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  Reply # 1045004 14-May-2014 17:59 Send private message quote this post

Agree that low sugar is a great option. I'm combining (probably badly) fasting (less so these days), low sugar, high protein, low GI, and building a lot of muscle.

Because I'm vegetarian I miss out on a lot of protein and amino acids in meat. I'm using Nitrosyn protein powder which has all sorts of things including  BCAAs, plus creatine, glutamine, CLA, and just ordered some  L-Carnitine. Most I'm just trying to see what happens, so far I think they are helping a little at least.




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  Reply # 1045011 14-May-2014 18:08 Send private message quote this post

I think it is best to have several small meals a day and definitely not miss out on lunch. That way I am rarely hungry and I keep my metabolism up. The low carb, or low sugar or low GI is also a great idea, a friend of mine does that and she lost 30kg. However another friend finds it very hard to give up on sugar all together, so having those 2 days a week might be the way...



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  Reply # 1045018 14-May-2014 18:25 Send private message quote this post

The "eat lots of small meals" and "fast and eat one meal" ideas are pretty much opposites. I don't think it really matters when you eat, and I think being hungry occasionally (proper hungry - haven't eaten in 16 hours) is good for you. It helps calibrate your appetite.




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Reply # 1045022 14-May-2014 18:31 Send private message quote this post

what I meant was eat 5 meals a day and then fast for 1 or 2 days, maybe you misunderstood is that possible?



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  Reply # 1045061 14-May-2014 19:02 Send private message quote this post

I'm not convinced meal size makes any difference, but if someone's happy doing that sure, why not. Given that humans cope fine with eating once a day I'm not sure how useful 5 times is.




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  Reply # 1045582 15-May-2014 14:48 Send private message quote this post

I am a personal trainer and have read a lot about fasting. It is especially interesting to me since a lot of the nutrition philosophies that are taught while gaining your qualification are the typical eat small meals, rev the metabolism, whole grains etc etc. 

I question all of it as most mainstream nutrition advice and studies to back it up are pushed by food companies. 

I think the fast diet is an interesting one. Of course it will work because for one, you are obviously eating less calories over a weekly period (assuming you eat normally and dont over indulge on the non fast days). There are a lot of other reasons why fasting works well though which have been previously mentioned here, like autophagy (cleaning up the cells, cleansing system), increased growth hormone (preserves muscle, burns fat), giving the digestion system a break and a host of others that you can google about fasting. 

One of the key things I have read about fasting is that to get all of the benefits you need to refrain from eating ANYTHING and I struggle to see how eating 500 calories would have the same benefits of nothing at all (as soon as you eat that fasting period stops until you food is fully digested which can take up to hours). Eating this small amount of food I believe takes far more disciple than simply saying  im not eating untill 6 tonight for example. Also, fasting benefits are greater the longer you fast (up until a point of diminishing returns). You get the most benefit from the fast between 18 -24 hour mark onwards, up to 36 hours when the the benefits of the fast begin to drop off (muscle starts to catabolise, cortisol rises, sleep disturbance etc).

The method I think works well is fasting 1 or 2 times a week for 24 hours (skip breakfast and lunch have dinner), and eat high protein, good fats and veges for the bulk of your diet. This way you are getting the benefits of long fasts but still are eating every day (going 36 hours is quite hard as you skip a whole day of eating). With 24 hours you can fit it around social occasions and life in general.

Of utmost importance when fasting is to include heavy weight training into your exercise regime - it doesn't need to be a realy long hard workout - you just need one or two sets per muscle group, really heave (6-8 reps) to send a stimulus to your muscle that it is needed, so when you are in a calorie deficit your body wil hold on to your muscle (because you have sent the message that you need it to push heavy things) and go for your fat that is not needed instead. Do this 2 or 3 times a week. 

