Rev That Metabolism!

January 5, 2012 · 68 comments

Upon first sitting down to create my nutrition plan with Jim, one of the first things I had to change about my diet was my timing.

I knew it was bad for me to wait to eat breakfast until work. I was aware. I’ve heard the whole “You’ve gotta get that metabolism revving first thing!” piece of advice. I just decided that sleep > breakfast.

But then, when I step back to think about it, is 10 minutes of extra sleep every morning really worth it when I can be spiking my metabolism?

When I first told Jim I had been waiting until I get to work to eat my english muffin/Bagelthin and sliced banana, he yelled at me.

I WAS eating breakfast (I never skip a mean, c’mon). I just wasn’t eating it at the right time.

On my nutrition plan, I have learned how important it is to eat within 10 minutes of waking up. I wake up, get ready, and promptly make my english muffin, almond butter, sliced banana, and cinnamon combo.

(recycled photo sans cinnamon)

A timely breakfast makes for a happy metabolism. 🙂

And THEN… another mealtime I’m putting off for too long? Dinner.

You see, my gym is on my way home from work. So I leave work, go to the gym, then run errands on my way home. Dinner very rarely happens directly after I work out, and even when it does, I’m always wanting a shower before I eat. ‘Cause I’m a sweaty beast.

When I called Jim all distraught over the fact that I just couldn’t seem to get dinner in me fast enough, he told me all would be alright if I just had a protein source post-workout. He recommended one of my favorite snack options in my meal plan, the EAS Myoplex Lite. But since I usually drink this before my workouts as my afternoon snack, I now opt for something else.

The Myoplex Lite Bar.

This bar is absolutely delicious — maybe one of the best protein bars I’ve tried. To me, it tastes like a spin off a Snickers… sigh. These iPhone-snapped photos don’t do the bar justice.

When EAS told me they were sending me some boxes of these bars, they weren’t kidding. I am stocked. And my stocked, I mean psyched.

Since these Myoplex Lite Bars are extremely large, Jim suggested I only have 1/3-1/2 of the bar at a time. So, after my day at the gym, I’ll grab an EAS Myoplex Lite bar and munch on half of it.

I highly recommend these babies… AND the shakes. I’m in love with the EAS Lite Chocolate Fudge, which I can easily find at Food Lion and Walmart. I’m high rollin’ in these streets.

Lastly, that myth about not eating at night?

Jim recommends a post-dinner snack if I’m not going to bed for a few more hours (which is always the case, since I’m a night owl). SO THERE, all you old school scientists who tell me I can’t eat past 9 p.m. I’ve been happily eating something high-protein after dinner each night.

So, moral of the story? Don’t just pay attention to what you’re eating — focus on the time, too. Make sure you’re eating a substantial breakfast right after waking up and munching on something after exercise. If you’re active, it’s smart to have a high-protein snack at night time.

Let’s keep those metabolisms in check, okay? Eat your breakfasts. And try some EAS Myoplex Lite Bars!

*EAS supplied me their product; however, all opinions stated above are my own.

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{ 44 comments… read them below or add one }

1 gabriella @ lessons on the run January 5, 2012 at 5:38 pm

I used to hate breakfast, I basically never ate it until my Junior year of college. And now that I do I’m just automatically hungry when I wake up. I seriously think it changed my whole eating patterns and timing during the day. I love a snack before bed but I don’t need to eat as much as I was at night, which makes me hungrier when I wake up. And who DOESN’T want a faster metabolism anyway?

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2 Erin @ Running Tall January 5, 2012 at 5:41 pm

I need to work on my timing of food too. I sometimes choose sleeping over eating breakfast at home, waiting until 8pm to eat dinner, or eating it super early so I can get to the gym when my show is on (priorities over here). Thanks for the tips chocolate face 😉
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3 Janine @ThePurpleGiraffe January 5, 2012 at 5:48 pm

Oooo I always choose sleeping over eating, but then when I get up, I still don’t eat right away. Guess I have to change that habit!
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4 katie January 5, 2012 at 5:49 pm

eating as soon as I wake up made a HUGE difference in my day! it got rid of a lot of my late-morning crankies. and that bar looks delicious, I might have to add it to my pile of protein things in the pantry!
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5 Marla January 5, 2012 at 5:52 pm

Hi Alyssa! I’m bad with eating right when I wake up to. I usually wait until I get to work too! One question – how does Jim feel about the sugar in bars/vitatops? I know you mentioned luna bars and vitatops on the blog before (and the myoplex bars) and I was just wondering if I really need to be watching out for that or if they are okay. Thanks!

