I am happy to report that project “6AM Workout” is going well.  I’ve even started to wake up before my alarm in the morning, which somehow makes the whole excruciating habit a bit less excruciating.  Could it be that my body craves movement first thing in the morning?

Could be, but more than likely I’m just trying to convince it that it does.

I took a detour from my regularly scheduled AM workout yesterday because I knew I would be training with The Fella later in the day.  I have managed to convince him to add me to his client list at a pretty steep discount (err, without paying).  By “convince” what I mean is nagged incessantly until he succumbed to my wiles.  

Honestly, I’m doing him a favor.  The better shape I’m in, the more likely I am to walk around naked (Hi Mom, what I meant was floor length flannel pajamas)!  I think I’m being downright altruistic 😉

I finished writing early yesterday and had a little over an hour until Roy met me at the gym, so I decided to pregame with cardio.

This was a mistake, one that I know better than.

First of all, I do a lot of cardio.  This is a personal preference, but the treadmill is my happy place and since I’m living in a relatively stressful world right now, I can go for an hour at a clip just to burn off steam–and usually do.

When my trainer/Fella walked through the doors of the gym and saw that my shirt was already soaked with sweat, he said “Did you eat yet?”

Translation: There is no way you’re going to be able to lift heavy objects for an hour if you have no glycogen reserves in your body.

My answer: No, followed by a bashful look and some fluttering eyelashes.

He was right, my weightlifting session was craptacular.  This was a totally rookie mistake on my part, but one worth blogging about in the off chance that other people may be doing the same thing.

If you tend to workout out on the fairly light end of the spectrum , the order in which you do cardio and strength doesn’t generally matter.  If you’re into intense sweat sessions that consist of intervals, sprints, long durations and perhaps a wee bit of grunting with barbells, the order in which you workout really does.

In an ideal world you would separate your workouts to be well fueled for both, but since most folks can only muster the motivation or time to get to the gym once a day, it’s best to do strength training first and cardio after.  The reason being that cardio depletes the glucose reserves that and raises cortisol levels.

Cortisol interferes with testosterone (you need that to build muscles, you will not become a giant ape man), and contributes to the deterioration of  muscle fiber–making your strength training session all but pointless.

In general I like to circumvent this problem by splitting my workouts.  I prefer to do cardio in the AM on an empty stomach (this has nothing to do with fat burning, I just tend to get nauseous if I do cardio within two hours of eating), eat a whole bunch of yummy things, and then do strength training later in the day.  That’s my ideal schedule, but life doesn’t always workout in the ideal, and when I can only hit the gym once in a day, I should do cardio post weight lifting.

If you do combine, it doesn’t hurt to keep a snack rich in carbs and protein in your gym bag.  Between workouts eat up and rest for 10-15 minutes to let your body replenish its stores.

This morning I got up and got to the gym for some bonding with the treadmill while The Fella was still wrapped up tightly in a blanket burrito, I’ll do my strength training workout later after I’ve eaten a few meals.

Here’s breakfast,

I stopped at a local deli for an egg white omelet with feta, broccoli, spinach,
and a side of watermelon, before I settled into a cafe work and wifi.