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Nutrition, Diet and Supplements Discuss nutrition, diet, cutting and weight loss. Supplement discussions as well.

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Old 05-03-2012, 06:30 AM   #1
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Default Alternate Day Fasting/Eat Stop Eat

Alternate Day Fasting. 1 or more 24 hour fasts per week.

Experiences, opinions, thoughts?
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:08 AM   #2
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I've fasted about 10 days in my life, mostly light juice fasts. Did several single day fasts, a 2 day fast and once a 3 day fast. I felt pretty human until about dinner time. After that point, and until I ate I started to feel weaker and weaker. I was certainly functional, but physically I felt weak. About halfway through day 2 I started to feel a hair better and more human.

Water loss was pretty substantial, as you can imagine. I had to force myself to drink because I grew tired of running to the bathroom.

Not sure how this weakness window impacts strength though. I was not exercising at this time.
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:13 AM   #3
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I do IF which is 16 hour fasts and I train twice a week after 14 hours fasting without ill effect. Can't say for sure what a 24 hour fast would do but I am usually fairly hungry by hour 16. The obvious way to go would be have your last meal at 8pm then fast until 8pm the following evening. I assume this is all part of The Plan (trademark)?

I have read before that 24 hour fasting can be quite healthy. Martin Berkham has also alluded to this at some point I'm sure.
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:54 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Fazc View Post
Alternate Day Fasting. 1 or more 24 hour fasts per week.

Experiences, opinions, thoughts?
I've personally done this several times to lean out, with good results. Dependent on my work schedule, how I scheduled the 24 hour cycle would depend largely on this.

But, typically, If I was working 3 to 11, my 24 hour cycle would begin at 8AM and end at 8AM. The first variance would be a very large meal (close to 1800 to 1900 calories, with a lot of fiber, with macro set up accordingly, MT-Line, 2300), and then I would fast completely for the next 24 hours. Workout would commence about 4 or so hours after the meal, and then I would go to work. I was actually less hungry, as compared to 16 to 18 hour arrangements.

Likewise, If I wanted to eat double MT, knowing an event was coming up (say like Christmas dinner, or whatever), I would setup a diet that hits my MT-line close, drop Carbohydrates to nearly 0 for about 5 to 6 days, setup a weight program accordingly during this period, set up one to two sittings of meals, with 16 hour fast. Then pig the heck out on 4,000 or more calories (mostly carbohydrates), with no ill effects.
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Old 05-04-2012, 06:56 AM   #5
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I've fasted about 10 days in my life, mostly light juice fasts. Did several single day fasts, a 2 day fast and once a 3 day fast.
I felt some of the same Btb, it was at about the 20 hour mark I started to feel very hungry again. I pushed through and it actually became easier, by the time I'd hit the gym I wasn't hungry again and eating after the gym was just a normal relaxed affair. No over-eating or any urges to.

A couple of strange things; strength was fine in the gym, I was doing sets of 12 in the Squat and it was fine. My chest felt no soreness from the previous days workout, but it was only a few hours after breaking the fast that I felt soreness from the workout over a day ago. Might be co-oincidence but I thought it weird I felt no soreness while fasting and then immediately after the DOMS it. Weight dropped down by about 1lb, after refeeding the next day.

The 2-3 day fasts must have been brutal!

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Originally Posted by Kuytrider View Post
I do IF which is 16 hour fasts and I train twice a week after 14 hours fasting without ill effect.
Definitely all part of The Plan! I've been doing the 16/8 Leangains stuff for a while now, perhaps 2-3 months and it's pretty much ingrained into how I eat. It's more than easy now, it's just the way it is. I wouldn't change it.

BUT once you get over the initial hurdle of eating 1k to 2k per meal then it's actually very easy to overeat on a Leangains schedule or experience substantial hunger for little reward while in a deficit. I read a few accounts online of people using 16/8 for the majority of the week but then 1-2 24 hour fasts per week to really accelerate fat loss. I think this idea has some merit. I'm attempting another 24 hour fast from either saturday or sunday.

In regards to benefits; I've been reading Eat Stop Eat the past few days and one point which stood out to me was his contention that the body can be in either two states: Fed or Fasted. Each brings it's own hormonal responses, of which both have numerous benefits. We as weight trainers know all about the benefits of being in the Fed stage but Pilon's contention is that in the modern age where we're never more than a few hours from a meal, humans never get to experience the benefits of the Fasted stage. Of which, apparently, there are numerous.

