The skinny on Fasted Cardio!

For quite some time I’ve been hearing about fasted cardio.  The idea is simple enough, but there is quite the debate raging about whether fasted cardio is actually good for you.  It’s exactly what you think, not eating at all before your cardio workout. Some say that it burns more fat than a normal cardio session.  Trainers suggest it for people looking to lose weight. And other people groan at the sheer mention of it.  What’s the big deal with fasted cardio?

More often than not I do fasted cardio, but I didn’t realize there was a name for it! I get up and go for a run.  I always have a glass of water, but was never a fan of eating prior to running.  Occasionally I have a granola bar, but I generally dislike the way it makes my stomach feel. No matter what time of day I run I always feel wonderful, but I love running in the morning the most.  I love waking up and having a run be the first thing I do for the day. It makes me feel strong, energized and wonderful! And I love it on an empty stomach.

There is a growing group of people who are not digging fasted cardio. We’ll call them haters, as I personally love it. A blog on My Fitness Pal stated recently that “Fasted Cardio Does not Enhance Fat Loss.” Basically it blasts fasted cardio as not burning more fat and even says that “Despite the persistent popularity of “fasted cardio”, the evidence clearly shows that it is not the best strategy, either for fat loss or training quality.” Interesting, but incorrect. There is not one strategy that is best for everyone’s workout. I’ve always done fasted cardio.  My mother does fasted cardio.  My man does fasted cardio.  It’s what’s best for us! I consistently run this way and thrive this way. You can too.

Fasted cardio is a great way to exercise, but it should not be used as a tool to drop weight. Too many people try to use it that way. They don’t enjoy it, but they keep doing it and keep torturing themselves. Silly people! Don’t torture yourself for a workout unless you ENJOY being tortured. Personally I enjoy a workout even more when I have to mentally work my way through it. It’s fun for me! But it’s not for everyone, and neither is fasted cardio.

If fasted cardio is something you’ve always done then I say keep doing it! You need to listen to your body, trust what you’re doing and what you enjoy. Exercise should be fun and if it works for you then awesome! Losing weight can’t be your only goal, just one of many along the way. And how you workout is secondary to the work you put in. We need to remember that it’s the intensity of our workouts that matter people.  Push yourself through it! The more intense your workout, the harder you work and the more you burn during and after.  If you like to workout on an empty stomach then do it, but make sure you do it for the right seasons! I like fasted cardio.  To me it’s just my morning run!




  1. Beth

    April 23, 2014 at 5:24 pm

    I’m in the same boat! I like to get my work out in early and never eat beforehand- then I don’t have to worry about stomach issues. Aside from a few sips of water – I work better on an empty stomach (granted I typically eat later and I don’t think my stomach is completely empty when I wake up). If I was truly starving I’d grab some almonds or a small protien shake!

  2. Mandi Mellen

    April 23, 2014 at 5:48 pm

    Totally agreed! I’ve also read that if you’re working out for under thirty minutes that you only need something VERY light if you fuel before. BUT I’m normally going from 40-1hr (sometimes longer) and I just don’t like the feeling in my stomach 🙂

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