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Early morning workout (like 4:30 am) questions regarding sleep and eating the night before

Hi everyone, I want to start working out before school to get it out of the way, but seeing as school starts at 7:10 for me, I'd have to get up at 4:30 to go exercise. I can get myself out of bed, and I have a serving of fruit as a pre workout snack. I then do some cardio and weight lifting, but I find that I have a real hard time with my endurance and I'm really tired because I don't sleep that well at night. I try to get to bed by 8:30 because I know I won't fall asleep for at least another hour, and I wake up a lot in the night. Does anyone have suggestions for that? I take a lot of natural meds like tryptophane and melatonin, but I wonder if I need something more? Also, should I have a big evening snack before bed with carbs, or would it do me better to eat more throughout the day instead of saving it all for before bed? Could that be making it hard for me to fall asleep? Thanks, and any tips you have for early morning workouts would be gratefully appreciated :)

Mon. Jan 16, 11:11am

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You shouldn't eat for at least 2 to 3 hours before going to bed (some prefer 4) Especially carb loading! Don't do it! If you must, I've read protein is a better snack before bed, like around 100 to 150 calories or so, something small. But ideally, you are not eating before bed like that. Why would you want to consume calories right before bed? You don't need them then.

Fruit as snack before work out at 4:30am? Why not try something with less sugar? Better yet, why not skip the pre-workout snack all together! Do what most personal trainers, body builders and triathletes do and have the snack "post-work" to build lean muscle mass! Most personal trainers will recommend this, the "post-work out" snack.

I'm sorry you are not getting quality sleep. Could be from the way you are eating. Definitely try to stop eating carbs right before bedtime.

Good luck!

Friday, January 20, 2012, 8:38 PM

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You shouldn't eat for at least 2 to 3 hours before going to bed (some prefer 4) Especially carb loading! Don't do it! If you must, I've read protein is a better snack before bed, like around 100 to 150 calories or so, something small. But ideally, you are not eating before bed like that. Why would you want to consume calories right before bed? You don't need them then.

Fruit as snack before work out at 4:30am? Why not try something with less sugar? Better yet, why not skip the pre-workout snack all together! Do what most personal trainers, body builders and triathletes do and have the snack "post-work" to build lean muscle mass! Most personal trainers will recommend this, the "post-work out" snack.

I'm sorry you are not getting quality sleep. Could be from the way you are eating. Definitely try to stop eating carbs right before bedtime.

Good luck!

Friday, January 20, 2012, 8:39 PM

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@ 8:38

Yea, I know I shouldn't eat all that before bed, I need to work on doing that. It's more emotional eating at night. I do need a bit of energy before a workout, especially one so early for me. I do eat breakfast after, then I have to go to school by 7:00. Thanks for the post, the more I hear it, hopefully the more motivation I'll have to do it.

Saturday, January 21, 2012, 1:47 PM

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Your low energy probably has more to do with your sleep quantity and quality. Work on sleep first and see what affect that has.

Saturday, January 21, 2012, 6:07 PM

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Yeah, I would work on sleep quality. Are you using ear plugs? Is your bedroom really dark? If it's not dark, are you using a sleep mask?

Eating carbs right before bedtime makes me very sleepy, and does not appear to interfere with my weight loss at all as long as it doesn't take me over my calorie budget. This is probably different from person to person.

You don't say anything about this, but make sure you are not consuming any caffeine or other stimulant with dinner. Chocolate, sodas, coffee, tea, etc. are not a good idea after noon if you are having trouble getting to sleep.

Saturday, January 21, 2012, 10:26 PM

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early morning

I've did 4:30/5am for about 2 years and learned a few things:

1) going to bed early but not too early is important. I say try 9:30, and read in bed to get tired. DEF. no caff after 2pm.

2) My energy/endurance was never as good as it was at 8am workouts. But it was still good enough, you know.

3) It's HAAARD in the winter when it's pitch black (even on the way home) and freezing.

4) I felt awesome all day every day after I did it. It's wonderful to feel the satisfaction of having done it instead of the loom of "needing to go."

5) I worked out on an empty stomach.

6) setting my clothes, ipod, water bottle, etc. the night before helps!

GOOD LUCK!

Sunday, January 22, 2012, 8:59 AM

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You mention that you are in school, but do not say how old you are. If you are a teen your sleep needs are different from children and adults. Teens need a lot of sleep, find it difficult to get to sleep early and sleep well into the morning. Google Dr Marc Weissbluth author of Healthy Sleep Habits Healthy Child for suggestions. They find that teens that are allowed to sleep later have higher test scores as well as other benefits. Lack of sleep raises cortisol which can affect weight loss, so you could be shooting yourself in the foot here.

If you are older - please disregard this long response : )

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