I found out about an interesting study on sports nutritionist Jeff Rothschild’s blog. There is a lot of advice out there about training and breakfast, often contradictory. My take was that it was fine to do a long low intensity session before breakfast (also known as “train fasted”). But I thought it was a good idea to eat breakfast, with a decent amount of carbs, before a higher intensity session.
This was put to the test in the new study. There were 3 groups of cyclists that did a hard interval session that lasted an hour. The first had no breakfast, the second a high carb breakfast, and the third a low carb breakfast. The difference in their performance? None. It doesn’t seem to matter.
Now I’ve certainly had the experience that my performance is impaired, or at least feels like it, on hard days with no breakfast. But they tend to be longer hard days, like closer to three hours with high intensity thrown in. I don’t really like those kind of sessions anyway, truth be known. I like longer lower intensity sessions or shorter higher intensity sessions, but not to combine the two.
So today I tried going for a ride of just over an hour with lots of high intensity, before breakfast. And it felt fine. Who knew?