A very good book on the topic of fasting is Brad Pilon Eat Stop Eat:Eat Stop Eat He has done so much research and provides the science behind intermittent fasting for fat loss, and also muscle building. The guy worked for a supplement company before this so it is very interesting to here him talk about the selected information those companies put out to their clients to sell product, when really a lot of what they are claiming their products can do can easily be achieved with fasting, good nutrition and smart exercise - but that doesnt make anyone any money. 

I found his book far more informative than 5:2 and actually a lot smarter. I don't like how 5:2 promotes the 500 cal day (negates the effects of fasting) and allows you to eat 'normally' on the other days. It really is more of a calorie counting diet in my view and Eat Stop Eat is far more effective.


Also, one last thing - if you have been living a pretty unhealthy lifestyle for a long time then you wil find fasting quite difficult to begin with as your blod sugar management will be all over the place - and Brad explains that well. It is best to get yourself on a healthy regime then step it up a notch with some fasting thrown in.

Cheers!



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  Reply # 1045601 15-May-2014 15:06 Send private message quote this post

jumcc87:
One of the key things I have read about fasting is that to get all of the benefits you need to refrain from eating ANYTHING and I struggle to see how eating 500 calories would have the same benefits of nothing at all (as soon as you eat that fasting period stops until you food is fully digested which can take up to hours). Eating this small amount of food I believe takes far more disciple than simply saying  im not eating untill 6 tonight for example. Also, fasting benefits are greater the longer you fast (up until a point of diminishing returns). You get the most benefit from the fast between 18 -24 hour mark onwards, up to 36 hours when the the benefits of the fast begin to drop off (muscle starts to catabolise, cortisol rises, sleep disturbance etc).

The method I think works well is fasting 1 or 2 times a week for 24 hours (skip breakfast and lunch have dinner), and eat high protein, good fats and veges for the bulk of your diet. Of utmost importance when fasting is to include heavy weight training into your exercise regime - it doesn't need to be a realy long hard workout - you just need one or two sets per muscle group, really heave (6-8 reps) to send a stimulus to your muscle that it is needed, so when you are in a calorie deficit your body wil hold on to your muscle (because you have sent the message that you need it to push heavy things) and go for your fat that is not needed instead. Do this 2 or 3 times a week. 

A very good book on the topic of fasting is Brad Pilon Eat Stop Eat: Eat Stop Eat He has done so much research and provides the science behind intermittent fasting for fat loss, and also muscle building. The guy worked for a supplement company before this so it is very interesting to here him talk about the selected information those companies put out to their clients to sell product, when really a lot of what they are claiming their products can do can easily be achieved with fasting, good nutrition and smart exercise - but that doesnt make anyone any money. 

I found his book far more informative than 5:2 and actually a lot smarter. I don't like how 5:2 promotes the 500 cal day (negates the effects of fasting) and allows you to eat 'normally' on the other days. It really is more of a calorie counting diet in my view and Eat Stop Eat is far more effective.


Agree with you 100%. Eating a little is much more difficult than eating nothing, so when I fast I eat dinner one day then don't eat anything until the next evening. I tend to do cardio exercise, but nothing too heavy, as I'm not sure what happens if your body doesn't have protein to repair muscles. I train heavy, with body weight exercises from You Are Your Own Gym, though I better join a gym soon before I ruin all our furniture.

When I'm training I don't fast, I figure muscles need protein and energy. I only train 3 or 4 days a week so once I'm recovered from training I fast for a day before getting back into it. The supplements seem to help a bit.

In the past two months I've gained 3kg but my waist size is the same or slightly smaller.




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  Reply # 1045615 15-May-2014 15:33 Send private message quote this post

timmmay:

Agree with you 100%. Eating a little is much more difficult than eating nothing, so when I fast I eat dinner one day then don't eat anything until the next evening. I tend to do cardio exercise, but nothing too heavy, as I'm not sure what happens if your body doesn't have protein to repair muscles. I train heavy, with body weight exercises from You Are Your Own Gym, though I better join a gym soon before I ruin all our furniture.