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6 @PavementRunner January 5, 2012 at 6:03 pm

That’s a great tip about WHEN you eat…. i never knew eating so quickly after you wake up was important. I also wait until I get to work for breakfast. I’ll have to keep that in mind. Cheers.
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7 Nicole January 5, 2012 at 6:07 pm

I spoke with Jim yesterday! I am anxiously waiting on my plan. Nervous excitement! 🙂

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8 Dorsa @ Running Thoughts January 5, 2012 at 6:08 pm

We usually go and workout first then come back and eat breakfast.. prob not a good idea huh?

I just dont like protein shakes… Find me one that doesnt have a weirdo after taste and I will drink it.
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9 Karlee @ BringingBackBalance January 5, 2012 at 6:20 pm

Thanks for the tips! I have definitely been waiting too long to eat breakfast after waking. Sometimes I wait a little longer til I am hungrier and to reduce the time gap between lunch and breaky..

Did Jim suggest eating a mid morning snack? I have heard some controversy over the morning snack. I usually have some fruit to tide me over, but some days I feel like I need a mini meal or my stomach is going to eat itself!

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10 Lena @Fit on the Rocks January 5, 2012 at 6:28 pm

Ugh my timing is terrible, too. I wait until I get to work, which is a good hour and a half after I wake up. I suppose foregoing 10 minutes of sleep isn’t SO bad.
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11 julie January 5, 2012 at 6:35 pm

i feel you mama. i used to workout in the morning then wait until i got to work to eat breakfast um that was like 2 hours later. STOOOPID. haha now i eat breakfast and my mid morning snack at my desk when i get to the welp i’m bored i might as well eat period of time haha
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12 Heather January 5, 2012 at 6:41 pm

ive personally found that i can’t stomach an entire breakfast within the first 15 minutes of waking up, but I have done my best to make sure I get A LITTLE SOMETHING down the hatch first thing in the morning. Sometimes I just turn my “breakfast” into two mini-meals instead, and eat them about 90 minutes apart from one another.

For example: today when I first got out of bed at 5:45 AM, I couldn’t THINK about eating my cereal with banana and milk with apple slices on the side. Instead, I ate the banana with a smear of peanut butter, then 90 minutes later or so, after getting ready, walking to work, and logging into my computer, I head to the kitchen to prepare the remainder of my breakfast.

I’ve also been known to take the apple slices and cereal (dry, in a to-go container) to eat while I walk to work and then drink me some milk for that dairy advantage. [mostly on days I’m running ridiculously late. mostly due to cuddle time with the kitten, of course. why does he want to be all sweet and snuggle at 6:15 AM, but at 6:15 PM he just wants to knaw on my hand? that’s my question.]
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13 Amber K January 5, 2012 at 6:51 pm

I wish I could eat my breakfast that early, but I have to wait at least half an hour after taking my thyroid pill in the morning to eat breakfast. The doctor would prefer I wait an hour, but I’m hungry in the morning! I drink water with lemon juice while I’m waiting.
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14 Andrea @ Andrea Out Loud! January 5, 2012 at 6:53 pm

I am the worst with my breakfast timing! My trainer just mentioned the same thing to me. the last few weeks we have been working on my nutrition and i hand him WHAT i eat and he asked me to start writing WHEN. And he said I need to eat breakfast asap rather than waiting until i get to work (which is an hour after i wake up typically).
Im still workin on this 😉
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15 Carolyn @HealthKitten.com January 5, 2012 at 6:56 pm

Man, I get up at 7am and don’t have breakfast until I get to work around 8:30am. Mainly because I’m getting that extra 9 minutes of sleep and I prep my breakfast and lunch the night before. Sleep = happy Carolyn.

