By 6pm each day I am starving and it is this time I wish to workout, just before dinner. Fat loss is also a goal, so I guess this fits 'nutrition as it relates to exercise'.

I work a 9-5 desk job with access to a fridge, microwave and a kettle. Each day I eat chicken salad for lunch but im starving by dinner because I eat no carbs at lunch and breakfast. I want to reshuffle my eating pattern so I can go home and do a workout while not getting distracted by my stomach.

In the morning I'm thinking oatmeal. For lunch I was thinking of cooking a large batch of sweet potatoes to eat during the week. There is also brown / whole meal pasta.

Anyone else any good recommendations?

  • I agree that this is on topic, but I think it's a bad question because it's going to be a lot of personal opinions. That being said, I like "The Feed Zone Cookbook", which is a lot of quick and/or portable carbs.
    – JohnP
    Dec 1 '14 at 1:36

Fat loss is also a goal

Learn to control your hunger. If you want to lose fat, you need to reduce your calorie intake. The reason you are distracted is because your body releases a hormone called ghrelin ahead of expected meal times. This is a unconsciously trained response, and as you alter your diet your body will release hormones at the right times accordingly.

After a few weeks of controlling your intake this should subside.

As for distractions, drink more water or green tea.


It is never a good idea to be starving, especially before you train. So if you are hungry, you need to eat. Make sure you are not dehydrated either. Especially on a higher protein diet, your body will require more water. I find a piece of cheese and a handful of almonds with a tall glass of water an hour before I train provides me with the energy I need to train and it keeps my blood sugar balanced so I don't 'crash' in the middle of my workout.

I tend to keep the carbs low throughout the day much like you and eat the majority of mine after I train in the later hours of the day with my post workout meal and my dinner. When I eat oatmeal and sweet potatoes at breakfast and lunch I get sluggish and tired. So I understand your initial logic. The carbs that we eat the day before are the ones that are fueling our workouts. Not the ones we are eating 2-4 before. So keep that in mind.

I hope that helps,



If you really are eating "no carbs", you'll be in ketosis. Although pretty grueling for the first 48-72 hours, your blood sugar will quickly level out and you'll have a much more balanced energy level throughout the day.

You'll want to really avoid high glycemic index foods. That would include (basically) any carbohydrate that is not found in its natural state. If it went through a factory of any type before you ate it, chances are it's been "processed", stripping away natural fibers and husks. The more pre-digestion that happens in a factory (such as smashing wheat into flour), the less your body has to do, and the quicker it can be absorbed into your blood. That in turn spikes your blood sugar, dumps insulin, and enhances fat storage.

If fat loss is your goal, you should:

  • Avoid carbohydrates as much as possible. Even by doing that, you'll still get plenty.
  • Absolutely avoid any carbohydrate that is not found as it was in nature. Unless you can find a "flour tree" with little bags of flour growing off of it, don't eat flour.

Track your calories for a week or two with something like myfitnesspal or dailyburn. Focus on reducing the carbs, upping the protein, and scattering food throughout the day every few hours. Low carb induced ketosis combined with smaller high protein meals means I can go weeks without ever feeling hungry.

Get your diet nailed down and the energy level will take care of itself.

  • 1
    Your generalized statements tend to demonize carbs. Your approach to carb consumption may not be appropriate to others.
    – rrirower
    Nov 27 '14 at 5:07
  • @rrirower refined carbohydrates are the number one cause of obesity in the world, and by extension the cause of much illness. i eat chips and popcorn in moderation and like pastrami sandwiches. but all in i keep refined carbs away as much as possible and would advise others to do the same.
    – Eric
    Nov 27 '14 at 8:32
  • 1
    It's not that I disagree with your statements re: refined carbohydrates....I don't. It's that your comments tend to imply that what's good for you, is good for everyone else. Your approach to training/nutrition may not be appropriate to someone else. I'm sure you'll agree, there is no "one size fits all" approach.
    – rrirower
    Nov 27 '14 at 15:09

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