I lift fairly heavy within about 15 minutes of waking up. I know I should eat something before I start, but I am not sure what or how much. I use a basic protein powder supplement after then a small meal about an hour and a half after. Any recommendations on what to eat immediately after waking up before a workout?
There are a number of schools of thoughts surrounding the concept of when to eat (before or after) a workout, and worse, when the workout is in the morning fresh from under the linen.
Some 'weight-loss gurus' say it is best to not eat anything, as whatever you may eat before the workout, will be what is burned and not the fat that is already present in the body. So if weight-loss is your aim, then that is recommended, though, it is not so black and white and you are starved for energy at the time you wake up and will need some amount of fuel to support you during the workout.
Another school of thought says eat, but moderate the amounts according to the amount of time that will pass before you start the workout.
Large meals Eat these at least three to four hours before exercising.
Small meals Eat these two to three hours before exercising.
Small snacks. Eat these an hour before exercising.
Still others say, eat a snack to get started and intermittently top up during the workout with juice and bread and peanut butter, just enough to keep you going.
At the end of the day though, not every and anything will work for everyone. If it is that you are weak when you are lifting, then explore the option of pre-fueling. Otherwise, you might be just fine as you are.
If you work out immediately after waking up and the problem is that you're hungry while working out, then it doesn't much matter what you eat. Don't over-optimize the small stuff.
Foods that are quick to prepare and aren't terribly filling are the solution. Bananas, pre-boiled eggs, or a fruit smoothie all sound fine.