empty, but it’s a bit more than that. It has to do with how your body processes and absorbs the food you eat.
When you eat food, it gets broken down into various molecules that your cells can use, and these molecules are released into your blood. Insulin is released as well, and its job is to shuttle these molecules into cells. Depending on how much food you eat in a meal, your insulin levels can remain elevated for several hours (anywhere from 3 – 6+).
When your body is digesting and absorbing what you’ve eaten, your body is in a “fed” or “postprandial” state (prandial means “having to do with a meal”). Once it has finished processing and absorbing the nutrients, insulin levels drop to a “minimum” low (or “baseline” level), and your body enters a “fasted” or “postabsorptive” state. Every day your body moves between “fed” and “fasted’ (or “postprandial” and “postabsorptive”) states.
So, to recap:
• Exercise done during periods where insulin levels are elevated and food is still being processed and absorbed is “fed” training.
• Exercise done during periods where insulin is at a low, baseline level and food is no longer being processed and absorbed is “fasted” training.
Why It Is Beneficial For Burning Fat?
One type of cardio training that gets discussed at a very high frequency rate is that of fasted cardio training. The thinking behind this set-up is that you'll get up first thing in the morning and before downing your usual breakfast meal, you'll head straight for the gym and get in a good 30-60 minutes of cardio first.
By doing so, the hopes are that you'll turn directly to your body fat stores for energy rather than utilizing the current glucose in the system as you would be doing had you have had something to eat prior to doing the session.
Some people are quick to shun fasted cardio however, saying that by doing it you're just going to be setting yourself up at an increased loss of lean muscle mass. Some just don't like the idea period.
Others relish the idea of tapping into that stored body fat easier than before and wake up eagerly every morning without ever skipping a beat to hop onto that treadmill in hopes that it'll mean them waking up leaner the next morning.
What Are The Best Pieces Of Commercial Gym Equipment To Accomplish This?
Treadmills are for the most basic impact exercises: walking, jogging and running. Every quality treadmill has the ability to change the speed and incline.
Stairmaster is actually just a brand of stair stepper machine. The motion of a Stairmaster is similar to climbing up steps, but your body weight is actually pushing the steps down. If the difficulty of the Stairmaster is increased, the steps will fall faster which will cause you to step faster.
The rowing machine is the most underrated cardio machine in the gym. Most people do not understand the correct way to use the rowing machine.
Rowing machines are obviously the best cardio machines for simulating rowing but they are great for cardio as well if you know how to use them.