That notion that we're missing the benefits of being in the Fasted state was very interesting. Pilon contends we're missing out on about half the hormonal benefits that the body is capable of. Glucagon levels, Growth Hormone and all sorts which are suppressed while we're either eating or digesting. That made a lot of sense to me.

Furthermore, and this is just my interpretation, the benefits of being in a completely Fasted state mitigate the negatives of a lowered calorie intake. It's during that period of fasting where we see stuff like Growth Hormone spike and various other cool hormonal stuff happen which actually offsets the lack of food. So if we bear in mind that there are only two states Fed or Fasted. The problem with the typical lower calorie approach is that it *keeps* you in the Fed state but doesn't offer any of the benefits of the Fasted state to mitigate the damage done by being in a calorie deficit. So you experience all of the negatives of a lowered calorie intake without any of the bodies own mitigating responses to lowered calorie intake. That last bit if just my interpretation however it is one potential way to explain lowered metabolism, muscle loss and all sorts during periods of calorie restriction BUT none of that during periods of complete fasting. The idea being that completely fasting is far, far better than prolonged calorie restriction because of what goes on in the body and my own experience yesterday leads me to think at least some 20-24 hour fasts during the week are a good idea and far, far better than prolonged calorie reduction.

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Originally Posted by Chillen View Post
I've personally done this several times to lean out, with good results. Dependent on my work schedule, how I scheduled the 24 hour cycle would depend largely on this.
Fascinating Chillen, I didn't know you use this type of schedule to get into the shape you are in. As mentioned above I'll be trying this again on either Sunday or Monday so we'll see how 2 work out for me in a week.

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Old 05-04-2012, 07:59 AM   #6
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Fascinating Chillen, I didn't know you use this type of schedule to get into the shape you are in. As mentioned above I'll be trying this again on either Sunday or Monday so we'll see how 2 work out for me in a week.
I learned it the hard way, I tend to be a very stubborn individual to the point of fault sometimes. But, when you mess around with the weights, and diet a few years, you tend to figure out what works and what doesn't (if your heart is in it). When I first lost 45 plus pounds, dropping calories is all I had to do, the macros of carbohydrates, and fat, just didn't matter. The time I ate, how much I ate in one sitting didn't matter, as long as a calorie deficit was present. This is actually pretty good feed back (at the time) for one nearing 50. However, things began to change when BF got low (low in terms of about 10 percent, and wanting to go lower), and running deficits for several months prior.

Like a stubborn ass that I am, I stuck with what was working the passed few months. Stuck with calorie deficits as the main contributor; however, pushed cardio to new heights, and kept weight training progressively heavy. There was a point I was doing 4 cardio sessions in one day 3 to 4 times per week 30 minutes each. It was a very frustrating and depressive period.

This did NOTHING to push my BF lower.

I began reading and studying at this point, and came across Intermediate Fasting concepts, read on glucose storage (and variants of the Keto type diet). And, it was at t his point, I learned there were all kinds of ways to manipulate diet contents for various personal goals.

When I developed a varying 24 hour cycle (mainly controlled by hours of employment), IF eating plan, manipulating carbohydrates to sub-80 grams (at this point not varying it whether it was a training day or not), dropping the cardio, and adding in high rep training (to solicit higher carbohydrate usage), and one to two heavy weight training sessions (post re-feed session), is when things began to change---a lot. This is just a brief recap.

What is interesting (an may be of interest to you), is though I leaned out, I actually put on a small amount of lean muscle after several weeks. The one to two day (dependent on arrangement) re-feed, I actually felt leaner as compared to the days I was running calorie deficits and carbohydrate depravity. 24 hour IF clock was mainly 8A to 8A, but there were times I had to flip it forward, or flip it back, because of work unannounced BS. It was at this point with these personal lessons in mind, I decided to do depletion, re-feed cycles (double MT or more, dependent), and post these, I would add in calorie surplus days, and develop a power weight training for period, and follow with circuit strength training sessions, and then repeat it. All the while varying my IF...cycles around work. My body (though not big, as this wasn't my goal), responded rather well, and still does to this day.

It was in this learning process, where I learned: "hey....I could stuff my ugly face with 5,000 calories on Thanksgiving" (by cycling depletion where applicable), and just have a hey-day with food, and not worry about the 3,000+ excess calories (pushing mainly carbohydrates).

So, Yes, IF Has been good to me. Hope it works for you if you attempt to give it a shot.

Peace, my friend


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Last edited by Chillen; 05-04-2012 at 08:04 AM.
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