Might have to stock up on some Pure bars (’cause those EAS bars look scary – can’t have HFCS in my brekkie!) to have for first breakfast, then have just the fruit part of my normal breakfast (hard boiled egg + fruit) once I get to work.

Did your nutritionist give you any science/facts why it should be eaten within 10 min? I’m curious! 🙂
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16 Lauren January 5, 2012 at 7:02 pm

With my crazy student schedule, the timing issue is a tricky one for me. It’s hard to eat breakfast at 6 am one day when you don’t wake up until 9 am the next. I have to say, this trainer thing is pretty dang cool. You’re just full of healthy tidbits of information!

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17 Hollie@lolzthatswim January 5, 2012 at 7:13 pm

I have to rely on bars sometimes when I’m stuck on campus. I love all that interesting facts you are giving out. The trainer feature on the blog is awesome. PS: Are you doing any races anytime soon? You are doing the Shamrock half aren’t you?
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18 Christine January 5, 2012 at 7:16 pm

Have you gotten any advice from him on how much water to be drinking all day and the benefits of it? I’m curious myself! I stock up on the chocolate coconut luna bars from Trader Joe’s. The boxes are surprisingly cheap!

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19 Katie @ Plates and Paste January 5, 2012 at 7:54 pm

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day! Thanks for the info. I never knew you should eat breakfast within 10 minutes of waking up. I usually eat mine within a half hour, which is hopefully ok. Otherwise I may be so tired I’d be pouring orange juice on top of my cereal.

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20 She Rocks Fitness January 5, 2012 at 8:18 pm

A few years back, I used to skip breakfast completely, now it is by far my favorite meal of the day! I look forward to it every morning and have learned how to fuel up for my clients and my workouts. Great tips and enjoy the rest of your day! 🙂
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21 Catie January 5, 2012 at 8:27 pm

Just a real quick question re eating in a morning. I go to the gym first thing, and normally have a 45 minute break between leaving the gym and eating my breakfast at work. If I am doing weights, I normally have a protein shake, but on cardio days (3 of out 5 when Im working) I dont.

Any advice?

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22 Emily January 5, 2012 at 9:27 pm

I just finished reading “Thrive” by Brendan Brazier and he focuses a lot on the importance of timing when it comes to our meals and snacks. It was such an eye opener for me. I’ve heard, time and time again, how important pre and post workout nutrition is, but I’ve never truly implemented it into my daily life. I’m working on it though!
I’ve been trying to eat my breakfasts earlier as well but I’m having a hard time with it, for some reason. I just feel nauseous when I eat first thing in the morning. So frustrating! Hopefully it’ll get better with time.
Thanks for the awesome post!
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23 Brittany @ GOtheXtraMile January 5, 2012 at 9:39 pm

I need to work on my timing as well. Very useful information! Those bars look great!

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24 chelcie @ chelcie's food files January 5, 2012 at 10:04 pm

those protein bars sound amazing..anything that taste like a snickers bar, sign me up!
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25 Rach January 5, 2012 at 10:26 pm

I am way better at keeping track of my eating schedule than I used to be. I get grumpy really easily if my blood sugar gets too low, haha!
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26 Kristen @ notsodomesticated January 6, 2012 at 12:55 am

Very interesting stuff! I usually eat my breakfast within an hour of waking up, but I think I might just bump it up even earlier! I’m always starving when I wake up … so why not??

Thanks for the advice, girl! And sorry for not inviting you to Florida. I thought it might make our romantic getaway a little awkward. 😉 Maybe next time!
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27 Sophie January 6, 2012 at 1:09 am

Here’s a question… what if you’re an early morning exerciser? I wake up around 5:30, drink a bit of coffee to wake up and then go run or go to the gym. By the time I get home and shower it’s already time for work so I end up eating when I get there. I don’t have the times in the mornings to eat anything substantial and let it digest. Thoughts? I would love some advice!

