Last week at Uni I performed a sub max steady state exercise test on a ergo bike (a technical stationary bike). Week 1 was under normal dietary conditions and week 2 was after a 4 day carbohydrate depletion. The idea of the test was to compare the two and see wither there was a change in the way fat and carbohydrate was used during the test. Fat is used as a fuel source at low to moderate intensity due to the large cost of oxygen to metabolize it. Carbohydrates however cost the body less oxygen to metabolize and this is why it is the preferred fuel.
Once glucose (carbohydrates) hits the blood, the body suppresses fat breakdown and switches to using the glucose. To increase fat loss we can lower our total daily carbohydrate intake so we can empty our stores of carbohydrates more easily during exercise and tap into fat.
Eat plenty of good fats, protein and some good complex carbohydrates in the form of whole foods. For weight loss, at night time limit your carbohydrates and then again in the morning or skip breakfast.


If your a runner (or other endurance event) and would like more energy during your run then you can train your fat oxidization pathways as this is highly trainable.
High Intensity Interval training (HIIT) has been shown to be the greatest tool when your goal is to burn fat.
Yes, you will burn carbohydrates at the time BUT it’s what happens when you stop that counts. After that gut wrenching, brutal, make you feel sick HIIT session, your body needs to return to its base line or normal state.  Hormones need to come down to base line, muscles must cool, the heart needs to slow down, while you scrap yourself off the floor. Besides EPOC there are also physiological adaptations that cause you to become more efficient. As you can see it’s not a massive arduous task and you eat pretty well, probably better than a lot of people. Now you know the basic science behind it, you can start to apply a few better eating methods to your day. As fast as you can or timed- 10 push ups, 10 squat jumps, run 300m, 10 push ups, 10 squat jumps, run 200m, 10 push ups, 10 squat jumps, run 100m. As you can imagine I used fat as a fuel source for much longer during the second test because there was a reduced pool of carbohydrates for the body to use.


Basically it’s a long process for the body to complete and requires plenty of oxygen to do so. You have stopped exercising and now the body can burn fat as you breath in the required oxygen to do so.
Put simply, a trained person can burn fat longer than an untrained person due to more efficient muscles.
This told us whether I was using more fat or carbohydrate as fuel during each stage of intensity. You have fasted from dinner to after your workout, so you’ll be training with less carbs in the tank! There are also other things to take into account that go with your newfound exercise regime.
When you decide to start exercising more, you most likely eat better afterwards too which will aid in fat loss.



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