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Exercising first thing in the morning is often recommended as a great option for busy people. Breaking a sweat before the day has even the slightest chance to railroad your best laid plans will ensure you don't miss out altogether.
To maximise both your time to sleep and your time to exercise, the thought of having a snack before you hit the gym can be easily abandoned. But is it something we should try to do?
If you are happy with how you perform during your sessions, setting your alarm for an early morning pre-workout snack isn't something you need to worry about.
While some people thrive on training with an empty stomach, others may find their energy levels are too low to make it worth their while. If you're finding it hard to give 100% before breakfast though, especially when you're trying to complete high intensity sessions, it could be worth trying to get a quick snack in your belly before you run out the door.
While some people thrive on training with an empty stomach, others may find their energy levels are too low to make it worth their while.
For intervals or speed work, it's beneficial to your performance if you have plenty of carbohydrate available for your muscles to use for fuel. Top up your carbohydrate levels with an easily digested carbohydrate snack such as honey on toast, a piece of fruit, or some cereal before you put your sneakers on and see if you get more out of your session.
Regardless of how long or how intense your workout is, adequate hydration is important. You may not need a pre-workout meal for a long walk or an easy run but don't skip drinking some water before, during and after your session.
Whether or not you eat a snack before your workout, be sure to have a balanced breakfast within an hour of finishing the session. Aim for a meal rich in carbohydrates and protein like fresh fruit topped with low-fat yoghurt and crispy wholegrain cereal, or a wholemeal wrap filled with scrambled eggs and mixed veggies.
The COACH Program® is a confidential free health coaching service delivered over the phone by nib's Accredited Practicing Dietitians to help those at risk of, or with, Coronary Heart Disease. Based on a self-management model, it's all about helping you to take better care of yourself. Please phone 1800 339 219 or email [email protected] for more information.