Updated: Nov 4, 2020
Does fasted cardio mean accelerated fat loss? Let's see if this method is the secret way to burning more fat.
Is the state of doing cardio without any caloric intake, usually after being in a "starving state". The easiest time to perform fasted cardio is right when you wake up because your body has been in a starved state due to sleep.
Fasted cardio can burn more fat on your body because you would be performing the workout without consuming food. Utilizing this time to work out can help you burn fat and energy storage directly. If you want to get lean quickly or want to lose weight for a specific event, fasted cardio can aid in you achieving that goal as well. Cardio helps fat loss in general and a way to get an extra cardio session in.
But Don’t Get Fooled
Most people turn to fasted cardio and fasted workouts in general in the hope to lose weight and become leaner. But, fasted exercise is actually one of the fastest ways to lose muscle, because our bodies tend to break down muscles for fuel during a session (yikes.) Sometimes even if break down fat cells, they just go back to replenishing themselves! This is how you fasted cardio and actually lose weight:
The best way to lose fat during a fasted cardio is by walking or doing slow-cardio for a 1-2-hour period of time. Slower cardio burns the most cardio during a session but does not have any after-burn effect. You burn the calories during the exercise and that’s it. For most people, a 2-hour cardio session in the morning isn’t feasible or time-sensitive.
2. HIIT training, which is the best fat burning method that has an after-burn effect, is
another idea for cardio. Unfortunately, when doing HIIT in the fasted state, you will
break down fat but way after your session. Meaning your muscles will be used as a fuel
source during the actual workout.
What to Do
If you have the time in the morning to take a 2-hour fasted cardio walk, then that works perfectly for you. You will be burning fat without having a worry. If you do not have the time, like me, eat a little protein before doing fasted cardio. Sounds like it defeats the purpose, but consuming 30-60 calories of proteins, such as whey, nuts, BCAA, egg whites or chicken breast, can help protect your muscles from getting broken down. The small number of calories will still keep your body in a fairly steady fasted state.
Final Verdict -
If done right, fasted cardio can help you burn more fat. But so does regular cardio. So try it out and see if it works for you!