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28 Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy January 6, 2012 at 1:31 am

Good advice! I have to eat before I go work or I am way too hungry and don’t feel good! But dinner…sometimes I put that off. I prefer to shower and get ready for bed after I go to the gym , then eat dinner :/.
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29 Anna @ Food Fitness Frolicking January 6, 2012 at 2:06 am

I just found your blog and I love it! You are HILARIOUS and this post is especially great!

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30 Jenn January 6, 2012 at 2:56 am

I see that you are going to start train for a half marathon, how does your nutrition change once you start training?

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31 Kristin @ FoodFash January 6, 2012 at 3:30 am

I’m super guilty of not eating breakfast until I’m settled at my desk because that extra 10 minutes of sleep in the morning feels like pure treasure!
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32 Jess @ Healthy 'n Hungry January 6, 2012 at 12:23 pm

Great information! What do you typically have as a before bed snack? I definitely need something before bed or else I either can’t sleep or wake up feeling nauseous.
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33 alyssa - fashion fitness foodie January 6, 2012 at 1:15 pm

What if you like to wait an hour before running in the morning but don’t want to eat? So therefore i’m doing a starved cardio session and then eating around 10am (when I wake up at 7)…bad??
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34 Heather @ Run Eat Play January 6, 2012 at 1:35 pm

I hate eating right when I wake up. Its so hard! Does coffee count?! I do try to have at least a piece of fruit when I wake up. That’s about as good as it going to get.
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35 Michelle @ Blogitness January 6, 2012 at 2:39 pm

I normally choose sleep over breakfast too. This year I am working to change that!
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36 Marijke January 6, 2012 at 2:45 pm

Good advice with regards metabolism.

What I want to know though, is how you get your hair so damn shiny? It’s beautiful!
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37 Lauren January 6, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Some day I eat right when I wake up, other days I don’t. I don’t notice a difference in how I feel either way, so I don’t really get hung up on eating times. But if the new plan works for you, more power to ya!
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38 Stephanie @ afitbliss.com January 6, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Who is jim?! I am a new reader! Also im on my phone so i cant search that easily.

Love the info about timing of eating! So important 🙂

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39 Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers January 6, 2012 at 6:30 pm

I’m a big EAS fan. I haven’t had the bars, but I like the pre-mixed shakes. They’re so darn easy.
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40 Emily January 7, 2012 at 4:14 am

I have to take this sucky, sucky medicine that requires I wait 30 minutes after waking up to eat. Sorry metabolism!

It’s good to be aware of those kinds of things, though. I used to wait too long to eat dinner and it was no good for me or my body. Live and learn!
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41 Lizzy January 8, 2012 at 10:25 pm

ohh I love this advice!! I am good at eating the right things, but my timing is definitely off!! no wonder I can’t build muscle!! thanks for this post and the bar recommendation!! xoxo!
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42 Kim January 11, 2012 at 3:16 pm

One thing to keep in mind… You got a Jim… 🙂

It is ALWAYS easier to be conscious of goal limiting behavior when you have a support system… The protein bars don’t mean shit if you get all depressed and then don’t have someone to talk to and end up eating a box of ice cream… 🙁
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43 Alexa August 21, 2014 at 11:39 am

hello! i just found your blog, so i know im commenting on old posts, but if you get this message id love to know what you think about me getting up at 5:30am and not eating until 7:30. i know Jim’s plan is made specifically for you but it seems like his advice about starting your metabolism first thing in the morning is general advice. but for me, i dont have time to take an extra 15-20 min to make and eat my oatmeal at home. i get up at 5:30, do my hair/makeup/get dressed, and leave the house at 6:45am with coffee. do you think if i had like a handful of almonds when i woke up, that would be sufficient?
thanks ! 🙂

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44 Alexa August 21, 2014 at 9:46 pm

Sure I’m always open to more suggestions!
I love to eat haha so im always looking for bigger and voluminous foods. I love Luna bars too but eating half of one just doesn’t satisfy me cuz it’s gone so quickly I guess!
Next week I might try getting up 15 min earlier to eat oatmeal (it’s still a recommended breakfast option right?) It’s a bummer that I have a 45min commute by bus cuz its not like I can eat in the car and I don’t want to be that weird girl on the bus eating overnight oats or an omelette! Lol

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