The Best Time To Workout While Fasting

In a Nutshell: The best time to exercise while fasting is during the fasting window itself, as this optimizes fat burning and muscle preservation by maintaining low insulin and enhancing growth hormone levels.


  • Exercising during the fasting window maximizes fat burning and muscle preservation.
  • Low-intensity cardio and resistance training during fasting use fat as the main energy source.
  • Fasting increases growth hormone levels, which are essential for protecting muscles and enhancing fat burning.

Optimal Exercise Timing During Fasting

Fasting isn’t just about what you don’t eat; it’s about when you move. Autumn Bates, a Clinical Nutritionist with a Master’s in Nutrition Human Performance, unravels the intricacies of syncing your workouts with intermittent fasting. 

Her expertise zeroes in on harnessing this timing for peak performance and wellness, offering a new perspective for those on a journey toward weight loss and improved health.

The Ideal Workout Window

The key to maximizing fasting benefits for fat loss and body recomposition lies in the timing of your workout. 

Bates advises that the optimal time to exercise is during the fasting window when no food is consumed and only water is taken. This approach ensures that insulin, a storing hormone, remains naturally low, triggering the fat-burning process called lipolysis. 

Consequently, working out in this state primarily uses fat as fuel.

Enhancing Fat Burning

A crucial aspect of exercising while fasting is the more frequent use of fat as a primary energy source by the muscles, even at higher intensities. 

Additionally, Bates highlights the increase in growth hormone levels during fasting. This hormone is essential for protecting muscles from breakdown and doubling down on fat burning within the body.

Choosing the Right Workouts

To maximize the benefits of fasting, selecting appropriate workout types is critical. 

Bates recommends low-intensity cardio and resistance training during the fasting state. Low-intensity activities like walking or light swimming predominantly use fat as fuel, primarily since they don’t significantly raise the heart rate. 

In contrast, high-intensity workouts often shift the body’s energy preference to carbohydrates.

Conclusion: Harnessing the Power of Timing in Fasting Workouts

In wrapping up, it’s clear that the most effective time to engage in workouts while on an intermittent fasting regimen is during the fasting window itself. This precise timing is instrumental in enhancing the body’s ability to burn fat more efficiently.

Moreover, this approach goes beyond burning fat; it plays a crucial role in preserving muscle. The increase in growth hormone levels, triggered by exercising during fasting, ensures that muscle health is maintained even as the body sheds fat.

Ultimately, this strategic combination of fasting and timed exercise emerges as a potent tool for achieving health and fitness goals. It’s not just about fasting or exercising in isolation but about how these elements are synergistically combined to optimize overall wellness.

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