When I'm training I don't fast, I figure muscles need protein and energy. I only train 3 or 4 days a week so once I'm recovered from training I fast for a day before getting back into it. The supplements seem to help a bit.

In the past two months I've gained 3kg but my waist size is the same or slightly smaller.




Yes, that way you don't have food on your mind all the time as well when you just straight fast.

Cardio exercises are generally pretty much a waste of time as a weight loss tool (not saying their not good for your heart and health). If you think about on a half hour jog you might burn 300 calories - well you will probably eat those back with the increased hunger from exercise. Diet is the most powerful tool you've got when losing weight. The reason heavy lifting is so important when you are dieting is that it sends a message to your body that you need to keep that valuable muscle for future lifting, so instead of your body eating your muscles for fuel when dieting it, it will go for the fat. Maintaining strength should be your number one goal when dieting. This way you will keep muscle loss to a minimum and fat loss high. Muscle is expensive metabocially to keep, so if your body suspects a famine it will eat at the muscle to try and lower the metabolism and keep you a live longer!

Cardio exercise, while dieting will most likely raise cortisol (Stress hormone) and eat use muscle for fuel sorry to say! Go for the weights.

In regards to worrying about your muscles getting the protein, it's actually not as cut and dry as supplement companies like you to think. You dont actually need the protein straight away and your muscles aren't going to fade away. Quite interestingly is that if you fast after weight training the growth hormone release actually increases and burns more fat while retaining muscle. It's a very powerful tool. Think about it - our hunter gatherers didn't always have a succesful hunt! Our bodies are designed to be able to survive that.

So you are quite safe to weight train on fasting days and get the protein in at night - its the protein over a 24 hour period that is important, so that evening you might want a big juicy steak or protein from other sources you prefer. Another good thing about weight training on fasting days as it burns more fat, makes your body retain your muscle and can actually be an appetite suppressant during the day.

I always weight training when I fast now and it has been so much more effective for me with burning fat and keeping muscle on.


Honesty Brad has some great reading on fasting in his book Eat Stop Eat - I highly recomend it - he is a real guru on the subject and has pretty deidicated his adult life to the subject. 

Happy to answer any questions - im a bit of a fitness geek :)





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  Reply # 1045646 15-May-2014 16:33 Send private message quote this post

Again I agree with 99% of what you say, I do find cardio helpful though. When I walk up hills and steps for 30-40 minutes a day in conjunction with fasting I lose weight much more rapidly - I often do around 1000 stairs in there too. Even if I'm just doing regular calorie controlled eating I find it helps. However I am more disciplined that most people, I can choose not to eat extra because of the exercise. However since it got cold I gave up cardio, doing purely heavy weights at home, and I'm losing tummy fat - not that there's a huge amount left. As a vegetarian I have to have protein powders, supplements, and eggs to try to keep my protein up.

I'll check out that book, I've read a bit about it but not the whole thing yet.




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  Reply # 1045692 15-May-2014 17:46 Send private message quote this post

timmmay: Again I agree with 99% of what you say, I do find cardio helpful though. When I walk up hills and steps for 30-40 minutes a day in conjunction with fasting I lose weight much more rapidly - I often do around 1000 stairs in there too. Even if I'm just doing regular calorie controlled eating I find it helps. However I am more disciplined that most people, I can choose not to eat extra because of the exercise. However since it got cold I gave up cardio, doing purely heavy weights at home, and I'm losing tummy fat - not that there's a huge amount left. As a vegetarian I have to have protein powders, supplements, and eggs to try to keep my protein up.

I'll check out that book, I've read a bit about it but not the whole thing yet.


hey if it works for you go for it! Actually walking can be very good for the body, but im talking taking nice leisurely strolls outside (lowers stress, burns fat).

