Answered by Emily Spilko on Thursday, October 22, 2009
The ideal meal prior to a sunrise workout should consist of a combination of carbohydrates and protein and contain from 150 to 300 calories, says nutritionist Susan Kleiner, Ph.D., R.D., author of Power Eating. "You can have a bowl of cereal with milk, yogurt, or some cottage cheese with fruit and a glass of fruit juice," Kleiner suggests. The combination of carbohydrates and protein will also decrease the catabolic effects—the breaking down of substances such as glucose and amino acids—of exercise. Kleiner says it's best to consume this carb-protein combo about 30 to 90 minutes prior to exercising, but if you work out at dawn, that may be next to impossible. Those who rise and run should "try to maintain a diet containing sixty to sixty-five percent carbohydrates in general, and make sure to eat a well-balanced dinner the night before." In the morning, drink water, sports drinks, fruit juice, or "whatever you can tolerate," says Kleiner. "Something is better than nothing, and being well-hydrated is most important."