Don’t Eat – Immediately Before Exercise


Getty Image as seen at WebMD.


I didn’t believe that I couldn’t grab a bite immediately before exercise.  Why not?  Prior to working with a trainer, I thought I had learned all there was to know about exercise habits and practices. Exercise and proper eating were no stranger to me especially since I’d often attempted to establish a healthy eating and workout regimen.  It was not uncommon for me to have a banana or a light meal before heading into my workout.  Not once did I feel uncomfortable or out of sorts as a result.  When I met my trainer, that all changed…

My first ever meeting with a trainer was October 3, 2012 and boy was I in for a shock.  Prior to the session, I enjoyed a light snack of 10 almonds.  Of course, I saw no need to share this information with my trainer. Besides, there was really no time since the initial visit involved several preliminaries that needed to be completed quickly in order to begin exercise.  After weighing, checking BMI, and taking measurements we got started.  I looked at the clock and thought there is no way I can get in a good workout with 20 minutes left in my 30 minute session.  Boy was I wrong!

My trainer incorporated familiar and unfamiliar exercises into an intense circuit of cardio, plyometrics, jump roping and strength training.  I was desperate for the session to end and repeatedly glanced at the clock for refuge. When we were finally done, my trainer and I had a 10 minute pow wow about the importance of staying focused and committed to my new journey.  Our conversation was moving, engaging and inspirational for all of 3 minutes!

Suddenly, I felt subtle spurts of shortness of breath.  While my trainer kept talking, I murmured “uh huh” to avoid causing any alarm.  As she talked, I looked around the studio almost as if I was in a trance but I was really searching for a place to stretch my body and pass out.  It wasn’t exhaustion but more of a lightheaded delusion.  Her voice became monotone and the last thing I remember her saying was “I am so proud of you. Most people get sick after their first workout.” That was my cue! I ran to the bathroom in an attempt to empty the contents of my stomach into the toilet.  If I could make it and get it out, I knew all would be well again.  But it didn’t get out…it lingered.  My head was spinning and stars were flashing before my eyes.  My breath was short and I could barely stand.  If you’re wondering…NO, I was not going to call my newly hired trainer into the bathroom.  I was so embarrassed.  It was astonishing to be in such a state considering my history of exercise and healthy eating, what the heck???

The good news…I didn’t throw up.  Once I went outside for fresh air and concentrated on not being sick, the feeling subsided.  Afterwards, I had serious doubts about whether or not I would attend my second session two days later.  I also wondered if my trainer knew what she was doing.  Maybe she was working me too hard.  Two days later, I was back, worked out even harder but felt much better.

Now, it has been about two months and I feel and look better than ever.  I’ve also learned a huge lesson about eating and exercise: no more poor meal timing!

Find out more about why you don’t eat immediately before exercise on causes of nausea after exercise.



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