An article in Wednesday's New York Times entitled "The Benefits of Exercise Before Breakfast" discussed a study that shows that exercising in the morning, before eating, seems to significantly lessen the ill effects of all this excessive holiday eating. The study seems to indicate that by running or biking intensely before eating or drinking exercise drinks helps to keep us from putting on as many holiday pounds or becoming more insulin resistant.
I found a comment from a reader who referred to the weight loss benefits of “exercising in a fasted state”as “bonk training”. The commenter mentioned a September 2002 Bicycling magazine article that outlined the following "Bonk Training" workout:
HOW TO BONK TRAIN
1. Upon waking, drink 2-3 cups of coffee, up to 45 minutes before cycling. Don’t eat.
2. Ride at endurance pace- 60-70% of your max heart rate, or a casual pace that doesn’t make you pant when you talk.
3. Keep it up for 20-90 minutes.
4. You can do this on consecutive days, but mix in at least one normal breakfast per week.
5. Eat your typical breakfast as soon as the ride ends.
6 . Watch the blubber ignite!!
I don't usually eat much before a run anyway, but I've always been told to eat before a ride to avoid the bonk. I guess that's flipped on its head for shorter sessions. I don't think I could stomach 2 to 3 cups of coffee before a ride, but one cup along with only water in my water bottle is something I could handle. I don't think I would do this on a very long run or ride, but I can see it on a short to intermediate workout. I think I'll give this a try. Just to try to keep off those extra holiday pounds.