The Checkup: Study Shows How to Burn More Fat During Morning Workouts

Ramp up your a.m. exercise with this easy trick.


• Kudos to you if you’re bright-eyed enough to work out in the morning. I’m just not, no matter how how hard I try (Ugh. Snooze button.), so I’ll take this opportunity to pass on a bit of science-proven wisdom that you might find useful, even if I don’t: If you work out on an empty stomach in the morning, you can burn more body fat than if you eat breakfast before exercising. Researchers at Northumbria University in the U.K. made the discovery using a small group of male athletes who were asked to run on the treadmill first thing in the morning; half ate breakfast beforehand, and half didn’t, running only on fuel from dinner the night before. They found that men in the latter group burned almost 20 percent more body fat than their breakfast-eating peers. “Exercise increases the total amount of energy we expend and a greater proportion of this energy comes from existing fat if the exercise is performed after an overnight fast,” study author Javier Gonzalez says. “Our results show that exercise does not increase your appetite, hunger or food consumption later in the day and to get the most out of your session it may be optimal to perform this after an overnight fast.” Read more over at ScienceDaily.

• Guys, if you’re worried about your sperm count, I have two pieces of advice: exercise more, watch T.V. less. A new study found that moderate to vigorous exercise boosts sperm count, while moderate to vigorous T.V. watching lowers it. More here.

All of your sex questions answered—by science. Thank you, Blisstree.

  • meghan

    Ugh I hear contrasting reports on this aaaaall the time. I used to do mornings on an empty stomach, but heard a lot about how that deteriorates muscle and it’s good to have at least a little food energy to work with. Now this.