One thing that I find very interesting with what you said. You said that after doing just the heavy bodyweight stuff you have lost belly fat. One side effect of too much cardio is increased hormone cortisol. High cortisol tends to make you retain or store fat on your stomach! I find interesting that since you have stopped it and only done the weights, you have lost tummy fat. Weights do raise cortisol a bit but in conjunction with growth hormone (which cardio does not raise and actually does the opposite) with promotes fat loss - weights also increase testosterone which furthermore promotes muscle mass! All good things.

Just remember with cardio - even though you might be losing weight, it might not necessarily be fat. You would rather be heavier with less fat on your body and more muscle, then lighter with more fat and less muscle. Weight promote the former, Cardio the later.





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  Reply # 1045701 15-May-2014 18:07 Send private message quote this post

jumcc87: hey if it works for you go for it! Actually walking can be very good for the body, but im talking taking nice leisurely strolls outside (lowers stress, burns fat).

One thing that I find very interesting with what you said. You said that after doing just the heavy bodyweight stuff you have lost belly fat. One side effect of too much cardio is increased hormone cortisol. High cortisol tends to make you retain or store fat on your stomach! I find interesting that since you have stopped it and only done the weights, you have lost tummy fat. Weights do raise cortisol a bit but in conjunction with growth hormone (which cardio does not raise and actually does the opposite) with promotes fat loss - weights also increase testosterone which furthermore promotes muscle mass! All good things.

Just remember with cardio - even though you might be losing weight, it might not necessarily be fat. You would rather be heavier with less fat on your body and more muscle, then lighter with more fat and less muscle. Weight promote the former, Cardio the later.


When I was doing fasting with cardio I lost belly fat as well, probably quicker than with weights. Just about any diet or training scheme works for me, if I stick to it.

My main thought is "you can't outrun your fork". Eat too much, or the wrong thing, you'll get fat. Eat the right amounts of good food and move, cardio or weights, you'll lose weight. Some foods are better than others, some training schemes are better than others, but most things will work if done properly and enthusiastically.

Just finished a "pull" day, with a side order of ab wheel and ab exercises.




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  Reply # 1045769 15-May-2014 19:57 Send private message quote this post

Good work!

You are absolutely right, it's all simple stuff really and I think we are all guilty of over complicating it or thinking we are missing out on the secret to losing fat - but in reality it is just discipline with eating and exercise!

I guess I delved into the fasting stuff because of the subject of this thread and my interest in it. If you are going to try advance strategies like fasting I think it needs to be done right  - and it is not a free pass to gorge and fast - repeat. 

Because you find it relatively simple t lose fat by doing some fasted cardio and weights, you are probably quite metabolicly healthy. The reality. most people aren't in that state to start with, eating highy processed, high sugar foods and bad lifetstyle choices - it is dangerous for them to jump straight into something like 5:2 and think its a magic bullet without first sorting out their nutrition and exercise and actually educating themselves on it.

You are right though. It's no secret - jut discipline with exercise and good food - but no one wants to do that; they want the 'new, fastest, secret' way to get in shape. Like the saying goes 'i'll do anything to lose 10kg, except exercise and eat right' ha!

 



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  Reply # 1045772 15-May-2014 20:02 Send private message quote this post

I use http://www.myfitnesspal.com/ to track what I eat quite carefully - not all the time, but enough I know what I'm putting into the machine. Being vegetarian and having a history of being overweight I have to pay more attention to nutrition than most. I used to be 100kg when I was 22, I got down to 68kg using Atkins, some cardio, and lots of weights - I could bench press 110kg when I weighed 68kg. Kept it off for ages, made it to 85 last year, back down to 73 for my wedding, now 76 with the same waist size and going down. Progress.

Fasting is an interesting option, done well it can really help I think.




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  Reply # 1045773 15-May-2014 20:03 Send private message quote this post

sorry - i guess the last reply defeated the purpose of this thread - body hacks!



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  Reply # 1045778 15-May-2014 20:12 Send private message quote this post

Threads always go off topic :)




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