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Morning or Night?

Updated: Oct 3, 2023

I am a morning person through and through! This is a key question to resolve to ensure you are getting the best out of training, nutrition, and mindset.

For me it started way before I had my family! I just always seemed to be awake early, I felt more energised, more creative, and ready to achieve the day. For my husband though, he always found it hard work to get out early in morning, was grumpy and preferred evenings.

For those that are more of a morning person, let me share my routine and tips. Though do share with me your routines and handy tricks.


My routine

My daily routine is getting up at 5.00am every morning, followed by putting kettle on (to have a drink of hot lemon and honey) and starting my stretching routine. The importance of stretching whether it is a training day or non-training day, has several benefits! Above all else it allows your body to start the energy flowing, coupled with breath work will flex the mind and calm you internally to enable you to set your goals and achievements for that day.

Once stretching is complete, have my drink, change into my training gear (it could be running gear, bike gear or strength gear) I am then off for my session! My sessions usually last around an hour, I am out the door and back by the time the children are getting out of bed and getting ready themselves. A quick shower, including a minute under cold water, dressed and make up on, I am then ready to be “mum” sharing breakfast with the family, before doing the school run or going to work in the office – all achieved before 9am.

I feel so energise and I feel that I perform brilliantly at work! Around lunchtime, I do feel a slight slump, so 5 minutes mediation and proper fuelling I am ready to go again. Once work is complete, I then go home become mum again, battle with homework, prepare dinner, breakfast, and lunches for the following day, before completing my day with journaling and relaxation! And yes, I do go to bed around 9pm ish depending on kids' clubs.

How do I do it?

It is all about the fuel! Let’s just clear the elephant out of the room, I do what some may term as “fasted training”. Yet, my evening meal is balance, full of protein, carbohydrates and vegetables which fuels my body to be able to train in the morning. My evening meal is usually around 6.30 to 7pm, allowing my body to process the energy and gain additional benefits from intermittent fasting.

In the morning I do train with water and when my energy levels are low, I will eat a banana. Is there any benefit of fasted training? Yes, you do burn more calories in the morning, and yes there is a slight benefit to training your body to use the appropriate carbohydrate stores rather than sugar, and fasted training helps with reduction in belly fat.

However, it is mainly about preference and that comes with trial and error. Later in the series we will talk about when to fuel before a race and times etc. If you want to try training in morning but not get up and have full breakfast, then try a banana or a biscuit and see how that goes. My recommendation is to use this approach for those hour-long sessions; I would not do on a weekend when I am perhaps doing a longer run or duration.

What is key when doing sessions in the morning, is despite all other responsibilities, I need to have breakfast! No breakfast the whole day is a train wreck, no energy levels, I end up eating anything that is quick and easy. I am “ratty” with everyone and achieving nothing.

My breakfast is carbohydrate and protein loaded; I need to replenish these essential stores. Fruit, porridge and yogurt. This keeps my energy levels high until lunchtime, I can focus and achieve what is on my list to do. Lunchtime is focused on protein fuel, mainly fish to help boost my immune system, small snack in afternoon then a well-balanced evening meal.

What if you are a night person?

Fuel! Just because you are training later in the day, you need to have the correct fuel to perform your day ahead and then a decent training session and please do not ever forget to fuel after the session! Lots of tips here for those that can’t eat a big meal, but let’s keep it high level.

Focus on Protein and Carbs in the mornings, you may not be a breakfast eater, you may be brunch person, but ensure that you have something to kick start the system. Either way, you will need that mix to train later.

What time is your training session planned, this is important to know, is it in lunchtime or after work? If at lunchtime, make sure you refuel afterwards, and is balanced with lean protein and some carbs. If after work you may want something a bit lighter, like a chicken salad or superfood salad.

Before starting your sessions make sure you are not starving! Maybe have a quick energy ball (we can share a recipe) or a banana at a minimum 30 mins beforehand, then your mind is focused on the session and not wondering off.

Achieve the session, relax and then focus on the refuel. Always think about the protein after, if you can’t eat a big meal then let’s look at how to get that extra in, maybe it is poached egg on toast, omelette or hummus and pitta?

Final thoughts

Everyone is different, so don’t think one rule will work for you. If you are just starting out, then it is trial and error. For a week do one way then another, but keep a diary of what you ate, how did it make you feel and how was your training session and energy levels. This way you can look at patterns and focus on positives. Don’t forget if you are a female, we also have menstrual cycle to consider, and this impacts training but remember we all need some form of carbohydrate to balance our hormones.

What type of person are you? If you need further guidance and support, then please do use the contact form and we can connect.

3 tips to help you succeed

1. Set an alarm, whether you train in the morning or in the evening, get out of bed each day giving yourself enough time to stretch, wake up and balance your mind, before setting about your day.

2. Make sure you have your kit ready, the night before! For me I lay out a week's worth of little piles so I don't have to think about it or feel rushed.

3. If you are not a self motivator, then train with a friend (yes there are other nutters that want to train in the morning!) Book into a class or set yourself an reward for when you have achieved the training.


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